Do you have lingerie that no longer fits, or is no longer your style? Numerous places will accept worn bras to resell or recycle. But what about other types of lingerie? Or if you want to get some of your money back?
With 175 million active users, no place has the potential to put your items in front of as many eyeballs as eBay. It’s often the place I turn to clear out my perpetually-overflowing lingerie drawers. It’s easy and cheap to sell lingerie, and anyone can do it.
Here’s how to get the most out of the online auction site:
What does selling via eBay cost?
You can list quite a few items each month for free. As many as 50 in the US! After that, there’s a small fee, in the pennies, for each new listing.
If someone buys your item, then you’re charged a ‘final value’ fee. It’s a percentage of the sale price and shipping cost, typically 10%. PayPal, the standard eBay payment method, also charges a smaller fee. So factor these in when you’re deciding how much to ask.
If you’re brand new to eBay, also be aware that Paypal may hold payments from your first few sales until the buyer receives the item. Make sure you’ve set aside money elsewhere to ship them out.
Photo via Estelle Puleston
Can you sell worn lingerie on eBay?
You may be wondering what types of lingerie are okay to list on eBay. Let’s start with what you can’t sell. Used bottoms (briefs, thongs, etc.) are not allowed for hygiene reasons. Used bodysuits, however, which also have a gusset, are okay in the US. eBay UK technically bans them but does let you list them, so it’s a grey area.
Any other type of worn lingerie---bras, nightwear, hosiery, etc.---is allowed. Used swimwear, too. Want to sell something vintage? Then anything is acceptable, even briefs, so long as it’s neither pictured on a body nor recently worn. It will need to go in the Vintage Clothing category specifically though.
And all new, unworn lingerie is okay to list, even if they no longer have tags.
How do I get the best price for my lingerie?
I’ve bought lingerie on eBay as well as sold it. It’s good for a few things, one of them being finding bargains. Great for deal-hunting buyers, less ideal for sellers looking to maximize their prices.
In my experience, lesser-known brands often sell for below their value. If few people have heard of the brand, few will be searching for it. That’s not to say don’t try it. Just choose a sensible starting price that you’re okay selling for if you only get one bid.
You can check what similar lingerie sold for recently. Search for your item or its brand and tick ‘completed listings’ in the filters. You'll find prices of sold items in green. If they’re rather low for your liking, it may be better to seek out a lingerie-selling community. These small but niche groups are much more likely to know and value the brand you’re selling!
Alternatively, here are a few tips to get your products’ true worth on eBay:
Consider setting a reserve price. It’s an undisclosed minimum figure you’ll accept for the item. If the auction doesn’t reach it, you have no obligation to sell. You can choose any reserve amount in the US. eBay UK only allows reserves of £50 or above. But since adding one does incur a fee, it just makes sense for higher-value items anyway.
Create a ‘Buy It Now’ listing rather than an auction. It’s a take-it-or-leave-it price, just like in a shop. Though you can choose to allow buyers to send a ‘Best Offer,’ lower bids you can accept or decline.
Write a good title and description. The words you use (especially in the title) are what determine if your item shows up in people’s searches. So don’t just call it “Agent Provocateur 32B bra." Also, include descriptive words like silk/lace/black/plunge/ Some buyers also search for acronyms like BNWT (brand new with tags) and VGC (very good condition).
Increase the listing duration. For auctions, you can choose 1, 3, 5, 7 or 10 days. You can’t extend the sale once it’s underway. If you’re in no immediate hurry for the money, I say why not choose ten days? More time means more views and more potential interest.
Have you ever used eBay (or another platform) to turn your unloved intimates back into cash? Do you have any other advice or tips on how to sell lingerie?
Featured image: iStock