However, one of the major problems I have with thrift stores is the lack of consistency. I find things not exactly my style, my size or my choice of fabric but I feel compelled to buy it anyways because it's such a good deal. But just a few months later, those garments tend to go back having been barely worn.
Luckily enough, the modern age is finally catching up to the brick-and-mortar shops around the corner, and I'm going to share my two new favorite online stores that solve all my thrifting problems!
I first discovered Tradesy, an online site where you can resell your closet, about a year ago -- but don't let the name fool you. It's more like selling on eBay for Paypal for site credit, and is not so much a place for trading and one-to-one swaps, and this unique concept has plenty of perks...
First off, they have the audience. My fellow users are looking to clean out their closet and refresh their wardrobe with items. I love how Tradesy cleans up the photos for you; you simply snap photos of your clothes, upload through the app or the website, and once sold, Tradesy sends you a clean, elegant shipping package (no more searching for boxes in the back of your closet) and the buyer covers all shipping prices.
My only negative comment is the search capabilities and site organization. My first time selling took 3 weeks to pay me -- but this was due to an error at the post office, where they forgot to scan the tracking code and didn't have the shipping label on record! If Tradesy had somehow linked the number to my profile, all of that drama could have been avoided.
And to be honest, their search isn't so great either. Every time I filter down to things I want, when I go back to the previous page, they reset. Ugh.
But all in all, Tradesy is a great way to unload clothes if you're in need of making a quick buck. For the value of a formal dress I never wear, I was able to buy an awesome pair of corduroys and a silky creme blouse for work -- as well a purse to boot -- with my store credit.
glasses: oliver peoples // ruffle blouse: coverse (tradesy) // brown corduroys: levis (tradesy) // green check wedges
99dresses is the other app I use and my personal favorite. Their mentality is way more pay it forward and is solely a bartering system. It helps you find those garments that aren't the right fit anymore but you just hate to ditch in a donation bin a good second home, and you get to do the same for someone else. All those garments that have never sold on other sites will go to ecstatic individuals who will cherish them, and that's a great feeling.
I was lucky enough to be invited to the 99dresses app in beta a few months ago and loved it. They run on a point system: the more you list, the more you earn. You can either save up for that high priced item and trade in or grab lots of smaller items (just pay shipping). This is way more of the traditional bartering system, and the points help incentivize you to roll up your sleeves and really clean out that closet once and for all.
black statement necklace: forever 21 (99dresses) // ruffle blouse: converse (99tradesy) // lace shorts: pins and needles (99dresses) // robin's egg bag: unknown (tradesy) // translucent flats: forever 21
I find that I can get more for my points than paying sale prices on deal sites. I traded a jacket that was just too large for me and got these adorable lace shorts and black statement necklace, as well as a houndstooth skirt, another black blouse, a Chanel necklace not pictured -- AND I still have points leftover!
My other favorite aspect to 99dresses is the filtering mechanism. The site stores your sizes and you can filter just by what will actually fit you. No more discovering that adorable-yet-totally-not-your-size dress. You can also save sellers and items to follow. I have found a few people that are my size and taste in style and I can watch specifically for them to clean out their closets.
Of course, donating is still an option -- but I'm gearing my findings more towards people like me who still need to see some sort of return on their clothes in order to have enough money or credits to afford some new wardrobe necessities.
Bottom line: if you just need to get rid of those boxes of unused clothes and maybe use them to splurge on a cute little find, 99dresses is absolutely where you should be. But if you have enough clothes and are still hoping that your unworn garments will fund your college textbooks or your next grocery run, stick with Tradesy.