I’ve been doing a fair bit of comfort shopping recently. It’s hard not to feel a little locked in, and online shops are just so shiiiny and although I’m well aware of the science behind the (unsustainable) endorphin kick we get when we buy new things, it hasn’t stopped me from indulging in it.
One of the things I’ve been sad about during lockdown is the closure of charity shops. Usually they are my outlet for any retail cravings: if I want something new (to me), I can walk out of a charity shop with a bit of treasure which I know has contributed to charity, detracted from landfill and not exacerbated the fashion industry’s footprint. Not so in lockdown 3.
Buying second-hand online
My latest batch of goodies came from Vinted, an online ebay-style store which specialises in clothing – quite possibly because they have been mercilessly advertising at me wherever I go on the web. It’s peer-to-peer (you have to avoid thinking too hard about how you are effectively looking through the wardrobe of other women who wear your size) and the pictures and information available can be a bit dubious, but the classification of the clothes (by category, size, brand and price) is fantastic and it’s very easy to find something that suits. Much easier, in fact, that trawling through 18 charity shops, which is how I usually find clothes. Like on ebay you get a sense of the quality of the item (brand new/very good/good condition), but the price is set by the seller so there’s no faffing with auctions and such.
How was it? Well, my first purchase was cancelled: the seller decided, a few days after I had bought, that she was “away”. A bit annoying, but the refund did come through immediately and automatically. If you want to buy more than one item from a seller, which they promote by suggesting ‘bundles’, you do need to wait for the seller to confirm postage cost and such, and some of the journeys around that are clunky (why can’t you apply any filters on the bundle view? why?). But once my second purchase was made, and the bundle of four tops confirmed (for £8!), I quite happily awaited my bundle of joy to land on my doorstep. When it did arrive – with its accompanying endorphin hit – the tops were all as described, clean, bright, and fitted fine.
I miss charity shops a little less now.
Have you bought any second-hand clothes online? Where from? How was it?