A couple of weeks ago, I shared with you how Truncation is moving in a new direction, and how from now on I’ll only be shopping from ethical brands or buying items secondhand.
But even when I posted that I knew that I didn’t want to just leave it at that.
I want to take this journey with you guys and share any struggles/discoveries that I make along the way.
So. With that said, today I’m sharing something that isn’t necessarily a new discovery. It’s actually something that I have been doing long before I had ever even heard of the terms capsule wardrobe or ethical fashion.
We’re talking… eBay!
Now here’s the thing about eBay: it can be SO overwhelming.
There is so much listed that it can be really hard to sift through everything, but I have found some of the BEST gems by being a little persistent and having a clear strategy.
So To help you out, I’m giving you my top five strategies for shopping secondhand on eBay.
1.Have a Clear Vision for What you are Looking For:
eBay is not for window shopping. It’s best utilized when you know exactly what you’re looking for.
And this is why I think it’s a really good companion to a capsule wardrobe.
When doing a capsule, you have a much better idea of what you need each season and so you can go to eBay with those items in your mind.
2.Use Super Specific Keywords when Searching:
And having a specific item in your mind will make searching much easier.
As you can see in the picture below, I’m looking for white high top sneakers. Instead of just typing in “white high top sneakers”, which will bring up a thousand or more listings, you’ll need to use the advance search option.
I always select the specific category (women’s shoes) and select the size (obviously), price limit, material (if applicable), color, item location (north America), and returns accepted.
This will narrow your search down significantly and make it so much easier to search through items.
3.Only Shop from North American Sellers UNLESS Searching Vintage:
There is a very specific reason that I only search North American listings: if I don’t select that filter, I will get a flood of listings from China.
Now, there are two reasons I don’t like shopping from the Chinese shops:
First, these shops are selling brand new items, which is the opposite of what I’m hoping to accomplish by shopping eBay.
Second, In the past I have bought things from these shops and the quality has been pretty terrible.
Only buying from North American shops will give you the ability to mostly sift through secondhand items that you know will have better quality.
Of course, it’s on you to read the descriptions and note any wear and tear that the seller notes.
The only caveat is vintage.
Obviously, vintage is always going to be secondhand and I have found some killer pieces that shipped from the UK, etc.
4.Only Shop from Sellers Who Will Return Items
I only shop from sellers who will return items.
I am just way too unwilling to waste money by shopping secondhand without seeing an item first.
95% of shops are going to be completely honest in the description about the condition of the item because it’s in their best interest (ratings are VERY important in eBay).
BUT, often the clothing you will buy will be several years old (or vintage, which can be really tricky) and sizes can be all over the place. Even when I ask for measurements, the item can still not fit well.
Just be prepared to pay your own return shipping.
5.When in Doubt, Ask Questions!
Which leads me to my last point: never be afraid to message the seller and ask questions.
Believe me, they don’t mind! As a seller myself, I would ALWAYS rather someone ask a question on the front end than have them return it.
SO! Now you know the inner secrets of having success on eBay. If you’re scared of bidding, don’t be! Try it out and see how it goes. You’ll win more auctions than you may think.
What do you think? Have you done very much shopping on eBay?
Until next time,