8 tips for scoring the fill-in-the-blank of your dreams
  1. Don't let your emotions get the best of you
    The "Best Offer" button seems like a good idea — this is where you name your price. But make sure you can actually afford the price you're offering, or that you really want the item. It's easy to get blinded by the label.
  2. Do be prepared to "Buy It Now"
    Every once in a while, some sucker will put up a Jil Sander seafoam green leather coat for $26. This is when emotion should take over. Close your eyes and click "Buy It Now" like it's the difference between life or death. However, it's smart to set a limit beforehand. I have an under-$30 rule for instances exactly like this.
  3. Be specific
    It seems obvious, but include brand names in your search. Because I'm on a continual hunt for Prada and Jil Sander (that previously-mentioned $26 coat was not folklore, my friends), I make sure to tell eBay exactly what I'm looking for. It's like dating! Pay attention to the recommendations eBay gives you based on your brand-related searches, too. They're fairly accurate and could lead to your newest purchase acquisition.
  4. Play detective
    Pretend this is like an episode of Catfish: if there aren't a lot of pictures, assume it's for a (bad) reason. If an item seems to good to be true (a $50 pair of "Brand New" Céline shoes, for example) ask for more photos and information. However, remember some of the best vintage will have light stains. Try to accept minor flaws — everyone has a past, right?
  5. Face the realities of pricing
    If the list in is super low and there's still a few days left, remember the price will likely rise. I always forget that the starting price is just that: a start. Avoid sticker-shock and heartbreak by preparing yourself to spend more than the first listing.
  6. Be obsessive and aggressive
    Get the eBay phone app and turn on notifications. Track searches so that each time there's a new listing for, say, Alexa Chung x AG Jeans, you'll get a little ping from eBay. Check in for new listings every day. It takes a few seconds, but you never know when the perfect price will pop up.
  7. Know your market
    If it's not on eBay, it might be on Etsy. There's a greater chance of finding newer-used items (like jeans and purses) on eBay, while Etsy tends to be better for handmade goods and true vintage.
  8. Most importantly, know your measurements!
    Get a measuring tape and a good friend. Have her measure your waist, hips, thighs, chest, and legs.