ebay mobile


With its huge selection of products, eBay is great for finding the best deal on anything. This is made possible by allowing different types of seller to freely sell.

In this post I will be talking about different types of sellers on eBay so you have a better idea of how eBay really works.


1) Assistants in the fashion industry.

You can score some designer “samples” on eBay. In case you are wondering what samples are, brand names often make a few samples of new designs to help them determine whether they want to officially release the design and make multiple copies for sale. You could consider it a trial version waiting for approval. Some of these get approved, while some don’t. Either way, they cannot be sold on regular retail sales floor because these are either stamped with “sample” sign or have sample tags. In other words, eBay is the perfect place to sell them. Some sellers sell only samples, which makes me assume they work closely with the design team and therefore have access to samples.


2) Associates.

This can include corporal associates, sales associates, managers- anyone that works for the brand and benefits from occasional freebies and discounts.

Some of these sellers are interested in getting rid of unwanted merchandise they received for free at a generously discounted price simply because 1) there is no point in saving a product they will not use and let it go to waste and 2) little money is better than no money.

The rest will offer discount on popular items because associates get 30%~up to 50% discount on merchandise. Most likely they will charge buyers slightly more than the discounted price. This is a win-win situation: buyers buy at a discounted price and sellers can still profit.


3) Business owners.

The most common type of business on eBay is wholesale. Sellers will buy specific products in bulk, which makes the unit price ridiculously cheap, allowing them to sell at a significantly cheap price. Just the way Costco works!

Second most common type would be selling less popular products at a discounted price- it’s like an online outlet shop.


4) Anyone!

It’s made so easy to sell on eBay that your neighbor could be selling, your mom could be selling, you could be selling.

I have been an active member of eBay since 2006 both as a seller and as a buyer. When I first started, I made my account and set up PayPal so I can buy on eBay. I never saw myself selling on eBay-until I needed to move and realized all the clothes I have was not necessary. They were actually a huge burden. Since then I started to clean out my closet every other month. I didn’t need to set up a separate seller account, I just used the same account I use to buy. When I worked for American Apparel for a few months, I was one of those sellers wanting to get rid of unwanted freebies and discounted merchandise just chilling in my room and taking up space. I sold almost everything I planned to sell, and it’s great knowing that the items found a better home. I can say that eBay served me well both for selling and buying.

I prefer eBay over places like Buffalo Exchange and Crossroads because I can communicate and negotiate with buyers. Instead of someone telling me your beloved designer piece is only worth $10, I can set my own price.  If a buyer thinks my price is too high, he can send me an offer. I can either accept/decline it or even send a counteroffer.

eBay is like the car boot sale in the U.K., where people bring out things to one big open space and sell. Except it’s online so more people can participate. If you have unwanted things at home, don’t dump them because someone else might appreciate them. I highly encourage anyone to sell on eBay. If you are lazy, or don’t care for extra money, then make a donation to a local donation center!


holographic trend



Can’t pick a favorite color? How about something with hues of EVERYTHING- red, orange, yellow,…. rainbow??

Holographic trend, sister of metallic trend, has been around quite some time but it still feels new and exciting. Maybe because it will never stop being so bold and in your face.

To my knowledge, the holographic/iridescent trend is actually from the 80’s. This trend exploded again last Spring 2o13 and is still going strong. This time much more loud and vibrant than the 80’s. Now you can find holographic anything, from tops to jackets to accessories. It’s about time they make holographic undies.. or Hugo Boss has already done that



Many designers have incorporated holographic fabric into their designs:

Jonathan Saunders S13 hologram trend Jonathan Saunders S13 hologram trend Jonathan Saunders S13 hologram trend

Jonathan Saunders Spring 13′



Hugo Boss S13 hologram trend Hugo Boss S13 hologram trend Hugo Boss S13 hologram trend

Hugo Boss Spring 13′



Burberry S13 hologram trend Burberry S13 hologram trend Burberry S13 hologram trend

Burberry S13 hologram trend

Burberry Prorsum Spring 13′




In addition to garments, you can spot various types of holographic accessories. Holographic carry-all pouch by American Apparel, pouches and sleeves by Marc Jacobs & Stella McCartney.

american apparel metallic carry all pouch        Marc Jacobs, Stella McCartney hologram accessories



My favorite part of this trend has got to be shoes obviously.. I need these babes in my shoe collection. Oxfords by Miista, Boots are either Docs or knockoffs, looks to me like knockoffs.

miista black holographic oxfords miista zoe oxfords

holographic boots



I bet Dorothy approves 😉 Who knew she was setting the trend from way way back in time?

dorothy red sparkle shoes



If all this is too loud and overwhelming, you can still join the trend by painting your nails in holographic hues. Only downside is that they come in so many different shades and made by so many different brands, it will be a headache to choose one.

layla hologram effect nail polish   laylahologrameffect


The most worn pair from my combat boots collection are Docs because they are super versatile and easy to style. I normally score my boots on eBay or Etsy.

