When I first got into gas mask collecting I couldn't find gas masks for sale from any place different than ebay, and because of that I couldn't find what I was looking for most of the time. This guide is for anyone that wants more places to look for gas masks and other related items, especially the ones that just got into the hobby.
Amazon: best place for a casual purchase
Amazon's gas mask stock has been growing recently, and many options can be found now: if you just want to buy a funny gift or do a bit of cosplaying amazon is the quickest and easiest way to go.
Militaria shops are the most expensive places to get gas masks: not many options can be found and everything is overpriced: unless you know the right price for a mask and find a store that sells that mask for cheaper, avoid militaria shops at all costs.
Ebay is the largest online market for militaria, and lots of bargains can be found here.
If you need to find a specific gas mask you can try searching it by its proper names, but many times less common masks can’t be found that way. Many times the people who put gas masks for sale don’t know their proper name so in-depth research is essential to find bargains on rare gas masks. For those masks, it’s recommended to search on the Ebay version of x country (where x is the country of origin of the mask you are looking for ) the local name for “gas mask” of that country and then scroll through the options in search of the mask.
For example: if I want to buy an Italian T.35 gas mask and look for “italian gas mask” on Ebay.com you’ll find only very expensive international sellers. If you instead go to Ebay.it (it is for Italy), you’ll find much cheaper options.
Flea markets are both the best and the worst places to get masks: here you can find overpriced rotten gas masks and super rare gas masks for very cheap. When going through these kind of places, it’s recommended to have a bit of knowledge about gas masks to recognize bargains from crap.
Kijiji and other similar websites
Kijiji is an app made to trade anything informally, including gas masks. On this kind of sites, it’s very quick and easy to put something for sale, and a ton of bargains can be found there.
Most countries in the world have an equivalent to kijiji (i.e. : Spain- todocollecion, France-leboncoin, Belgium- 2ememain, Italy-Subito etc.), and the rarest gas masks can be found by searching on the local kijiji equivalent.
For example: if I want to buy a Romanian Md.35 gas mask for cheap you can go to olx.ro, the Romanian kijiji equivalent, and search for “mască de gaze” (Romanian for gas mask). After finding the cheapest option, you contact the seller. If you can manage to get the seller to ship internationally, you are good to go with you your new gas mask.
Militaria fairs are like flea markets, but bigger: the same rules applies, but gas masks are more plentiful and cheaper, and rarer gas masks can be found. Militaria fairs are the best places to buy gas masks offline.
Forums and word of mouth
The last –and best- way to get rare gas masks, and I mean truly rare gas masks, is just to ask older collectors. If you enter a local militaria forum you can ask around for people who are willing to sell, or maybe find a more exclusive forum with serious collectors: making friends in the gas mask collecting community will help you to get rarer gas masks and to get to know people with the same interests.