To give this unique website some context, Vestiaire Collective is an e-store where you can buy and sell second hand, quality goods, much like eBay.
The difference? It is dedicated to fashion. We’re talking Chanel and Louis Vuitton handbags. Isabel Marant dresses and Christian Louboutin shoes! This untapped resource really is a true gem. Just a quick two minute browse on site and you will undoubtedly be cooing over a designer item.
The proof is in the pudding… Here is the most beautiful Louis Vuitton bucket handbag I have ever seen. Mine, courtesy of Vestiaire, for a mere £250.
Which leads me to the REALLY exciting bit. Vestiaire’s authentication process.
Once you have purchased something from their shop, the seller posts it to Vestiaire HQ direct, where their expert team will put it through a scrutinising authenticity process. Measuring, smelling, touching, comparing and inspecting until they are 100% certain is is not counterfeit and is in the exact condition as described by the seller online. Once they are happy, and only once they are happy, will it be posted onto you to enjoy.
Basically, it cuts out any chance at all of spending your hard earned cash on fake goods.
Below, a member of the Vestiaire Collective team checks a Sandro top and Hermes Birkin bag are both up to scratch. (FYI they passed the test!)
To fully understand the process, Fashion Editor took part in a guessing game: ‘Is it real, or is it fake…?’
Which of the two Balenciaga Motorcycle bags below do you think is the real deal?
Answer: see below…
Answer: the blue Balenciaga is a fake. How can you tell? Do you see how the embossed ‘Balenciaga’ name tag is deeper on the blue bag, creating more of a shadow on the lettering? And how the stitching does not follow all the way to the edge of the leather on the top left hand corner compared with the green, authentic handbag?
It really was so interesting learning all about counterfeit and I now feel well equipped to spot fake fashion goods. Thanks for sharing your secrets Vestiaire Collective!
Already a huge hit in France, Vestiaire Collective officially launches in the UK on Monday.