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Secondhand Shopping in Japan


Looking to buy stuff for cheap in Japan? You’ve come to the right place, fellow yen pincher. Living in Japan as a foreigner can take a toll on your sanity and your life savings, so why not help one of those things by shopping secondhand? Thrifting in Japan is easy, affordable, good for the environment, and doesn’t typically require much or any extra effort.

In this article, I’ll give you general tips on shopping secondhand in Japan, as well as introduce some prominent shops and marketplaces to get started. My experience comes from bargain hunting as a grad student in Nagoya, but I suggest looking into your local area to support any small thrift stores or flea markets near you. In any case, after reading, I hope you’ll feel empowered to go forth into your own Japanese thrifting adventures!

Why Buy Used Goods in Japan?

But Emily, you say, why should I waste my precious time sifting through people’s old garbage? I like buying nice things!

Japanese used goods are often in fairly pristine condition.

Well, I’ve got splendid news — in Japan, that old garbage is often practically good as new. In the US, unless an item is listed as brand new, I’m used to seeing a little wear and tear. On the other hand, I expect the Japanese used goods I buy to be in fairly pristine condition, because people tend to take better care of the items they’re selling. Nine times out of ten, I can barely tell the difference between a new item and a used one described as “in good condition” or better. That’s why I treat secondhand shopping in Japan as just regular shopping, but better for the planet and easier on my wallet.

And speaking of yen, you likely won’t be spending much of it when shopping secondhand in Japan. Used items tend to be cheaper than new anywhere, of course, but I’ve found that Japanese prices skew especially low. Many used manga at Book-Off sell for a meager 100 yen or less, and on Mercari, you can buy clothes in great condition starting at 300 yen. You may also find a wider range of sizes in thrift shops than normal Japanese clothing stores, which can be especially helpful for foreigners.

Japanese prices for used goods skew especially low.

So if the strings of your coin purse are feeling tight, or if you need your parachute pants in an extra-large, consider purchasing some nihonjin’s not-so-crusty castaways. Since used goods are so much cheaper, you might be able to experiment more often. Try out a new book series, branch out with your interior design, or finally become the fashion gyaru you were always meant to be. If you don’t like what you bought, you can simply pawn it off again and rest easy knowing it wasn’t much of a financial risk anyway.

And lastly, if you’d prefer to try living more sustainably and/or feel less guilty about supporting fast fashion from potentially dubious corporations, secondhand shopping is an excellent solution. You can even find used brand-name clothing from whatever unscrupulous company you fancy, so no need to dress like a plebe if that’s not your style. There are tons of reasons to thrift in Japan, so find what feels right to you.

Japanese Words to Look For

So you’ve decided to venture into the wholesome waters of secondhand shopping and know the benefits of doing so. Now, how do you actually locate a Japanese thrift store in a sea full of kanji?

Here are some useful Japanese words to look for if you want to find secondhand shops in Japan.

リサイクルショップ (risaikuru shoppu, “recycle shop”) store that sells used goods
リユース (riyūsu, “reuse”) reuse
中古 (chūko) used
中古品、中古商品 (chūkohin, chūko shōhin) used products/items
古着屋 (furugiya) thrift store for clothing
古本 (furuhon)
古書 (kosho)
secondhand books
中古漫画 (chūko manga)
中古コミック(chūko komikku)
secondhand manga
古着 (furugi) secondhand clothing
ブランド古着 (burando furugi) brand-name secondhand clothing
買い取り or 買取 (kaitori) buyback/resell service
不用品 (fuyōhin) unneeded items
フリーマーケット (furī māketto)
フリマ (furima)
flea market
フリマアプリ (furima apuri) flea market app

Armed with this vocabulary, you should be able to navigate your way to the nearest “reuse store,” or at least to an online marketplace. In addition to buying pre-owned items, many of these places will pay you a modest amount of money for your used stuff as well. For example, anywhere with a sign that says kaitori sentā (買取センター, “buyback/resell center”) or ouri kudasai (お売り下さい, “please sell [your things]”) is probably a safe bet. So if you’re looking to buy or sell any old trash — ahem, beloved treasures of a bygone era — keep an eye out for phrases like that on your next stroll around town.

