How to buy a Birkin bag
because it's an insanely ridiculous process
July 30, 2020
(4 min read)
(4 min read)
I'm guessing you didn't click on this post because you want to buy a Birkin bag, but because you thought the title was absurd and intriguing. You're in the right place.
First, this is a Birkin bag:
This exact bag recently resold for almost $300k. I'm guessing I have your attention now.
The fashion community considers Birkins to be the holy grail of handbags. Kylie Jenner has a closet full of them, they frequent Sex and the City episodes (anyone else remember when Samatha lied to get one?), and they're absolutely the most expensive bag sold. They range from $9k - $500k. Birkins are incredibly "scare and exclusive," which drives up the price as you business lovers should know. The value of these bags increases about 14% each year- don't be too quick to call people dumb for saying they're a great investment.
A brief history:
The English actress Jane Birkin was famous for using a wicker basket for carrying things. While on a flight, Birkin complained to hear seatmate that it was impossible to find a handbag she loved. Her seatmate introduced herself as the chief executive of Hermès, Jean-Luis Dumas. A year later, Birkin's custom bag was finished and named after her. Surprisingly, the bag wasn't popular when it first came out. It wasn't until the '90s that the Birkin bag got its status as the "it" bag.
So how does one buy a Birkin from Hermès?
1. Many of the most "iconic" Birkin styles are not available online (except on resell sites).
2. Stores have a very limited supply. Each store is responsible for buying their own collection of Birkins and can do so only twice a year.
3. You can't just walk into a store expecting them to take your money no matter how much you have. There are waitlists and even celebs have to join these. Some people skip these lines by being "offered" a Birkin, but this rarely happens- unless you've spent millions at Hermès or are Princess Diana, you can kiss this goodbye.
4. If you don't "look the part," the stores will simply tell you that they're out of stock and not put your name on the waitlist. Rumor also has it that some store associates won't put you on the list unless you've spent a certain amount at their store.
5. Because stores are in charge of buying their own supplies of Birkins, you might have to travel pretty far to buy your bag from Hermès.
6. Once the store finally has a Birkin for you- and this will likely take over a year- it probably won't be the model you're hoping for. The majority of buyers take this above potentially losing their spot on the list.
7. If you really want a particular style or color, you might have to pay an extra $10k for it, according to a Hermès employee.
8. There is a limit for how often a certain customer can buy a Birkin from Hermès.
9. Hermès staff is said to monitor the online resales of Birkins and put known buyers and sellers on a "no buy list."
After reading about how unobtainable these bags are, ask yourself if you're more interested in them now than before you knew all this... I know I am.
Scarcity and exclusivity really do manipulate the shit out of humans. Leather bags are going for hundreds of thousands of dollars, Kylie Jenner's crappy, runny lipstick became the hottest product, and Supreme literally turned some resellers to millionaires- what's next?
The fashion industry screams out billion-dollar business tips to anyone paying attention. This is just one of the many examples.
the mind of an american teenager