Building a simpler and greener life

My “No New Clothes Challenge” for 2020

My “No New Clothes Challenge” for 2020

I’m going to cut down on spending, waste, and clutter with a “no new clothes challenge” this year!

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No New Clothes Challenge - Join me as I attempt to go through the entire year without purchasing any brand new clothes! |

Call them New Year’s resolutions…call them life changes…

Whatever the name, January is by far the most common time of the year to set goals and challenges for yourself. 

This year, instead of fitness or diet goals, I’m going to try something that I’ve never tried before. But it goes towards my goal of practical minimalism and I’m excited to give it a try. 

I’ve been working towards a capsule wardrobe by limiting my clothing purchases for a little while now. And, I’m ready to take it one step further.

I’m going to embark on a “no new clothes challenge” for 2020! 

Although I’ve never had tons of clothes, this won’t be an easy feat. 

For one thing, I’m very tall, so it’s not always easy to find clothes that fit the right way directly off the rack. Pants give the most issue, but tops can be tricky, too. Long arms, long torso… you get the picture. But, I’m confident though with a little time and persistence, I’ll be able to find what will work for my body type. 

I’ve been purchasing a good percentage of my clothing second-hand for years, but never all of it. This may be the year. Now that both of my children are in school for at least part of the day, I have a little more time to go thrift shopping alone. I’ll be able to try on clothes and take my time. Something pretty rare for a stay at home mom of two little kids. I also shouldn’t need any coats or dresses anytime soon. But a year is a long time, so it will still be tricky. 

I will be making a few exceptions though. I’ll be purchasing new undies, socks, and swimsuits if the need comes up. 

Even though I’m not going to be looking for brand-new clothing, I will be able to pick up items from thrift or consignment stores from time to time. 

In case anyone wants to join me in my no new clothes challenge, or just pick up a few items from time to time, here are some spots where I’ll be doing my shopping for 2020.


thredUP is one of the granddaddies of online clothing consignment store. They have it down to a science. You can shop by brand, size, or item. They even have kid’s options and easy returns. 

Plus, you can even filter to find brand new clothes and shoes. 

I’m intrigued by their rescue boxes where they ship surprise orders that need a little TLC. Perfect for DIY projects or anyone who likes to create custom clothes!

Right now, thredUP is generously giving all new shoppers $10 towards their first order! That can go really far!


Mercari is another online thrift store, but with a little bit of everything. I think the prices are a little high for me, but if you have the time or are looking for something specific, this might be the site for you. 


Poshmark, and other upscale online consignment stores such as The RealReal and Tradesy to name a couple, offer pre-owned designer goods at deep discounts. I don’t see myself having any fancy galas to attend in the next 12 months, but if I do, I know where I’m shopping! 


Goodfair has been coming across my radar more and more lately and I think it’s an amazing site. Instead of allowing the shopper to pick out specific items, the staff behind Goodfair offer bundles of like clothing. For instance, you can choose 4 pre-loved comfy flannels. Or perfectly worn-in hoodies. I love the idea behind the “Breath of Fresh Air bundle” where they donate half of each sale to the nonprofit One Tree Planted. 

Certain sizes and bundles sell out fast on Goodfair, so if you see something you want to order, grab it fast! 

I just ordered a mystery sweatshirt for the winter and I’m so excited to see what I get! 


There are tons of new items on eBay now, but you can filter the clothing section for pre-owned items too. Because the shipping is set by the sellers, that can be on the high side, so double check before buying! 


Did you know you can shop at Goodwill online? I haven’t bought anything yet because they don’t have the most user-friendly search options, but with a quick glance, the prices seem reasonable! They also offer home goods, accessories, and much, much more! 

Of course, there is always the option of searching through your local thrift stores, garage sales or flea markets.

We have a huge flea market that benefits a school in our area in March and I’m really looking forward to that. So many great treasures there!

I am so motivated to see this “no new clothes challenge” through in 2020.

It goes hand-in-hand with so many things I care deeply about – saving money, cutting down on waste, keeping unwanted clothes out of my closet. Same thrill of the purchase, but without adding to the fast fashion issue. 

I’ll be posting updates throughout the year, so be sure to subscribe to my site and social media channels to see what treasures I find! 

Wish me luck on my 2020 “no new clothes challenge”!

For more on shopping second-hand, check out these posts:

12 Tips for Shopping at a Kid’s Consignment Sale

My Favorite Thrift Store Finds

Why You Need to Shop at a Habitat for Humanity ReStore

6 Online Consignment Shops You Should Know - Find out where I'm going to shop during my year-long no new clothes challenge! |

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10 thoughts on “My “No New Clothes Challenge” for 2020”

  • Very cool goal! I need to cut back – I had been doing really well until recently. At least I’ve recognized the fact!

  • This sounds like a really big goal! I don’t think I buy a lot of clothes every year, but this has gotten me to thinking. Perhaps I buy more than I realize! 🙂

  • Good luck on this, but like now I’m going to do this!

    Last year my big goal was to donate at least 1/2 of my clothes before I moved (I wound up doing a lot more than that!) So I now have something else to try to do this year!

    • With all the surprises and challenges of 2020, I definitely had to change my plan. I’ve had to scale back my website to concentrate on my other business so I haven’t been giving updates, but I’m planning on posting an end of year review about my no new clothes challenge soon. Long story short, I’m planning on continuing into 2021!

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