Once you’ve found your way to a secondhand store or online marketplace, you’ll probably want to know how to tell whether the thing you’re buying is full of holes or not. Reference the following list when you want to talk about the condition of items.

傷 (kizu) imperfections, flaws, scratches, defects
汚れ (yogore) dirt, stains, spots
シミ or 染み (shimi) stain, spot, smudge, discoloration
シワ or 皺 (shiwa) wrinkle, crease
色褪せ (iroase) fading, discoloration
使用感 (shiyōkan) wear and tear, signs of use
日焼け (hiyake) sun damage/fading

Eager to find these new vocabulary words out in the wild? Here are some example sentences you might come across in your secondhand shopping pursuits.

  • 中古品ですので、ご理解の上ご購入ください。
    Chūkohin desunode, gorikainoue gokōnyūkudasai.
  • Please understand that this is a secondhand item before you purchase.
  • このスマホケースは傷がありますか?
    Konosumahokēsu wa kizuga arimasuka?
  • Does this smartphone case have any scratches/imperfections?
  • 目立つ汚れはありませんが、使用感はあります。
    Medatsuyogore wa arimasenga, shiyōkan wa arimasu.
  • This [item] has no noticeable dirt or stains, but it does show signs of wear and tear.

Whether you’re reading product descriptions online or trying to impress the people at the flea market with some premeditated questions about shiwa and kizu, these words should come in handy.

Where Can I Find Secondhand Items?

Okay, you’ve learned some vocabulary to help you spot secondhand stores in your neck of the mori. But you should also know a few of the best places to find used items overall in Japan, as well as on the good old internet. Here’s a quick introduction to some of the big chain “reuse/recycle” stores, online marketplaces, social networks, flea markets, and specialized shops you’re likely to find in most areas of Japan.

Reuse/Recycle Stores

photo of a recycle shop taken from an upper floor and looking downwards

Chances are, you’re familiar with the phrase “reduce, reuse, recycle.” Well, in Japan, you may find secondhand stores referring to themselves as both “reuse shops” (リユースショップ) and “recycle shops” (リサイクルショップ), even though the former is what they actually are.

You may need to visit a physical store to find the best deals.

This section will focus on shopping at three of the big chain stores in the flesh, but they all have online stores of varying quality as well. I’ve found that 2nd Street, Off-Mall, and Treasure Factory tend to only list more expensive items on their website, while Book-Off Online‘s prices are just as limbo low as they are in person. Thus, even though it’s retro, you may need to walk your caboose into a physical store to find the best deals.

If you’ve found yourself in a multi-level store, each floor will probably be labeled by item category. For those who can’t read Japanese, breaking out Google Translate or just wandering around to see what’s what will do you just fine.

You can generally resell items at any of these stores as well.

While you’re at it, you can generally resell items at any of these stores as well. Remember the word kaitori (買取)? It’ll serve you well at any of the following places, though they may only take or pay for things that are in decent enough condition. They all also offer at-home buyback services, which let you box up your own stuff and either send it to the company (takuhai kaitori, 宅配買取) or have it picked up by an employee at your address (shucchō kaitori, 出張買取). This is a very convenient way to get rid of anything you no longer need, like that life-size figure of Ash Ketchum collecting dust on your nightstand. Isn’t it time to give him a better life with some other lucky PokéManiac?

Whether you’re the one relinquishing such valuables or hunting for them, you should be able to find a big chain reuse/recycle store just about anywhere in Japan, especially in and around urban areas. So let’s explore some of the most common ones.

