eBay is amazing. It is literally the world’s biggest consignment shop.

I never have any luck when I hit the thrift shops. Why would this be any easier?

eBay is an often overlooked asset for expanding your plus-size wardrobe, and allowing you to try different labels without the hefty price tag retail would subject you to.

You can find designer brands, international designers, and, if you’re lucky, smaller indie labels on eBay. Some are new and in pristine condition. Others are gently used but still in great shape. Whatever you’re looking for, here are some things to keep in mind when buying clothes on eBay:

  1. Shop with a specific item in mind. I find that mindless browsing can lead to mindless buying. Knowing exactly what you want will help you save time, narrow your search, and save you money in the long run. If I want a silk shirt, I am not going to look at poplin shirts or t-shirts. Keep your eye on the prize.
  2. Know exactly what size you are for each different fashion label. I am a size 22 in Lane Bryant pants, but a 20 in Marina Rinaldi skirts. Taking a couple minutes to Google the company’s measurements will save you money from buying something that doesn’t fit.
  3. Read the measurements carefully. I don’t trust sellers who don’t list measurements on the product listings. Read the item description to ensure the seller is talking about the measurements laid out flat or if they are guessing the entire circumference.
  4. Ask questions. If they don’t list measurements, ask away. You have the right to know if the item will fit or not. My experience is the vast majority of eBay sellers are customer-service oriented, and will respond to you within 24-48 hours.
  5. Know the material of the garment you are ordering. You can have all the measurements in the world, but 100% silk does not have the same elasticity as 100% cotton.
  6. Get every detail if you are buying a used item. There’s nothing wrong with buying used, but check the buyer’s feedback to see if they are reputable and will disclose everything. Ask them to send pictures of the defects. I’m OK with having a scuff on a shoe or a little tear in a hem, but I want to know that beforehand. (I was selling a shirt on eBay one time and set it on fire. I had to cancel the sale. True story. LOL.)
  7. Cheaper does not always mean better. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: quality over quantity. I will pay more for a used Lafayette 148 pencil skirt than a new White Stag skirt. Because I have a very specific item in mind, I’m not wasting money on cheaply made clothes I don’t want.
  8. See if the seller offers refunds. Though it wasn’t such a big deal to me a few years ago, I now often find myself only buying from sellers who offer refunds. Yeah, many charge a restocking fee, but I’m OK with paying that if it means I get most of my money back if the item isn’t just what I was looking for.

I hope you will browse eBay and see what different labels it has to offer, and that you will find something you can afford, and that you can’t find in the stores where you live!

What is the best item of clothing you have ever purchased online? Comment below!