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The Ultimate Guide To Buying Luxury Goods On eBay

All the tips and tricks you need to know to help authenticate your online designer purchases.

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Buying previously owned fancy things on the internet can be like a box of chocolates: You never know what you're gonna get.

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Is it real? Is the condition as advertised? Will it ever actually show up at your door?

But the savings are often SO epic and the finds so amazing that some of us keep coming back for more! And eBay, with its bajillions of listings, is by far the best place to try to score deals on pre-loved designer goods.

Many other sites will take a cut of the sales, meaning the seller has to pad their price to account for this in order to make a decent profit — but since eBay takes less of a cut, the prices are typically way lower.Plus they have seller reviews and a slew of items they've authenticated themselves, they let you add things to your watch list, they save sellers, and so much more!
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Many other sites will take a cut of the sales, meaning the seller has to pad their price to account for this in order to make a decent profit — but since eBay takes less of a cut, the prices are typically way lower.

Plus they have seller reviews and a slew of items they've authenticated themselves, they let you add things to your watch list, they save sellers, and so much more!

So how can you make the most out of your eBay experience and spot the fakers from the amazing deals? Well, we've curated a list of all the best tips to spot those phony-ass designer goods and take the scariness out of buying pre-loved investment pieces online.

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If you know what to look out for, you could end up scoring a pretty great deal on the designer pieces of your dreams!

1. Always...always look for quality photos (and a lot of them).

For example, if you've found a listing for an amazing handbag, make sure it has a bunch of photos, including the front and back of the bag, the bottom, up-close shots of the handles, hardware, inside lining, zippers, tags, serial numbers, authenticity codes and cards, and a modeling or scale shot. Get this pre-owned small black lambskin Chanel handbag from pursehive for $499.
rover.ebay.com

For example, if you've found a listing for an amazing handbag, make sure it has a bunch of photos, including the front and back of the bag, the bottom, up-close shots of the handles, hardware, inside lining, zippers, tags, serial numbers, authenticity codes and cards, and a modeling or scale shot.

Get this pre-owned small black lambskin Chanel handbag from pursehive for $499.

2. Make sure the seller has a high rating, and cultivate a list of sellers you love and trust.

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eBay lets shoppers rate and review their buying experience, which means you don't have to shop totally blind! If a seller has over 30K sales and 98% positive feedback, chances are you're in trusted hands. Now, that's not to say that a new seller with barely any reviews and a slew of designer goods up for bid isn't trustworthy, it's just worth a bit more research.

Check out all the items a seller has, examine the pictures and the type of listings, descriptions, prices — maybe someone is just cleaning out their closet and has a variety of awesome pieces that just don't fit in their life anymore? Or maybe it's 15 versions of the same handbag? If it's the latter, might be best to keep on shopping.

One of my favorite sellers is brand_jfa. They're a Japan-based eBay store that carries an amazing variety of authentic designer pieces and has great customer service, and you can often score a pretty awesome deal (like this pre-loved Louis Vuitton bucket bag)!

3. Research the item you're interested in buying so you know what it's supposed to look like and so you can spot a fake.

If the item you love is still available in store, go check it out! Examine it, feel it in your hands, memorize all the details. If it's sold online, even better because you can do a side-by-side comparison. If the item is no longer available, ask the seller for more photos or take some time to find photos online of the original piece. Most items have distinct date codes and identifying features, so do what you can to figure out what those are for when you're scouring the listings. Louis Vuitton, Chanel, and Hermes are probably the most commonly knocked-off bags out there; learning the signs of what makes one of their bags unique can help you spot the impostors.Get this authenticated vintage Hermes Kelly bag from linda*s***stuff for $5,509.
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If the item you love is still available in store, go check it out! Examine it, feel it in your hands, memorize all the details. If it's sold online, even better because you can do a side-by-side comparison.

If the item is no longer available, ask the seller for more photos or take some time to find photos online of the original piece. Most items have distinct date codes and identifying features, so do what you can to figure out what those are for when you're scouring the listings.

Louis Vuitton, Chanel, and Hermes are probably the most commonly knocked-off bags out there; learning the signs of what makes one of their bags unique can help you spot the impostors.

Get this authenticated vintage Hermes Kelly bag from linda*s***stuff for $5,509.

4. Look for eBay's Authenticity Verified stamp to get a 100% guarantee that your goods are totes real!

eBay will take a luxury seller's items and authenticate them before they're even put up for purchase, giving you the peace of mind you want before throwing down serious hard-earned cash.Get this vintage Louis Vuitton monogram Speedy bag from luxury.garage.sale for $565.
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eBay will take a luxury seller's items and authenticate them before they're even put up for purchase, giving you the peace of mind you want before throwing down serious hard-earned cash.

Get this vintage Louis Vuitton monogram Speedy bag from luxury.garage.sale for $565.

5. If you're really just unsure, try a third-party site, like Authenticate First or Authenticate My Bag, for a second opinion before you complete your purchase.

Starting at about $10, you can have an item reviewed and authenticated with just the photos from the listings! Get this monogram Dior saddle bag from xupesboutique for $2,629.18.
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Starting at about $10, you can have an item reviewed and authenticated with just the photos from the listings!

Get this monogram Dior saddle bag from xupesboutique for $2,629.18.

6. Straight-up ask the seller! If they take forever to respond or don't actually answer the question, it might be worth taking your business elsewhere.

One of the great things about eBay is that you can communicate with your seller via the site — documenting every conversation just in case everything turns out not to be what it seems. Prior to your purchase, contact the seller and verify that the item you're interested in is actually an authentic item, as advertised! Do they get back to you quickly and answer all of your questions? If they do, then you're probably in better hands!Get this Supreme x Comme des Garcons shirt from sneakerchamps for $599.99.
rover.ebay.com

One of the great things about eBay is that you can communicate with your seller via the site — documenting every conversation just in case everything turns out not to be what it seems.

Prior to your purchase, contact the seller and verify that the item you're interested in is actually an authentic item, as advertised! Do they get back to you quickly and answer all of your questions? If they do, then you're probably in better hands!

Get this Supreme x Comme des Garcons shirt from sneakerchamps for $599.99.

7. And remember, eBay and PayPal are on your side!

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I once thought I scored the best deal of my life on a Celine bag...but it turned out I didn't follow my own advice, and the price tag was too good to be true. It took one message and a phone call for me to get a full refund. Just like that!

eBay has a money-back guarantee that promises you'll get the item you purchased and not a fake.

Explore all the luxury and splurge-worthy products that eBay has to offer!

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eBay has a slew of listings for designer heels, Gucci pieces, sunglasses, Chanel bags, designer wallets, Louis Vuitton, and Valentino pieces – just to name a few.

Get this Louis Vuitton trunk paperweight from brand_jfa for $328 and this velvet Prada Trompe L'oeil Cahier shoulder bag from yoogiscloset for $1,465.

Looking for the perfect gift for any occasion? Check out all of BuzzFeed’s gift guides!

Allison Krausman / BuzzFeed