Best Thrifting and Secondhand Shopping Apps of 2024

There are three general motivations behind thrifting: environmental, social and financial. 

Thrifting is an attractive option for eco-conscious shoppers as it can be a more environmentally friendly practice compared with shopping new. The fashion industry is a major polluter, causing global concerns — in 2018, the industry’s total greenhouse gas emissions were equivalent to all of France’s, Germany’s and the UK’s combined. The industry’s water usage and carbon emissions via global shipping are two major concerns.

Thrifting is one way to extend the lives of existing clothing, creating what advocates call a “circular economy.” The basic idea of this cycle is that when clothes are passed on to other consumers, they stay out of landfills and help reduce demand for new clothes — two things that help alleviate fashion’s environmental footprint.

From a social perspective, research has shown that there’s been a significant decline in the stigma surrounding resale in recent years, up to 76% of Americans surveyed in one study. In fact, thanks in large part to Gen Z, thrifting has become a social media trend. Thrifting took off on social media in 2021 as a TikTok trend, with users making trendy #ThriftFlip videos of their best thrift store finds and transformations. As of September 2023, the tag “thrifting” had over 11 billion views on TikTok. 

And, for shoppers, thrifting is a great way to save you money. One report estimates you can save nearly $1,800 a year by shopping secondhand. 

There have been concerns about the ethical impact the rise of thrifting has had. The increased popularity of thrift stores can lead to increased prices, potentially making these products out of reach for the communities they were originally meant to serve.

Sellers have similar motivations: cleaning out your closet can make room for current trendy pieces; donations or resales can be a more environmentally friendly practice and keep clothing out of landfills; and it can be a great way to make some cash.

Seller and buyer fees by app

App Listing fee* Seller fees** Buyer fees*** Who pays for shipping?
Poshmark None Sales over $15: deducts 20%
sales under $15: $3
None Buyer
Vinted None None Buyer protection: Each sale = 70 cents + 5% of item price Buyer
thredUP Included in Clean Out kit service fee $15 + shipping for Clean Out kit For returns, $4 restocking fee + shipping (exceptions apply) Buyer for sold items, seller for submitted items
Vestiaire Collective None Incremental depending on item price Only in event of needing to relist an item Buyer
Mercari None 10% of item price plus processing payment fee of 50 cents + 2.9% of item price None Depends — sellers can print labels themselves or have Mercari do it and charge buyers
Depop None 10% of item price plus payment transaction fee of 45 cents + 3.3% of item price None Depends — sellers can cover shipping or have the buyer incur the cost
The RealReal Depends on method of sale: consign/trade/sell Depends on method of sale None Buyer
Fashionphile None None None Sellers for submitted items, buyers for purchased items
eBay Yes after 250 listings Incremental percentage from 13.25-15% + 30 cents None Buyer

* A listing fee is a one-time amount that a seller must pay in order to post an item for sale.

** Seller fees refer to the costs that sellers will incur once a sale is completed — this does not include any potential shipping costs. 

*** Buyer fees refer to any costs buyers incur in addition to an item’s price and shipping.