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Buying a used Louis Vuitton bag or purse is a gamble. At least, it is if you’re new to the market and haven’t bought, handled, or owned many Louis Vuitton items.
However, even if you are familiar with the brand, finding a good deal on a used Louis Vuitton is a balancing act of patience, making sure the bag is authentic (and in good condition), and getting lucky.
Bags and purses are available at nearly every price point but, if you go too cheap, you can expect to get scrap material instead of a purse. The chances of it being authentic are drastically reduced as well.
For savvy buyers who know that they’re going, there are some great deals to be had. If you want to be one of those buyers, don’t worry, I’m here to help.
Let’s start off with the two crucial skills you’ll need to be successful in buying used Louis Vuitton bags:
- Learn To Find Sellers That Specialize In Used Louis Vuitton Items
- Learn To Authenticate Louis Vuitton Items Without Handling Them
The 3 Best Places To Buy Used Louis Vuitton Bags
Once you’ve found the best places to buy used Louis Vuitton bags you can pretty much be sure that everything you get is authentic and you can start shopping for deals. It’s finding the place that’s the problem.
If you want the absolute best deal those places aren’t always what you expect, and identifying the right sources can be difficult. It’s our goal here to avoid flippers (middlemen) and source the bags ourselves (which means it’ll be cheaper).
Let’s start with our most highly recommended spot where you can do just that and then we’ll work our way down from there:
If you buy from the right places, eBay can be one of the best places to get great deals on pre-loved Louis Vuitton bags.
Many people scoff at the idea of buying such an expensive bag from eBay and, instead, go to boutiques and consignment shops without realizing that those shop owners bought most of their bags off of eBay.
Selling fakes is actually against eBay policy (not to mention illegal) so eBay works hard to keep knock-offs off of its site.
However, be sure to check out our list of trusted Louis Vuitton sellers on eBay to make sure you’re not getting scammed.
2. Consignment & Resale
If you want a bag that is thoroughly cleaned and guaranteed authentic there are tons of sellers both online and locally where you can find Louis bags. Just be prepared to pay for it.
Thrift boutiques often have vintage Louis Vuitton bags and, if they don’t, they can usually offer you a recommendation about where to go.
If you want to shop online (and are prepared to pay a premium for used bags) then any of the following platforms authenticate the bags that they sell:
3. Direct From The Original Owners
Buying directly from the owner can be a great way to get a deal on an authentic bag. If you are buying from the original owner, odds are they have the original receipt, certificates, dust bag, etc.
Be sure to do your due diligence and trust your instincts as there are lots of bad actors who sell fakes by the dozens on local classifieds sites which are often far less regulated than the online platforms.
How To Tell If A Used Louis Vuitton Bag Is Real
So if you’ve decided to go rogue and find your own place to buy a Louis Vuitton bag, learning to authenticate it is crucial to avoid getting scammed.
Just be aware that, while most fakes are obvious, there are some really nice dupes out there and even Louis Vuitton store employees have been known to be wrong sometimes.
Getting the bag authenticated by a service (or by sending it to Louis Vuitton) is the only surefire way of knowing. However, these tips should help you weed out the bottom feeders.
One of the easiest ways to know if a Louis Vuitton bag is real or not is to simply become very familiar with the style(s) that you’re shopping for.
I’ve seen several “Louis” bags for sale in styles that were simply never offered by the company.
Knowing the measurements, locations of pockets and rivets, and colorways will put you ahead when it comes to buying unique styles of bags.
The Louis Vuitton logo is almost always wrong on fake bags. Familiarize yourself with the font and spacing as most dupes are off on both.
This isn’t just a problem of choosing the right font either, many companies that make knock-offs purposefully “mess up” the logo in a feeble attempt to avoid copyright and legal issues.
Date and Manufacturing Tag
While I have heard that some bags (vintage ones) were made without an inner tag I’ve never seen one. If you’re nervous about the authenticity of the bag look up the serial number and even give Louis Vuitton a call.
Louis Vuitton is extremely protective of its copyrighted logo. It’s the face of their company after all. Learn exactly how the print lays out as many fakes will reverse the print or slightly change the shapes.
Also, Louis Vuitton never cuts the LV in their logo when making a bag. The other shapes are cut but the LV will always be intact.
This is probably the easiest (and most used) way of avoiding fakes. Louis Vuitton bags have a unique feel and it doesn’t feel cheap, thin, or brittle.