2nd Street

photo of the storefront of a 2nd Street store

2nd Street is probably the most well-known secondhand clothing chain in Japan, with over 700 stores nationwide. This means you’re in luck — more than likely, there’s at least one in your area for your browsing pleasure. There are even some locations in the US, Malaysia, and Taiwan, for those residing outside of Japan.

There’s likely at least one 2nd Street in your area.

You might come across a 2nd Street in a popular shōtengai, in your city’s downtown area, or as a stand-alone shop out in the boonies. If you want to buy cheap basics or feel open to finding anything that catches your eye, 2nd Street is a great resource. That said, your mileage will vary depending on what you’re looking for and what each location has in stock. I’ve had some luck shopping for professional attire at 2nd Street myself, when all I needed was a handful of short sleeve shirts that covered my tattoos for the sweltering Japanese summer. It’s also a good place to pop by if you need just “any” jacket, pair of sunglasses, bag, pants, etc. and don’t need it to be particularly in vogue.

2nd Street has a wide selection, but can sometimes skew matronly.

On the other hand, if you’re seeking particularly trendy outfits or something specific, you might want to look elsewhere. Thrift stores in bustling downtown areas tend to have more stylish options than 2nd Street, which has a wide selection but can sometimes skew matronly. And if you already know you want a pair of bedazzled bell-bottoms, plugging that into Mercari is probably a better idea than hoofing it to 2nd Street with your fingers crossed. All in all, 2nd Street is one of the most accessible secondhand clothing stores in Japan, but it wouldn’t hurt to branch out, especially if your style is on the younger side.

The “Offs”

photo of the storefront of a Book Off store taken at night

If you’ve lived in Japan, you’ve likely heard of the famous “Off” family of stores: Book-Off, Hard-Off, Hobby Off, and the somewhat rarer Liquor Off, Off House, Mode Off, and Garage Off. The more common branches are practically everywhere in Japan, with Book-Off and Hard-Off each having over 800 locations. Despite their specific names, most of these secondhand shops stock a range of items, with smaller stores tending to stick closer to their categories and larger stores sometimes selling a ridiculously eclectic variety of products. These stores can be fun to peruse, especially if you’re in the market for just about anything.

Despite their specific names, most of these secondhand shops stock a range of items.

For instance, a small to moderately sized Book-Off might only sell books and manga, but a Book-Off in a very central location might get real loose with the definition of “book” and also peddle clothing, shoes, bags, jewelry, appliances, musical instruments, and golfing gear. Regardless, you can count on all Book-Offs to sell a huge assortment of cheap Japanese secondhand books, manga, video games, CDs, and DVDs, much like all Liquor Offs sell more alcohol than your liver can handle.

Anyone who wants to shop for a general category of items while also pawing through other random treasures will be more than happy in these shrines to consumeristic entropy. So get off the couch and buzz off to one of the mysterious “Offs” if that sounds like you.

Treasure Factory

photo of the storefront of a Treasure Factory store taken at night

Speaking of treasure hunting, make like a pirate and sail on over to Treasure Factory, or TreFac (トレファク), if there’s one in your area. Treasure Factory isn’t quite as ubiquitous as 2nd Street or the Offs, as right now there are only 100+ locations in eleven prefectures. But there’s a good chance you live in one of those prefectures, which include Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, Aichi, Fukuoka, and other highly populated areas.

Treasure Factory sells a mishmash of secondhand booty you can root through to your heart’s content.

TreFac is the only place on this list I haven’t personally been to, but if the advertising copy is to be believed, it’s a good place to dig up hidden gems (horidashimono, 掘り出し物), search for treasure (takarasagashi, 宝探し), and make some great finds (hakken, 発見). Which is all to say, it sells a mishmash of secondhand booty you can root through to your heart’s content. Furniture, appliances, clothes, outdoor gear, interior goods, hobby items, kitchen tools, electronics, musical instruments, booze — rest assured, you’ll be swimming in all of it here.

