Buying used items in good condition can save a lot of money, so it’s no wonder that it’s so common. While there are a lot of great deals on used items to be found, there are some things you should never buy second-hand, whether for safety reasons, “ick factor,” or other considerations. Following are ten things you should always buy new instead.
1. Underwear and Bathing Suits
People buy used shirts, pants, and jackets that are clean and in good condition all the time, but underwear and bathing suits? Even if they’re washed and clean, they’ve still been worn close against people’s intimate parts for long periods at a time. This goes for intimate apparel as well. Do we need to elaborate?
2. Personal Hygiene Products
Here, we’re talking about things like nail clippers, nose hair trimmers, razors, toothbrushes, etc. Even if they’ve been sterilized, do you really want to use something that someone else has used for those things? Just don’t.
Mattresses are expensive, and it’s no wonder that you might want to save money by getting a used one. However, it’s hard to really clean an entire mattress well, so even if the mattress is still great functionally, you could be sleeping on allergens, pests, mold, and dried bodily fluids left by the previous owner(s). Enough said!
4. Upholstered Furniture
This is bound to disappoint college students and young couples just starting out, but used upholstered furniture can be both gross and a health hazard. That’s because they absorb odors, stains, food waste, pet dander (including fecal matter), and more.
Here’s another one that’s bound to disappoint since you can surely find awesome deals on great-looking rugs. The problem is that these, too, attract and retain all kinds of dirt and pathogens. Unless you know the rug has just been professionally cleaned or you’re willing to pay for that yourself, don’t buy it.
6. Car Seats
Car seats and a lot of other safety equipment for infants and children are rated for one crash only. What this means is that if a car seat has been in an accident, it may look perfectly fine while its integrity has been compromised. Somebody selling one may say it’s never been in a crash, but you have no way of knowing for sure. Such a gamble is not worth it.
Like car seats, most helmets for biking, skating, skiing, rock climbing, and other risky activities are rated for a single incident only and should be discarded and replaced after one. Plus, that helmet’s been on someone else’s sweaty head!
In the first place, you might not want to wear shoes someone else’s feet have been in, but that’s not even the main reason not to buy used shoes. If they’ve been broken in, the shoes conform to the precise shape of that person’s feet, so even if they’re the right size, they may not fit you properly. Buying brand-new shoes that someone else has tried on but decided not to keep is okay.
9. Pots and Pans
Used pots and pans can have rust, dents, and scratches that can leak toxic and carcinogenic chemicals. The risk is even greater with non-stick cookware. Good pots and pans aren’t cheap, but it’s still better and safer to buy them new.
You might think this is a no-brainer, but then you’d be surprised to know how many people sell, buy, and take medicine that’s already been opened and used. For starters, the medicine could be expired, rendering it ineffective or even harmful. Also, if it’s a prescription medicine, it could be in a dosage that could be dangerous to you. Finally, you have no way of knowing if someone has tampered with it.
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Karee Blunt is a nationally syndicated travel journalist, focused on discovering destinations and experiences that captivate and inspire others through her writing. She is also the founder of Our Woven Journey, a travel site focused on inspiring others to create memory-making adventures with their loved ones. Karee is passionate about encouraging others to step out of their comfort zone and live the life they dream of. She is the mother of six kids, including four through adoption, and lives with her family in the Pacific Northwest. You can learn more about Karee on her about me page.