The Do’s And Don’ts For Buying Used
Buying used or secondhand has tons of benefits. You can save a little money while being environmentally conscious. But there can be hidden costs of buying used for some things. Bed bugs and product recalls can end up costing you more in the long run. Here’s what to look out for when shopping secondhand:
1. Don’t – Buy Children’s Toys and Furniture
This is a no-no for safety reasons. It can be hard to know when and where a toy was manufactured, which can put you at risk for product safety recalls or lead paint exposure. Some older products won’t have the same safety features as new ones, so skip these items.
2. Do – Wash and Dry Clothes and Linens
Thrift shopping can be a great way to spice up your wardrobe and give a little love to a garment that still has years left in it. It reduces the landfill waste that fast fashion can cause. But you still need to be careful. Bed bugs can linger in clothes and linens, so you should immediately wash and dry everything as soon as you get home. For things you can’t wash or dry yourself, take them to the dry cleaner.
3. Don’t – Reuse Cosmetics or Brushes
Even though luxury cosmetics can get pricey, so can the medical bills from buying used makeup. Cosmetics and brushes touch your eyes, mouth, skin and hands and can cause a rash or infection. Pass on the powders and lipsticks for your own health and safety.
4. Do – Know Your Allergies
If you have a specific allergy to cats, dogs or other pets, be extra careful when buying used linens, clothes or furniture. Look for fur or other hair, which could be a sign that the previous owner had a pet. Even if a purchase looks safe, give it a wash and a dry when you get home.
5. Do – Research Recalls
Many things can be recalled for safety hazards. If there’s an appliance or piece of furniture you have your eye on, check for recalls first. Get the make and model name so you can check the manufacturer’s website. If an older product is no longer on the list, you can give the company a call to confirm. You can also visit the Consumer Product Safety Commission.
If you do experience a rash or physical side effect from buying used, there are a few different ways to get care. You can consult the 24/7 Nurse Line, use Telehealth Services or find a primary care doctor.