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J. Crew will pay you major money for your old shirts, sweaters, and more — here's how to take advantage

J. Crew Always includes two parts: J. Crew Vintage and ThredUp.

J. Crew Always

Photo Credit: Getty Images

J. Crew's new resale program, J. Crew Always, lets you buy and sell quality vintage clothes in-store and online in exchange for store credit. This means you get to save on future purchases and reduce environmental impact — a win-win all around.

How does J. Crew Always work?

J. Crew Always includes two parts: J. Crew Vintage and ThredUp. J. Crew Vintage is a collection of curated men's and women's apparel sold at certain stores, including two in New York City.

ThredUp is a secondhand apparel site that sets shoppers up to buy and sell J. Crew women's and kid's pieces online. In return, they get credit toward future J. Crew purchases. Credit amounts work out to 3% to 80% of the selling price, depending on the item.

Here's how you can participate in J. Crew's ThredUp program:

  1. Get your Clean Out Kit from a J. Crew store and activate it online, or print out a free shipping label to deliver your gently used women's and/or kid's clothing.
  2. Pack your items in a box and send them to ThredUp via FedEx or USPS.
  3. Collect and enjoy your J. Crew credit (earned on eligible items that sell within the listing time frame).

Eligible items must show no wear (including fading, shrinkage, and pilling), damage (including rips, stains, odors, or missing pieces), and alterations (including missing sizing information). If items are deemed ineligible (which can understandably happen), don't worry — ThredUp will recycle or reuse them, or you can request they be returned.

Before starting the process, be sure the brands of the items you wish to send in are eligible. These need to be either mid-priced, premium, or designer brands such as Gap, Levi's, Zara, Nike, and Asos. But you're always free to send in lower-priced items, and ThredUp will work to reuse or recycle them for you.

Why should I do J. Crew Always?

There are several reasons to participate in J. Crew Always. First off, you'll save money that you can use for other things. And, let's face it, cash is definitely a scarce commodity for some of us these days.

On top of your cushier bank account balance, you'll be doing a great thing when it comes to saving limited landfill space and reducing pollution, including harmful chemicals and substances put into the world by garment production.

Since the fashion industry is responsible for about 10% of the planet's air pollution, anything we can do collectively to lower that is a win. That means the more we re-wear or repurpose clothing and other apparel, the fewer new items need to be produced, and the more we can decrease pollution. J. Crew Always is just one way to help achieve this goal.

Are there similar programs to J. Crew Always?

Other retailers offer similar resale programs, which just goes to show how popular thrifting has become and the benefits it brings to people and the planet.

For example, lululemon's Like New program, both in-store and online, lets you trade in gently worn gear in exchange for discounts on authentic, lightly used gear to refresh your wardrobe.

Amazon also has its Trade-In program, which allows customers to exchange their eligible electronic items and devices (like cell phones, video games, and more) for an Amazon gift card and potential further discounts or credits toward a new qualifying device.

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