How to Enter the Lululemon Resale Market

You can start with eBay.

Rephrase: You COULD start with eBay. But you don’t want to. eBay fees are pretty high. Well, compared to zero fees, eBay fees are high. What you want to do is start on the many Facebook groups dedicated to the sale and resale (and resale) of Lululemon apparel. The biggest is called the Lululemon Exchange, there’s also the Lululemon Bidding Battles (LBB) site where many unicorns are posted daily. (Don’t know what a Unicorn is? Check out my other post about the vernacular of a Lululemon addict.) There’s also a Canadian Version of LBB, where the seller only has the right to ship only within Canada. The Lululemon Market is popular, and The Lululemon Trading Post has a similar format. Each site has their own rules. The main reason myself, and many other people use these sites is to avoid eBay fees, sell to people who love LLL as much as we do and so that when there is a problem buyer or seller they can be removed from the group. Most of the time, the transactions go off without a hitch. Myself, I’ve never had a problem.

The Lululemon Market is simple: You can post your item to the wall, for whatever price you want and you’re allowed to bump it every few days. You also have the option of adding your photo to a size album and then bumping it to the wall.

The Trading Post has similar rules: You can post your item in an album with a price, then bump it to the wall, with subsequent bumping allowed only once every 7 days. While pricing is not “policed,” fairness in pricing is politely requested.

The Lululemon Exchange is both the largest group and the one with the most rigid guidelines. You may post your item to the wall, or you may post it to a size album, but you may not do both. Also, it is specified that no photos may be posted to the wall, therefore any ads you post to the wall are to be text based only. You may not bump your post to the wall when it is added to a size album, you must wait 7 days. You may not bump your posts more than once every 7 days. This is to ensure that the wall is not flooded with too many repeat ads. They also have very strict rules about pricing. So, read carefully.

Lululemon Bidding Battles: The idea is simple enough: you post a photo to the wall of your item, stating the name, size, condition, starting bid, buy it now (BIN) price (optional) and ending time (24 hours from the start time) and people are free to bid on (or BIN) your item. You’re allowed 6 bumps during the 24 hour run time, plus one extra “to the wall,” if you post in a size album. This is the best place, by far, to sell hard to find items, or pricier ones.

There you have it. Your entry into the Lululemon after-sales market is a simple Facebook search away.

Of course sometimes links are helpful too:

The Lululemon Market is located here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/281577148614119/

The Lululemon Exchange is located here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/luluexchange/

The Trading Post is here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/161513970598488/

Lululemon Bidding Battles is here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/143922069083293/

I hope that helps 🙂

UPDATE:

There’s another group that started in the same month that I wrote this post (June of 2013), that I hadn’t added to this list, even after it gained popularity. It now has over 3,000 members and there’s a lot of action in the group! It’s called the Unicorn Bidding Field and you can find it here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/lululemonbidding/ Enjoy & Happy Selling! Thanks to Jen for helping out with this update!

UPDATE:

The Canadian version of LBB, while once fairly popular has not seen much action lately. This is the link: https://www.facebook.com/groups/Canada.LBB/ if you would still like to join. Thanks to Sherri for helping out with this update!

UPDATE: I found a page for Canadian sales that seems to have more action. It’s called Lululemon Canadian Combat and can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/lululemoncanadiancombat/

UPDATE: Lululemon 911, a seller-focused market has become quite popular. Here’s the link:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/549663845180180/

Lululemon Slang Terms

The Vernacular of a Lululemon Addict

If you’re thinking about entering the world of after market Lululemon sales, you must be versed in the vernacular of the indigenous population of Lulu collectors, lest you become lost in the Swirl of Peri-manifesto print.

Quickly, let’s go over some of the most common abbreviations and terms.

General terms:

Unicorn: An item that the party has been searching for for a long time, that is both rare and highly desirable. Many people’s unicorns are also the unicorns of others as well.

GEC: Guest Education Centre, basically, Lululemon’s Customer Service

ISO: In search of. People will post ads stating that they are in search of an item in hopes that someone will reply to that ad with the item that they are looking for, and hopefully a fair asking price.

