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Buying Pre-owned Brand Name Jewellery

By Scott Lee


Why buy pre-owned Brand Name Jewellery

Buying new brand name jewellery at retail prices is great, but depending on your shopping style, it isn’t always the best option. Many fashion conscious women today are looking for a good deal, searching for a design or look they love, or finding the charm of an iconic design that is no longer in production. Preowned, preloved or used designer jewellery items are a great way to bypass some of the industry markups, find vintage or antique styles, and still get the brand name and craftsmanship you are looking for.

Purchasing anything second-hand carries some risks and it is never a bad idea to do some research beforehand to ensure you come out on top. We don’t have a be-all-end-all list of rules for buying pre-owned jewellery, but we’ve put together a short list of helpful tips to keep in mind when shopping for pre-owned designer jewellery.

4 Tips for buying pre-owned brand name jewellery

It pays to understand pricing. Brand name jewellery is very similar to cars in the sense that the moment you walk out of that 5th Avenue store with the ring, the value starts depreciating. A savvy shopper can take advantage of that effect and can find great deals on pre-owned brand name jewellery. But just like used cars, there are steals and there are scams. There is no manual on what a particular second-hand Tiffany or Cartier ring is worth, but two places to look for finding a fair price are:

  • The company website - most authentic items should be something like 40-70% of the listed price on the company website.
Tiffany 1837 Interlocking circles 100 Ways Tiffany interlocking circles
  • eBay - instead of just looking at prices on live listings (usually what sellers hope to get for the item), checking sold listings (what items have actually been sold for) is a good way to gauge what item is actually selling for.
ebay sold listings

Find a trusted reseller. There are many ways you can buy a used ring or bracelet. You can use online marketplaces like eBay or 1stDibs, check out a local consignment shop, or visit flea markets or antique fairs. You can come across unique finds or great deals in any of these channels, but make sure you take into account the reputation of the reseller. A good online reseller or physical consignment shop should offer a guarantee of the authenticity as well as a reasonable return policy.

Authenticity and sourcing

If you are buying from eBay, pay close attention to how many reviews the seller has. We recommend never buying expensive jewellery from anyone with under 500 reviews unless you are a real expert on identifying fakes.

If the item seems too cheap, chances are there is a catch. In the digital age, it is easy for anyone selling their designer jewellery to do a quick search online to find out a realistic value for their item. It is very unlikely that a ring that retails for $8,000 will be posted for $275, so if the price seems too low, be extra careful. You may have stumbled across a great bargain, but chances are it is a fake.

fake cartier love ring

It also pays to do some research signs that an item might be fake. Any item that holds its value will almost always be counterfeited. The authenticity of an item is probably the most important factor in buying pre-owned designer jewellery and the biggest risk factor in most transactions. By doing a bit of research on the brand, or even the specific item you are interested in, you may be able to rule out a lot of replicas and fakes.

fake tiffany

Paperwork, original packaging, and receipts help but can also be replicated. You don’t necessarily need to be an expert in the field to spot the majority of fakes out there and it definitely makes sense to do a little homework. Here is an example of a helpful guide on how to spot fake Tiffany jewellery

All in all, there are some great deals to be had in the pre-owned jewellery market, but you want to make sure you are getting the real deal.