Posted by on in Subscription Box Swap News | 87 comments

Swap Site + MSA Update on Selling Subscription Box Items

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Subscription Box Swaps

We’re making a change to the swap site – starting Monday, you be able to either list your item for swap OR list it for sale by sharing your eBay item ID.

Before getting into the details of the changes, I wanted to give some background on why we’re making the change:

Almost 2 years ago (I can’t believe it has been that long) we built the swap site with the purpose of helping MSA readers trade subscription box items with each other. Since then, we’ve been making updates the swap site thanks to all your suggestions, with the goal of making it a fun, safe and easy place to swap. We also want this to always be a completely free-to-use service.

Since then, both in comments on blog posts and as a PayPal listing on the swap site, we’ve seen that while a lot of people want to swap, some people want to buy and sell items as well. We want to provide a way to connect buyers and sellers, but at the same time, we also want to keep the swap site an entirely free service. That means we need to involve a different party (eBay) to handle transactions, deal with any claims/issues, and ensure that both sellers and buyers are protected.

Starting October 5th, you will be able to list your eBay listings for any subscription box item on the swap site. These listings will show up alongside swap listings, and readers can filter to just show eBay for sale listings as well. Just like with listing swap items, it is completely free to list eBay items (Any fees from eBay still apply). (Also good to know – any eBay listing that is expired will be removed from the site within 24 hours).

SinceΒ some swappers may need to make adjustments with this change, we’re not making it mandatory until November 1st. You have until October 31st to remove any PayPal listings from the swap site.

We also ask that PayPal buy/sell comments are now handled through eBay listings on the swap site.

I know this is a significant change for some,Β but I hope it’s clear that our goal with this change is to make sure Swaps remains a helpful, fun and free service for the long run!

Here is how the new eBay integration on Swaps works:

Screen Shot 2015-10-03 at 12.56.00 PM

When you list a new item, you now have the option to select Swap or Sell.

If you select Sell, you will be prompted to add your eBay Item Number:

Screen Shot 2015-10-03 at 12.55.45 PM

Once you enter the eBay item number, you will be shown the listing and asked to verify that this is correct.

Once you verify, click List Your eBay Item, and it is listed:

Screen Shot 2015-10-03 at 12.56.12 PM

(FYI – this is just an example screenshot my husband Eric put together. Please only list items that are from subscription boxes).

And when you are browsing a subscription box item listing, you can now filter to show only items that are for sale:

Screen Shot 2015-10-03 at 12.56.27 PM

Please let me know if you have any questions and/or feedback.

Written by Liz Cadman

Liz Cadman

Liz is the founder of My Subscription Addiction. She’s been hooked on subscription boxes since 2011 thanks to Birchbox, and she now subscribes to over 100 boxes. Her favorites include POPSUGAR Must Have, FabFitFun, and any box that features natural beauty products!

All views in this review are the opinion of the author. My Subscription Addiction will never accept payment in exchange for a review, but will accept a box at no cost to provide honest opinions on the box. This post may contain affiliate/referral links. If you buy something, MSA may earn an affiliate commission. Read the complete My Subscription Addiction disclosure.


  1. I’ll admit I read most of these comments, but not all. If someone buys the item through ebay then the transaction is over? IE there is then no option to leave feedback on the swap site? I ask because it would be a good way for new members to gain positive feedback.

    • Currently you would only be able to leave feedback through eBay’s system. We’ll see what we can do though. Thanks for bringing this to my attention! πŸ™‚

      • Thanks Liz!

  2. Is there a way to not see the ebay listings? I’d rather not see them at all.

  3. This is great. Sometimes I have 2 of the item and list one on eBay and one for swaps. This will allow the cross posting and still allow the swap one to be here for getting items through swapping for it. Thanks!

  4. I am beyond excited for this change!!!! I have purchased a full box from the paypal listing thingy and it was fantastic…the seller is amazing and we have swapped since then. I think that adding eBay and PayPal can also provide a lot of protection for us on both sides!

