Fun fact: I’ve made $25,000 selling over 1150 items on Poshmark since 2015.
In 2020 alone, I profited* over $10,000.
Poshmark was the only way I could pay my rent during the early pandemic days. All of my photo gigs dissolved, and the easiest fallback was leaning too hard into reselling.
Wanna take the same journey? It’s easy: start with your own stuff.
How I got myself into this mess
My “Poshmark phase” started as a Marie Kondo-esque evaluation of my closet at 25. After working in retail for most of my adult life, I had accumulated a ton of clothing that I only wore because it was free or cheap. I grew up a sale shopper and recognize that I often like the feeling of getting a good deal more than I like the actual thing. (This, I have learned, is what they call a “red flag.”)
You know when you meet a random person and they say something totally mundane that sticks with you forever? That happened to me at Buffalo Exchange. On one of my first closet clear-out endeavors, the buyer casually mentioned that she only kept 30 hangers in her closet. Every time she bought something new, she had to get rid of something else to make room.
The idea of having 30 hangers was abso-fucking-lutely insane to me. I could not wrap my mind around consolidating my closet to such a small collection.
Nevertheless, as I’ve learned to let go of clothing that doesn’t “spark joy” for me, the 30 hanger rule is becoming more feasible. Something that once felt impossible has helped me change my thinking to only buy and wear clothes that I love. Not just because I need to feel something. *le sigh*
Also one time on tour, I asked Lyndsey how she always looks ready to go even in pajamas, and she told me she just never buys clothing she wouldn’t want to be seen in. Up until that point I was sure PJs were supposed to be ugly. Now I give all sleepwear a side-eye of scrutiny.
These days I am much closer to 30 hangers but admittedly haven’t counted in a while. Keeping this capsule wardrobe article on my 2021 vision board for sure:
Are you ready to rumble?
Here are 8 tips to help you start your own closet purge:
- Start with your most expensive items. Recognizable brands and/or high quality goods (like real leather shoes or 100% cotton anything) always sell faster and for more money.
- Take well naturally-lit photos at all angles. Bonus points if you can model. Show any extra features, damage, and quality of material with closeups.
- Note condition, fabric, and measurements. Nothing is more annoying than someone asking “measurements?” then ghosting you, so save yourself the trouble and answer people’s questions before they have to ask.
- Price competitively! Try to find the same item online, aka what we in the business call “comps.” Through Poshmark’s search you can filter by availability to see what people paid for similar items. Note if there are others currently available and price accordingly. The Lens feature on the Google Photos app is also a game changer, especially for identifying shoes.
- Shoes are often the easiest item to sell. They hold their own shape and pretty much model themselves. If you’re looking for the highest ROI, start with your lightly worn shoe collection. Don’t forget to show the soles. Use Google Lens, seriously.
- Share your items to Poshmark parties. This is one method I rely on to spread the word about my closet. Parties happen four times a day. Share once to each.
- Use a bot like Closet Tools to share items automatically and send out offers to likers. This tool is the only thing that makes Poshmark a sustainable side hustle for me.
- Take time to ship items with care. Inspect them in bright light, maybe give them once over with a lint roller, and fold them nicely. Pack shoes in boxes with tissue paper if you think they could scuff in transit.
How I actually make money doing this
Did I make $25k from my personal collection? Hard no.
When I first started on Poshmark, I knew nothing about clothing and basically sold everything for bottom dollar while photographing everything on the floor of my apartment.
Over time I learned to spot quality brands and vintage pieces, and now my rule is that if I’m not buying it for myself, I have to be confident I’ll make at least $50 for the item to be worth my time. This results in my shopping trips earning me a small net profit in the end, and I have an incredible collection of clothing that is mostly sourced from thrift stores. Feels good.
I wrote this blog when I thought I wanted to start a reselling business, before I realized I was running away from photography. It has been slightly adapted to give more practical advice. I still use Poshmark to this day and use shipping items as an excuse to walk to the post office twice a week. My ultimate goal is to trim my inventory down to only photoshoot worthy items so my clients can rent/buy clothing for our sessions. Consider it my secret life.
*this figure is profit on the Poshmark platform. It does not account for cost of goods sold, which is $3-10 on average.
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