How to Make Money From the Pieces You Never Wear
So how to sell clothes online? Aside from Ebay, specialist fashion resale websites are a relatively new concept. However, because competition has fired up quickly, we're already spoilt for choice. Well, a so-called investment buy can really prove its worth when your taste changes—including those lime-green Prada wedges you only wore once. One woman's gold really is another woman's treasure when it comes to fashion. Chances are there will be someone in a fishing village in Italy (or a mother of two in Kent) who just has to have them.
Frequently editing and stripping back your wardrobe to put items up for resale is a savvy way of funding your next buy. If you want to cash in your Rolex, there are several slick websites out there eager to find you a buyer. You can be as involved or as hands-off as you like. Many offer concierge services where teams come to your home and take the hassle out of listings. There are also more high street–friendly marketplaces, like Vinted, for all those Zara dresses with the tags still intact that you've realised need a better home. Snapping and uploading via the app is strangely addictive.
So if it's time to part ways with old wardrobe friends that you've drifted away from, follow our roundup of the best places to successfully sell your clothes and accessories online.
Best for Renting Clothes You're Not Quite Ready to Sell: Hurr Collective
The Hurr Collective has been positioned as the Airbnb for fashion—a way to monetise the items you don't wear in your wardrobe by listing them on the site and then renting them out. The founder, Victoria Prew, is serious about extending the lifespan of clothes and creating a platform with a sustainable message. In fact, the company has also partnered with eco dry-cleaners Blanc and the London-based bike courier service Pedals. There is currently a waiting list to join, so sign up at the Hurrcollective.com.
Best for… The site is perfect for weddings, as you'll find many Ganni and Rixo dresses, but also more classic items like Chanel 2.55 bags.
Commission: It is free to list your wardrobe and you will be charged a service fee (15% of the total rental price) once you accept a request from a renter.
Best for Designer Labels: Vestiaire Collective
Paris-based site Vestiaire Collective is bursting at the seams with designer fashion and, as you'd expect, plenty of French brands, such as Goyard, Isabel Marant and Agnès B. It has a team of experts that check every single item for authenticity, thus reassuringly expelling the transaction of counterfeit goods. There are two ways to sell on Vestiaire Collective. The first way is the DIY way, where you submit pictures of what you'd like to sell, then once you've been given the green light and a price, upload them to the site yourself. Or, there's the concierge service, where the team will come to your house, take everything off your hands and do all the hard work for you.
Best for… French labels! Céline, Chloé, Hermès, Chanel… They're all there. We spied a bit of Christopher Kane and a lot of Gucci as well.
Commission: Sellers will receive around 75% of what their item sells for.
Best For Rare Desirables: Xupes
Having started life in 2009, Xupes is a curated destination of pre-owned, incredibly rare pieces; from Chanel to Rolex. Committed to continuing the story of every item it sells, Xupes takes a hands-on, personal approach, first vetting items with imagery supplied by the seller, then arranging a time to see the piece in real life. Influencer Emma Hill has recently been working with the brand to curate an edit of thirty pre-owned handbags, too.
Best for… Specialising in watches, handbags, jewellery and even artwork, Xupes is exactly where you should turn should you be in the market for some of the world’s most difficult-to-source treasures. We’re particularly impressed with its current offering of Hermès bags.
Commission: Xupes’ general consignment fee is 20% + VAT but, should you be looking to part with your piece quickly, in some instances Xupes may also offer you an outright sale option.
Best for Denim: EditSecondHand
Also a boutique in West Sussex, EditSecondHand carefully curates pre-loved stock, only selecting pieces its team would like to have in their own wardrobes. And they've got good taste; the site is a lovely mix of many midpriced ranges from Étoile Isabel Marant, Chinti and Parker and Malene Birger. Once you've agreed on what you'd like to sell (and at what price), you send your items on to the store, which then takes responsibility for selling the pieces—with its commission added on.
Best for… Denim—there are plenty of J Brand styles on there right now.
Commission: EditSecondHand sells the pieces at higher prices than you would sell them for, meaning you receive money regardless of when the item sells.
Best for Designer Handbags: Collector Square
Logging on to Collector Square kind of makes you feel like you're shopping on the Harrods website. Specialising in handbags, watches and jewellery, everything is meticulously and uniformly photographed, echoing the high standard that the products on the site have to meet. As the name suggests, it sells big high-end brands. It has a whole section dedicated to Chanel's Boy bag alone, with 23 styles. All items are certified by French luxury experts and dispatched within 24 hours with free returns. There's also a showroom in Paris if you want to drop your item for sale off there.
Best for… Anything you wanted a few seasons ago from Bond Street. We're talking Patek Philippe diamond-encrusted watches and Cartier Love bracelets.
Commission: Expect to pay around 25%, plus VAT.
