I’m one of those women who hates shopping for clothes, at least in person. Some of my reasons for disdaining this dreaded chore have to do with spending money, finding suitable fashions and trudging to the plus size section (I am currently a 14) against my will. On top of it all, clothing is so expensive! You can hardly find a good outfit for less than $100 with your shoes included. A friend turned me on to a unique service that challenged my thinking about shopping.
How Online Clothing Rentals Work
The premise is you pay a fee each month, according to how many outfits you want to have at one time. You fill your virtual closet and the company sends you an outfit or two or three (your choice). You wear it, toss it back in the bag (that they send) and pop it in a mailbox. When the company receives the item, they send you a new one. Of course, if I like an item, I can purchase it too. Sounded interesting, right?
My Experience with Clothing Rental
I do a lot of one-on-one meetings with clients so looking good is important to me. I recently lost 20 pounds (yeah me!) but I my wardrobe shrunk along with my waist size. I needed clothing fast and what I saw at the thrift store wasn’t working. I needed a whole outfit, not pieces of suits or the usual black pants and random shirt. I decided to give one company, Gwynnie Bee, a try.
I signed up for the one-item-at-a time option and I got the first 30 days of clothing rental free. The cost was $39 which I thought was reasonable for what I was getting. I hoped to try at least 6 outfits in a month. That would give me four working and two “play” outfits. At least that was my plan.
What I liked…
Navigating Gwynnie Bee’s site was pretty easy, that I liked.
Setting up the account was simple too.
I liked the variety of styles that were available but I found the reviews from other renters especially helpful when I needed some advice or was on the fence.
I liked that I could put outfits on hold, like a second closet. They wouldn’t ship but I wouldn’t lose them.
The items arrived pretty quickly and I could track them.
I didn’t like that I couldn’t move clothes around in my virtual closet. Sometimes I didn’t want to put an item on hold but had to because I couldn’t move on outfit ahead of the other.
The sizes can vary. You have to pay attention when ordering because the sizing is different on some designer brands. For example, there was one outfit that was sized 1 through 5 but you had to click to find out exactly what that means.
The outfits can get pricy if you want to purchase it. I had sticker shock when I found something I liked and inquired about it. I had to pass.
I think that sites like Gwynnie Bee are a great temporary solution to a wardrobe conundrum. However, I don’t think I’ll want to continue to spend $39 a month to rent these outfits, no matter how cute they are. Perhaps if the purchase price was cheaper or if I could manage to receive and wear more than four outfits a month, then maybe. Still it was a fun experiment!