If you’re simply looking for a general secondhand store, or sōgō risaikuru shoppu (総合リサイクルショップ), that sells everything under the sun, a regular Treasure Factory will do. But like the “Offs,” Treasure Factory also has many spin-off stores that specialize in certain categories of items. You might plunder トレファクスポーツ (TreFac Sports) for sports and outdoor gear, or トレファクマーケット (TreFac Market) to buy a whole set of large furniture at once. You lucky seadog, you!

Treasure Factory also has many spin-off stores that specialize in certain categories of items.

For clothes, though, you’ve got a few more options. TreFacStyle (トレファクスタイル) describes itself as a basic “fashion reuse shop,” likely similar to 2nd Street. But if you want even more “overwhelming cheapness” (or 圧倒的な安さ, to be exact), TreFac also has a used clothes outlet called UseLet (ユーズレット). The fine folks at UseLet claim you can buy ten articles of clothing for 5000 yen, so I suggest you take them up on that challenge if you’re a true Mr. Krabs. But if you’re simply too cool for the outlets, check out Brand Collect (ブランドコレクト), which specializes in luxury brands (ハイブランド, or “high brands”) of clothes and accessories.

TreFac also has a very frequently updated blog showcasing random new arrivals (shin’nyūka, 新入荷) that come in stock, which is fun to scroll through regardless of whether you actually purchase anything. Each listing tells you which store location has the item, how much it is, whether you can purchase it online, and some extra pictures and description of any special features. So when Treasure Factory posts a half-scale, fully functional model of R2D2, you know exactly where you need to pounce. Be sure to exclaim how gekiyasu (激安), or “dirt cheap,” your loot is too — it pleases the Factory.

Online Marketplaces/Social Networks

Not too keen on leaving the house, even for a good deal? You’re not alone, hermit. Plenty of people in Japan do their secondhand shopping online, and honestly, I usually prefer it. It can be faster, easier, and cheaper to find what you want by using specific search terms than by praying you find the perfect lavender cowboy hat in any given bargain bin. So get your thumbs in typing position, because here are some of the best online places to find used items in Japan.

Mercari

screenshot of the Mercari landing page

If you already know what you’re looking for, my number one suggestion is to investigate a magical place called Mercari, or メルカリ (Merukari). Mercari is an e-commerce platform/flea market app that was founded in Japan, then expanded into the US and the UK. But while there are Western versions of Mercari with different branding, I highly recommend downloading the Japanese version of the app if you live in Japan. That way, you can make sure you’re buying goods from within Japan, even if it takes some language learning on your part along the way.

If you’re know what you’re looking for, Mercari is your best bet.

There are plenty of nihonjin unburdening themselves of their belongings on Mercari, often at the minimum price of 300 yen. You can even create saved searches that notify you when new listings are posted for, say, “Moe Moe Kyun! volume 163,” or “lobster suit, extra stretchy.” Thanks largely to this feature, if you’re on a budget and are trying to build up your wardrobe, collect a certain type of goods, or search for something very specific, Mercari is your best bet.

And if you’re only down for buying things in mint condition, don’t worry. You can specify the condition of items when you search, peeking at this handy dandy vocabulary list if you need to.

絞り込み (shiborikomi) search filters
商品の状態 (shōhin no jōtai) item condition
新品 (shinpin) new
未使用 (mishiyō) unused
未使用に近い (mishiyō ni chikai) close to unused
目立った傷や汚れなし (medatta kizu ya yogore nashi) no noticeable imperfections or dirt unless you look very closely
やや傷や汚れあり (yaya kizu ya yogore ari) a few noticeable imperfections or dirt
傷や汚れあり (kizu ya yogore ari) clear imperfections or dirt
全体的に状態が悪い (zentaiteki ni jōtai ga warui) bad condition, generally damaged

These terms might be useful at other secondhand stores besides Mercari too. By the way, if you only want to see things available for purchase now, you’ll also want to check the box that says “for sale now” (hanbaichū, 販売中) under “availability” (hanbai jōkyō, 販売状況). Otherwise, you’ll be inundated with “sold out” (urikire, 売り切れ) items that you can’t get your dirty paws on anyway.

