StockX, GOAT, Grailed, Farfetch, everything but retail. These sites were created for reselling, so if that item that you wanted so badly, (or the one you never knew you wanted), sells out, you still have a chance. Yes, this may sound like a God-sent, but the devil slipped in somewhere along the lines, as often the hot ticket item you want is marked up by well over 100% (looking at you box logo hoodies.) And well, since you're reading this, I believe that it is safe to assume that you don't want to overspend on the item you want, so I'm here to teach how to avoid doing just that.
1. Find out how much the item sold for retail
This is the most important step, no seriously. The ridiculous bids and subsequent asks that you see on StockX are in due part from consumers not understanding the true market for the shoe. If a widely-produced shoe was retailed for $190, there is no reason someone should take the bait and 'buy it now' for $322. When that occurs, the consumer was impulsive and now more sellers will expect sales at that high of a rate thus, the market is upset.
2. Check StockX, then continue to search.
No doubting StockX as the King of resale, but where there is a King, there is a Kingdom of loyal servants. So, your coveted item may be on the platform in large numbers, but also with high prices if the demand is there. If the demand is no there but the item is (which is rare at best), then there is usually no reason to look further than StockX to purchase it. But in the typical case that demand is present, you should go on to check Grailed, and GOAT (which recently introduced streetwear to its platform.) Honestly speaking, when it comes to footwear, GOAT usually has higher prices than StockX, and also a wider variety. Therefore, put in an offer and continue your search to Grailed and message the seller to barter for a lower price.
3. Go on Reddit because it could potentially be your best friend
Reddit is a TRUE God-sent, many sellers that you see in the forum are true fans of the item that you are looking to buy (or the entire brand itself), and usually cut deals because they are realists who want to actually complete a sale (again, looking at you box logo hoodies that sit for $800+.) Slipping into forums such as r/sneakermarket and r/streetwear and checking out the Buy/Sell/Trade threads or making a Want to Buy [WTB] post should greatly help you bring home your grail.
4. Be smart about it
If you are looking for a rare find (like the Unité Totale Vapormax I previously wrote about), then you need to practice patience in your search. On the other hand, if your item is easy to find and widely available, practice some restraint and don't bite at the first ask you to see. Like the Vapormax I wanted, I paid $242 for a shoe that was going for under its retail value of $190 because I got frustrated in my search, don't make my mistake.
Whether you are in search of a new pickup or finally embarking on the journey to find your grail, overspending doesn't have to be a part of the process. Be smart out there thriver, happy hunting!