Yay! You've found the dress or accessory you want to buy.  We are a listing service, so you'll deal directly with the seller for the transaction (making everything faster and less expensive).

Read our tips on How to Avoid Online Scams on Used Wedding Dresses. There are a couple of ways you can protect yourself during a transaction. The first and most crucial one is to use a safe payment method (we recommend Paypal and have integrated it into our site, the seller can invoice directly inside your conversation) and you'll be fully protected if your item doesn't ship, or arrives and isn't exactly as described. Learn more here about safe payment methods.

Before You Commit To A Dress

  • Buy Within Your Size Range
    It is important that you buy a dress within your size range. It is much easier to take a dress in a size or two than to try and let it out. Especially if the dress has already been altered; most manufacturers only leave 1/2-1" of materials to allow for letting a dress out. 

    If a dress does not fit when you receive it you will not be able to return it for a refund via PayPal unless the seller misrepresented the tag size or alterations done.
  • Look Up The Designer's Sizing Chart
    Every designer will fit differently - try to find the size chart for the dress you are buying to confirm if an unaltered version of the size you are looking to buy would fit, then consider the alterations the seller has done and determine if the dress will work for your body.

1. Contact the seller with the "Email Seller" button

  • Never communicate off the site. Our system allows pictures to be sent. Do not believe sellers who say they cannot send pictures on our site!

2. Details, details, details....& Pictures!

  • Ask Questions.
    Confirm the authenticity and condition of your item. Ask the seller lots of questions about its current condition, the size & alterations done, the color, and ask if they offer a return policy and HOW the return policy works.
  • Ask for Pictures.
    SO IMPORTANT! You need to see the dress in its current condition as of today. An honest seller won’t mind – a scammer will make up a reason they can’t send you pictures of the item as it looks right now in their hands.

3. Agree on Pricing & Shipping

  • Agree with the seller on the items price and the shipping terms (who is paying for shipping? Which company is being used?)
  • Check out our shipping tips and shipping cost calculators. The seller will need to get a shipping quote for the weight/dimensions of the packaged item. 

4. Pay with a Secure Payment Option.  

We only recommend Paypal or Escrow.com because they protect both the buyer and the seller. These services offer you strong protection if the item isn't shipped, or arrives and isn't as described. So you can rest assured you'll get the dress or item you want, without risk.  (Read more about the protection here).

To make this easy for you we have integrated PayPal into our site so that the seller can send you a PayPal invoice directly inside our messaging system.

  • Using Paypal: both buyer and seller set up PayPal account and seller sends an invoice to the buyer
  • Using Escrow.com: both buyer and seller set up Escrow.com account and either the buyer or seller initiates the transaction.

5. Seller Ships Your Dress/Item Using Her Own Shipping Supplies.

After you have paid, ask your seller for the tracking number. When you receive the dress or item, take pictures or a video of you unpacking the box, inspect it, and try it on.
Then enjoy!  Wear your beautiful new dress or accessory.  Look and feel beautiful!

Don't see your question answered here?  Send us an email and we'll get back to you in 24 hours (or less!)

What happens if I cannot reach the seller of a gown I'm interested in?

What payment methods do you recommend?

What do if my dress/accessories arrives and it isn’t as the seller described?

Can I try on a dress before purchasing it?

What is the return policy?

Who pays for shipping and how much will it cost?

Can I buy a dress from a seller in another country?




What happens if I cannot reach the seller of a gown I'm interested in?

If you've tried to reach a seller by email and have not heard back from her after 5 days, please email us. We'll reach out to the seller on your behalf.




What payment methods do you recommend?

We only recommend Paypal or Escrow.com for payment. Each is safe and secure and offers the buyer and seller a resource in the unlikely event of a dispute.  No other payment services offer this protection.  For that reason, do not pay with unsecured forms of payment like a check, Venmo, wire transfer or money order. Of course, if you meet your seller in person then cash is an option too.



What do if my dress/accessories arrives and it isn’t as the seller described?

For Paypal users:
If your item arrives and it isn’t as described by your seller, your first recourse is to contact the seller to discuss it.  If you aren’t able to find a solution acceptable to both of you, then login to Paypal.com and visit their “Resolution Center” and open a dispute.  Paypal allows 45 days from the payment date to open a dispute.

For Escrow.com users:
Every Escrow.com transaction has a built-in inspection period.  In that window, the buyer can decide to notify the seller of a return for any reason (no matter what the seller’s return policy is).  Buyers must return the gown in the exact condition in which it was received, and in a timely manner.



Can I try on a dress before purchasing it?

Some sellers do allow brides to try on a gown before purchase.  Others do not.  If your seller allows a try on by mail, we recommend that she charge a 2-10% restocking fee if the dress is returned.



What is your return policy?

Every seller on our site sets her individual return policy. Before buying an item, please check the listing to see if they note a return policy or final sale, or inquire with the seller directly. Ask the seller exactly how their return policy works if they offer one.

We ask our sellers to consider these terms if they decide to offer a return policy:

  1. The buyer must notify you of her intention to return the item within 2 days of receiving it. The item must be returned in the exact condition in which it was sent.
  2. The buyer must provide a tracking number for the return shipment within 5 days of saying she wants to return it. 
  3. The return shipment must be insured for the purchase value and returned at the buyer's expense.
  4. The refund will not be provided until the seller receives the returned item and confirms its condition.
  5. Include your return policy terms directly on your Paypal or Escrow.com invoice and specifically review them with your buyer in advance of the transaction. Do not choose the friends and family option when invoicing with PayPal - this does not offer purchase protection, which you can read more about here: https://www.preownedweddingdresses.com/for-buyers/recommended-payment-methods



Can I buy a gown from a seller in another country?

Definitely!  Just be mindful that shipping costs might be higher and import taxes might apply. 

Any carrier (USPS, Fedex and UPS) can ship internationally. Ask the carrier you and the seller agree about customs charges specifically. Find shipping cost calculators and import/duty calculators here. 

PreOwnedWeddingDresses.com TipFor international transactions, we only recommend Escrow.com for payment.



About PreOwnedWeddingDresses.com

Since 2004, we've been connecting buyers and sellers of new, sample and used wedding dresses and bridal party gowns. Buying and selling with us is safe and easy. And since we don't charge any commission, you'll make more money selling here than anywhere else.