Donating your unwanted clothes to charity and supplementing your wardrobe with secondhand duds are great ways to conserve resources, save money and keep your closets clutter-free.
But what if you want to cash in on the value of your quality garments? Or do you prefer online shopping to digging through racks of used clothes at the thrift store?
Over the past few years, a crop of websites has sprung up that help members easily trade, sell or buy secondhand clothing and accessories with people across the country and even the world. So get ready to clean out your closets and find a new home for your unwanted garments – or pick up some budget-friendly, new-to-you pieces – with these six clothing swap websites.
At SwapStyle.com, you can trade, sell or buy used fashions in good condition: from a $20 Banana Republic blouse to a $500 wedding dress. In addition to women’s wear, the site features kids’ and maternity clothes, shoes and accessories like purses, hats and jewelry. The site allows you to search by color, size or brand and to create a wish list.
You can get even get rid of or snatch up, books, DVDs, electronics and purchased but unused cosmetics. But sorry to all you stylin’ guys out there; Swap Style.com is just for fashionistas; the site doesn’t include men’s clothes. Membership is free; for trades, you simply pay shipping costs.
In its ninth year, SwapStyle.com has over 55,000 active members from all over the world and has assisted its members in trading over 4 million items.
2 . Dig’N’Swap
True to its name, no money exchanges hands over at Dig’N’Swap, which helps members swap both men’s and women’s clothes, shoes, pet clothing, and women’s accessories like handbags and jewelry.
Membership is free during the site’s beta testing phase, and members pay to ship their own items.
To get started, post your unwanted goods and search for other members’ items by category, brand or size. When you find something you like – perhaps the Juicy Couture wristlet purse or Sportsman Guide men’s cowboy boots – bid on the new-to-you item with one of your goods or a combination of them.
Sure, you can swap both men’s and women’s clothes, accessories and even books on Rehash Clothes: a navy Express men’s jacket, women’s Coach Tortoise-shell sunglasses or a copy of New Moon. But Rehash is also a social networking site, helping members make friends, share fashion and green living advice and promote in-person swap events.
Rehash membership is free, and members work out shipping costs with each other.
Parents have clothed their growing kids in hand-me-downs for generations, but website thredUP takes this tradition online, allowing its members across the U.S. to get rid of or pick out secondhand children’s clothes and toys.
Rather than post goods individually, thredUP provides you with a free box to fill with unwanted clothes and toys, grouped by gender, size, brand and season – even special occasions like Halloween. When another thredUP member orders your box, print out a pre-paid shipping label and leave it outside your home for pick up.
If you’re in the market for gently used goodies, browse thredUP’s selection of boxes – clothing for babies to pre-teens or toys for all ages. You can purchase each box for $5, plus a $10.95 shipping fee. With more than 10 items in the boxes, thredUP says that each item only ends up costing about $1.50 – a real deal for budget-conscious families.
ReFashioner may not be the only clothing swap website out there, but it’s only one with a “Fashion Police” that vets each piece of clothing posted by members – accepting or rejecting them.
The site is like a curated consignment shop online, helping members trade high-end women’s clothing, shoes, unworn lingerie, jewelry and accessories like scarves, sunglasses and handbags. While not every piece needs to have a designer label, ReFashioner says they generally do not admit everyday work wear or casual tees, sweats and jeans.
If your items are approved, the Fashion Police prices them with ReDollars, which you can use to spend on other members’ goodies – Kate Spade ballet flats or a Marc Jacobs floral dress. In addition to “spending” your ReDollars at check-out, you pay $8 plus the flat-rate mailing charge.
Did your son grow out of his Patagonia jacket? Are you in the market for Patagonia gym wear, but on a tight budget?
Last month, the outdoor apparel manufacturer launched its Commons Threads Initiative, featuring a storefront on eBay where customers can buy or sell secondhand Patagonia gear.
To start selling your unwanted Patagonia items, register as a seller on eBay and PayPal and post an item description, photo and price. Or browse through the goods listed for sale, including a $6.99 women’s athletic top, a $34.99 men’s fleece pullover jacket or $45 boys’ hiking shoes.