Is that pink fuzzy sweater no longer sparking joy? Then it's time to whip out your mobile device. Selling your old clothes online has never been easier, thanks to resale websites and clothing apps that let you set up shop from the comfort of your own home. Plus, if you're trying to declutter your closet, donating or reselling your clothes and accessories is always the best choice for the planet according to the Good Housekeeping Institute's sustainability experts, since the most sustainable fashion is anything pre-owned. Reducing waste and making some extra cash? Now that's what we call a win-win.
That said, when it comes to selling your unwanted clothes online, not all services are created equal. While some do all the work for you, others require that you snap photos and type out detailed descriptions of your items. When that's the case, if you want your item to sell for top dollar, it's crucial that you learn the tricks of the trade. “It’s all about the photo,” says Good Housekeeping’s Style Director Lori Bergamotto. “Make sure your image is clear and shot from all angles — and be hyper-specific about detailing the measurements and condition of your item.” Timing is everything, too: Bergamotto says you’ll fare much better if you're selling something that’s seasonally in high demand. “If a polar vortex is approaching, a heavy winter coat will sell much quicker than a swimsuit!” she notes.
To get you started, we asked our editors and product experts to share their favorite places to sell clothes online.
Who it’s best for: Sellers that don't have time to create listings, take pictures and ship their items.
Effort needed: Minimal
Our editors can't stop raving about this one. In fact, Digital Director Lauren Matthews says she sells all of her old clothes — as well as her son's — on thredUP. “It’s so easy,” she says. “They send you a prepaid bag or mailing label, you send the company your clothes, then their staff handles everything from photography to descriptions, so you just sit back and see what sells.” Selling is free on ThredUp and they take a percentage of the profit of the sold items.
You can sell new and used women’s clothing, from premium and designer brands like Theory and Tory Burch, to clothing from retailers like J. Crew and Ann Taylor Loft and many others. ThredUp takes women’s clothing, shoes, handbags, accessories, plus size, maternity and kids' clothes. Some of the most popular brands include Anthropologie, Madewell, Free People and more. If your items don't sell, ThredUP will either ship them back to you or recycle them, depending on your preference.
Who it’s best for: Casual to serious sellers looking to unload stuff geared to a younger crowd.
Effort needed: Medium
Depop offers you the option to sell just a few one-off items or, for serious sellers, the ability to set up a virtual storefront complete with a store logo, description and direct connection your social media handles. Once you’re set-up, it's similar to other clothing resale sites where you're in charge of taking photos or videos of the items you’re selling and writing up a description, including important details such as color, size, item condition and price. It’s free to list items, you just pay Depop 10% when it sells.
There are categories to sell both menswear and womenswear from everyday casual clothing to prom dresses. Popular brands include Nike, Adidas, Zara and Brandy Melville. You can also list jewelry, beauty items, home decor, sports equipment and more.
Emma Seymour, Senior Product Analyst in the Textiles, Paper & Apparel Lab says, “I love using Depop to both buy and sell clothes. On some other resale sites, nothing I post ever sells, but everything I post on Depop sells pretty quickly!” You can also use hashtags to help people find your items easily.
Who it’s best for: Casual to serious sellers with trendier name brand items to sell.
Effort needed: Low
Top brands to sell on Poshmark include Louis Vuitton, Coach, Nike and Lululemon just to name a few in womenswear, menswear and kids clothing. Not only can you sell everyday clothing but you can also sell wedding dresses or suits and just about everything in between.
When you sell an item through Poshmark, the company sends you a prepaid shipping label, making it simple to pack and track your package as it goes off to the buyer. For sales under $15, Poshmark takes a flat commission of $2.95. For sales over $15, Poshmark takes a 20% commission.
Lexie Sachs, Executive Director of the GH Institute's Textiles, Paper & Apparel Lab, loves selling clothing on Poshmark: "The listing process is so smooth and easy!" The app also has a social media component, so you can follow your friends and sign up for "Posh Parties," virtual events where you can sell your stuff in a flash.
Who it’s best for: Casual to serious sellers that have everyday clothing to sell.
Effort needed: Medium
To list your women’s, men’s and kids' clothing on Mercari's app, you'll need to take your own photos, write descriptions and set the price. You can sell dressy to casual attire with top brands such as Nike, Lululemon and Tory Burch being top sellers.
Once an item sells, a prepaid shipping label with a discounted rate will be emailed to you (you can also ship it on your own, but Mercari recommends this option only for experienced sellers or oversized items). It's free to list, but there is a flat 10% selling fee charged when a sale completes.
Who it’s best for: Sellers that have lots of luxury designer items in pristine condition to sell.
Effort needed: Minimal
If you have luxury women’s, men’s or kids' items to sell, Bergamotto recommends heading to The Real Real. The online consignment shop can pick up your items right from your home, but you can also ship them directly to the RealReal offices or visit one of its Luxury Consignment Offices for a free valuation. From there, luxury fashion experts evaluate, photograph, price and sell your items for you. Once your item is sold, the company guarantees you’ll pocket up to anywhere between 30% to 85% of the profits, depending on how much you've previously sold on the site. Also, the more you sell, the higher the commission!
Who it’s best for: Casual to serious sellers that are selling high-end designer or designer-like clothing.