Best for High-Street Heroes: Vinted
Best described as one big feed of unwanted wares, Vinted is ridiculously easy to use in that you register, snap your item and upload it. It's big on high street—there are Urban Outfitters and sportswear brands in abundance.
Best for… High-street must-haves from Mango and Zara you let slip by.
Commission: The site charges a 15% fee, but swapping with other users and giving items away is free.
Best For Limited-Edition Collectables: Vide Dressing
Vide Dressing prides itself on its meticulous checks it carries out on the authenticity of each designer piece that comes through its doors before it makes it online. Once the item has been confirmed as an original, it will be added to the on-site roster, where buyers can place an agreement order on it. The seller then has 72 hours to confirm the availability of the piece (which proves particularly handy if its been listed on other resale sites). If unconfirmed, the order is cancelled automatically, saving the buyer the usual stress of awaiting a refund.
Best for… Designer accessories seem to be the most sought-after on the platform, with new styles being uploaded on a daily basis. We’ve also found many a hard-to-track-down limited edition piece on Vide Dressing, too, making it an essential stop should you be in the market for something niche.
Commission: As of 2019, Vide Dressing no longer takes a commission on items listed under £150. On items over the £150 threshold, a fixed commission of 15% will be taken from the item sale.
Best for Unique, Instagram-Ready Pieces: Depop
The app Depop is considered a cross between eBay and Instagram—mainly aimed at teens, 20-somethings and those who don't want to wear the same Zara pieces as everyone else. It is a treasure trove for vintage and secondhand buys and serves a fashion startup platform for aspiring e-shop owners.
Best for…Novelty Instagram pieces and classic vintage pieces, such as shearling coats and denim.
Commission: Depop adds a 10% commission fee to the sale.
Best for Luxury Skincare: Hardly Ever Worn It
This London-based resale site Hardly Ever Worn It will consider selling everything from a £35 Sonia Rykiel T-shirt to a £7000 Hermès handbag as well as menswear and children's clothing. It occasionally links up with celebrities who've had a clear-out for charity—so you could come across something belonging to Harry Styles. Buyers can contact the seller for information on the item they're thinking of purchasing.
Best for… There are plenty of Mulberry items listed at the moment, and it's also worth a look for luxury skincare products.
Commission: 15% plus VAT, but the company will cover your postage costs.
Best for Accessories: Rebelle
Headquartered in Germany, Rebelle boasts a far-reaching selection of European luxury brands as well as the usual household names. Its top brands include Miu Miu and Dior vintage.
Best for… Accessories. The site has over 5000 sunglasses, scarves, belts, bags and watches for sale right now.
Commission: Roughly around 30%. Rebelle operates a staging system whereby anything sold at less than £36 incurs a £14 fee and anything thereafter is subject to an additional percentage charge. If you sold a dress for £180, you'd pay around £55.
Best for Vintage Luxury: Vintage Heirloom
As the name suggests, Vintage Heirloom specialises in the resale of vintage luxury bags and Chanel costume jewelry. It has a small but perfectly edited selection of Fendi baguette bags and cute Céline styles pre–Phoebe Philo.
Best for… Bygone styles by the brands mentioned above, plus Louis Vuitton and Gucci.
Commission rate: 30% commission plus VAT, and a £25 admin fee. Regular sellers benefit from a 25% commission fee (plus VAT).
Best for Retro Gems: Etsy
The Style Stalker
From art and toys to jewellery and home wear, Etsy is a paradise for the online shopping aficionado. The site is, however, particularly known for its offering of vintage fashion and is perfect for selling on those rare finds to fellow second-hand style hunters.
Best for… Distinctive yet affordable vintage pieces that would usually be found hiding in obscure boutiques. Also great if you're looking to sell unbranded second-hand buys.
Commission rate: It costs £0.15 to publish a listing to the marketplace. A listing lasts for four months or until the item is sold. Once an item sells, there is a 5% transaction fee on the sale price (including the shipping price you set). If you accept payments through Etsy Payments, they also collect a 4% + £0.20 payment processing fee when an item is sold.
Best For Cult High-Street Buys: Ebay
The Style Stalker
Ebay is the big daddy of resale sites and, due to its sheer scale, is well set up for a quick and painless selling process. This is a good platform if you're looking to get rid of any cult high-street pieces (e.g., tea dresses from Kate Moss's Topshop collaboration or limited-edition items).
Best for… The high-street pieces that got away: think sellout viral buys and popular high street collabs.
Commission rate: You can list up to 20 items a month for free. After your free 20 items, each item you list costs £0.35. When your item sells you pay 10% of the final transaction value, including postage. This is called a final value fee. They cap final value fees so you will never pay more than £250 for a single item.
Next up, see our guide to the key trends for spring/ summer 2020.
This piece was published at an earlier time and has since been updated.
Opening Image: Getty