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How to shop vintage and premium second hand on eBay

Shopping on eBay can be an overwhelming experience if you are just starting out. The site offers millions of listings for everything between heaven and earth. To make your shopping experience as pleasant and fruitful as possible, start with figuring out what you are in the market for, generally, and narrow your search.

Select the Vintage category

For example, if you are looking for vintage treasures. Start with entering the "Vintage" section of ebay. You’ll find it under "Clothing, shoes and accessories" -> "Specialty" -> "Vintage", or just click here. Make sure eBay doesn’t default your search into just "Women’s Clothing" making you miss out on all of the vintage goodies.

Utilize the powerful search function

Because there is such an overwhelming amount of listing on eBay, it really pays off to be specific in your search. Rather than searching for "Louis Vuitton bag", try "Louis Vuitton Alma bb" to narrow your results to the exact bag you want. If you are looking for a specific vintage era, you can try searching by decade, like "1980s" and then select the vintage category to find vintage items and not have to sift through loads of retro fashion.

Filter by size...

If you are looking for a particular fit when shopping for premium second hand on eBay, be sure to include your size in the search. This eliminates all items that won’t fit the way you want them to, you can always include one size smaller and larger to widen the search if you want more of a range. However, there is a caveat to this point. When you are shopping for vintage items, pay more attention to measurements than size. Since older sizes often differ from the ones we use today.

Ask for more pictures and information

Don’t be afraid to reach out to the seller asking for more images or details about the item you’re interested in. Most items are listed by ordinary people and not shops, so the images might not always show every detail you need to make an informed decision. This is extra important when spending larger amounts of money on luxury goods, and most sellers are happy to help.

Save searches and favorite sellers/shops

eBay have a really neat save feature that enable you to save favorite sellers, shops and searches. This is super useful to not have to re-enter all that information and really streamlines your treasure hunt. Additionally, you can save categories and even shipping preferences. When I find a new shop or seller I always make sure to save it to my profile so I can keep track on new exciting listings.

Pay through PayPal

I always pay via PayPal because of their buyers protection if there would be any issue with the items or seller. So far, I haven’t had to use it (knock on wood) but it feels safe to know that I can get my money back if something should go wrong.

Emma Hill has created a great video guide on how to score some major finds on eBay 👇

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