Shopping vintage can be a more challenging experience than just going to the mall, but it’s definitely worth it when you’re looking for a unique look. Whether you shop in boutiques, thrift stores or online, it’s important to avoid a few errors that most vintage shoppers regret.

Discover the worst vintage shopping mistakes and improve your shopping experience by making sure that you’re only spending your money on quality items that you’ll get to wear plenty of times. Pay attention to these details when you shop vintage and you won’t end up with buyer’s remorse.

Never Trust the Size on the Label

Purchasing vintage clothing can be tricky, even when you find plenty of items that fit your style. While sizing varies from brand to brand, there have also been plenty of changes to the system over the years. The actual measurements of vintage clothes are much more important than the size printed on the label. Buying vintage clothes one size too small is never a good idea.

Not Checking the Seams

One of the worst vintage shopping mistakes is ignoring the seams when you’re in a store and can actually inspect them thoroughly, as opposed to online purchases that are always risky. Some vintage garments have been altered, and restoring them to their original state can be very difficult. Checking all the seams is a must when you have that option.

Ignoring Worn Out Parts

Elastic and leather can get worn out much faster than fabrics and replacing them isn’t always an easy option. Make sure that you inspect the clothes carefully in shops, or inquire about the state of any waistbands or leather panels when you’re shopping for vintage clothes online.

Missing Discoloration

If possible, it’s important to check fabrics in a natural light. Ignoring discoloration is definitely one of the worst vintage shopping mistakes you can make. Make sure that you check for fading, particularly in the shoulder area. Once you make a purchase, there’s really nothing you can do about the discolored spots, and even dying the item can leave the color uneven.

Ignoring Care and Maintenance Requirements

When you aren’t interested in making special accommodations for vintage pieces, like dry cleaning, always check the label and avoid those that can’t be machine washed. Even if they seem to be sturdy enough to go into the washing machine, preserving your investment by gently hand washing them might be a good idea.

See also: 10 Worst Clothes Shopping Mistakes

Not Checking Zippers and Clasps

Making sure that everything is in working condition is very important. If you don’t carefully check all the claps and zippers, you’re making one of the worst vintage shopping mistakes. Of course, they can be replaced, but you have to take into account the time and energy you’ll waste, along with any potential issues that stem from worn out fabrics.

Vintage Clothes Shopping

Not Looking for Stains

When you’re checking for discoloration, it’s also important to make sure than there aren’t any stains that won’t come out. The most common ones are sweat stains. While you can get the smell out of most vintage purchases, the armpit stains don’t usually come out.

Not Reading All the Details

Finding the perfect clothes online can be easier than browsing through a lot of stores, but one of the worst vintage shopping mistakes is not reading the full description. Don’t just speed read through it, there might be plenty of info that makes you reconsider your purchase, but you’re just skimming through and missing it.

More: Can You Still Wear Shoes That Are Too Small?

Not Paying Extra Attention to Shoes

Buying vintage shoes can be even more tricky than clothes. There are plenty of things that can go wrong with them after wearing them just a couple of time, so you’re better off avoiding them, especially if they’re really old and made of leather. If you absolutely must have them, make sure that you inspect them carefully.

Not Bargaining

Overpaying can be one of the worst vintage shopping mistakes, so don’t be afraid to ask for a good deal, particularly when you’re buying more than one item. Be polite to shop keepers as soon as you walk in, because a smile can take you a long way when you’re trying to get a good deal.