Shopping online for designer deals can be a little overwhelming. There are dozens of sites claiming to offer major discounts on big-ticket items such as Chanel or Dior bags, but sometimes it’s hard to tell if they are real or fake. My rule of thumb: When the price seems too good to be true for a rare designer piece, it probably is.
I spoke to Rati Levesque, vice president of merchandising at The RealReal, a cool consignment fashion site that just relaunched with several new features, to get the scoop on everything we need to know to shop for the best deals.
She said shopping consignment online is all about timing—sometimes it’s pure luck that you come across the perfect piece. “People aren’t buying based on season,” she added. “They want to be able to buy a winter coat or a piece for summer right now.”
Some designer items hold their value better than others. Rati said Hermes, Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Hermes, Celine, Prada, Dior, and more recently, The Row (the label from Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen) are all good brands to keep and invest in.
The RealReal offers a service to people that are thinking about selling their designer items online. They will come to your home, check out your potential sale items and tell you on the spot if they can sell them and how much they would go for. The site has an over 95 percent success rate in selling luxury pieces. “Most items move within the first three days,” said added.
Finally, look for an authentication certificate, which should come with most items. Don’t rely on a site telling you it’s real.
Have you shopped for consignment fashion online? If so, what’s the best item you’ve ever purchased? I think my favorite piece ever purchased from an online consignment site was an Isabel Marant jacket!