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The complete guide to starting a record collection

PSA: It's *totally* time for you to start a record collection. Why? Bc nothing beats the vintage sound of listening to a record. Plus, artists include never-before-seen photos and lyric sheets in their vinyls. Not to mention that supporting musicians through record collections helps them *way* more than streaming does.

But how exactly do you get started? We're here to help with all the basics: where to get records, how to store them and so much more. You and your besties will be jamming out in no time.

Where to find them

Not sure where to find records? There are plenty of options. Check out your nearest Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million or Target for a great selection of well-known artists. If you want an album that's rarer or older, try looking up a local, independently owned record store. They're sure to have the most incredible (and iconic) albums out there. Newbury Comics is a fantastic online store for all your vinyl needs, and they even have a selection of signed records and CDs—the perf addition to your collection.

There are tons of different colored discs (variants) out there, and sometimes there are even multiple for each album. Stores like Walmart and Target have *exclusive* variants. (P.S. Olivia Rodrigo's sour has plenty of variants, including hot pink, purple and dark blue. We love to see it!) Choosing which color you want can be challenging, so sometimes, people will add multiple colors of the same album to their record collections.


How to store them

Ofc, making sure you protect your records and store them properly is key. You never want to stack them on top of each other—it can cause them to break! Standing them up next to each other on a shelf or in a bin is a good option. Purchasing clear, plastic sleeves to protect them can also be helpful (you can buy them here on Amazon.)

How to play them

Lastly, finding a good record player is key. Tbh, it's the most important part of your collection. Crosley and Victrola have affordable (and aesthetic) turntables. 


There you go! Now you have everything you need to start a record collection. Need some more music inspo? Check out these playlists:

🎵 This vintage playlist will give you *all* the fall feels
🎵 A playlist with the best sapphic representation 
🎵 Add these pump-up songs to your party playlist ASAP

Tag us in a pic of your record collection on Instagram @girlslifemag for a chance to get featured!

All GIFs via GIPHY
Slider image: @stephbohrer


by Kelly Schwint | 1/16/2022