Wondering what common sentences you might run into in the wild west that is Mercari? Spend enough time scrolling and you’re very likely to come across most, if not all, of the following phrases.

  • 早い者勝ち方式。即購入OK。
    Hayaimonogachihōshiki. Sokukōnyū ōkē.
  • First come first served. Immediate purchases are okay.
  • いきなり購入禁止。コメントでやりとりしてから専用出品します。
    Ikinari kōnyū kinshi. Komento de yaritorishitekara sen’yōshuppin shimasu.
  • Please don’t instantly buy this item. Comment first, and then I’ll put up a reserved listing for you.
  • username 様専用
    username-sama sen’yō
  • Reserved for username-sama
  • 使用感があるため、神経質な方はご遠慮ください。
    Shiyōkan ga arutame, shinkeishitsunakata wa goenryokudasai.
  • This item is clearly used, so please refrain from buying if you’re picky/sensitive to wear and tear.
  • 3回程使用後、畳んで保管しておりました。
    Sankaihodo shiyōgo, tatande hokanshiteorimashita.
  • After using it three times, I folded it up and stored it.
  • 保管場所にペットはいません。非喫煙者です。
    Shokanbasho ni petto wa imasen. Hi-kitsuensha desu.
  • There are no pets or smokers where this item has been stored.

Now that you’ve brushed up on Mercari lingo, you’re probably raring to go buy all the used Yu-Gi-Oh cards your parents wouldn’t let you have when you were a kid. But wait, you’re a foreigner! How do you not make a bumbling fool of yourself on this culturally Japanese platform?

From my own (shamefully copious) experience, here are some tips for shopping on Mercari.

  1. Make sure to check whether the shipping fee is cash on delivery (COD) or chakubarai (着払い), meaning you pay when the package arrives. The cost of shipping is generally a mystery until it shows up at your door, so if you’d like to avoid potentially unwelcome surprises, I suggest looking only at listings that are “free shipping/shipping included” (sōryōkomi, 送料込み). You can check this box in the Mercari search filters, under “who will pay the shipping” (hassōryō no futan, 発送料の負担). It’ll save you from greeting the postal worker with a bunch of question marks above your head as you scramble to find your wallet.

  2. Either reply to every message or write a few reassuring sentences in your profile. Unlike typical American sellers, Japanese sellers often message you a lot, both when you buy an item and when they ship it. Before moving to Japan, I had hardly ever messaged an online seller, simply waiting for the item to turn up in my mailbox after each wordless transaction. So at first, I assumed these “update” messages on Mercari were just a courtesy and required no response. That is, until I got a one-star review from a seller saying they felt worried throughout the process because I didn’t reply to any of their (question-free) messages. After that faux pas, I put a Japanese explanation in my bio that I was an American foreigner, so no need to fret if I didn’t respond to messages that weren’t questions. From then on it was smooth sailing, so keep this cultural difference in mind when using Mercari.

  3. Unlike a lot of e-commerce situations, you can try to haggle in the comments section, but if the listing is already cheap, you may not find much success. Especially if you see phrases like 値下げしていません (nesageshiteimasen, “I’m not lowering the price”) or 値下げ不可 (nesagefuka, “no price reduction”), maybe save your wheeling and dealing skills for the next time you buy a used car.

  4. Always remember to rate and review each seller once you receive your item. If you don’t, the transaction won’t be finished, so sellers in Japan will usually message you if you forget. To avoid this, try not to ignore your inbox, and keep an eye on any transactions that are still torihikichū (取引中), or “in-process/incomplete.”

As someone who spent two years going bananas on Japanese Mercari, I can vouch that it’s well worth the learning curve. You’ll likely need to be a bit more meticulous and on-the-ball in some ways when using Japanese online marketplaces, as mentioned. But it’s a small price to pay for a more personal, interactive experience where you always know exactly what you’re buying.