*Sizing tip: They run big, about half a size. Since they only come in whole sizes, if you are half sized, say 6.5, round down and get a 6. If you are whole sized, say 6, it will be safer to get a 6 than sizing down to 5, which will fit you snug. You can always wear thick socks to make up for the room. To be safe, compare outsole measurements because sizing may vary based on country of manufacture and on style. You want to find a pair that measure a little longer than your usual outsole measurement. Different brands can mean very different sizing, so you’d want to contact the seller and ask for measurement if it isn’t already provided.


Here are some ways you can incorporate combat boots into your outfit:


1. Feminine punk

Combat boots alone aren’t intimidating enough. I like to toughen up my look even more with my go-to moto jacket. I paired it with some black riding pants and added my own feminine twist with the delicate lace lingerie and sheer chiffon tank.

doc martens, bcbg leather jacket, american apparel chiffon tank and riding pants, victoria's secret bra



2. Denim on denim

If you don’t want to stress with styling outfits, choose denim because there is no other safer bet. Denim plus combat boots create that perfectly industrial, rugged look.  I paired this look with a lace navy bralette.

denim blazer, cheap monday jeans, american apparel lace bustier, doc martens


3. Picnic ready

Something about combat boots is kinky and playful, despite the rough look. So feel safe to pair your boots with a girly outfit, like this thrifted rayon dress. This outfit will be perfect for protecting your feet when marching around a music festival, or a picnic while keeping your body cool and breezy.

vintage dress, doc martens


4. Playful

I paired my rayon sunflower print shorts with a garter belt to make this look more daring and fun. On top, I have a floral lace bra and a cropped lightweight oversized sweater.

american apparel sweater and lace bra, forever21 chain chanel-esque necklace, doc martens


5. Go all out

Last but not least, I love to take advantage of the kinky nature of combat boots for a fun night out. I used thrifted lavender cardigan and mock garter stockings to get me through cold night. This outfit is actually one of the 7 outfits from my previous post 7 Outfits to Look Like a Million Bucks with Thrifted Clothes.

h&m bustier, thrifted cardigan, levi's shorts, doc martens


Challenged by the budget of a poor college student and reluctant to support mass production of garments followed by unethical treatment of workers, I went thrifting (shopping at second-hand stores) for the first time in freshman year of college. I admit that I used to have an aversion for thrift stores because not only am I super allergic to dust, I have a sensitive sense of smell. But after finding some of my favorite pieces of all time, I confess that I have become a thrift store junkie.


salvation army san leandro

<Image: from Thrift Town in San Leandro>


You should thrift because..


1. Everything is so cheap it can’t possibly hurt you. In addition to garments, you can also find books, furniture, home decor products at a price simply unbeatable. Most of my furniture during college days came from thrift stores and they were absolutely worth it. As for garments, you can play around and follow the trend without hurting your bank account. Did you know? Even thrift shops have sales! I love those “half-off everything” days.


2. One of a kind items. Don’t you just hate bumping into someone wearing the same exact outfit as you? That’s my issue with mass production. I want to be different and rare, don’t you? It will be extremely difficult to see someone wearing what you found at a thrift store. Your finds will be unique and therefore even more awesome.


3. Recycling matters. We make so much clothes, most that go to waste. What for? I think consumerism is great. It keeps the economy going. But sometimes we get too lost in the pleasure of spending that we forget about the horrible consequences behind production. Sweatshops, animal abuse, landfill overflow are all caused by mass production and suppliers continuously forced to reach corporations’ demands. “According to Goodwill, about 23.8 billion pounds of clothing end up in U.S. landfills each year. Currently, 166 community-based Goodwill organizations in the U.S. and Canada divert more than 1.5 billion pounds of clothing and textiles a year from landfills and, in the process, create job-training opportunities for more than 1.5 million people annually.” (Egolf, K., AdAge)


4. You are spending on a good cause. Most thrift stores are charity organizations. They donate most of their profit and whatever didn’t sell will be sent to those in need. Yes, you can make a difference. Thrift stores would go out of business without shoppers/donors like you! You certainly do not have to buy from thrift shops if you’re not too convinced about the benefits. Even so, please donate your clothes/furniture/books/etc. Never throw away unwanted things because someone and the mother earth will appreciate it.


