So I have been doing this for a couple of years now— selling, consigning and donating my stuff. Like most women, I love pretty things. Having a background in fashion and merchandising has instilled a love for fashion and design. So I use the opportunity to do this to keep items out of the landfill and fund my new items.
I have been selling and consigning online at various sites, which can get tricky since websites come and go. This is not a list of all of them, but a list of the ones that I have personally tried.
Sites that I have sold, consigned or donated to (click on the name to link) and see the summaries of my experiences below.
Lately I have sold mostly to and website called ThredUp. It is pretty easy— you sign-up and they send you “clean-out bags” and you send them your stuff. The site recently started offering labels as well so you can use your own box. The deal with this site is they want some stuff and some they don’t. The site tells you upfront that they are very picky. You can let them recycle the rest of your stuff or pay a fee ($10.99) to send back what they don’t want for their site. Over the last year, it is hit and miss which items they want. I have had stuff that I have sent in and gotten returned to me, but when I sent it again, they accepted it. I guess it depends on who evaluates your bag. I always pay the fee to get my items back so I can donate any items they rejected and get my tax receipt or sell it elsewhere (instead of letting them profit from the recycling of the fabric) One big tip with this site is to send items that are current for the season (if it is summer, send summer items). You can also donate with them by sending in your donation bag and they send you a tax receipt. They definitely don’t pay out much for non-designer items and the fees can add up, but it is an easy way to clean out your closet if you don’t have time to sell them or take them to a charity shop yourself. Payment is through a prepaid Visa card, website credit or PayPal. Overall, I have had a pretty good relationship with ThredUp.
My most recent endeavor has been consigning with The Real Real. I first went here to find pre-loved designer handbags. But I saw that they consigned and decided to give it a go. They have a strict list of designers they will accept and quite high fees, but again it is great if you don’t have time to sell the stuff yourself. They authenticate, photograph, price and list everything for you and you get the commission when your item sells. They will send you a Fed-ex label and even an empty box to send in your items. In some cities like here in the San Francisco area, you can take your stuff into their offices be evaluated or schedule a pickup. It is a great website to find pre-loved designer stuff that has been vetted and have a pretty good return policy. I am still a newbie on The Real Real, but the process has been easy so far. Payment is made by check or direct deposit.
Of course there is eBay. Many people buy and sell from eBay. Yes they do charge a fee (10%) for the months you sell items and they let you list up to 100 items for free. So that is not too bad in the fee category, but it’s the time that it takes to photograph, list and then ship each item that can deter people from using the service to sell their items. I have sold with eBay, but I did find that the time that it took was worth the fees charged by other selling or consignment websites. I have found that if you tag your items the right way, your items will come up in searches and generate traffic for your goods. The buyer pays you directly with PayPal.
Next is Glambot. Believe it or not, they buy & sell new or gently used makeup. It’s true! So that eyeshadow palate that didn’t quite workout or free items with purchase that you didn’t use or give to your friends, you can sell it to this website and they will pay you for them. If you follow the directions and send the items and brands they accept, you can clear out your cosmetics drawers with this website. They will email you a free shipping label, but they will not return items that they don’t accept so you should truly be ready to part with the items. They pay or with website credit or PayPal.
Finally, I want to talk about Give Back Box. I first heard of it through Amazon. It is a service that connects you to a charity so you can donate items. They want you to reuse the boxes you get your order with Amazon to send items to charity with a free shipping label. On the site you can fill out a form for taxes when you print out the labels. This is ideal for me as I order from Amazon frequently (you know you do too) and I don’t have to save up a bunch of bags of stuff to drive to a charity shop. I can pack up a box, print up a label and request a free pick-up from USPS. Easy breezy. Give Back Box have connections to many companies whose boxes you can use and many charities where your items go. It is a win for your closet and a win for charities that get your stuff.