Reduce, Reuse, Reluxe: The Fashion Resale Platform Bringing Luxury, Thrill And Ethics Into Bargain Hunting
With the detrimental impact the fashion industry has undeniably had on the environment, consumers have been forced to re-evaluate their buying habits. As a result, the stigma around purchasing vintage and second-hand items has shifted over the last couple of years, and reselling markets are no longer seen as second-best. Sadly, there is a downside. An increasing number of these sites have become overwhelming to the point of distraction, flooded with counterfeit goods and a below-par service to boot. Hence a well-curated, trusted, and ethical source has become the Holy Grail.
Which is where Clare Richardson comes in. The highly sought-after fashion stylist and brand consultant has launched Reluxe, a reselling website and concierge service that is already proving a hit with time-poor and eco-conscious style hunters. “I felt like there was a gap in the market for people like me who wanted to shop resale but didn’t want to look through tons of products,” explains Richardson. Her reputation as an industry tastemaker (she’s recently collaborated with Matchesfashion and is a favourite with some of the world’s most prestigious fashion houses – including Hermès and Balenciaga), her knack for effortless styling and her long-time romance with vintage fashion have seen Richardson garner a vast and loyal clientele. She hand-picks their timeless, statement and everyday pieces to grow her treasure trove. Surprisingly, the price points are (relatively) inclusive. This, says Richardson, was intentional.
Within Reluxe’s carefully curated platform of mid to high-end, second-hand, and vintage, you can expect to find a mixture of little-worn treats – in sublime condition – that are far less than a fraction of the original price. At the time of writing there was a black Isabel Marant tassel skirt for £120, embellished Manolo Blahnik satin pumps for £350, Simone Rocha flats for £250 (the designer’s shoes can retail close to three times that price) and, for those looking for investment pieces that will always hold their value, a range of pristine, classic, candy-coloured Chanel tweed blazers for £1,000 (bought new, expect to pay upwards of an eye-watering £4,000). While, of course, the range by no means reflects mass-produced high-street prices, Richardson’s vision is that Reluxe will inspire people to shop in a way that is ultimately better for the planet; however, she is realistic about this dream. “I hope that in five years’ time, customers will shift more to pre-loved products. But if they’re buying new items, I hope they’re well-made, investment pieces that stand the test of time.”
Here are four other luxury reselling platforms that are bringing the thrill back into pre-loved shopping:
With a thriving online and in-store presence, Designer Exchange transports you to a wonderland of bags presented alongside the latest – as well as vintage – clothing and accessories to revamp your wardrobe.
Open For Vintage
The regular deals on Open For Vintage allow you to grow your accessories wardrobe at a steal. With a handbag Repair And Restore portal, customers can breathe new life into their pre-owned bags.
Founded by the luxury bag connoisseur Danni Dance, The Hosta offers a carefully curated website of highly sought-after pre-loved bags – expect to find everything from a classic Chanel to the Louis Vuitton pochette handbag.
Noelle Bonner is the first to put a creative spin on the luxury consignment service – her e-commerce platform The Nobo allows you to swap items with a similar value at a smaller fee.
Yelena Grelet is a London-based multimedia journalist and filmmaker