  5. Make sure you compare prices on eBay before you commit to the listing on here. I’m not trying to steal anyone’s thunder, but I am an experienced full-time eBay seller. I sell a lot of subscription box items, and my prices are reasonable, but I don’t have time to list them on both sites.

  6. As someone who has never used Ebay does that mean I have to open up an Ebay and Paypal account? And then I’m opening my listing to thousands (potentially) of people on Ebay? Or do I just set a sale price with no bidding?
    Sorry I know these are probably dumb questions but I’m confused as I don’t know much about Ebay.
    (I’ve sold some entire boxes but I sell to a woman locally so we just meet up)

    Liz–sure this was an amazing amount of work. Thanks again for all you do (not sure my bank account does lol)

    • Yes, you would have to create an eBay account (and PayPal account if that’s how you’ll accept payments). You can set up a regular auction for your item, or you could just list it with a buy it now price. (Either option will display on the swap site).

      Hope that makes sense! And thank you for your support! πŸ™‚

  7. hi Liz- what about the comments on the blogs or spoilers? Are we still able to say selling whole box email: xyz? Or looking to buy whole box, etc?

    • Instead of commenting on wanting to buy/sell a box or item, we ask that sellers list in the swap section, and buyers can browse there. This allows blog comments to be just about discussing the box, and also prevents lots of expired buy/sell comments.

      • THANK YOU!!!!

  8. Liz, how long is the waitlist? I have been waiting a very long time now and haven’t heard back. I really want to swap for some items but I’m still waiting to get in. Please advise!

    • It is usually a few weeks. We’ll be opening it up this Monday! πŸ™‚

      • By “opening” does that mean you’re opening to the public (and those on the waiting list) or does that mean you’re going to accept as many people from the list as you can?

        • Everyone who is currently on the wait list will get an invite to join tomorrow. Hope that clarifies! πŸ™‚

          • I am also on the waiting list and have not recieved and invite yet. Do you know if those have gone out yet?

          • It will go out later this evening.

          • I have been patiently waiting all day for my invite to swap. I haven’t received one just yet. I have been on MSA for years, just haven’t signed up for the swap, fortunately for others, sadly for myself, I think it is time to quit hoarding my “treasures”, and give them a home where someone will appreciate, and use them. That being said, I have ONLY unopened, unexpired goodies, and I only intend to swap! No “selling stuff”, it’s just not for me. I have been looking for instructions/policies/rules section, and I cannot seem to locate it. I gather by other peoples’ post that swappers that are not on the “up and up” will be outted by the community reviews. I would love some feedback from a swapping pro, to help me navigate through all this. I am honest and truthful, but I know there are people out there that are not. After collecting the information I have found thus far, I know MSA does not mediate, screen, vet, or guarantee any transactions on the swapping site (absolutely should not anyway, your just doing a service to people wanting to exchange our finds for other people’s finds). The update about going online with EBay for people wanting to “sell their samples/stuff” is what really turned my head and made me want to join MSA’s swap community. I belong to several monthly subscriptions, mostly beauty, also purchase cosmetics online, and love a “free with purchase gift”! That along with being a VIB (rouge) at certain stores, I think I can bring a lot of good swap options to the table. So this is my plea “resume”, if you will, to being accepted into the MSA swap community. It may take me a week or so, once i am invited, but I hope to have all my “treasures”(jk,lol) out for swap, ASAP. Thanks for doing what you do Liz, and team, I have been utilizing your website for years, and can honestly tell you, you have given me the inside track, and downlow more times than you know! Thanks for that! Monica

          • Hi Monica,

            The invite should go out later this evening. If you have any issues please let me know.

  9. Will there be a way to change currently listed items from how they are listed now to sell instead? Or will we have to re-list anything we want to sell?

    • If you want to sell something that is currently listed for swap, you would have to relist it with your eBay item number for that item.

  10. I think that’s a great idea! One question–and maybe this is already posted? (I didn’t look through all the comments)–will the item for sale also show up on the actually ebay site, or will it be exclusively for sale for member of your site/swap site?

