I’m a second-hand shopping queen – my £35 finds are worth £250 and here’s how you can grab huge bargains too

Shop SECOND-HAND for more than just vintage items.

You can find everything from wardrobes to wedding dresses for a fraction of the normal price if you know where to look.

Social media manager Caroline Butler, 46, recently won more than £250 worth of new clothes and boots for £34.50 during a visit to the Sue Ryder store in Norwich


Social media manager Caroline Butler, 46, recently won more than £250 worth of new clothes and boots for £34.50 during a visit to the Sue Ryder store in NorwichCredit: John McLellan

From online auctions to resellers and charity shops, Harriet Cooke explains how to track the best deals.


Karen Millen Dress - RRP: £139 - Depop: £55 - Save: £84


Karen Millen Dress – RRP: £139 – Depop: £55 – Save: £84

SAVVY shoppers can find great discounts on clothes that are being resold because they are not returned in time for a refund.

Start your search on Google Shopping, which searches major online stores, second-hand sites like Depop, and charity shops like Oxfam.

Also check out resale site vinted.com and clothing site re-fashion.co.uk. For baby and baby clothes, try wearinwardrobe.com.

When searching second-hand sites, use filters to select only “brand new” clothing.

Look out for acronyms like BNWT (Brand New With Tag) and others – see our code guide below right.

On Depop we found this new Karen Millen purple strapless midi dress for £55, on the designer’s website £90.35, down from £139.

Street chains often donate inventory to charity shops, but sometimes they cut the labels first so it’s not always recognizable.

Talk to the staff to find out if they take regular deliveries from the brands you like.

A pair of shoes

Ted Baker Mules - RRP: £150 - Office Outlet: £50 - Savings: £100


Ted Baker Mules – RRP: £150 – Office Outlet: £50 – Savings: £100

IF you want to look good on a tight budget, you can get huge discounts on used shoes that have been displayed or returned by customers.

Office, Schuh and Clarks have lesser known sites where you can get some great deals, although some might have some weird bugs.

Visit schuh.co.uk/ex-display, clarksoutlet.co.uk And offcutsshoes.co.uk.

This week on the Office store, we found these Ted Baker Deltino flats in size 4 for £50, down from £150 and listed as Type 2, meaning they’re still in “condition” Good”.

A lot of people buy shoes online and forget to return them, so you should also search Depop, Vinted and eBay as well as scour charity shops.

On Depop this week we found Michael Kors brown leather luggage high heel Berkley sandals for £45, brand new in the box and originally purchased in the US. They retail for twice that amount at Macy’s.


Made Wardrobe - RRP: £1,300 - Auction: £179 - Save: £1,121


Made Wardrobe – RRP: £1,300 – Auction: £179 – Save: £1,121

Auction houses aren’t just for antiques – some specialize in selling brand new items.

John Pye Auctions sells returns, expired goods, and second-hand display goods from major retailers such as John Lewis and Sofology.

You can bid online and get your furniture delivered to most parts of the country for an extra fee.

John Pye is currently auctioning thousands of items, including sofas, chests, lamps and more from make.comOnline furniture store went into administration last year.

Some of the best made.com deals recently won by bidders include the Ilaria multicolored glass chandelier that originally sold for £375, but has since been auctioned for £55.

A three-seater Tubby three-seater sofa in a cylindrical shape, originally sold for £449, sold for £106.

And an Ebro twilight gray triple wardrobe, originally £1,300, sold for £179.

The made.com auctions will run until August.

Outlet stores are also worth a visit as they sell discounted furniture that may have been displayed in a showroom or returned by a customer.


Ninja Air Fryer - RRP: £219.99 - Amazon Warehouse: £55


Ninja Air Fryer – RRP: £219.99 – Amazon Warehouse: £55

AMAZON Warehouse sells items that customers have sent back but cannot sell as new because the packaging has been opened.

It can be a great way to pick up new technology at a discount.

This week we found the Ninja Foodi AF300UK Dual Zone Air Fryer (7.6L) there for £164.99 where only the box was broken. The same gadget is currently on sale elsewhere for £179.99, down from its original price of £219.99.

But use a comparison site like Idealo.co.uk to make sure you’re really getting a bargain.


SURPRISED by the codes used to describe the items? Here is our helpful guide:

TRASH CAN: Buy now

BNIP: Brand New In Package

BNWOT: Brand New No Card

BNWT: Brand new with stamps

EUC: Excellent condition of use

HTF: Difficult to find

MIB: Mint in the box

NRFB: Never Take It Out Of The Box

northwest: New With Card

Find returned or out-of-season items with great discounts

SAVE Caroline Butler loves rummaging through charity shops and browsing the web for bargains.

Social media manager Caroline, 46, recently won over £250 worth of new clothes and boots for £34.50 during a visit to the Sue Ryder store in Norwich.

Her bargains include a new £95 linen dress by East for £8; Zara shorts £29.99 for £5; a blazer worth £70 for £7.50; Mustang boots £40 for £7.50; and a men’s French Connection shirt, worth around £15, for £6.50.

Caroline, from Norfolk, said: ‘It’s really thrilling to find a bargain, it’s like a treasure hunt. I also love the Vinted app, where you can get amazing finds.

“I received a new Vivienne Westwood clutch bag still in the box worth £130 for just £35.

“Facebook Marketplace is great too. I recently found a Jack Wills handbag for just £5 with £39.99 still on.

“The Nextdoor app is also great for bargains. It has a dedicated section for things for sale in your local neighborhood.”

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  • Caroline’s posts are found on TikTok and Instagram @caroline.shops.


  • BEFORE going to the nearest charity store, download the Google Lens app to your phone and use it to take pictures of items that look like new. It will help you find their value. When shopping online, click on the image and do a Google image search to see its new price.
  • If the brand name has been cut out of the garment, look for other signs that the item is from a high-end store, such as whether the item is lined, the quality of the stitching, and the label says. where production.
  • Keep an eye on Twitter and Facebook pages as charity shops will sometimes flag special sales. For example, Pilgrims Hospices recently held a “Brand New With Tags” event at the Westgate store in Kent, which was posted on Twitter.
  • For a variety of outlet stores for different fashion and homeware brands, see money Savingexpert.com/deals/outlets.

Russell Falcon

Russell Falcon is a USTimesPost U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Russell Falcon joined USTimesPost in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing russellfalcon@ustimespost.com.

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