At the beginning of the year, I set slow fashion goals for myself. These goals included, buying better on consignment, buying better on sale vs. spending the same amount of less expensive pieces, and renting for special occasions instead of buying. The biggest motivator for this goal was environmental. The second motivator was far more indulgent, I like nice things and I don’t always have the budget to buy them.
I love Aquatalia shoes, particularly their boots, and now that I own a few pairs, thanks to Poshmark, it would be hard for me to ever buy boots from another brand again. All Aquatalia shoes, including their sandals, are weatherproof. Aquatalia’s exclusive weatherproofing and stain-resistant technology begins during the initial tanning process when supple leather and suede skins are immersed in a state-of-the-art sealant. A uniquely designed drum allows for complete and even coverage. Stitched seams are filled with a liquid sealant to inhibit water penetration. This unique and complex process allows the materials to resist moisture while maintaining breathability, keeping feet comfortable and dry. What I love most of all about Aquatalia shoes is they are functional and incredibly stylish. So often it seems that if shoes are weatherproof they’re not always attractive and, personally, I’m not interested in that.
How to Successfully Buy Shoes on Poshmark
At the end of this year, I look forward to sharing how successful I have been with this goal. For now, I want to give my tips on how to successfully buy shoes on Poshmark. After buying several pairs for myself, I have learned a few tricks that can keep you from making the same mistakes I have.
Here’s the catch, Aquatalia shoes are, rightfully, expensive. Booties retail for between $395-$450 and their boots between $600-$850. While I could save up and purchase maybe one pair, I don’t have the luxury of purchasing all my boots from Aquatalia, and considering I live in boots all winter, I want all of them to be from this brand.
With my slow fashion goal in mind, I now own three pairs of Aquatalia boots that I got from Poshmark, each pair for under $100 and each pair with limited-to-no wear.
I bought a 4th pair that wound up being a bust and how I learned what to look for when buying shoes on Poshmark. All sales are final on Poshmark, except in cases where a seller lies or misrepresents, so it is important to know what to look out for when shopping for shoes on the site. Here are my tips.
#1- Know how you size in the brand
Knowing your shoe size isn’t the only thing you need to know when purchasing shoes. You need to know how a brand fits you. A last is a 3D model that all designers use to make their shoes and, typically, they use one last for all their shoe models. If that last isn’t compatible with your foot, it doesn’t matter how comfortable the shoe is, if the last doesn’t work for your feet the shoe won’t work for you. Before you take the plunge on a new shoe brand you’re not familiar with, give the shoes a try in the store so you can get a sense of how the shoes fit you and what size you will need.
Another tip is to ask the seller the measure the length of the shoes to see if they will work for you. I am currently selling a pair of Gucci loafers that are a size 7 1/2 but fit my 6 1/2 foot. If you aren’t sure what size you need in a brand, ask the seller to measure the shoes you are considering if they don’t already give the length.
#2- Look at the toe boxes
Toe boxes are a dead giveaway of how old a shoe is as trends in toe shape varies. Remember those long pointy toes during the early 2000’s or the super square toes of the 90’s? This is how one of my recent Aquatalia purchases wound up being a dud.
I found a gorgeous pair of cognac tall boots and made the purchase. When I got them, I was shocked by how pointy and dated the toes looked. “How could I have missed this?” I thought. When I went back to look at the shoes online, I noticed that the seller craftily cut off the toe boxes in one of the shots and, in my haste to buy these boots for a steal, I didn’t pay attention. I had to keep them because, while what the seller did was sort of douchey, it was my fault for not noticing it or asking.
#3 Is the logo current?
Another way to tell how dated a pair of shoes are (or any product, for that matter) is to inspect the logo. This is something I make sure I can see, or I ask for if it is not visible, before buying a pair of shoes because it’s a guarantee that a brand will have updated its logo over the years. If you aren’t good at dating a shoe based on toe-box, the logo will most definitely tell you. If you aren’t familiar with what a brand’s current logo looks like, check it out at a store or online if you can get a view of the inside of the shoes.
On the left is Aquatalia’s current branding. On the right is a dated logo. Now, of course, there is the off-chance that a brand just changed their logo a year ago, so if you aren’t sure but the shoe looks dated and the logo isn’t current, proceed with caution or ask the seller how old the shoes are.
#4 Look at all angles of the shoes, including the bottoms
I don’t mind light wear on the bottom of the Aquatalia boots I buy, but beyond that, I’m not interested. Always inspect the bottoms of the shoes, look at areas on the shoes that get naturally stressed from wear, like the toes, heels, and creases in the instep. For the most part, I have been pretty impressed by the quality of Aquatalia shoes sold. Most pairs I buy have never been worn, but I do scroll past a few duds that belong in the garbage.
#5- Ask to see things not photographed
You can ask to see things not currently photographed in a Poshmark listing. If a seller omits something, don’t automatically assume they are trying to pull the wool over your eyes. When I purchased my grey Aquatalia boots, the seller didn’t have the bottoms or insides photographed so I wasn’t able to inspect the condition or the age of the boots. When I asked the seller, she immediately added the photos so I could take a look before buying.
#6- Don’t be afraid to negotiate
My friend Cheryl was a huge Poshmark shopper long before I was. When I was visiting her in Seattle she told me about the feature where you could offer a lower price than the current listing. This was me:
How did I not know this? Well, it has changed everything about Poshmark shopping. Don’t be insulting about it when you negotiate, like offering $20 for a $150 pair of shoes, but, typically, most sellers are open to a lesser offer.
Selling on Poshmark? My friend Cheryl also has a smart tip. If you are selling and list for say $25, it will typically mean that a potential buyer will want to offer like $20. But if you list your item for $23, instead of $25, it feels silly to the buyer to offer $20. By knocking $2 off the $25 selling price, you wound up making $3 more. It’s an interesting strategy that can yield a decent amount the more you sell.
What are your tips for buying on Poshmark?
These are just a few of my tips that I’ve learned through trial and error when buying on Poshmark. I am sure there are so many more. Got a tip? Leave it below in the comments.
Oh and if you decide to start buying Aquatalia boots on Poshmark, just leave the non-black size 6 1/2’s for me.