    Also can an item be offered for both–swap and for sell?

    Last question: Is there some way to request an item be offered for sale? Here’s an example scenario I could see happening–as I do not have the time to change all my listings from “swap” to “for sell:” I receive a swap request, but the other swapper does not have anything I want and my items are not for sale. There could be a button added “Request this item be offered for sale,” or “Make an offer for an ebay sale.” Or whatever you can think of (as you are the site genius not me – lol).

    • o yea that sounds good. I see like the sample listing now when we list things we have to pick swap or sell…so I guess…which is now another step in listing process…in which I will never list a sell item so I’m now going be required to go through at least another extra step to list the item. The sell stuff needs to be totally separate. But what you are requesting could possibly work…it sure gives it a good angle. Or another option.

      • And maybe if something like that is only available after trying to do a swap like in the counter swap option area

    • Thanks Laurel! If you’re listing an eBay item on the swap site, it will exist on eBay as well.

      If you’d like to either sell or swap an item, you would need to do two separate listings.

      And I like the suggestion to add a request an item for sale button. We’ll see what we can do! πŸ™‚

  11. I am still a newbie here but realized almost immediately that it is virtually impossible to swap for a nice bag–even with 100% Positive rating, a fully loaded swap list, and a high end bag to offer in exchange! Since people weren’t really swapping these anyway it just makes sense to me to do this. I do wonder if those people out there with many high end bags just sitting on their swap list will indeed use the Ebay listing option. Some small part of me thinks they just enjoy torturing the rest of us!

    • Haaaaa! Welcome to the site! I found that out in the first month. There are some people that have a HUGE stash of high end or ISO items that have remained on their list forever. Do not worry about them…there are plenty of us that swap all the time, and have a good time doing it. You will get to know who they are, also, follow some of the blogs that the ladies do. I do not participate, but there is a group on the swap site that look out for eachother and either swap or just give eachother ISO most wanted items. I just go to ebay if I cant swap for it and get it there for a fraction of the swap value, or on line at Amazon or elsewhere. Dont get me wrong, I LOVE a good swap, but it is just not that serious!!! Best of luck! and see you on the swap site!

    • It’s possible those people are just really picky and that’s why those items are still UFS – they haven’t found the right item they want for xxxx.

  12. I think it’s a great idea. I don’t ever have a lot to swap so a lot of times,I would just like to buy it. But, paypal will protect any purchase and you have to pay fees to send an invoice so I don’t think it is the reason people wanted to use it. I use paypal anywhere it is accepted. Since ebay and paypal are separate entities now, it is just adding another step, you are still going to be paying through paypal.

  13. I’m hoping we can filter out the eBay listings as well please.

  14. I’m not getting what is so confusing about this, just quit selling in the comments. There really are other avenues. Try out swapping or better yet quit buying things to sell them or use ebay,etsy for that. I really like this blog to read feedback on boxes to see what is a good fit not to buy the others regret purchases, sorry, to be blunt but this is honest feedback.

    • Agreed. Swaps will still happen in the swaps only section. No need to wade through it me for sale either. If you’re going to sell you need to do it via eBay with the eBay link added here. If you don’t want to use eBay then don’t use eBay. I’m not sure why items for sale were even included on what was intended as just a swap site in the first place. This isn’t an e-commerce site and if people wer using it that way that’s not MSA’s problem or obligation to provide a free venue to do so. That’s what craigslist is for. Legally it was moving in that direction so they stopped it, partly I’m assuming due to legitimate liability concerns.

  15. I hated seeing the Paypal listing because to me it meant the person wasn’t in it for swapping and would probably decline all swaps. I started to avoid people who listed Paypal. I would definitely be interested in a Swap Only option. I have been a part of the swap site from the beginning and it has been no fun lately with people just selling stuff.

    I’m not sure why a site that is clearly listed as a swap site has to offer a sale option at all, but if it does then Ebay seems the way to go. The only drawback is that won’t the lister be forced to choose between listing it as ebay or listing for swap? They can’t be simultaneous can they?

