Mandarake has always been a very elusive online shop in my mind. Back when resin BJDs were my thing, I always saw people getting dolls on Mandarake, but when I looked I was overwhelmed by selection, language barrier, and a bit distrusting of the idea of such a massive secondhand mall.
When I got into Dollfie dreams, however, I befriended people who actually shopped on Mandarake and assured me that it wasn’t as scary as it seemed. Mandarake is as it appears, it’s the online storefront of a collection of secondhand shops in Japan. They have a massive, constantly changing inventory that can be there one second and gone the next, and it can start a never ending cycle of window shopping.
My personal relationship with Mandarake began when a friend suggested I look there for Azone 50‘s. Being that I’d only shopped for Azone 50’s on Ebay – where prices were extremely inflated, and Retail – where selection is pretty limited. I was overwhelmed by the selection and prices. I spent days browsing my options, and then started to search other things.
“Dollfie Dream” – ooooooh even MORE options, so many deals!
“Azone” – oooooooh TINY DOLLS. Welp, now I’m going to collect tiny dolls too.
hmm, I wonder if I could find more dolls if I just tried “volks”
“Volks” – ooooooh CLOTHES!! SHOES!
and then I started to realize that not all of the items were labeled the greatest.
“Happiness Clover” – OH! Big Azones that aren’t tagged with Azone!
and even beyond this, there’s a doll missing a foot and stained but ya know what WHO CARES it’s only 12,000jpy – WHAT A BARGAIN!
Suddenly your cart is full of dolls and items you didn’t know existed before you started shopping, you’re finding ways to rationalize buying it all, and you’re crying because everything in your cart is from different locations and thus ships separately.
But then you learn to filter by Shop…
The longer you shop, the easier it is to shop, so the more you shop.
Don’t shop on Mandarake, don’t even just “check it out”. Just don’t. It’s a horrible downward spiral of constant refreshing, thinking of new things to go look for, and contemplating your life’s choices, and you will a never ending flow of packages coming to your house.
In all seriousness though. For those considering shopping on Mandarake but unsure. It’s easy 🙂
If you’re looking for a key item, find that first and then filter by the store that item is that and look for whatever other items you might want – then they will ship together.
they do take paypal, and the check out process is easy. You’ll select paypal payment on check out, then wait for an email (this may take a few days as they do actually have to go make sure their store hasn’t sold the item yet), choose your shipping option (if you have a choice – large dolls are EMS only) and click the link in that email to check out! Then it’s pretty much the normal paypal check out process from there.
Go forth and shop! It’s not scary 😉