Effort needed: Low
This site takes a ton of the hassle out of selling women’s clothes, bags and shoes. Just snap a quick photo, upload it to the Tradesy app and it’s up for the world to see. Once an item sells, select from a Tradesy USPS priority label, a full shipping kit (complete with a box and shipping label), or use your own box to send it to the lucky buyer. Coveted brands and retailers include Chanel, Alice + Olivia, Tom Ford, Zara and more.
If your item sells for under $50 then Tradesy takes a flat commission fee of $7.50 and for items more than $50 the commission fee is 19.8%. Other than that it’s free to list items, however, you will pay a 2.9% fee when you withdraw your earnings but if you use your money to buy other items on Tradesy then there’s no fee. Any returns are shipped back to Tradesy, and you still get to keep what you earned in the sale. Now that's what we call a win-win scenario!
Who it’s best for: Casual to serious sellers looking to sell their kids' used clothing.
Effort needed: Medium
Moms, meet your new best friend. Kidizen is the top-rated kids' clothing app, allowing you to easily sell your kids' hand-me-downs. Just set up your shop's "storefront," promote your pieces from top-selling brands like Matilda Jane Clothing, Mini Boden, Tea, Petunia Pickle Bottom and more and then send them off to buyers once they sell.
After that, Kidizen will take a 12% fee from the list price plus $0.50 for the marketplace fee. But fair warning: You might find it tough to resist buying all those cute accessories, toys and shoes while you're browsing.
Who it’s best for: Casual to serious sellers with a variety of things to sell.
Effort needed: Medium
eBay, the original buying and selling site that we all know and love, has been a resale go-to for decades. If you want to sell your clothes (or anything, really) all you have to do is set up an eBay account, post a photo and description, choose a starting price and watch as people make bids on your item. Or you can use the “Buy It Now” option and sell it for a fixed price. There’s also an opportunity to use both methods at once, and see what people will offer on the clothing.
You can sell just about any brand on eBay but in-demand brands include Zegna, Carhartt, Eileen Fisher, Free People, Diane von Furstenberg and more in men's, women's and kids' clothing. You can purchase one of eBay's labels or handle shipping on your own once an item sells.
eBay doesn’t charge anything for the first 250 listings and then after it’s $0.35 per listing. After you sell the item the fee is 15% for items sold under $2,000 and 9% for items over $2,000.
Who it’s best for: Serious sellers who have time to run a vintage clothing storefront.
Effort needed: High
Etsy, the popular online marketplace that specializes in handmade and vintage items, is a great place to sell your old clothing. You can sell women’s, men’s and kids' clothing as well as bags and purses.
Keep in mind, according to Etsy’s policy items sold must be vintage and according to Etsy's policy vintage is defined as clothing items at least 20 years old.
You can manage orders, chat with buyers and buy/print discounted postage for a super smooth selling experience. Listing an item is a flat $0.20 fee and when you sell an item, keep in mind that you'll have to pay a small commission of 5% of the total order and a processing fee of 3% + $0.25 USD directly to the site.
Selling your clothes online can be worth it, but don't expect every single item to be profitable. Clothing that is in excellent condition and in demand will yield the best results, as long as applicable fees and shipping rates are less than the price you're selling it for.
Take note, the money you'll get per item can vary vastly depending on the item with some only bringing in a few dollars, while luxury designer clothing could bring in hundreds, possibly thousands, of dollars. A good rule of thumb, the more work you do, the more you'll get paid.
Still, it's worth keeping in mind that even if you simply break even, it's a worthwhile endeavor to give your clothes a new home, instead of sending them off to join the 11 million tons of textile waste that ends up in landfills each year.
- Determine if it’s worth selling. Before you spend time listing your item, you’ll want to determine if it’s even worth selling. Examine the piece to make sure it’s in sellable condition, meaning no holes, tears or stains. In some cases, you may be able to sell clothes with defects, but they often won’t sell for a good price.
- Consider the seasonality of the item. While items can sell out of season, it’s more likely you’ll get a better price in season. A good rule of thumb is to follow what retailers are selling in stores. If it’s out of season, you may want to hold off on selling it.
- Scope out the competition. Do a quick search on the platform for the item you are selling to see how many there already are for sale and the average listing price. If you see 50 black Gap t-shirts listed at a really low price, you may want to consider if it’s worth your time and energy.
- Estimate shipping costs. Once you’ve scoped out the competition and have a ballpark idea of what the item might sell for, use a shipping calculator to estimate the shipping cost of the item. This will help determine if you want to sell the item at all, if it costs more to ship than what buyers are willing to pay.
- Take high-quality photos. Good photos are extremely important; after all the buyer can’t see this item in person or touch it, so photos and the description are all they have to determine if they want to buy or not.
- Write a detailed description. Tell the buyer everything they need to know about the item such as brand, style name, size, color, measurements, materials and anything else that’s relevant. You’ll also want to note any imperfections and generally be as transparent as possible about the condition, otherwise this could lead to the buyer returning the item.
- Make sure your items are freshly cleaned. You’ll want to make sure your clothes are stain-free, steamed and look as new as possible, otherwise you could risk complaints from buyers that the item doesn’t match the listing.