    • We’re adding a see swaps only option that will be live on Monday as well. I’ll post an update with screenshots then. Also – if someone has an item that they want to sell or possibly swap, they will have to create two separate listings, then remove whichever listing they don’t end up using.

      • Is it okay if you add a sell price on a swap listing? e.g.: (at the end) If for someone reason a swap doesn’t work out on this item, I would sell it for __________–just send me a comment you are interested and I will list this item for sale.

    • From my time on this site I have bought one swap and am in the middle of another. When I am reading a listing with a PayPal icon, ( I’m not saying this applies to my two buys mentioned above) the idea of the individual possibly looking for fast cash beginning to formulate in my mind. I don’t like buying on a site reserved mostly for swapping. With the aspect of buying, I begin to ruminate whether or not I received a fair price, is the other person content with the amount of money they received, feeling mislead because the size of the actual product doesn’t match up with what I thought I was going to be getting, believing that items I was going to be receiving are not included in the package. An individual commented above: are some people going to be pushed out? That idea scares me, are the buyers going to have the upper hand over the swappers? I fear that with buying readily available that people will flock to that leaving only a small amount of swappers to continue on swapping items and enjoying the original method. Does anyone else agree with me?

      • I know we’re in the transition phase this month, but have you noticed any of those changes you are concerned about already happening? Thanks – I appreciate the feedback!

  16. I think we will end up liking the option and knowing how responsive you are to everyone’s suggestions, we will be patient as the kinks get worked through. I agree that it would be desirable to be able to filter on swaps only. It is going to be interesting to see how this option impacts the swap value of items. I do love this swap community and hope it stays the friendly place it is!

    • Thanks so much Kathy! I definitely appreciate the patience! πŸ™‚ We’ll see how these changes work, and make adjustments as needed.

    • I really like it too! I looked into two or three other trading communities, and they did not have the same feel to them. MSA is distinctive and special!

  17. I never do anything on to continue on this site we need to somehow get an eBay number? So confused..

    • Only if you’re selling versus swapping.

    • If you only use the swap site to swap, nothing changes for you. If you want to sell your items instead of swap, then you would need to set up an eBay account if you want to list those items for sale on the swap site.

      Hope that makes sense!

  18. Liz, is there a reason why we have to continually log in?

    • I think that’s your browser. I don’t find myself needing to log in unless I turn off the browser altogether.

    • That shouldn’t be happening – sorry! Can you email me details on what browser you are using? ([email protected]) We’ll investigate.

  19. When do we find out if we are invited to swap? I think I’ve put in two requests over the past few months. I have a five star rating eDivv and 100% + on eBay.

    • You’ll receive an email invite from us tomorrow – Monday the 5th! πŸ™‚

      • Awesome! Thanks, Liz!

  20. I would love a way to see only swaps! I second/third all the other ideas on it!

  21. Will this cut down on the comment sections of blog posts being full of buy/sell inquiries?

    • Yes – that’s part of the goal. There will be one place to go in swaps if you’re looking to buy a specific item, and also if you want to list it.

  22. Will these items also show up on ebay for others to bid on?

    • Yes. So basically if you list an item on eBay, it will have the same visibility as all eBay items have. With this feature on the swap site, your listing will also be easy for people to find if they are looking to buy subscription box items.

      Hope that makes sense!

      • Wow Liz you are amazing! I bet you never would have guessed all the changes that would occur on the swap site when you first started it (if you did maybe you wouldn’t have added lol I know us addicts can be so demanding).
        I can’t believe it has been two years either! I don’t know how you do it. You honestly do the work of at least FIVE people. All I can think is that Eric was some how able to clone you–after all he has great tech skills.
        On a more serious note, are you planning to do a Swap Site “selling” Beta before rolling out the new option? If so I’d be happy to help out in any way I can:) Thanks again for all your hard work!

        • Thank you so much – you made my day! πŸ™‚ Basically the beta roll out will be from October 5th – October 31st. Everyone can use it at that point, but we aren’t making it the mandatory alternative to PayPal listings until November 1st.

