Back-to-school shopping can be a serious undertaking, as anyone who's dragged a middle schooler through a department store knows. If everyone else in the class is going to be wearing [insert trend here], you don't want your poor little fashionista ostracized for being sartorially lacking. But in addition to being a serious battle of wills between you and your child, back-to-school shopping can be expensive: Americans spent $8.5 billion at family clothing stores last August, according to the U.S. Census. Avoid the cost and make back-to-school shopping (slightly) more fun with these tips for greening your child's new wardrobe.
Go thrifting. Hand-me-downs are only a bad thing if they come from an older sibling with questionable taste. "Vintage" is still a magic word for hipster teens, and younger kids with character might enjoy the treasure hunt presented by your local Goodwill. Come prepared with your child's sizes memorized and the energy to hunt through the racks for hidden gems, and the ultimate find: clean, popular label, and with the tags still on!
Shop secondhand online. If sorting through the racks isn't your thing, you can let someone else do the hunting for you. Websites like Schoola Stitch sell clean and well-preserved used children's clothes for a fraction of their retail price.