It’s not the easiest thing to say, but my body has gone through changes since I was in college. I’m not the 110-pound young woman I once was. I have two children, a busy life and no time to exercise.
The point is those clothes that used to fit before, don’t. For some, a trip to Goodwill is in order. For others, I paid a little more for them and I feel like they’re destined to help some young 20-something look good.
That’s why the concept of ThredUp is so amazing. The idea that I could get rid of my old clothing and make a little cash on the side is very appealing. Trouble is, I never even tried it out.
Using ThredUp starts out like most apps. Download the app and create a profile. Once you’re all registered, you can start browsing clothes.
I didn’t know much about ThredUp at first, so I tried to use the app to list clothes. It turns out, that’s not an option. On this app, you don’t list clothes at all. Instead, you mail them into ThredUp.
The Trouble Starts
In order to mail your clothes to the company, you need to order a Clean Out Kit. Up until recently, ThredUp required you to pay $10 for the kit. Now, it will give you a free one, but it will take time for them to look at your clothes.
I went to the ThredUp website to find out what the deal is with the Clean Out Kit and how much money I could possibly get in return. I found the FAQs, but when I tried to read them, ThredUp required me to log in first. That meant providing my email address or Facebook profile.
The company is gathering my information and doing who knows what with it just so I can have my questions answered! Maybe I’m naive, but I’ve never seen a company require you to log in just so you can read the FAQs.
It Gets Worse
Once I accessed the FAQs, here’s what I found.
- Your clothes must meet brand name standards and be in quality condition. I’m not shocked by this, it makes sense.
- There is no guaranteed payout. Get a Clean Out Kit and it’s entirely possible you get nothing in return.
- ThredUp gets to decide if it pays you for your clothes up front or on consignment. If the clothes are on consignment and they don’t sell, or they’re rejected by ThredUp, you have to pay shipping fees to have the clothes sent back to you.
- If ThredUp does buy your clothes, the first 14 days all you get in return is ThredUp credit. After that, you can ask for a PayPal cash out.
- Return Assurance is an extra service offered in which the unaccepted clothes get sent back to you. That’s an extra $10.99.
- What happens to unaccepted clothes? If you don’t buy Return Assurance, ThredUp will sell your clothes to “third-party sellers” and KEEP THE MONEY.
That’s where I stopped reading.
Let’s just sum up the racket that ThredUp is.
ThredUp deigns to look at your clothes. According to its own website, it usually only accepts about 40% of the clothes it receives. If you want those clothes back, you pay ThredUp $10.99 to send them back. (BTW, the Return Assurance is only good if ThredUp accepts one of your items, if none are accepted, you get a talking to from the ThredUp staff.) If you don’t want the clothes back, ThredUp sells them to someone else and keeps all the money.
And let’s not forget, it’s already making money off the clothes it bought from you and then marked up by 50% to sell to someone else.