People are selling their old office clothes online for cash


When Robin Camarote attends a Zoom meeting, she no longer needs the heels, the blazer, or even the pants she wore to the office. So instead of leaving those “casual” staples in her closet, she sells them all online.

I don’t see a scenario where I’m going to wear these clothes again, ”explains the 45-year-old management consultant.

As the coronavirus pandemic stretches into the fall, Camarote is one of many former warrior companies to ditch their newly useless office attire via second-hand websites like Poshmark, The RealReal, Facebook Marketplace and eBay.

At RealReal, women’s pumps are now the best-selling type of footwear, according to Sasha Skoda, category manager of women’s and children’s clothing at the online consignment retailer. In May and June, the number of men’s ties on the site increased 47% from two months earlier, she says. The number of cocktail dresses increased by 93%.

“Some people are definitely giving up on the classic 9 to 5 suit-and-tie mentality,” Skoda says.

There is less demand, of course. Purchases of suits and ties are down 12% and 9%, respectively, from a year ago. But bargain hunters, some living in parts of the east coast, the south and other areas where closures have started to ease, continue to make deals.

Emily Ho, a 39-year-old digital marketing consultant in Louisville, Ky., Used the Poshmark fashion resale platform to sell 21 items, mostly cocktail dresses which fetch around 60% of what she got. paid for them, since May. So far, she has earned around $ 1,000; the money that helped protect her emergency savings account.

“I kept getting overwhelmed by the number of clothes I wasn’t wearing,” Ho says.

Ho has used Poshmark sporadically since 2016, she says, but her shoes, dresses and other items have sold at a snail rate before the pandemic. Now she has a lot more traffic.

Teressa Peirona, an executive assistant for a tech company in Rocklin, Calif., Also said her Poshmark sales had increased since the quarantine began.

Peirona, 30, sells already-worn clothes in her own closet – a pair of J.Crew women’s dress pants earns her between $ 20 and $ 30 a pair, she says – as well as clothes from friends and family , who pay her a commission of at least 20% for each item she successfully pledges online.

Overall, Peirona says her income “is enough to pay my student loan repayments.”

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To start

This trend has lasted, although some American workers are starting to return to their desks, says Alison Gary, a style blogger in Greenbelt, Md., Who sells some of her lightly worn clothes on Poshmark and Facebook Marketplace.

Americans are redesigning their wardrobes and aiming for smaller, more organized closets, “not just because they need to make money,” Gary says, but because their lifestyles have changed. At last count, 13.6 million Americans were unemployed (more than double the unemployment at the same time last year) and millions more have switched to telecommuting for the foreseeable future.

“People seem to be offloading themselves,” Gary says.

They have more options than ever. Poshmark and The RealReal, both founded in 2011, operate as consignment intermediaries, meaning that sellers receive money added to their account once an item is received by a buyer, and in some cases, its return window expires. RealReal typically charges consignees a 45% fee for each item sold, with prices for some designer pieces reaching $ 200 and up. Most sellers send a detailed box of approved designer items. These items are then photographed, sold and shipped directly to buyers. Poshmark, which requires sellers to photograph, sell, and ship their own merchandise, applies a 20% discount on items priced over $ 15 and charges a flat rate of $ 2.95 for items in less than $ 15.

Senders can find buyers directly on Facebook Marketplace without paying a discount. Or they can turn to eBay, an e-commerce auction site established 24 years ago that is free to most small sellers and has a built-in audience of bargain hunters from around the world. So sellers can ship their casual clothes to buyers in Germany, Korea, and other countries that are more responsive to COVID-19 than in the United States.

“In a lot of other countries, you still physically go to your job,” says Amanda Miska, a stay-at-home mom in Wyncote, Pa., Who earns hundreds of dollars each month selling second-hand clothes online.

In recent months, Miska has sold many of the dresses she wore to conferences and meetings to overseas buyers, she says.

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To start

As a salesperson on several online platforms, she has also answered many questions from people who want to make extra money by reducing their wardrobe.

These days, Miska is sort of an expert on the subject.

“I literally wear yoga clothes every day,” she says.

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