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Answer Angel: How to cash in on your old clothes

Ellen Warren, Tribune News Service on

Published in Fashion Daily News

Dear Answer Angel Ellen: I am in a bit of dilemma. I need to sell off many pairs of shoes. A few that I never wore. Bottom line, I don’t want to sell and have them returned because of fit. I don’t want to sell on eBay because I want a set price and I no longer have PayPal. Another problem is many of the shoes are of narrow width, which is an endangered species. Few stores carry narrows in either limited stock or brands.

Any suggestions?

— Judy A.

Dear Judy: I hear a lot of complaints from readers that they can’t find narrow width shoes, so yours might be in high demand depending on style and condition — and the opposite of a problem you need to worry about. A few chain stores — Buffalo Exchange ( and Clothes Mentor (, among others — will pay you cash on the spot for your clothes, shoes and accessories. Or find a consignment shop in your area that will sell your shoes for you. But be warned that they often take a 40-60% commission.

As for eBay, if you stipulate “no returns” in your eBay listing, the eBay rules are: “If they ordered the wrong item or changed their mind, then you aren’t required to accept the return.” The rules also say if the buyer wants to return the item because it is “damaged, faulty or didn’t match your listing description then you need to accept the return.” As for price, you’re not required to sell to a buyer who bids lower than what you’re asking. Renewing your PayPal account is easy, so no sweat there.

Dear Answer Angel Ellen: What do you or your readers recommend for dark under-eyes? There are so many products out there and I don’t know if any of them work, but I’m tired of my dark, baggy eyes. Help!

— Claire M.

Dear Claire: This is a tough one, made tougher by the pandemic. I’m not impressed by the creams, lotions, gels, serums and other products sold — often at huge prices — to reduce bags and dark circles. At best, my experience is they make minimal, short-term improvement.


Makeup is your friend on this one. If it is any comfort, your problem is common, and if you doubt that, just go to YouTube and see the many, many videos on how to hide dark, baggy under-eyes, which have been viewed by millions of fellow sufferers. Crucial to concealing with whatever cosmetics you choose is artful blending so you don’t wind up replacing the dark areas with paler makeup that screams concealer.

Watch a few of those how-to videos, then — if you’re comfortable shopping in person at this stage of the pandemic — head to a department store. You’ll find a dizzying number of cosmetic brands and trained makeup artists to tell you how to use them. It’s a process to figure out what works for your coloring, but ask for advice on what shade(s) to choose. While COVID-19 curtails hands-on personal mini-makeover demonstrations of the past, you can still seek advice and free samples to try at home, no purchase necessary.

Reader Rant

From Carol M.: “I love your Answer Angel column and look forward every week to questions and great tips for women. Why, oh why, then are the men taking over your column? I’d love for them to have their own advice guru and leave Ellen to us women.” From Ellen: Awww. Thanks for caring, Carol. I don’t get a lot of questions from guys, so when they do ask me for help I figure they really need it. I’ll still be here for my women readers and, as a sweet little boy I know reminds me, “Sharing is caring,” let’s let the fellas in once in a while.

Angelic Readers

Kim M writes: “I used to feel the same way your readers feel about the skimpy foam pads that are so difficult to fit back in the bra’s insertion slots, until I discovered… a whole new world. Putting them back in is so EASY with the rolling trick (there’s a video on The magic is rolling them up (well I’d say like a joint or cigarette but…!) and sticking them in the slot. It will unroll in the pocket and you can adjust as needed. Voila! Changed my entire life!! Hope this helps someone!”

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