guys this is serious insider info. I would only share it with a group of people I really love and trust. Don't make me regret it by getting to all the good stuff before me. Also please let me know if I'm missing any!
  1. Society of St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Store 210 N Ave 21 Los Angeles, CA 90031 (Lincoln Heights)
    St. Vinnies used to be amazing - giant and full of weird, great stuff. At some point they caught on to how great they were and jacked up the prices. Now some of the magic is gone, but it's still worth the occasional look, they still have more furniture than almost anybody, and there's a great, tiny vintage store called Revival right across the street, that has very reasonably priced pieces, mostly mid century.
  2. American Way Thrift Store 3226 W Magnolia Blvd. Burbank, CA 91505
    American Way is consistently jam packed with great stuff, lots of it junk and lots of it legit vintage, just the way a good thrift store should be. it's great for clothes, particularly vintage dresses and jackets, if you are willing to dig, and also has great knick knackery. Artwork and old books are plentiful but overpriced.
  3. Salvation Army Family Store 6300 Sepulveda Blvd. Van Nuys, CA 91411
    Huge, with lots of great furniture and clothes and a messy but solid knick knack section. Great sales. I've furnished an entire house from this place for a job and spent less than $1000.
  4. MTA Thrift 6735 Van Nuys Blvd. Van Nuys, CA 91405
    this place feels like the entire contents of your grandparents and aunts and uncles 60s and 70s suburban homes, from the groovy basement to the fussy parlor. Some stuff is ridiculously overpriced, but there are amazing items to be found.
  5. BTS Thrift Boutique 10409 Washington Blvd. Culver City, CA 90232
    I always have trouble remembering where it is, and it's in a part of town I rarely visit, but it's totally worth the trip. A lot of the stuff leans toward antique, but is still reasonably priced. I once drove by and saw my dream sofa sitting outside, so I went back and bought it - for $60. they have lots of great furniture but also great artwork and knick knackery.
  6. Acts Thrift 1382 Locust St. Pasadena, CA 91106
    My favorite part of this store is the craft section. I've found lots of vintage wrapping paper and greeting cards and dead stock vintage items. Also solid glassware, clothes and behind the counter jewelry and antiques.
  7. Sun Thrift 8800 Foothill Blvd. Sunland, CA 91040
    This place is huge and sprawling and dirty. like all the best thrift stores, you feel like you need to take a shower when you leave. The best part is the room at the back, stacked with furniture, vintage light fixtures and weird stuff. Also a great book section, including old magazines and (my personal weakness) bins of cassettes.
  8. Deseret Industries (DI) 2720 E 11th St. Los Angeles, CA 90023 (Boyle Heights)
    The clothing section is very well organized, a little too organized, but the downstairs is sufficiently jam packed with strange junk.
  9. Salvation Army 6850 San Fernando Rd. Glendale, CA 91201
    I almost always find great, weird, colorful vintage clothes here, like eccentric middle aged women have recently offloaded their best 70s and 80s stuff.
  10. Goodwill Outlet 3150 N San Fernando Rd. Los Angeles, CA 90065
    This is the palace of all goodwills - it even has a cafe. I really dislike the main store as it is trying so hard to be a TJ Maxx. Everything is organized and homogenized and color coded and the focus is on newer stuff, no vintage treasures to be unearthed. There is however a bin section in the back of the building where all the misfit toys (aka good weird shit) can be found if you literally dig for it.
  11. Salvation Army 56 W Del Mar Blvd. Pasadena, CA 91105
    This Salvation Army is what I call an Armageddon thrift store. It feels like the world has exploded in there and it's everyone for themselves. this can be fun, and there can still be good things under all the carnage, and you feel prouder for finding them.
  12. Valley Value Center 13630 Victory Blvd. Van Nuys, CA 91401
    Another example of Armageddon, only bigger and crazier. This one is always jam packed but I almost always find something great. it takes a lot of energy though, so I barely ever go. you really have to get yourself in battle mode and be sure to eat before you go.
  13. Super Thrift Store 13422 S Saticoy St. North Hollywood, CA 91605
    This one feels like a secret. It's deep in the valley, I always have trouble finding it, and it's never busy. they have a huge neon sign on the wall reading JESUS IS LORD, and a whole lotta good junk and clothes.
  14. The Salvation Army 1658 11th St, Santa Monica, CA 90404
    This one has a small but usually pretty good furniture section, and tons of clothes. I once found a cheetah print suit here. There's also a "boutique" thrift store next door of all the stuff they want to sell for more $$. I prefer to dig for treasure than to have it selected for me, but there is good stuff on that side too, and sometimes the prices aren't too crazy.
  15. Son of a Vet Thrift Shop 3310 N Eastern Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90032 (El Sereno)
    Truly one of the best. This place buys up estates and resells everything, so there's a whole lot of weird stuff. It's also off the beaten path so you feel like you're discovering something. Amazing books, great deadstock, awesome knick knackery.