- Maegan Tintari/flickr
Most of us have closets overflowing with items we don’t want anymore.
The good news is, reselling your clothes, shoes, and accessories is easier than ever. Long gone are the days of schlepping them to the nearest consignment store or listing them on eBay – today, you have several apps and websites to choose from.
If you’re looking to declutter your closet, and earn some money while you’re at it, consider these eight outlets.
Antonia Farzan contributed to an earlier version of this post.
- BI Intelligence
For social shoppers: Poshmark
Poshmark, an app which looks and feels like Instagram, allows you to buy and sell clothing just like you would on eBay. The app has an enthusiastic community of shoppers and sellers who “follow” each other, comment on photos, and star their favorite items.
Brands like Tory Burch and Michael Kors tend to be the most popular, but you can also find lower-priced items from Forever 21 and H&M, as well as high-end labels like Chanel and Balenciaga.
For Alexandra Marquez, a 23-year old living in Arkansas, reselling thrift store finds on the app has become a full-time job. “I look at my phone from the time that I wake up until the time that I go to bed … and sometimes also when I get up in the middle of the night,” she told Business Insider.
It’s paid off: She earns $5,000 a month and was able to quit her corporate marketing job.
Business Insider’s Caroline Moss tried using Poshmark, and made $700 in less than two months.
Many of the app’s users are on the younger side, like Marquez, but co-founder Tracy Sun told Business Insider she sees people of all ages reselling their preowned clothes. “Everyone from teens, college students, professionals, celebrities, stay-at-home moms and even grandmothers are using the app,” she says.
For busy parents: ThredUP
With ThredUP, all you have to do is put your unwanted clothing and accessories in the mail. The company provides you with a shipping bag and label, and will make you an offer after it receives and sorts your items.
Originally for kids’ clothes, it’s expanded its mail-in resale service to include women’s clothing and accessories.
Many of the site’s two million users are busy moms who can’t keep up with how quickly their kids are outgrowing their clothes, and don’t have time to take photos, place listings on sites like eBay, and make extra trips to the post office themselves.
Anthropologie, J. Crew, and Free People are big sellers, and Moxie, Merrell, and Jacadi are popular for kids. However, the site will also accept items from less expensive stores like Old Navy. On average, items are listed for 70% of their original retail price, and anything that can’t be sold gets donated to charity.
Laurie Palau, who runs the organizing business SimplyBOrganized, says she gives ThredUP’s shipping bags to clients who need help decluttering their homes. “I deal with a lot of clients who feel guilty donating high-end clothes that they have spent a lot of money on,” she explains.” Taking time to go to a consignment store isn’t always realistic for them.”
To streamline her own life, she always keeps one of the bags in her closet. “Last time I checked, I had over $700 in my thredUP account.”
For label fanatics: SnobSwap
On the high end of the resale spectrum, there’s SnobSwap, where clothing and accessories from brands like Chanel, Christian Louboutin, Tory Burch, and Coach typically sell for $250 to $370.
(You can also skip the waitlist and get a Hermès Birkin bag for $90,000.)
Co-founder Emily Dang describes the average user as a professional woman between the ages of 20 and 45 years old who is fashionable but budget conscious, and loves a good deal.
Lydia, a seller who didn’t want her last name used, fits that definition: She’s made over $4,000 selling gently used pieces from her wardrobe, like Louis Vuitton and Prada bags.
SnobSwap authenticates every single item that it sells, which builds trust with buyers and makes it easier to get high prices for previously owned luxury goods. As Lydia puts it, “No one wants to spend $2,500 on a handbag that was actually a $25 replica from China.”
For people who only wear designer duds: TheRealReal
TheRealReal has a similar model: mail in clothing and accessories from luxury brands like Louis Vuitton, Gucci, or Cartier, and the site will make sure they’re authentic and list them for consignment.
TheRealReal keeps all of its four million members anonymous, but says that on average, sellers make $8,500 a year.
Items on the site typically sell from $150 to as much as $20,000.
- Material Wrld
For the high-end shopper who wants something new: Material Wrld
If you’re looking to rid your closet of certain items, but not necessarily downsize, Material Wrld could be your best bet.
Another spot for the high end shopper, the site lets you trade in your pre-owned designer fashions in exchange for an electronic gift card to shop new fashions at hundreds of online and in-store locations.
After signing up, you’ll receive a free “trade-in kit” with a list of accepted items, mailer bag, and prepaid shipping label. You can then mail any clothing, shoes, handbags, and accessories from the acceptable brands and Material Wrld will send you an offer via email; if you accept the offer, you’ll receive your gift card and can hit the stores.
For stylish guys: Grailed
Though most clothing resale options cater to women, a new site exclusively for men, Grailed, is growing quickly.
“It’s possible to list a piece, receive an offer on it, and sell it in under 30 minutes,” Dave Nacianceno, who has become the site’s top seller, explains.
Most of the clothing for sale is on the casual side, like hoodies, t-shirts, and sneakers, which appeals to the site’s core base of users in their mid-to-late 20s. However, that doesn’t mean it’s inexpensive. Designer labels like Alexander Wang, Allan Edmonds, and Helmut Lang sell for an average price of $140, and Nacianceno cleared over $25,000 in revenue last year.
For the entrepreneur looking to start a side hustle: ASOS Marketplace
Fashion junkies frequent ASOS Marketplace, which is known for its diverse and funky styles. While you can find pretty much shop for anything among their 900-plus vintage boutiques, you can also start your own and sell to ASOS’ audience of millennial fashion lovers.
The process of applying for, and opening, a boutique is more involved, but it has its perks: You’ll be assigned an account manager to help manage your sales, a boutique storefront and blog to help build your brand, and you’ll have access to a large global audience.
Before starting your side hustle, keep in mind that an ASOS boutique costs £20 (about $29) a month.
For Instaholics: use #shopmycloset
All resale companies take a cut of the money that you make by reselling your clothes, which is why some people are running their own sales on Instagram instead. Using the hashtag #shopmycloset, which has over one million posts, they post photos of clothing and accessories that they don’t want anymore, and take bids in the comments.
Susanna Hindman, who blogs at Revisionary Life, hosts #shopmycloset sales on a dedicated Instagram account, @shopsuzyscloset. “Your following tends to already like your personal style,” she tells Business Insider. “That’s often why they follow you, so marketing exclusively to an audience that enjoys your personal taste seems to produce a higher return and more competitive bids.” Her last sale earned her around $100 on previously owned children’s clothes.
Although doing business through Instagram isn’t a violation of the app’s policies, it’s not encouraged, either. There’s no “Buy” button and no built-in way to pay a seller, so users have to find workarounds.
In a guide posted on her blog, Hindman explains that she asks the winning bidder to leave an email address so she can send them a money request through Paypal. The rest of the transaction takes place on Paypal, which gives the buyer security.
No matter how you choose to do it, one thing is clear: Reselling your clothes is big business. So if there’s anything you don’t love currently hanging in your closet, you may want to cash in.