Luxury second-hand goods surge in popularity

Pre-owned luxury goods are rising in popularity as the more sustainable and affordable way to shop designer brands (Image source: l’Etoile

By Lara Pacillo | @LaraPacillo

The luxury resale industry is escalating in popularity as buyers choose more affordable and sustainable ways to shop luxury goods.

The luxury second-hand market is growing four times faster than the primary luxury market at 12 per cent per year versus three per cent, according to a report by business publication Luxe Digital.

The reports states that the second-hand market is expected to double its current value of $45 billion over the next five years.

Online platforms are driving the growth with easier access to authentic, rare, limited collections.

Luxury resale stores such as The RealReal, Vestiaire Collective, Fashionphile and The Luxury Hall have been popping up online over the past two decades.

The report states that luxury resale stores create easier access to timeless pieces that, in the past, could only be traded “in small local boutiques and through person-to-person transactions with limited consumer reach”.

Owners of The Luxury Hall, Jenna Romeo and Christina Yfantidis, say that the growth is driven by luxury items becoming more accessible through more affordable costs.

“The main appeal is the prestige of the items at a more competitive price point, making them more desirable to more people of all ages,” Jenna and Christina agree.

“While our customers are mostly women of all ages who all have a passion for luxury items, younger women are breaking into the pre-loved luxury designer market as items are at a more affordable price point.”

The Luxury Hall is a South Australian business which was launched in September last year as a platform for Australian shoppers to access 100 per cent authentic items at fair pricing.

With a passion for pre-loved luxury bags, Jenna and Christina were unhappy with the number of counterfeit items for sale in the Australian pre-loved market.

They wanted to create a platform that guaranteed authenticity and a peace of mind.

Emerging platforms like The Luxury Hall are able to prove authenticity of items, which establishes transparency and builds trust with consumers.

“We send each item to world-renowned authentication services such as Luxury Authentication Australia and Real Authentication,” Jenna says.

“We also give customers an option to purchase a Certificate of Authenticity from our website for their own piece of mind.”

The fashion industry is the second largest polluter on the world (Image source: Films for the Earth)

The Luxury resale market is also driven by sustainability.

According to a report by the ABC, the fashion industry is the second largest polluter in the world.

The report states that the average Australian purchases 27 kg of clothing per year, with 23 kg of that ending up in landfill.

With environmental awareness in mind, more people are opting for more sustainable ways to shop.

A 2020 report by Thredup said 87 per cent of women globally have or are open to shopping second-hand, compared to 45 per cent in 2016.

Christina says it is important to use luxury items to their fullest through mindful shopping “where if you don’t find use in an item, you can then pass it on for someone else to love”.

“In turn, this supports a circular economy in Australia for luxury goods, where we hope to minimise waste and recover the full value of exquisite and timeless luxury goods.”

Another appeal, which is common to all vintage items, is their uniqueness.

Jenna and Christina find that buyers are drawn to the rarity of the items.

“A great appeal for pre-loved is finding those little hidden vintage gems that are so timeless and last through the decades,” Christina says.

Those who are interested in selling their luxury goods through reliable online platforms can do so through two main options.

The first is through consignment, while the second is selling directly to the online platforms where they will authenticate the item and buy it from individuals to resell themselves.

The Luxury Hall uses a combination of both methods.

“Around 90 per cent of our items are sold on a consignment basis, in which clients contact us to sell items on their behalf,” Christina says.

“Around 10 per cent of our items are purchased directly from our clients and then sold on our platforms.”

Shoppers should be cautious to avoid being scammed through buying counterfeit items.

It is recommended to shop on verified second-hand reseller platforms that are able to reliably prove items’ authenticity.

For information about how to recognise, avoid and report an online shopping scam, consumers can visit the Scamwatch website.

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