DISO: Desperately in search of

FS: For sale

NWT: New with tags

NWOT: New without tags

VEUC: Very excellent used condition (I use this for items when I’m not actually sure whether I wore them even once or not)

EUC: Excellent used condition

VGUC/ GUC: Very/ good used condition

EMT: Email Money Transfer, a Payment method available to Canadians

TTS: True to Size, indicating that the buyer bought their normal size in the item

Bump: A bump is when someone comments on their own post (usually just saying “bump,” sometimes using a *) which moves it to the top of the page until someone else posts or bumps their post.

IMO: In my opinion

MD: Mark down, indicates something is on sale, or was purchased for the sale price.

PM: Private message

MSG: Message

Angel: An angel is a community member who will purchase an item for you at a location convenient to them, accept payment for the item- including postage, and often a tip- and mail the item to you.

PP: When in regards to a purchase it means, “payment pending.” ie: Someone may comment on their own post stating, “sold, pp.”

CAN: Canada

US: United States

OOTD: Outfit of the day

UPLOAD!!! : Once a week, Lululemon adds new items to the website. Sometimes during the holiday season Lululemon will upload extra items at random..

UPDATE ON UPLOAD TIME: As of February 6th, 2016,  uploads have been occurring no later than 5pm EST on Tuesday afternoons. Times do vary slightly.

LOOT or WMTM or MD: We Made Too Much, formerly called “loot” is generally uploaded on Thursday mornings, very early. It is filled with items that are on Mark Down (reduced in price). Sometimes, over the holiday season, WMTM doesn’t get uploaded as often, but then normal uploads come more often.

Colours:

PP: Paris Pink

LR: Love Red

Articles of Clothing:

PO: Pullover

WUPs/ WUCs: Wunder Under Pants, Wunder Under Crops

NLT: No limits tank

WTF: What the fluff

DSC/ DSPs: Dance Studio Crops, Dance Studio Pants

DSJ: Dance Studio Jacket

GW: Gratitude Wrap

SW: Savasana Wrap

AW: Awareness Wrap

CRB: Cool Racerback

LS: Long Sleeve

WWA: Wear With All, a type of jacket

 

What drives the prices of USED clothing over retail?

The collectibility of Lululemon is undeniable. Some people must have all the Vinyasa scarves, others want an impressive collection of Wunder Under pants. Some people collect all items in Teal Zeal, others must have Pique everything! I’m a sucker for Define jackets, and Groove Pants. All of us are willing to pay more than retail for our most desired items. Who knows, maybe you have the latest coveted treasure hiding in your closet!?

Apart from the obvious collectibility of Lululemon clothing, is the quality. The general quality of Lululemon clothing has, historically, been impressive. I have many items in my closet that have lasted through the years, despite regular, rigorous use. Fast forward to today: over the past year Lululemon has presented its loyal client base with no fewer than four serious issues.

Having had personal experience with color bleeding and poor seam construction, I must admit to being extra cautious when purchasing NEW Lululemon products, in-store. It used to be customary for me to go in to my local retail establishment, be greeted by name, choose my selected garment (having done my research the evening before), and walk out the door without even trying it on. I used to spend my money on retail clothing, in-store. And, I still do, but only on selected items. And I try everything on. I check the seams, quickly, and I do a bend test to “make sure the coverage suits my needs.” The bulk of my spending now occurs in the after-market where I can buy better quality products at inflated prices. But I’m very happy to pay those prices, as long as i get what I want. And so are a lot of other people.

The collectibility of the items is created by Lululemon’s scarcity model, they only make so many of each style and color. The desirability is enhanced by the current trend of on-going product quality issues. As it stands, even if I thought that they were going to bring the Define jacket back into production, I would still prefer to purchase them in the after-market sales arena, rather than in-store, because their used clothing lasts longer than their newer offerings. As an aside, I have heard rumors that the define jacket will be put back into production. However, I’m concerned that they will reduce the quality of the materials and create a bastardized version of my beloved Define jacket. This worries me.

 

UPDATE:

The Define may or may not be coming back into production based on the results of a survey/ vote process that Lululemon is currently conducting on Hey Lululemon! .com I’ll discuss these results in a future post.

UPDATE: HeyLululemon.com has been retired. Also, the Define did come back! I wrote a post about it!

 

Lululemon example of some different pinks.

Lululemon example of some different pinks.

Clockwise (beginning with the Runder Under that has some black), left to right: Raspberry Glo, Blush Quartz, Pink Shell, Flash, Paris Pink, Pow Pink and Pinkelicious.