Facebook Sayonara Sales

screenshot of a facebook group for the Tokyo Sayonara Sale

Ever heard of a “Sayonara Sale”? These goodbye sales are like online yard sales, typically held when a foreigner is leaving Japan and wants to sell off everything they own, quick. You can find them on social media, especially on Facebook Groups, by searching your city or prefecture and “sayonara sale” or “garage sale.” You’ll probably have the most luck if you live in or near a metropolis with a sizable expat community, like Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya, Kobe, etc. But even if you live in the middle of nowhere, it’s certainly worth punching into a search engine.

You’ll have more luck if you live in or near a metropolis with a sizable expat community.

Everything from furniture to appliances to clothing to home decorations are listed in these groups, often only used briefly and in fairly good condition. You may even be able to negotiate prices more easily, since foreigners who are moving are typically pretty eager to rid themselves of every last possession. But bear in mind that sellers often expect the buyer to pick up the items, so if you’re buying a king-sized mattress, make sure you’ve got a king-sized vehicle to transport it back to your abode.

Your Social Circle

You’ve learned how to use the internet, as well as your feet and eyeballs, to wrangle secondhand goods from random people you don’t know. But what about people you do know? In Japan, it’s super common to inherit your stuff from the expat community around you, including friends, colleagues, classmates, friends of friends, and any other foreigners you happen to meet.

Listen closely to anyone who might be moving, graduating, or spring cleaning.

My advice? Whenever you’re hanging out with people in Japan, just listen closely to anyone who might be moving, graduating, or spring cleaning. Many foreigners, students, and expat teachers in Japan are fairly transient, so there’s almost surely a flow of used bed frames and washing machines in town that you can get in on. All of my furniture in Nagoya came from another student at my school who wanted to get rid of everything before he graduated and moved out. Don’t be afraid to ask around, reach out to acquaintances, and put out feelers on social media. There’s a good chance you’ll be able to reach someone with just the rusty old microwave you’re looking for.

screenshots of instagram stories from the author listing their personal items for sale

Social media can also help you give away stuff when you eventually hit the bricks. Before I left Japan, I engaged in the common practice of posting everything I wanted gone on my Instagram story, basically begging people to take them off my hands. Eventually, my cruddy pictures made their way to a new foreign student in the area, whose suitcase I was thrilled to fill with appliances, spices, and other random items I no longer needed. So if you’re looking to receive, keep your eyes peeled for these digital carousels of stuff. It might not be what you’d pick out for yourself, but one thing it probably will be is free. (Or at least cheap!)

But even if you’re not a social butterfly, there are still ways to tap into your local hand-me-down network. There may be international clubs at your school or in your city that hold secondhand flea markets expressly for people who have just moved to the area. My university had a cultural exchange circle that hosted a massive blowout sale every year where new students could buy furniture and household supplies for a few hundred yen or less from their graduating senpai. As you can see, it’s a good idea to look for any “international student support circles” where you live — you might even make some new chums while you’re at it.

Flea Markets

Online marketplaces and social networks work great when you already have a clear idea of what you’d like to buy. But eventually, you’ll probably get tired of parsing sixty pages of black leather jackets on Mercari and crave some variety. Or maybe you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for and need to scour a few tables of random stuff until something screams 「買って!」(Katte!, “Buy me!”) We’ve all been there.

Flea markets are a lovely way to spend an afternoon and support people in your community.

In that case, why not check out your local flea market? Often you’ll find them at centralized locations, like temples and shrines, on designated days of the month. For example, in Nagoya, there’s an antique flea market at Ōsu Kannon Temple on the 18th of each month, and at nearby Banshōji on the 28th. You may also find them held in parks, such as the Meiji Park Flea Market and the Earth Day Market in Yoyogi Park. Search for the name of your city/town plus フリーマーケット (furī māketto) or フリマ (furima) to find where people are pawning off their junk near you.

