Last week I posted a picture of a gorgeous swimsuit I purchased from Ali Express. I wanted to do this blog post once I had received the 3rd of 3 orders I had placed in December, but I have been inundated with emails, texts, Facebook messages & what apps so I thought I would do the post today, for all of you who absolutely can’t wait. So, before I get into the post, I feel like I should post a little disclaimer. THIS IS NOT A SPONSORED POST. I am merely sharing my experience with you. Should you place an order on Ali Express, & not be satisfied, it is at your own risk.
Now, I’ll start from the beginning. My assistant Tashia mentioned Ali Express to me a few months ago. It sounded interesting so I gave it a try. Now I am no stranger to online shopping; I have tried Sammy Dress, Wholesaledress-net, eBay etc. I am always open to trying different sites, especially when I can score a bargain.
I browsed the site & came across so many things I wanted to buy. And so many items I had seen online via local “designer boutiques”. Now there are two sides to this. These boutiques are buying items off sites like AliExpress at X amount. They then add in all their costs & a mark up, & are selling it to the public at Y amount. Many people still don’t trust purchasing from these Chinese sites, so purchasing from a SA online store is safer for them. I can understand that. There is also less risk here, because let’s be honest – if you aren’t happy with something you buy, it will be much easier to return to a local shop than a random Chinese one. Right. However, I have seen many instances where HUGE mark ups are being added, & items that are worth a R200 are being sold for over a R1000.
Something to think about…
A friend of mine purchased a dress from a local online shop she had actually found via my blog. She purchased this dress for R299 on sale. Then she saw the AliExpress pink swimsuit post on my Instagram (@brettrobson if you aren’t already following me). After this she browsed the site & found the same dress for $6.00 (R72).
I will leave it there, & move onto my experience with AliExpress.
My AliExpress mission: swimsuits. There are tons of gorgeous ones I found, but placed an order for 4. Two swimsuits were from the same seller, & the other two were separate sellers so I had three orders placed on the same day. I will discuss the 2 orders I have received so far.
Price: $8.37 / R100.44
Shipping: No shipping fee. However, when you select FREE Shipping it does tell you that it will take 15-60 days for your parcel to arrive. I placed the order on 8 December, & picked it up from the post office on 28 January. So let’s say 50 days. I had hoped for less, but 60 days was kind of expected too. I did not pay customs fees/taxes.
Garment Quality: The quality is really good here. I was actually quite impressed, & even left them a nice comment below the item. It also came with padding on the bust which I like. And the bottom was lined. I did actually place my order for a Red & not cerise. However, I am happy with the cerise. And for some reason Chinese people don’t see/understand the difference between cerise & red. I have had many situations like this at work where you ask for a fabric lab dip in red & get cerise instead. It’s kinda funny.
Fit/Sizing: I ordered a size SMALL, which I am & it is a great fit.
**If you would like to purchase this swimsuit, click here. This is the same seller I bought it from, but the price is now $8.90.
Price: $11.99 / R143.88
Shipping: FREE Shipping, with the same 15-60 days expectancy as the above order. Both orders were placed on 8 December & post office slips came on the 27 January & were picked up on 28 January. I did not pay customs fees/taxes.
Garment Quality: As someone who works with clothes & understands the quality aspects of garment construction, I would have to say this was bad. The bikini bottom was stitched well, but the top was poor. The was lots of puckering & “wavy” seams where the mesh was stitched to the spandex. Also the mesh was not the softest. It was quite hard against the skin. Cheap quality basically. It has no hanger appeal as well.
Fit/Sizing: I ordered a size SMALL again, but the fit was very poor. What happened here is they cut the fabric on the wrong grain. The stretch of the swimsuit should’ve been going across my body, but instead is went vertically. The bottom wasn’t that bad. But the top was such a struggle to get in to & out of for that matter. I did leave the seller a message. Not because I wanted to change the item, but just an FYI. The seller’s response was that I should take a bigger size. lol.
- Always scroll down to see their garment. The thumbnail is generally the item they copied, & the pictures on the dummy or hanger below is their version.
- Read comments/feedback below the item, so if people bought it & it was bad then you will know not to purchase it too.
- Check the seller rating.
I guess sometimes it’s going to be a hit or miss when it comes to these sites. AliExpress is basically the eBay of Chinese wholesalers. I do suggest starting off small, & not with a HUGE order. Test the waters & see if this is the method for you.
I hope this post was helpful for you guys 🙂 Leave comments below with any questions.