          If you use it during that period, any feedback you could pass along would be great! Thank you!

  23. The problem with this option is that you have to pay double fees to sell the item–Paypal and eBay. With the former, you get protection, too. It can also ding a selling limit for what is most likely a rather cheap item. Then there’s the fact that it’s more time consuming to go through eBay.

    • So — you make more money selling on this site, because you don’t pay fees

      It is easier to sell without things like a”selling limit”

      Listing items takes more time on Ebay

      Bummer. I totally understand. Sell on a swap site to make more money and save time. A loophole perhaps?

    • Yeah, I agree. I already sell on eBay, but it would have been nice to skip their fees selling through a site where we are already building connections and reputation separately. It’s like paying eBay when you don’t have to. Bummer.

  24. This is good, if only for the fact that I can now buy a throw from someone who is too stubborn to swap. I figure I will never get one otherwise!

    • “Too stubborn to swap”??? Being choosy is not being stubborn. No one HAS to swap with you if they don’t want to OR if you have nothing they want. And now they don’t have to sell, either, just because you want something of theirs. It’s much better to swap anyway. For example, I’d rather swap my $100 item for another $100 item versus selling it for much less via eBay because you lose much its value. Most people think if you are selling then you should sell it super cheap, too.

  25. Very cool!

    • Thanks! πŸ™‚

  26. I really like this idea. I don’t have the largest swap pile and I know there are some items I will never be able to swap for, but would be willing to buy.

    • Same here. This is a WONDERFUL addition, imo!

      • Thanks Jen!

    • Yay! I’m glad to hear it. πŸ™‚

  27. I know this may be a complicated change to make, but one thing I would love to see on the swap site is a way to list/search for clothing items by size. It can be challenging to find clothing items when you have to click on each item just to determine if it is listed in your size. Thanks!

    • I second this idea!,!

    • Great idea! Searching by brand would also be nice…I really like Le Lis dresses for example.

  28. What a great update! I’ve given up on looking through swap lately because I don’t want to buy something. The changes gives users the best of both worlds! I always wonder what protection the buyer had previously to the changes.

  29. So, will there be an option list for swap AND sell? (swap, sell, or swap and sell)

  30. THANK YOU!!!!

    This site is not set up to provide the protection needed when exchanging money. The potential problems and liability are huge.

    Honestly, I think selling on this site is just a way to avoid fees. Ebay provides legal protection, ratings of buyers and sellers, listing guidelines, and so much more — but this isn’t free! Someone has to pay for it, usually they expect a profit too.

    I hope only products found in subscription boxes can be listed. The odd sized sample slipped in with the sub box items, just isn’t fair.

    Thank you Liz and Chris

    • I only wish I could take credit for this update!

      Thanks, Liz and Eric, for this and all you do to make MSA so awesome!

    • I have a fever. Yup, I do. This is my excuse for any mistakes I have made or will make today.

      Sorry Eric.

  31. That’s great! When will the wait list open up?

    • The waitlist will open up this Monday, the 5th. Make sure to sign up for swaps before then if you want to get in on this round!

      • Sorry, I didn’t see this message before I posted. I hope I get in!

  32. So happy to see this update however could we add a filter so it only shows items for swaps or a preference to hide eBay listings? I for one don’t want to have to weed through all those listings.

    • We can add something like that. We’re going to see how it’s used this month, and make adjustments as necessary. Thank you for the suggestion! πŸ™‚

      • I agree! I would like a way to just see listings for swaps!

      • I assumed that there was the option to sort by swap only, and it just wasn’t listed in your post, since that is sort of the point of the site- swapping.

        • We’re working on it now so it will be live before this rolls out Monday. Thank you to everyone for your feedback on this!

    • I wouldn’t use the swap site unless there’s a way to view swaps only, so I hope this gets added!

    • I’d like to view Swaps only as well.

    • I agree. I hope there is a way to weed off the ebay listing. Thanks so much Liz and Eric. Love the swap!!

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