- Kinder to the pocket and the environment, these online spaces for pre-loved goods are shedding the taboo of second-hand buys to emerge as preferred shopping alternatives.
The advantages of buying pre-owned stuff are plenty. To begin with, it’s cheaper. Much cheaper. But it is, more importantly, a sustainable practice that reduces the strain on our resources, encourages a circular economy, reduces the waste directed to the landfills and could eliminate the packaging waste!
Closets, drawers, storage units etc. are ideally meant to give our lives a sense of order and structure. However, compulsive purchases and consequential hoardings snuff out this ideal sense of harmony. Which means cupboards overflowing with clothes that you no longer wear, racks that only stay to gather dust, articles that are stuffed in so carefully that they no longer see the light of day and so on.
Consignment stores for pre-owned goods are an excellent medium for people who wish to give away the things they don’t need any longer, and for those who want to purchase new pieces without having to shell-out too much. In an age when unnecessary production is exhausting the Earth’s endangered, non-renewable resources, curbing impulsive purchases and engaging in mindful consumption can be a great way to stop, think, take charge, and turn the wheels around.
To get you started on your tryst with pre-loved stuff, here are a few e-commerce sites that deserve a dekko:
With the aim to reduce the carbon footprint of garment production, Kiabza is a curated marketplace for buying and selling pre-owned clothes. They believe that extending the life of an existing product serves a nobler purpose than buying new ones. Hosting more than 1,500 brands, including H&M, Aéropostale and Converse, customers can purchase clothes at a lower rate than its original price.
The process to do so is pretty simple. First, you decide which clothes you would want to consign. Then, Kiabza arranges for a free pick-up, after which the clothes go through a quality check. Following that, the price of the approved clothing is defined by Kiabza and agreed upon by you, the seller, depending on the various parameters that are mentioned on the site. The clothes are sanitized and then photographed to be uploaded on the website, and you receive the payment after the sale of the products is completed.
Unapproved clothing will either be returned to you, or you may even choose to donate them to charities that partner with Kiabza. What’s unsold, will be returned after 6 months if not extended for a further period.
StylFlip is a virtual wardrobe platform where you can buy, sell, and even discover your personal style by shopping from the closets of millions of women around you. StylFlip aims to declutter the wardrobes of compulsive shoppers, while finding a new closet for the hand-me-downs. If you wish to declutter your closet, you must fill a form with the details of your product and images. StylFlip then verifies your listing and makes it available on their website. Once the product is sold, StylFlip picks up the product from your home and transfers the money into your account within 7 days of the product’s delivery.
CoutLoot is a platform that enables you to buy and sell fashion, books and electronics. The process is as simple as clicking a picture and uploading it on the site. You’ll know within 60 minutes if it is approved and chosen to be listed. CoutLoot also has great facilities like seller incentives. The faster you can sell online, the more you earn on your product. Once your item is sold, the CoutLoot team will offer a free pick-up and transfer the goods to the new owner.
One of the popular online spaces to give your belongings a second lease of life, Quikr lets you avail of a wide range of products right from furniture and appliances to fashion and bikes. You can buy, sell or rent at any price that you think best justifies the service of the item. Sellers can post an ad with details of their product/services and interested buyers can then contact the seller to negotiate the offer or make a purchase. Quikr then facilitates the payment directly while also organizing the pick-up and drop service. Once accepted, the item cannot be returned. Before buying a product or making an offer, one must always check the terms and conditions of sale and purchase.
Again a popular player in the space, Olx is a global product and tech group where you can buy and sell anything from cars and bikes to mobile phones and furniture. The seller can upload an advertisement and the buyer can browse through the listings. Olx plays middle-man for buyers and sellers to negotiate, buy and sell. It does not, however, facilitate a payment mechanism so transactions remain between the buyer and the seller. Cash transactions and personal pick-ups/ drop-offs are the most common between OLX users, but one may mutually agree to an arrangement with the buyer or seller.
Shop for pre-loved goodness on Ethico!
As big fans of pre-loved goodies, we have put up a virtual closet of all things pre-owned for our readers and customers. It features products for you and from you! If you have an item that you’d like us to feature, (it could be anything – showpiece, books, toys, kitchenware) click a picture and send it to us at [email protected] with the subject line ‘Pre-loved’.
We’re a team that is unlearning modern-day, convenient living to be able to lead an environmentally ethical life, and in the process sharing our insights with our readers.