Saturday, 6 October 2012

Ask Crumpet - What are Indies and Where Do I Buy Them ?

Hi Goddesses

Today's post is all about Indie Polishes.  I get lots of blog comments asking me where I buy stuff, so today I'm going to go into detail for you.

I Like My Polishes Unique

First of all - there's this thing called Google.  If ever you want to know about stuff, it's a great place to start.  Sarcasm aside, it works.  If you want to buy an indie polish, Google it.  You'll get lots of blog posts come up, and almost all of them will say "click here for Facebook" or "you can buy her polishes here".  So, that's tip number 1.

Ok.  Indies for me are divided into a couple of categories.   Firstly, there's the brands that are actually quite big names, and have their own websites you can order from - 
Cult Nails
Picture Polish

Then there's polish sellers who sell on Etsy or BigCartel, and finally there's those who sell through intermediaries.  Let's go through them one by one.

Etsy is an online market place for people who make their own products.  The address is - easy :)  Once there, you're going to need to search.  If you know the name of the brand you're looking for eg KBShimmer, enter that.  If you  just want to "window shop" type in "nail polish".

And away you go!  As I browse, I save each shop I like in my Favourites - this is done by turning the little heart red - like so.

And that's all there is to it.  Most Etsy shops allow you to pay by paypal, and the only downfall for me is that you can't see items that are out of stock.  I would love to know what else sellers do that I could pin to my wishlist, but for now, you just have to go with what is showing as in stock.

I have about 60 stores in my favourites - some awesome, some ok - and new ones keep cropping up week after week lol.  It really is an epidemic, but a good epidemic.  Case in point - all the Hallowe'en collections.  Tell me a "major" that's gotten even close to some of the artistry these girls have created.

Tip 2 - Facebook.  Most indie brands have their own Facebook page.  This is where they will show you photos of new polishes, give you launch dates and show you where to buy their stuff.   If you really want to snag that Dollish Polish, you need to be following her Facebook page.   Again, my tip is to use the bloggers - we all provide links - and this is they easiest way to connect to your favorites.

BigCartel.    Hmmmm.   This is another online marketplace, but I don't like it, and not that many indies use it.  I believe it has lower seller fees than Etsy, so as you get bigger as a brand, it's ideal, but it has always seemed harder to buy this way for me!   Again, if an indie maker uses this type of store, their Facebook page will tell you.


OverallBeauty Banner

Harlow & Co.

And then there's the intermediaries.   These are middlemen,  well, women, who buy the polishes from the indie makers and then sell them on to us, the consumer.   This is proving (in my opinion) the best route to market.  It allows the polish makers to forget all the admin types of things like listing polishes and posting them, giving them more time to do what we want them to do - make polishes.

Here are your key intermediaries - 
Ninja Polish
Overall Beauty
Harlow and Co

The other advantage of most of the intermediaries is that they will post international, and a lot of small Etsy shops won't do that.  Also, with an intermediary, you can buy a basket of products across a number of ranges - with all the others you can only buy that 1 individual brand the shop sells.

Again, use Facebook.  All of these intermediaries have Facebook pages, which are great for keeping updated about new product lines and launch dates.

Is it worth looking on eBay ?  In my opinion, No.  You'll pay through the roof, and only the rarer brands tend to make it on there.

Finally, Facebook has a LOT of groups that can help you get Indie Polishes.   There are lots of groups that do swaps or where you can just sell your polish - they are definitely worth checking out.  There are too many to list, but search for things like "polish", "swap" or "polish sales" and you'll find your way to a good few.

Hope that helps!  I can guarantee it won't help your bank balance, but hopefully that's done a little demystifying for you :)  xx Enjoy!!!
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