Every other month, I go through this ritual where I empty out my closet. I sell some of the clothes and donate most. I believe in the power of recycling and giving, you should too! Ever since I got myself into thrifting, half of my closet has been replaced with thrifted items. Experience the joy of finding treasures, saving money, and spending for a good cause all at once.


thrift town san leandro


how to clean dry clean only clothes

<Image: rodalenews.com>

Do you take all your clothes to the dry cleaners because you dread turning them into toddler-sized replica? Frown no more! You don’t need to  bring your ‘dry-clean only’ items to the dry cleaners, it’s expensive and unnecessary. There are cheaper and safer ways to take care of these hard-to-care fabrics at home. I like to take good care of my clothes so the collection can last longer. Since I thrift a lot, it’s even more crucial for me that I get rid of all the odor and stains so that my clothes are as fresh as new. The best way to treat your garment is to check the garment care tag which is located either on the back of the neck or lower right/left side and care as directed. If you cannot find the tag, here is how you can clean your clothes.


***Line dry (lay flat or hang to dry) your hand washed garments indoors to prevent any damage from UV rays.


  • Polyester: This is probably the easiest fabric the take care of because shrinkage is minimal and it dries in seconds. Machine wash or hand wash without a problem.


  • Cotton: We often think the temperature of the water determines how much your cotton shirt shrinks, but it’s really the dryer that does the job. The higher the percentage of cotton, the more the garment shrinks. For instance, a 100% cotton shirt would shrink more than a 50%cotton, 50%polyester shirt. I use cold water and gentle/regular dry cycle combo for most garments including cotton.


  • ‘Dry-clean only’ (wool/angora/cashmere/linen/silk/..): As for fabrics like wool, water temperature does matter. Hot water or hot dryer will shrink wool. Unlike most other materials, wool does not require frequent washing. (problem partly solved!) If you are using washer, soak the garment in cold water for a few hours and use cooler temperature. I personally prefer spraying some spot cleaner (such as tide, shout, etc.) for areas that need extra cleaning, hand wash in cold/cool water with a bit of shampoo and conditioner (or some mild detergent such as Woolite) and hang flat to dry (hanging on the hanger might stretch out the shoulders). Be careful not to use too much soap, as it causes more felting. This method will work for almost all delicates, including cashmere.


  • Hard to wash and hard to dry items (wool coats, blazers, costly dress shirts, etc.): I highly encourage you to steam clean for a quick, effective fix. You can apply steam to anything and everything minus suede or light-colored leather. I didn’t know about fabric steamers until I worked at AA (short for American Apparel). Almost every retail store uses steam to clean freshly shipped clothes or ‘go-backs’ before they are put out on display. It gets rid of wrinkles, odor, or any termites in seconds, which is pretty darn amazing. I invested in a steamer by Conair GS28, which does a fair job. Steamers allow you to clean most of your clothes without washing them too much, which save tons of water as a result. If you would like to buy a steamer, I suggest you to do some research and buy a decent one because cheap, poorly made steamers might not give you the best results. Here is a sneaky tip for you if you do not wish to purchase a steamer: After warm bath or shower, hang your wrinkly garments in the steamy bathroom and you will enjoy a similar effect.


  • Leather: Leather is the most costly item to be cared by the dry cleaners. I say no thanks to dropping over $50 to clean my favorite black moto leather jacket. Instead, I love to steam wash it. It helps with reconditioning leather and also deodorizes. This is my personal trick to get rid of the leather smell (or you know, that old, vintage smell if it’s a thrifted item): I spray some fabric refresher such as Febreeze, wait until the smell goes away, spray on my favorite fragrance or body spray. If there is a spot I want to clean or the surface is dirty, I take a baby wipe and gently rub. Baby wipes work great for wiping all over dark leather handbags, it almost adds an instant life to dull leather. If you really want to add more life to leather, you could treat it with some leather conditioner, which can be found at any Safeway, CVS, Walgreens, shoe repair shop, etc.


  • Suede: Do not wash. All you can do is to brush it occasionally with a suede brush, anything more will damage suede. Stay away from water as much as you can, and this of course includes the rain! If there is any serious damage or spotting you want to treat, then you want to take it to the dry cleaners.


  • Lingerie&hosiery: Hand wash in warm water using shampoo and conditioner (or mild detergent). For extra cleanliness you can put pre-hand washed lingerie in a mesh laundry bag and throw in the washer with other laundry.



Here is a campaign by Levi Strauss & Co. and Goodwill to promote good garment care, which is directly linked to greater longevity of garments and hence less that goes to landfill.

levi's goodwill care tag



Not only are you saving significant amount of money by cleaning your garments yourself, you are saving energy when you wash at home. So kudos to you if you are reading this post! Keep in mind that washing cold is more energy-efficient, not to mention that hand washing beats any form of machine washing in terms of water and energy usage. As mentioned in the campaign, please take good care of your garments and when you are done using them, either pass them onto someone you love or donate instead of dumping so someone else can give them a second life. Thank you so much for doing your part to keep this planet happy.