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Here's why shops resell stuff from AliExpress and Wish with big mark-ups (and don't disclose it)

More Irish sellers are being caught out.

RECENTLY, A DISCUSSION broke out on Twitter over the practice of business’s reselling wholesale items while trying to pass them off as their own.

According to their website, independent Irish store The Temple Wolf, ran by a woman called Emma, stocks a variety of items thoughtfully curated” from around the world, as well as a jewellery collection designed by herself. 

However, a recent customer took issue when she discovered the necklace she had bought from the store was available on Wish for a fraction of the price. (Temple Wolf no longer sell the necklace in question.)


While the customer in question was quick to acknowledge that she understands this is common practice for most retail businesses, she was shocked at the lack of transparency given that Temple Wolf also sells her own originally designed jewellery.

IMG_20180211_163354_747_grande The Temple Wolf's 'Eire' necklace

Speaking to, Temple Wolf owner Emma said she was “upset” to read about the criticism.

“I have a collection that I sell called The Éire collection which consists of a necklace, ring and earrings,” she said. “I came up with the concept for these pieces, if you can call putting a heart on a map of a country a concept, and contacted a wholesaler who now makes the pieces for me. The wholesaler is based in China.

I stock other pieces of jewellery and items on my site from a variety of designers and wholesalers but have never claimed to have designed any of these myself.

“I have a full time job and run The Temple Wolf in my spare time,” she explained. “I still consider myself to be a small business.

I try to run the shop in the best way I can, valuing customer service and charity donations.”

Again, it’s important to come back to how and why people do this. 

Around the time of Bloggers Unveiled (remember her?), the account shed a lot of light on this practice, which had become particularly popular among bloggers.

Among those accused of reselling bulk-bought accessories under their own labels include Ciara O’Doherty and her brand Taylor & Rose, as well as Rosie Connolly and her sunglasses line, Aluxe. Following the accusations, Rosie announced she was “stepping away” from the brand.

While people have been cottoning on to the practice online, it’s important to note that this happens on the high street too – most boutiques and shops sell items with a mark up to make moneys, obvs. (The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC says businesses are free to set their prices once it’s done independently and the price of products and services are displayed, putting the onus on the consumer.)

Last year, a fashion insider told about how often, these kinds of items often go beyond AliExpress.

“You are not buying off AliExpress, you are buying off a supplier,” she said. 

AliExpress items carry with them a lot of negative connotations in terms of perceived lack of quality. Often, this is why brands and shops won’t flag it with you that an item has been bought wholesale (although this is not always the case – there are gems among the mass-produced, for sure.)

Here’s a way you can check if an item you’re sussing out has been bought from a wholesaler:

The AliExpress app allows you to search for an item on their site using an image. So, say if you see a nice dress in a window or on another site. You take a photo or a screenshot and put it into the app. Then, it brings up all similar results for you.


It’s worth having a goo at apps like Wish as well, using descriptive search words to try and track down the item.

However, it’s worth reiterating again that this is very common practice and is by no means illegal. The internet’s just made us all savvier when it comes to capitalism and its practices. 

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