Second hand gifts for Christmas

Becca Donaldson ·


Did you know that the word ‘stigma’ comes from a marking burned into the skin of ancient Greeks in order to showcase them as outcasts? Choosing to buy second hand gifts for Christmas may not land you with an unwanted tattoo, but it could still leave you feeling like you’ll be cast out socially. 

The reality is, there is still quite a stigma around second hand Christmas gifts. While many more people are becoming conscious of their impact on the planet, some are reluctant to bring these principles of sustainability to gifting. 

If you want to know how you can give someone beautiful and thoughtful gifts that don’t cost the earth, then read on. 


Why should we all give and receive second hand gifts for Christmas?

We’re all learning that we need to be more responsible consumers. Our world simply can’t sustain the level of consumption we’re contributing to. For example, at Reliked we know that you love preloved clothing precisely because it’s a great way to be planet-thoughtful and nab a bargain. We are masters at choosing low food mile food. We recycle automatically and you won’t catch us with a plastic straw.

But when it comes to Christmas, it’s like we’re all duped by the glitter and fairy lights to expect only things that are new and dazzling. Our conscious consumerism fails. Indeed, an extra 30% of rubbish is chucked out during the festive season with over 100 million bags heading to landfill. 

So, to help you help the planet and banish the stigma surrounding second hand gifting, find out why you should buy second hand gifts for Christmas. 

Less waste

Buying second hand gives the item a new lease of life. It would otherwise be discarded, likely ending up in landfill. 

Support small

If you want to support your local community, or individual brands that matter to you, buying second hand helps. For example, when you buy from your favourite influencer, you’re helping them too.

Better bargains

Particularly at Christmas, prices are hiked up. You’re rarely getting good value for money, whether you’re buying a new bike or a sofa. You can make your gift budget go considerably further by choosing to buy second hand Christmas gifts. Your recipient receives something a little more special for the same budget.

Lower carbon emissions

Particularly in the fashion world, we need to be aware of carbon emissions. The fashion industry is responsible for 2.1 billion metric tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions, a sizeable chunk of the world’s total. Even if you choose eco-friendly clothing, it is still more harmful than not being a consumer at all. A good compromise is to ensure that you use second hand gifting where you can. 

More thoughtful

Second hand gifts can actually be much more personal, unique and thoughtful. You’ll need to hunt around a bit more, and in doing so, you’ll likely find something that will really suit the recipient, rather than going down the generic high street shopping route. 

More bang for your buck

When you buy second hand you can buy someone special something more for the same budget. A £75.00 designer t-shirt may be out of your reach normally, but by choosing good quality preloved items, you can buy it for your friend and make their day.

Are you convinced yet? If so, read on and discover some of our best second hand gift ideas. Let’s work together to ditch the stigma of second hand gifts and normalise it!


Top tips for second hand Christmas gifts

Preloved not unwanted

Choose preloved gifts chosen with care, don’t just re-gift something unwanted you were given. These may make good charity donations, but they don’t tell someone they are special and important to you.

Be honest

Whilst we’re battling the stigma around second hand gifts, it is worth being honest with recipients and enthusiastically sharing that it’s preloved and why you’ve chosen that.

Choose quality

If you’re choosing a second hand gift then buy from a reputable source, such as Reliked, where the quality will be high and any fixes or cleaning has already been taken care of.

Don’t cut your budget

Don’t reduce your budget because you are buying second hand. The idea is to show that you can give someone something more special, not just get away with spending less.

Make it look lovely

Packaging is a problem for the environment, but the reason retailers use it is that it sells. It hooks us in and makes us think we’re getting something more than we are. Given that the amount of wrapping paper we use each year could reach the moon, most of which isn’t recyclable, it’s important not to automatically go down that route, but consider ways you can make the gift look more special. What about brown paper and a sprig of holly from a local walk, a reusable gift bag, or using a useful box?


Best second hand Christmas gifts

What items make the best second hand Christmas gifts? Check out these ideas:


Accessories like belts, phone cases and sunglasses are brilliant second hand because they really do look as good as new. 

What about these Burberry Black Sunglasses?


Jeans wear well and look new easily. Try these Karen Millen Blue City Cut Straight Leg Jeans at 40% off.

Jackets and coats

High-quality coats in nearly new condition will be loved by the recipient. For example, we love this Wallis Teddy Coat.

Designer bags

Designer bags which are preloved make fantastic gifts. Check out this Songmont Black Niuye Bag Sliver Chain Cross Body Mini Bag. It retails for nearly £200 but you can get it for less than £50! 

Influencer owned pieces

Know your recipient’s favourite Instagrammer? Buy them a preloved piece from their favourite influencer and they will be made up! Shop second hand by influencer.

Make Christmas 2022 the year that you show someone just how thoughtful you are and break the stigma of second hand gifts. Shop our range of preloved items and find the perfect gift for your loved one!


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