How to Look Luxe on a Budget (while also being sustainable for the environment)
TBH, guys, I wasn’t sure what to call this post. It started as an idea - I wanted to share all the ways that I “afford” luxury on a budget, but all those ways I save are also GREAT for living a more sustainable lifestyle by way of not creating waste in extra products that fill up your closet.
So, to get started, my number one way that I always look fab on a budget is… Rent The Runway! I am a Rent The Runway Unlimited member, meaning I can rent and return as much clothes as I want in a month. It’s only $159 a month, but on the average month I am renting over $2,000 worth of clothes, bags, and jewelry! With top designer brands like DVF, Vince, The Kooples, Rebecca Minkoff, Furla, Derek Lam, and so so many more, fahsionistas like me can look fab so easily. I’ll rent pieces for blog events, blog shoots, vacations, parties, weddings, and more. Considering the average rental price for a single piece is $125, $159 a month for unlimited is such a good deal, especially if you’re the kind of person who wants to always be trendy but not shop fast fashion or have an overflowing closet. Want to try it for yourself? Get $30 off right here.
Next up, sticking with the theme of rentals, I have been loving my subscription to RocksBox! For $21 a month I receive three jewelry items that I’ve hand selected to wear for the month. With brands like Perry Street, Kendra Scott, Gorjana, Kate Spade, and more it’s a dream come true to have stylish pieces each month with out the price tag! Want to try RocksBox for yourself? Click here for your first month FREE or use code “SAHRABFF2”.
Love luxury bags but don’t want to shell out hundreds, or even thousands of dollars? Bag Borrow Steal is a REAL thing with REAL designer bags. While Rent the Runway has favorites like DVF, Rebecca Minkoff, and Kate Spade, Bag Borrow Steal has the brands you completely covet - Gucci, Chanel, Louis, Fendi… you get the gist. These bags rent for as low as $50 a month, you can rock the designer duds for such a reasonable rate! Want to keep it for realsies? Their “Buy” Section is full of pre-used gems at a steal of a deal.
Now if you’re the kind of person who wants to have their cake and eat it too (you want the goods and you want them FOREVER) then you need to think consignment, especially if you’re on a budget. The number on place I go to look for authentic designer goods is unwaveringly eBay. Yes, still, Though, I will say, that as someone who may be new to shopping used designer goods, it can be overwhelming. They are a number of fraudsters, deals that seem too good to be true, and fake items out there. A few key rules to remember shopping on eBay are:
if the price seems too good to be true it probably is (it’s probably a “high quality replica” - aka a FAKE - whenever I buy a YSL or Gucci bag on here I can’t think of buying anything under $100 as it will likely not be real, especially depending on the condition of the bag.
check the seller’s ratings and reviews ! this is KEY for weeding out potential scammers
Ensure there is authentic photos; items that look like stock photos may just be scamming you too
use a sniper for an item you DO NOT want to see get away - I use Gixen to put a max bid on a coveted item and forget about it until I hear if I win or not - it’s how I scored these Golden Goose sneakers!
Not into the bidding and waiting? I suggest TheRealReal! My coat above is by Band of Outsiders from TheRealReal; what’s great about them is that they have a team of buyers who choose the best pieces based on condition, style, and of course, proper authentication. Since there’s no bidding, you can easily browse their site and find amazing pieces for great prices, albeit it may be more than you could potentially find it for on eBay, but again, it comes with a lack of stress.
Another favorite site I love for shopping consignment is Current Boutique - a DC based, woman owned business that has been growing over the past few years! I love that you can send them your pre-loved gems and earn credit/money for future purchases (like these Lucky Brand jeans I scored there last fall).
Want to shop IRL? Head to Buffalo Exchange or Crossroads Trading for great deals all the time. Especially here on the West Coast I’ve found Crossroads to be a haven for affordable gems; I’ve found everything from the Alice and Olivia pants I’m wearing in this post (for $35!) to a Helmut Lang skirt for $20, a vintage Fendi bag for $75, and so much more. BONUS: If you bring in items to sell to one of these shops you can instant money back or store credit - something I LOVE to use whenever I’m there!
Lastly, of course, there are the re-sale sites like Tradesy, Poshmark, ThredUp, DePop, et cetera. In my experience, I’ve found these great for “fast fashion” brands, but designer labels tend to have inflated prices. You can still find some great designer basics, though! Personally, I don’t have the time to sell or shop on these sites, but I know many others who have found some cute gems.
So there you have it! My favorite ways to shop designer/luxe on a budget! Do you shop designer on a budget? What are your favorite tips?