The title might feel a little dramatic, but up until about 2 years ago, I was buying the closet I could afford–things on sale from big stores–and not the closet I actually wanted, full of fun, interesting, and slightly more expensive items. I had a huge hypothetical wishlist and no way to purchase any of it on my extreme student budget. Then I found Poshmark–where you can buy stuff directly from other people. I had a lot of questions at first, namely, “is this legit?” and “how do I find the things I want?” and it sounds like some blog readers have those questions, too! Here are all my tips for shopping on Poshmark, scoring great deals and discounts, and avoiding scams.
Finding what you want:
The first feeling I had on Poshmark was that there is way. too. much. stuff. to look through. Fortunately Poshmark has a ton of search filters that I fully recommend–start by entering your sizes so that you can always filter by size. The next thing I usually do is search by brand. If you know a brand you love and your typical sizes in that brand you are well on your way to a more productive Poshmark hunt!
If you know the actual name of the item you want, type it in! Big stores like J. Crew and Loft have very specific item names and if you search for them they are likely to come up. This Madewell dress has been on my list for a while–it’s called the “shirred midi dress in french rose.” I typed that in directly and found a few.
But if you’re REALLY on the hunt for something at a good price I also suggest searching synonyms or words sellers are likely to use to describe that thing. Why? Some sellers on Poshmark are professionals–they’ll clean out the Madewell clearance section and then mark stuff up on Poshmark. And they know all the item names. But you and I as small Poshmark sellers just know we bought this dress at Madewell last year and have totally forgotten the product name. So we might label it “floral midi dress” instead. And we might list it for $25 instead of $55:
My other tip is to search by typos. My favorite shoe by Steve Madden is called the “Irenee” (and professional sellers will use that name) but I’ve had far better luck at cheaper prices when I type “Irene” and filter the brand.
How to get it for a great deal
On Poshmark it’s normal to make an offer for 20% less than the list price. Here’s a handy chart I use for that:
Also, the best price is at least 50% off retail if the item is new with tags (NWT). If the item is used I would definitely pay less than that. Every item on Poshmark is listed at a price and shows the “retail price” next to that, but I recommend searching to find the true retail price when you can because sometimes sellers are incorrect or pad the retail price.
Should you lowball? “Lowballing” on Poshmark is making a low offer–closer to 40% or more off the listed price. Some sellers get really really mad about it and might block you. If I really, really want the thing, I tend to just offer the 20% lower price. If I’m on the fence about the thing sometimes I will make a lower offer just to see what happens.
How to avoid scams:
Poshmark is a relatively safe place to do business in my opinion. I’ve seen some horror stories but haven’t experienced many problems. I suggest you check the seller’s page to see if they have sold any items before. If they have, you can also go to their “about” page and see if anyone has left them “love notes” which are basically reviews.
One flaw with Poshmark is they don’t actually show the seller’s rating, just their comments (which are usually nice). But knowing they’ve sold things before tends to be enough for me to trust them unless there are negative notes in the profile.
Also don’t take purchases off of the website. Sometimes people will say they will sell things to you for cheaper using Paypal or Venmo, but if they do that you have no way to ensure they actually ship the item to you.
Also, you can’t return things on Poshmark unless they have flaws that weren’t described in the listing. So ask for the condition before you buy! I tend to ask if there are any flaws or damage in a comment. I also ask for measurements (especially bust measurements, hip measurements, and length) on items to make sure they will fit, because you can’t return things if they don’t.
If you’re totally sold and have not made a Poshmark account before, you can get $10 off (and I’ll get $10 in credit) if you enter the code REBRICE where it says “have an invite code?”
10 thoughts on “How I find my dream closet shopping on Poshmark”
Depop is also a great place for some bargains! Great blog post!
I have never browsed there! or Mercari! But all are great ideas!
I use poshmark a lot and I’ve mostly had luck but there are some things I’ve given up on. Fussy fabrics are something I often avoid because I’ve been burned before by receiving a cashmere or viscose item that had clearly been washed improperly and either shrunk or the fabric was just off. Poshmark makes you document issues with a sale and that’s really hard to document.
And some brands are so hyped that it’s almost impossible to get a good deal on anything (like everlane).
But my sweet spot tends to be JCrew, Boden, Madewell, and some other less hyped brands, and then I just search for my size using the search bar since I buy talls/longs so that knocks out a lot of inventory.
I agree on the hyped brands! Reformation, Everlane, and other online only brands are sooo expensive on there, versus Madewell which is in abundance!
This is so helpful! I have recently started buying and selling on Poshmark and I love it
I’m so glad! I get most of my clothes off of Poshmark these days!
I love Poshmark! I have bought some of my best pieces there. I used to sell there all the time too (I just checked and have sold 90 items over the past couple years…crazy), but finally quit after being burned by two buyers :/. Now I pretty much exclusively sell my clothes at local brick-and-mortar secondhand places.
Ah yeah I’ve had a couple questionable buyer experiences as well and they are so annoying!