Thrift shopping

Thrill of the chase ... the character and authenticity of thrift store finds are a big drawing card for younger shoppers. Photo: Jim Rice

WHILE the nation's youth have embraced Thrift Shop as a chart-topping hit, they are also embracing the song's inspiration - the op shop.

Macklemore and Ryan Lewis's rap homage to op-shop clothes has been at the top of the charts for seven weeks, praising grandfather coats over expensive new rags and $50 T-shirts.

''There's an authenticity that you get from op-shop clothes that you don't get from shiny new stuff,'' a 20-year-old student, Eliza Goetze, said. ''The clothes have history, they have more character and you know that it's lived a whole other life, but there's also the extra thrill of getting something at a super cheap price.''

The Salvation Army has seized on the popularity of op shops, launching a ''Salvonista'' campaign.

''Young people today are interested in giving back,'' the marketing manager for Salvos Stores, Freddy Choo, said. ''[Op-shopping] is relevant to them because not only do they look good on the outside, they feel good on the inside.''

Henry Ladd, 21, said he liked hunting for something unique. ""If you go op-shopping you can find something that fits, it's a bit different."