The logos on Louis Bags are stalwart and rarely rub off and even old bags maintain structural integrity. If a bag doesn’t seem nice, it’s probably not real.
Look for straight even stitches, no loose threads, soft leather, etc.
Just ask yourself if the bag/purse seems like something a luxury company with stringent quality control would decide to sell.
Authentic Louis Vuitton: Picture Guide:
To give you some picture examples, here is a vintage Neverfull PM tote that we found recently. It’s a good example of an authentic vintage bag and has several points we can look at to learn from:
First off, easily recognizable style that we know Louis Vuitton Produced. The shapes of the handles are right, it’s the right size, and everything is in the right place.
If we find a bag we’re unfamiliar with we often try to find the same bag from a trusted seller online (such as TheRealReal) to compare with.
The LV logo is the correct size and shape, it isn’t cut off, and it’s centered on the bag. All good signs.
Also, while it isn’t a hard and fast rule, Louis Vuitton attempts to line up the bag’s designs at seems. While it’s not definitive, it’s a good sign of added quality.
The zippers are high quality (metal) and the hardware is stamped. Note that many fakes will also stamp the hardware but poorly.
Many people claim that the hardware of authentic bags does not oxidize or lose color which is not quite true. It is true that it is typically much hardier than fakes though so if you see a new bag with highly worn hardware, be suspicious.
The rivest are stamped with the proper font and the stitching is even and straight.
Rivets seem to be one of the weak points in Louis Bags are often need to be replaced in vintage examples. While Louis Vuitton will repair the bag with logo-stamped rivets most independent repair shops will use smooth rivets. So, if a bag has been repaired, smooth rivets without the logo don’t necessarily mean that the bag is fake.
The logo, while faint, is as it should be. As this is an older bag it has the “made in France” stamped on it. Many new bags don’t.
Logos can either be stamped or printed depending on the model.
The “O” is one of the major giveaways in knockoffs. On an authentic bag, the O is a near-perfect circle rather than a 0.
The tag checks out. The liner looks and feels good. Check and check.
When it comes down to it, just trust your gut. If a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is. It’s better to spend a bit more than to push for the best deal possible and lose everything by buying something that isn’t real.
6 Things To Think About When Buying A Used Louis Vuitton Item
Where Are Real Louis Vuitton Bags Made?
Despite the idea that all Louis Vuitton items are Made In France, there are actually several production locations throughout the world.
Louis Vuitton bags are made in one of three locations: France, Spain, and the United States.
Other LV goods (such as shoes and clothing) are produced in France and Italy.
What Is The Cheapest Louis Vuitton Purse?
The cheapest Louis Vuitton purse is the one you get the best deal on. Great deals can be had on almost every style of bag if you’re patient.
In general, vintage Speedy bags, colored Damier, and small side bags such as the Danube are the most affordable options for Louis Vuitton bags.
Are Old Louis Vuitton Items Worth Anything?
While vintage Louis Vuitton bags tend to be less valuable than new options, they hold their value well. In fact, antique Louis bags and suitcases can be extremely valuable.
Should You Buy A Vintage Louis Vuitton?
Personally, I love vintage bags. They have a great look, a great feel, and a personal history. However, they do require more care to keep the leather soft and may need repairs on occasion.
Authentic Louis Vuitton bags are quality items that, if cared for properly and repaired when needed, will last long enough to be handed down to your kids.
Where Can I Sell My Louis Vuitton Bag?
If you want to sell it yourself, Louis Vuitton bags are one of the fastest-selling items on Mercari, eBay, and Poshmark
If you don’t want to deal with customer service and the possibility of scams or returns then reach out to a consignment shop (either in person or online) and they will do the legwork for you for a fee.
How Do I Get The Best Deal On A Louis Vuitton Bag?
In general, the best possible deal on a Louis Vuitton bag comes from buying a used option that needs rehab or repair.
In many cases, this simply amounts to moisturizing the leather and thoroughly cleaning it.
If you don’t have any interest in a bag that has been used to that extent, your next best option is to keep an eye on eBay auctions and try to snipe the bag you want for a good deal.
At the end of the day, buying a Louis Vuitton bag is a matter of patience and persistence. If you’re willing to put in a bit of elbow grease to authenticate a Louis Vuitton bag you can get an awesome deal.
Otherwise, do your best to stick to well-known sellers so you can ensure that your money is going to a legitimate product.
Best of luck!