Of the billions of pounds of used textiles thrown out in the U.S. each year, 85% percent are dumped into landfills or burned. And of the 15% that are recycled, much of those are shipped to other countries where they end up, once again, in landfills. Even when you donate your clothes to Goodwill or the Salvation Army, they don’t always find a new home in someone else’s closet. The landfill is still often the final destination.

The next time you’re clearing out your closet, consider making a few extra bucks while ensuring your clothes end up in a good home by selling online. If you’re feeling overwhelmed with the process, we’ve broken it down for you. Below are our top tips for selling clothing online, complete with the best platforms, pricing suggestions, and how to get paid.

Best Platforms For Selling Used Clothing

From Poshmark to Depop to good old eBay, every resale site has its specialty. Dive into the differences between five of the most popular resale sites here—below is an overview of a few of our favorites.

  1. Depop. With an Instagram-like interface, Depop, geared toward a more Gen-Z crowd, is easy to use and has tens of millions of users around the world. You take your own pictures and make your own listings, and Depop takes a 10% cut of sales prices. 
  2. Poshmark. Super user-friendly, Poshmark makes it easy to upload and sell used clothing and more. They take a flat $2.95 fee for items under $15, and 20% for anything over.
  3. eBay. A tried-and-true online favorite, eBay makes it easy to sell your used clothing independently, taking up to a 12.35% cut.
  4. The RealReal. Have some high-end pieces you’re looking to offload? The RealReal specializes in designer consignments, and you’ll earn up to an 85% commission.

How To Choose Which Clothing To Resell

Be both picky and realistic when it comes to which clothing items you choose to list. If an item has a stain or a hole, it might not be resellable. But many buyers are more than willing to accept an imperfection as long as the item comes at a steep discount. Be sure to photograph and describe the damage in the listing, or you might have an unsatisfied customer and not get paid for the item.

Keep in mind trend cycles, too—it’s much harder to sell an item that went out of style a few years ago (like a peplum top) than a more classic or trendy piece. Price outdated or unbranded clothes lower for a better chance of selling. 

Some items, on the other hand, will sell a whole lot quicker, like items new with tags, things from popular brands, and classic pieces that never go out of style—think blazers, pencil skirts, button downs, trousers, and little black dresses.

How To Create A Listing

  1. Photos. A decent photograph can mean the difference between an item that sells and one that doesn’t, and you don’t need much for the perfect shot—just a plain background and your phone’s camera. Try to model your clothes yourself to give buyers an idea of what the item might look like on them, but nicely hanging or flat laying the item works in a pinch. Shoot in bright, natural lighting, and make sure your background isn’t cluttered. Take at least four shots of every piece—front, back, detail, and tag. And iron the pieces beforehand if needed!
  1. Details. Provide as much clear detail in the listing as possible, like measurements and any defects. Think about what you as a buyer would want to know—for example, you’d probably never buy a pair of jeans that didn’t have waist and hip measurements.
  1. Pricing. Competitive pricing is the best way to stand out on crowded reselling platforms. As a rule of thumb, price clothing for no more than 50% of what a new, comparable item would go for. Most used clothing sells for around 25% to 40% of what it would be new. Do your research to look at competitors’ prices if you need more guidance. Keep in mind the quality of the item, and expect buyers to make slightly lower offers, too. Remember, those percentages are off of what the new price would be today, not what you originally paid for it.

How To Get Paid For Sold Clothing

Congrats, you sold your first item! It’s time to ship it out to the buyer ASAP for a better chance at a good review. Each selling platform has its own shipping process, but usually, it’s along the lines of packing the item in a box you already have, then putting the shipping label that the platform emails you onto the box and dropping it at the post office. Consider adding in a handwritten thank you card for an even better chance at a good review.

You’ll get paid as soon as the buyer receives the item. Typically, your funds go to an in-app account, from which you can transfer them to your bank or use the money to shop the platform. Buying second-hand rather than new will help support sellers like you!

Natalie Gale is a Boston-based freelance journalist. When she’s not writing about art, food, or sustainability, you can find her biking to the farmers’ market, baking, sewing, or planning her next Halloween costume. Say hi on Instagram!