Outside of pandemic times, flea markets are wonderful places to find a few pieces of clothing, handmade goods, produce, or model airplanes to spice up the mundanity of life. It’s also a lovely way to spend an afternoon, and you can walk away feeling warm and fuzzy about using your cold hard cash to support people in your community.

Local Thrift Stores

While you’re braving the outside world, you can also stop by any small thrift stores in your local area. To find these holes in the wall, try plugging any of the Japanese secondhand shop terms we learned into Google Maps. You can also use a website called Tokubai to enter your postal code or prefecture, then under “Type of Store” (omise no shurui, お店の種類), select “reuse/secondhand shop” (riyūsu/chūkohinten, リユース・中古品店). Tokubai is meant to show you information on sales and deals at close-by grocery stores and drugstores, but it also works well for seeing a variety of thrift stores in your prefecture/city/ward, near your current location, or within walking distance of a certain train station.

Sometimes, multiple reuse shops are concentrated in hotspots.

When searching, you may find that multiple reuse shops are concentrated in hotspots known for being hubs of antique, vintage, or retro goods. For example, many of Nagoya’s are located in the shōtengai in Ōsu Kannon, near the temple that hosts monthly flea markets. If this is true in your area, congrats! You can conveniently hit many thrift stores in one trip, compare prices, and shop around until you find something your kokoro truly desires.

Though buying things online may save you some exertion, it also tends to squeeze the serendipity out of the shopping experience. So I recommend at least dipping a toe into your local thrifting scene — you might happen upon something special you never would have thought to Google.

Places Specializing in Specific Items

Once you’re done perusing random succulents and old Gameboy cartridges at the park, why not take your shopping list to a more specific shop? Japan has some secondhand stores that specialize in one or a few types of items, many of which I mentioned in this article. So if you’re thinking, “Flea markets are grand and all, but what I’m really looking for is a bunch of really specific funky lampshades from the 70s,” this section is for you.

Specialty stores work well if you have a vague idea of what you want, but want to browse before buying.

Going to a specialty store in person works especially well if you have a vague idea of what you want, but need to browse some products in person before buying. For example, if you know you want to buy manga from a certain imprint but aren’t sure which series to choose, go to Book-Off and flip through some options. When you’re in need of something to sit on, head to トレファクマーケット (TreFac Market) to test which chair or sofa your posterior prefers. And if you’re a fancy-pants hunting for secondhand luxury brands, Komehyo or Brand Collect may be the best place to bring your yen.

If you’re more of an online shopper, the same goes. Gamers, manga lovers, and bookworms will want to check out Surugaya, while fashionistas might have some luck at ZOZOUSED or in the used section of the SPINNS online store.

If you’d like to learn more about these specific stores, as well as tips and recommendations for buying certain kinds of things secondhand, check out the rest of the articles in the series on secondhand shopping.

In any case, know that whether you’re browsing a general thrift store for everything but the kitchen sink or flipping through a thousand volumes of BL manga at a used bookstore, you’ll probably be able to find whatever you need secondhand. As I’ve burned into your memory by now, Japan has tons of places to look for pre-owned items, which will likely be in surprisingly okay to impeccable condition. <! – So hopefully this Tofugu article series helps you find the hippest old hand-me-downs the Land of the Rising Sun has to offer. –>

Congrats on Owning Old Stuff!

Three cheers! You’re the poster child for sustainability, as well as for being a tightwad. Using what you’ve learned in this article, you can now buy as many useless knick-knacks as you want without hearing the disappointed whispers from your conscience or your bank account. You’ve put your yen where your mouth is, and the planet is better off for it.

Cop a refrigerator from that foreigner who can’t seem to fit it on the plane home. Enjoy a series of manga and then pass it on to the next needy otaku who stumbles upon it in Book-Off. Take a page out of my book and replace your whole wardrobe with lovingly preserved garments of unknown origins from Mercari. Run free, recyclers, and happy thrifting!

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