If you’re looking to buy new lululemon, the ONLY place that sells authentic, new lulu online is the official lululemon website itself or, of course, lululemon stores. Any website claiming to be a lululemon outlet or discount retailer WILL sell you fakes. Brick-and-mortar lululemon outlets do exist, though. They’re listed on lulu’s website.
One handy thing to note: lululemon stores will ship to buyers anywhere in the country for free if you call them. This includes outlets, though sometimes they are hard to get a hold of. So, for example, if a pair of shorts is sold out in your size online, you can call around to stores. As long as they are in your home country, you can call around to stores near and far to have a pair shipped to you at no extra charge.
If you do want to get some authentic, discounted lulu, the exception to all of this is the lululemon resale market, where individuals sell their unwanted lululemon to other fans. If you want good deals on 100% real lulu, this is the best way to do it. I’ll go over how this works below.
Generally speaking, there are 3 main places you can buy and sell your lulu online in the “aftermarket”: Facebook, eBay, and other fashion resale websites. Let’s go over each of these:
1) Facebook groups
One of the busiest places to buy and sell is the many lululemon-dedicated Facebook groups. These groups are overseen by admins who are regular people and manage groups with their own free time. With few exceptions, all of the groups are closed groups which means members have to be approved by an admin, and people outside the group cannot see what is posted. To buy and sell through all of these groups, you’ll need a PayPal account.
If you become a member of a facebook buy/sell group, always read the rules before buying or selling. This will get you oriented to the do’s and don’ts of the group and answer a lot of questions you might have. Being sure you’re up to speed will save both you and the group admins time. If, after reading the rules, you don’t understand something, ask questions—everyone was new once. It’s better to ask questions if you are unsure than to accidentally break a rule.
The two biggest fixed-price selling groups are the Lululemon Exchange and the Lululemon Market (and there are many, many more!). A few groups are structured as 24-hour auction groups, such as Lululemon Bidding Battles and the Unicorn Bidding Field (note: there is usually a long wait list to get into these groups). There are a handful of offer-based groups springing up, too, such as Lululemon 911 and Lululemon Counteroffer. There are also groups dedicated to buying and selling specific items or specific sizes, groups dedicated to general chat, outfits of the day, posting ISOs, and more. The lulu facebook community is truly vast and there are dozens upon dozens of these groups. This is not anywhere near an exhaustive list!
The main advantage to buying and selling on Facebook is that, as a seller, you don’t lose as much money on fees. It’s also very simple and straightforward to sell. The downside is that it can be a little bit like the wild west of selling in terms of organization, people stirring up drama, and the occasional scammer that slips through the cracks (protect yourself!). Many of these groups are very large, ranging from 3,000 up to even 15,000 members. Buying and selling happens at a robust rate–across all the boards, there are literally hundreds of unique items posted every week.
Ebay really has everything: you’ll see anything from insanely cheap deals, to people selling fakes (yes it happens), to resellers who price-gouge, and everything in between. Because there are lots of people selling on ebay who don’t sell anywhere else, it can be a good place to look for an elusive item you’re having trouble finding.
As a seller, ebay will take 10% of the final value of your sale, plus PayPal fees. Note also that if you are new to selling on ebay, your funds will be held for 1-3 weeks while you establish yourself as a reliable seller (you must accumulate 25 successful sales adding up to at least $1000), which can be frustrating. On the flipside, the main advantage to listing on ebay is that you can reach a larger pool of potential buyers. For example, I sold an item for $80 on ebay that I had listed on Facebook groups for $55 and had received no interest. Of course, your mileage may vary!
3) Other fashion resale websites
The 3 most common resale sites where you might spot lulu are Tradesy, Poshmark, and Threadflip. All of these are sites individuals use to list items from their own personal closet at a fixed price. All three are currently US-only sites. Sometimes you can find great deals on these sites that don’t get snapped up as fast as eBay. Here are some details on each site:
Tradesy: Tradesy is a really great site with a simple and clean layout. The search function is very helpful and it’s easy to post. All prices include shipping, and Tradesy even accepts free returns. The good stuff here goes fast, so you have to act quickly. For sellers, Tradesy takes 9% of the sale price for themselves, but if you want to transfer your balance to PayPal (as opposed to keeping it as Tradesy “store credit”), they will charge you another $2 + 2.9%.
Threadflip: Threadflip is smaller and not as much comes up. As a buyer, you are able to make an offer to sellers instead of buying outright. Returns are at the sellers discretion. As a seller, Threadflip takes 20% commission. Threadflip also offers a white glove service, where in exchange for an increased commission, you can mail your things to them and they will list and sell them on your behalf.
Poshmark: Poshmark was originally designed as a mobile app. You can only create listings from the mobile app, although you can make purchases from both mobile and your computer. Lots of good deals have cropped up on Poshmark, but the search function is weak and can make items hard to find. Shipping is not included in the sale price. It’s common for buyers to ask sellers go through PayPal for a lower price. This is against Poshmark’s terms of service but you see it happen a lot, although not every seller will agree to it. The other side of this practice is that it can produce confusion because some items are still listed as available on Poshmark even though they have been sold elsewhere, which means someone can go through and purchase an item that is no longer actually for sale. Although you can get your money back, it’s of course frustrating. Read the comments before you buy to make sure a sale hasn’t already been arranged. On the sellers’ side, Poshmark takes 20% commission.