Everything You Need to Know About Buying and Selling Clothes on eBay

eBay rocks my world. It allows me to make money without even having to move from my bed… okay, sometimes I do have to leave my bed to mail out a package. But other than that, it’s smooth sailing. If you haven’t tried to sell or buy clothes on eBay or you just don’t know where to begin, this is the post for you.

A few years ago my cousin started selling tons and tons of clothes, comic books, action figures, etc. on eBay and I didn’t think twice about it. It just seemed like unnecessary work for “little” return. Little did I know that he made way over a thousand dollars just from selling clothes on eBay. My green eyes turned a little bit greener when I thought of the cash I could make just by selling the clothes in the back of my closet. Not only could I make money from selling my clothes, I would be giving my clothes to someone who will appreciate them instead of throwing them away. After all, only 10% of clothes donated to charity get sold… the rest gets thrown away or shipped to countries who don’t need any more clothes. Also, if I wanted to donate money to charity I could donate my earnings directly to charities through eBay. So instead of throwing away your clothes let’s put them to good use.

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Selling Tips

When I first started selling clothes on eBay, I was a little overwhelmed. Where do I begin? I called up my cousin and asked him for some tips and tricks and this is what we came up with.

Start off by looking what other people are pricing the same items for.

Before I list an item, I always look what other people are selling the item for and if they include shipping or not. I usually end up putting my item $1-$2 cheaper than what other people are selling their stuff for. This way people are more likely to buy my item for cheaper.

Measure everrrrrryyyythaaaanggggg. 

One thing I was absolutely clueless about was making sure all of the measurements are listed on jeans, belts, and so forth. Make your life easier and just look at this guide to figure out how to measure your pants. For shirts, make sure that if you think it runs a little small or large you put that in the description. It’s all about behind honest on eBay.

Take pictures of every corner of the item.

Take pictures of labels, pattern, tags, buttons, hemlines… if you think of it you should take a picture of it then do it. Also, if you are selling something that has a rip or stain (which I personally do not do) make sure you take a picture of it so people understand what they are buying. If you don’t you could get a bad review and people will become more hesitant to shop from your store.

Add personality into your captions. 

This is my absolute favorite thing to do on my eBay page. I love mentioning what someone can wear an item with and how fabulous they will look. I can just picture a total stranger reading my words and being super amused. Plus, this might make someone want to buy more because they can relate to the buyer. Make sure you include descriptors like “only worn once” or “it was the back of my closet since 2009 and has never been worn before.” The better the description, the better the outcome.

Shipping Tips

The hardest part about selling clothes is figuring out how to do the shipping. However, once you figure it out it will be second nature to you.

Don’t include free shipping with your jeans.

Jeans are typically heavy so they cost around $5-$7 to ship. This can be half of what you’re selling the jeans for so make sure that you calculate the cost of the shipping in the cost or just say shipping “$6.99” or whatever it is to ship. Sometimes I sell my pants for a super low cost because I know shipping is going to be so much. It all depends on if they’ve never been worn before or if you just bought them directly from J.Crew.

Shirts typically cost between $2.50-$4.50 to ship.

Since shirts are typically lighter you can make the shipping costs much lower. If you buy a scale (which I highly recommend you do) you can measure it the shipping cost before you put the listing up. It also helps when you do have to finally ship the product.

High priced items: include free shipping. 

Personally, I think it is polite to include free shipping when someone is buying a big priced item. I sold a pokemon card for $150 and didn’t charge the customer shipping. Obviously, a little card didn’t cost that much to ship but I think it makes the sale go through that much easier.

 

Buying Tips

You know that awesome feeling when you return something that you weren’t really sure that you loved or not? You then get store credit or your money back and you feel this odd sense of power. Okay, maybe just me. The best part about selling clothes on eBay is that you have money you can either save or you can put back into finding something super cute.

Make sure you read all of the descriptions! 

I almost bought a shirt that had a stain on it without even knowing. Just as I was checking out, I noticed the little description saying that there was a faint stain on the front of the shirt. That was definitely enough to deter me from buying the shirt. Also, sometimes the titles get mixed around when you’re posting so make sure that you’re actually buying the right size.

Play around with bidding wars.

This one is very new to me and it’s oddly thrilling to play the little dancing game. I’m currently in a bidding war on a beautiful Free People top. Fingers crossed that I win it because it is the cutest thing in the world. My tip would be to wait until the very end to bid the shirt up.

Search your favorite companies with descriptors you might be looking for. 

Instead of just searching the name search key things you may be looking. This may be the textile-like “lace” or it could be a vibe like “edgy”. This will help narrow down the search and hopefully weed out the sellers that you’re not looking for.

What is currently on my watch list:

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Free People Top, Vintage Belt, Feed Bag, Button Skirt, White Madewell Jeans

What do you think about selling or buying clothes from eBay? Have you ever done it or do you use sites like postmark? Let me know in the comments down below.