Your Entry into the Cult(ure) of so-called Lululemon Addicts.

People who love Lululemon clothing, myself included, obsessively study and monitor the past and current trends of the offerings. They know all the color codes and the difference between Raspberry Glo, Blush Quartz, Pink Shell, Flash, Paris Pink, Pow Pink and Pinkelicious. They know all the small nuanced differences between each Lululemon product and the names of all the products. The FedEx man refers to them as his “regular 2:00pm stop.” They can immediately identify someone who is wearing Lululemon and tell you the name of the product and the color. They treat their clothing like a wearable art collection rather than as garments that will expire, go “out of style,” and need to be thrown away.

It is for this reason that Lululemon’s clothing can both maintain and/or increase in value over time. When something becomes a collectible, the value of the item is controlled by the desirability (demand) as well as the availability (supply) of the item. For example, recently, I saw at auction a Lululemon Define Jacket in Royalty Space Dye sell for $500! These jackets retail for $99. This particular color first appeared in Hong Kong in late July of 2011, as discussed on the ever popular Lululemon Addict Blog. How does a jacket fetch over 5 times retail within 2 years of being released? Simply put: it’s Lululemon.

Lululemon Addicts, follow this blog and two others in order to stay current on the newest items. Lululemon has their own blog, where they will often preview things http://www.lululemon.com/community/blog/, and http://lulumum.blogspot.com/, is also popular. Another source of information is lululemon’s twitter feed: https://twitter.com/lululemon, where they recently revealed the new golf collection. The reason it is necessary to inform yourself so thoroughly is because once you begin to identify yourself as a collector of Lululemon clothing, you have by default also become a speculator of the market.

So, begins your entry into the after market sales of Lululemon. 

An Introduction to the little known world of Lululemon after market sales

Upon discovering Lululemon, and submitting to the fact that their marketing directly targets people like you and I, I wondered, what is it about this company in particular that allows it to earn and maintain such a loyal fan base. It does no television marketing, or pop-up ads, no billboards or print ads and yet the popularity of the clothing doesn’t seem to wane. Even in the wake of “Pantsgate,” profits and the Stock, seemed to carry on, almost uninterrupted, save for the occasional late night talk show gag.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=guYcnGKg9Z8 <<— watch Kimmel poke fun at Lulu here.

March 18th, the day that Lululemon announced the recall of sheer, defective, yoga pants the stock closed at $65.90. It continued to hover for a couple of weeks around the 62 dollar mark, and has slowly risen back up almost reaching it’s 52 week high of $81.77. As I write this, the price is currently $80.94. It’s astonishing to me, that a company that has experienced such a damaging public relations disaster can continue to remain so popular, and highly valued. At least it was astonishing to me. Until I encountered the obscure world of after market Lululemon sales.

Have you ever purchased a pair of Nike shorts? How much did they cost? Thirty dollars? What if I told you that you could sell those for more after you had used them? You don’t have to give them to charity or throw them away, even if they have a hole in them! Well, that’s the nature of the after market for Lululemon clothing. Of course, you can’t do that with Nike shorts, but there are shorts by Lululemon that sell for MORE than retail. And keep in mind that these are USED clothes. The reason for this is the scarcity model that Lululemon employs. Lululemon introduces new products every week, and they only manufacture a limited number of each product. Once the product sells out, (save for returns) the product is gone, and you can no longer buy it. At least, not from Lululemon. Enter the after market. A solution to a problem I didn’t know I had until I discovered it. It’s absolutely incredible and I want to help you understand and participate in it.

I love the Lululemon after market. It helps you discover things you didn’t know you wanted, things you never knew existed and it encourages you to see your Lululemon clothing as a collection. This culture is the reason, I believe, that Lululemon has been able to maintain its stock price despite some difficult press releases (Lululemon Recalls Sheer Pants,) and dropping some of their core products, such as the ever popular Define jacket. In writing this, I’m hoping to recruit more fans for Lululemon clothing as well as to introduce you to and encourage participation in the after market sales of Lululemon clothing.

I intend to discuss the vernacular, culture and trends of these markets and in order to encourage conversation, I ask that you submit questions regarding these markets as well as questions regarding the market value of individual items themselves.

I hope we can all have a fun and fruitful discussion about Lululemon!