6 Places for Top-Notch Thrifting in DC

These spots are rife with hidden gems

June 18, 2024 7:04 am
Thrifting
Who knows what you'll find at these great DC thrift shops?
Getty Images

Having the retail space for an extensive thrift shop is harder in a place like D.C., but it’s not impossible. Like with a good thrift experience itself, you’ve just got to have a little patience and a good eye and know where to look. Or you could just read our guide to the best of the best in the immediate area. While there are a handful of shops in the District proper, some of the best vintage or secondhand shopping takes place well outside of the city — but there are still a number of worthwhile spots. Our list of the best thrift shops in D.C. is inclusive of men’s and women’s options, so one or two of the more stalwart womenswear stores might not make the cut — but you should visit them anyhow — alongside our picks. After all, a hidden gem is just waiting to be discovered, whether it’s the so-old-it’s-new again blazer or a killer graphic tee that’s bound to be a conversation starter when you go out next. Check out our hand-selected picks below. 

Prime Thrift

Takoma

Originally started in San Antonio (go Spurs go) before removing to the D.C. area in the early 1970s, Prime Thrift donates its proceeds to the AMVETS charity to support veterans (if you were unaware, the San Antonio area features multiple military headquarters, including Lackland Air Force base) and a handful of other local charities. The D.C. location features a rather extensive selection and affordable prices, alongside seasonal goods and houseware items if you’re looking for more than just a cool or obscure tee shirt to wear. 

6101 Georgia Ave NW

Rosario’s Thrift Store

Columbia Heights

Rosario’s defining feature is that you can snag (most) items at a three-for $10 deal, making it one of — if not the most — affordable thrift shops in the area. Cozy and manageable to navigate, it has a really good selection that makes it easy for you to walk out with something bold and unique without having to dig and dig for hours to find that steal of a deal.  

3616 14th St NW

Frugalista

Mount Pleasant

Tucked away in the sleepy and loveable part of Mount Pleasant, Frugalista specializes in both men’s and women’s fashion finds, often with plenty of splashy designer finds and plenty of trendy pieces to up your game. Their Instagram, which hasn’t been updated in a while, historically does a good job of piecing together outfits from in-store items if you want to get a general sense of what’s available there — but it certainly is better to stop in and check for yourself. 

3055 Mt Pleasant St NW

Cool Off at These 8 DC Hotel Pools This Summer
When you simply can’t stand the heat any longer, book a cabana at one of these spots

Unique

Silver Spring and Falls Church

Real heads know that Unique is the place to go in the larger DMV area for thrifting. While it’s a bit out of the way (you’ll definitely need a car or an Uber), it’s absolutely worth a trek for the sheer scale of offerings. Very well-organized by category of clothing and size, Unique has both men’s and women’s clothing and even house goods. In fact, there’s so much of a selection that it’s very easy to go and make a whole day out of it, depending upon your desire and appetite to shop until you drop. Oh, and the prices are more than reasonable. 

10141 New Hampshire Ave, Silver Spring, MD // 2956 Gallows Rd, Falls Church, VA

2nd Avenue Thrift Superstore

Bladensburg and Alexandria 

Another place you’ll likely need a car or Uber to get to is 2nd Avenue Thrift Superstore. Living up to its namesake, shoppers will find an extensive selection of well-organized clothing alongside daily color tag discounts to help your dollar go further. Hell, the store even has a loyalty program if you’re so inclined to visit often, making it more attractive to visit on a continuing basis. 

4960 Annapolis Rd, Bladensburg, MD // 8750 Richmond Hwy, Alexandria, VA

Salvation Army Thrift Store

Rockville

A lot of the out-of-town thrift stores, as we mentioned, are a little bit difficult to get to — but not in the case of the Salvation Army Thrift Store in Rockville. Located just a few steps away from the North Bethesda Metro station, it’s about as accessible as it gets for out of D.C.-proper thrift shops and includes a really good selection of clothing. Very well-organized and clean, and there’s also an impressive selection of household items, too.

11550 Rockville Pike, Rockville, MD

The InsideHook Newsletter.

News, advice and insights for the most interesting person in the room.