As always,

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5 Ways to Stop Buying Fast Fashion Today

Vent. Okay, so originally this post was going to be about my weekend and how wonderful it was visiting Terrain with Juliette from Julietteful (which by the way was all kinds of wonderful). But before I sat down to write this blog post I watched The True Cost on Netflix and I couldn’t focus because I was so unbelievably frustrated and overwhelmed. For those who don’t know, The True Cost is a documentary that explains negative impact fast fashion has on the social, economic, political, and environmental structures of developing countries. That was a mouthful. In short: fast fashion is ruining everything around us. But what really resonated with me were the following statistics:

  1. The fashion industry is the world’s second-largestpolluter. (Oil is the first).
  2. The world now consumes a staggering 80 billionpieces of clothing. (And we throw clothes away just as quickly as we consume them).
  3. One-in-six people work in the global fashion industry. (The majority of them are women and are being paid less than $3 a day).
  4. Only 10% of the clothes people donate to charity or thrift stores get sold (When the clothes are not sold, they are shipped to various developing countries where they are bought by the box and kill the local textile industry).

After watching this film, I feel so overwhelmed. I have been so blind to what was happening right underneath my nose. More than half the products I own I don’t even know where they came from. I don’t even know how my clothes came to American or the processes in which they were cut, dyed, or sewn. I love shopping and the “rush” of finding a good deal but I’m quickly realizing how wrong that is. Do I really want a cheaply made garment that will unravel after a few washes? Do I really want a garment that people have made with their own blood, sweat, and tears? I think it’s time I drastically rethink the way I consume, which is why I plan on implementing these steps into my daily life.

Recycled Fashion - Thrift ShoppingIMG_9387Sell your clothes on eBay. 

I know it feels great giving your clothes to charity and thrift stores but the harsh reality is that only 10% of those clothes are actually being sold and the majority of those profits aren’t going back to charity. Some second-hand stores even have a 30-day cycle so that if they aren’t sold in the 30 days they are removed and either thrown away or shipped in a box to a developing country. Once the box arrives at the developing country, buyers pick random boxes without knowing what exactly is inside. Those clothes then flood the textile industry in that country and diminish work opportunities.

By selling clothes on eBay you not only make a profit, but you can potentially donate that money to a charity that you choose. You then can know how much of your proceeds are actually going to the charity. Or you can simply just keep the money and use it to purchase clothes that are sustainable. I’ve been selling clothes on eBay for about a year now and have made a decent amount of money. It is a great way to have a little extra cash and I often use that money to buy sustainable alternatives. Let’s face it, I own a good amount of fast fashion clothes but I’m not going to just throw them all away because that would just be adding to the problem. Instead, I can think of different ways to reuse these items and get the longest life out of them.

Shop on eBay or go thrift shopping. 

Now, I know this idea might deter a few people but hear me out. This adorable dress was actually found thrifting. Since the cut of the dress is way too rebellious for my taste, I just threw on a simple turtleneck and called it a day. When I go thrift shopping, I really need to be in the right mood or else I won’t find anything. You really need to be open-minded to different ways you can style something. If you are, you’ll find endless things.

This is a great way to find vintage clothes and clothes for DIY projects. Plus, you’re helping cut down the impact of clothes that would be going to landfills and adding to our pollution problem.

IMG_9496Research the products and companies you’re buying from. 

This is something I’m still trying to get used to. As an American and a blogger, I love consuming countless things I really don’t need. This is why I’m trying to refocus what I’ve been putting my money towards and seeing if it is really worth it. For example, instead of spending $50-70 bucks on a pair of cheap boots that I knew my awkward, pigeon-toed feet would ruin, I decided to buy a pair of high-quality boots from Thursday Boot Co. I did just as much research on these boots as I would on a camera. I looked up what type of leather they use, where they manufacture the boots, and what other consumers say about the boots. Since we live in such a technology-driven world, there is really no excuse to not researching a company before you buy from them. Plus, this really helps cut down on my impulse shopaholic habits.

Quality over quantity. 

Just like my boots, you really want to make sure the products you’re buying are worth it. Are your boots going to last walking around three airports at top speed? Will that white shirt still look white after the 20th wash? Will that seam stay pull or unravel after the third wear? These are all questions I am starting to ask myself as I shop. I admit, I still shop and Marshalls and Nordstrom Rack. The only difference is that when I buy products from there I really want to make sure they’re really good quality. I no longer buy a $5 cotton shirt that is thinner than a piece of paper because I know that I might only get a few uses out of it. Plus, if the shirt is $5 think of how much the person making that shirt is getting paid. I’m hoping that as I start this journey I can start developing a sense of what is good quality and what isn’t. IMG_9401Lastly, just be aware.

Since fast fashion is so ingrained in our lives, it is so hard to quit cold turkey. I totally get that and I’m right there with you. But now that I’ve opened Pandora’s box for you, you’re going to start hearing a little nagging voice in the back of your head every time you want to buy a cheaply made shirt. Sorry! But, hopefully, your bank account will thank you.

If you want to know more about fast and slow fashion I highly recommend watching The True Cost on Netflix, listening or reading the book Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Fast Fashion by Elizabeth L. Cline,  listening to the podcast Conscious Chatter by Kestrel Jenkins, and downloading the app Good on You. The following blogs are also great resources for finding more information on companies: Ecocult, Sustainably Chic, The Good Trade, and Ethical Unicorn.

IMG_9382Recycled Fashion - Thrift Shopping

Now I know conscious shopping isn’t for everyone, but I hope this makes you just a little bit more aware of where you’re getting your clothes. What do you think about fast fashion/slow fashion? Have you seen The True Cost? Let me know in the comments down below.

As always,

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