Where can you buy gently used yet fashionable clothing at up to 70% off retail shops? Where can you find a huge selection of trendy, designer styles as well as every day basics that are branded, trendy, clean and in good condition? At Refash, where “Twice never looked so good”! And this is also where you can go to sell your gently used clothing which don’t fit you or suit your needs anymore. They’ll sell your items for you (under a consignment sale) and pay you a percentage.
Brands they Buy & Sell
Refash buys and sells brands such as H&M, ZARA, Mango, TOPSHOP, mds collections, ASOS, Forever 21, Love Bonito, and Zalora. In fact, they have a very specific “preferred brands” list that they “fast track” (buy/sell) through their stores. They have several brick and mortar shops as well as an online shop where orders over $35 ship for free. Their largest “offline” retail outlet just had their grand opening yesterday (more details below).
Prices You Pay & The Money You Make
At their largest shop (PoMo), which spans more than 6,000 sqft, they have over 5,000 items displayed for sale with prices starting as low as $5. Most of their items are between $5 and $15. They even have brand new (with tags) clothing selling in that range.
If you sell your items through consignment with them, their fees vary from 70% to 30%, depending on how much they get from your items. For example, if they sell $160 worth of your items (if you assume an average of $10 per piece, that’s 16 pieces), you can “cash out” $80 from your sales. See the table below for their payout scheme.
Shop Photos & Their Locations
• PoMo: 1 Selegie Road, #01-01, S188306 (newest and largest shop)
• City Plaza: 810 Geylang Road, #03-130, S409286
• The Cathay: 2 Handy Road, #04-18, S229233 (pop-up)
• Suntec City: #02-377/378 (pop-up)
My Experience with Refash
Shops like Refash have been around in the States for decades so it was refreshing (or refashing 🙂 ) to see one open in Singapore. Like Plato’s Closet and Style Encore in the US, Refash is like a trendier (though more expensive) version of a thrift store. And if you have fashionable friends who give you second-hand clothes (or you happen to dumpster dive some), you now have another channel to sell your goods (in addition to online portals such as Carousell, Ebay, and Trezo).
Last month, I applied for a seller’s account (took <5 minutes), set a drop-off date, and brought 15 items down to their shop. In exchange for the items, which they took right away, they gave me a $5 Refash voucher. They ended up only accepting 2 out of the 15 items, which I was allowed to collect the following day.
Things I liked: Their application process and acceptance was super quick, and once you’re an accepted seller, you don’t have to pay a registration fee to sell at Refash. The process for dropping off my items was also easy. As an immediate reward, they gave me a free $5 voucher, which I thought was a nice and unexpected gesture. They notified me the next day how many items were rejected. For the rejected items, you have the choice of collecting the items back (within two weeks), or having Refash donate them to a charity on your behalf.
Then after just a few days, one of my items sold (for $10.20, which at my current level only earns me 30%, or $3.06). Here’s what it looks like in my seller’s account portal:
Things for sellers to note, or Things I wish were improved:
1. I recommend you keep a record of what items you gave (which I should have done but didn’t because these clothes were from my fashionable friend). The reason why you’d want to do this is because currently, there is no way for Refash to accurately track your items (they do not have a unique SKU assigned to each item). How they track whether or not one of your items sold is by tagging it with your seller’s account name.
2. This brings me to the next important thing to note – choose a name that doesn’t really identify you (if you’re a private person), or a name which might potentially help to sell your item (e.g., usernames like KateSpade, LV, and VeraWong might add some perception of luxury).
3. Even if your item is one of the preferred brands and is in mint condition, it still may be rejected and they won’t tell you why either.
4. On their website and in their adverts, you might see that they offer a courier service so you don’t have to personally drop off your items. What you don’t find out till later is that this courier service essentially will cost you $14 in fees (deducted from your seller’s account).
5. Because there’s no unique SKU, you don’t really know how much your item sells for. It could sell for $15, but in your seller’s portal, it might say it sold for $5. There’s really no way of knowing, and because of that, you have to trust their pricing and their process.
6. When I asked the staff what happens when an item sits in their shops for a very long time, she said that sometimes they will have pop-up shops with a steeply discounted pile. But because there is no identifier on each item (other than your seller’s account name), you still won’t know which items were relegated to this pile and whether you were able to fetch a better price on your own.
7. Getting an item back that was put for sale is a difficult process and may require that you close your seller’s account. At other consignment shops I’ve been to, this is usually not the case. You can change your mind and take your items back fairly easily.
8. Although their shops open from 11am to 9pm, the collection times are only from 2pm to 6pm. I’m not sure why they don’t extend the collection hours since dropping off clothes just requires that you sign them over, which takes no more than 5 minutes. It’s not like the person who inspects and accepts your items needs to be there when you are there.
9. There are a lot of brands that are fashionable and popular that are simply not accepted by Refash (at least not through their “fast track” process). I dropped off clothing from Armani Exchange, Guess, Esprit, Polo/Ralph Lauren, and Nike – all brands that are among the top most popular brands for Millennials and iGens (Generation z) but were not listed in their preferred brands list – and they were all rejected even though they were in mint condition.
Verdict & PROMO CODE
Refash saves money for shoppers, helps earn money for those who want to clear their clutter, and reduces overall waste in the world – what’s not to love? Would I sell though them again? Yes, but only if I have gently used clothes from their preferred brands list that (in my case) would have to be either passed down to me, from a thrift store, or salvaged from the dumpster (this is because I haven’t bought any clothes from retail shops for nearly a decade).
For a limited time only (till 30 April 2017), if you sign up for a seller’s account and use the promo code “CLEORF”, you can get a free $20 credit to your account. T&C’s apply.