Here at ELLE.com, our love of clothes runs deep…but if we’re being honest, the act of shopping isn’t always quite as lovable. Like so many relationships, when it’s good, it’s great. Nothing beats finding something that really makes your heart sing (a secondhand luxury bag, perhaps?), watching the cashier wrap it up, and taking home your new prized possession.
But more often than not, shopping trips are tedious, exhausting, and non-productive. And that’s just part of the process. Take into account the cost of buying a new dress for every job interview or engagement party, plus the closet space. Forget about it.
Thankfully, nowadays, there’s a better option: renting your wardrobe. It’s just like shopping the best online clothing stores, except you can save money and you don’t have to hold onto that sweater for years to come. All the while, you still score the chance to step out in something truly fabulous. With the best clothing rental services (including luxury fashion rental services), you’ll get access to top brands and designers while experimenting with your personal style and trends. It’s a non-committal dream.
We’ve done the research on your behalf, taking into account how each service works, what customers have to say about their experiences, and which service is right for you. Here, find the eight best clothing rental services that’ll transform your shopping habits and revive your closet.
Rent the Runway
Best for: It Girls on a budget
Why you’ll want it: Looking to stand out in the crowd as you catch the bouquet at your friend’s upcoming wedding? Maybe you have a snazzy job interview and want to dress to impress. Or maybe your everyday wardrobe is in need of a tune-up. Rent the Runway has eye-grabbing occasion wear and stylishly elevated workwear, including designer pieces from brands like Tibi, Rejina Pyo, Club Monaco, Tory Burch, Reformation, Jason Wu, and more.
How it works: Choose from one of RTR’s plans and receive up to four, eight, or 16 items per month. The smallest plan offers “basic closet access” to more casual styles valued up to $300 and one shipment per month. The two larger plans include RTR’s full collection, with values up to $3,500 and two or four shipments per month, respectively. Still, all three memberships allow members to rent four items at a time.
What customers are saying: “My RTR membership lets me refresh my wardrobe and try new trends without overspending on fast fashion. My closet’s always evolving and my budget can stay intact—win win!”—Emily
The cost: $94—235/month
Best for: Fashionistas who love a sense of community
Why you’ll want it: Why should you only borrow clothes from your friends? Join in the communal closet at Tulerie, the peer-to-peer clothing rental app allowing users to rent out the full spectrum of their wardrobes from each other. While you raid countless closets—hello vintage gems!—make money simultaneously by opening the door to yours. The best part? Everyone is incredibly respectful—each new member is vetted via FaceTime so that you can feel confident sharing your favorite pieces.
How it works: Download the app, browse, then make rental requests. It’s that straightforward.
To rent out, simply accept requests and ship it out. Don’t forget to professionally clean your clothes when they’re returned to you (using the cleaning fee paid by the borrower).
What customers are saying: “I was so excited to use Tulerie for the last vacation I went on. It was a sustainable and affordable way to get to have some new designer pieces in my wardrobe without the guilt. Their curation has been very elevated from the beginning and they have quickly become my go-to for events as well. I love supporting women-owned companies and the idea of a peer-to-peer sharing of closets helps build a really beautiful and like-minded community.”—Cassandra Dittmer
The cost: Priced individually on each listing.
Best for: Experimenting with trends and brands (without breaking the budget)
Why you’ll want it: You already spend your paycheck on beloved retailers like Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, and Free People, so why not rent from the good folks at parent company URBN each month, hassle-free?
How it works: First, fill out a short quiz about your sizing and shape. Once your personal edit is complete, you can browse the clothing and choose up to six rentals a month, which includes new seasonal items. Laundry and clothing repairs are also included in the price. If you decide you simply can’t let go of any of your items, you can purchase them at a discount.
What customers are saying: “I can try new styles and new designers. I really loved wearing this fancy $500 dress out and not freaking out about the price. It’s also helped me experiment with clothing I wouldn’t try on my own and I’ve discovered some new things about myself. I also love how it’s risk-free in the sense you can wear the items and they’ll wash them for you. Literally, as I type this post I’m wearing this lime green top and dropped a piece of mango on it. No worries—they’ll take care of that for me. WINNING.”—Kara
The cost: $88/month
Fashion to Figure Closet
Best for: Testing out accessories before making a discounted purchase
Why you’ll want it: Made for women sizes 12–24 and XL–3XL who want boundless stylish clothing options to choose from, Fashion to Figure will have you looking and feeling your best. Not to mention, they carry accessories too, so you can top off your look.
The details: Fashion to Figure Closet members can rent three styles—or three styles and two accessories—from the proprietary brand. Return and repeat as much as you want. If there’s an item you absolutely can’t part with, FTFC will knock up to 50 percent off the retail price just for you.
What customers are saying: “I am really happy I took a chance and tried FTF’s subscription service. I am sure I will have some misses, but if I don’t try, I won’t know what WILL fit. And I can just send back what doesn’t fit.”—Marcy
The cost: $55+/month
Best for: Every woman, every size
Why you’ll want it: Gwynnie Bee’s website has stylist-curated categories like work and weekend so members can easily browse clothing for every occasion. The service caters specifically to women sizes 10 to 32 with styles from brands like Calvin Klein, ModCloth, and Eshakti.
The details: Before you decide to commit to Gwynnie Bee, the company offers a free trial that allows customers to rent two items at a time for one month. After your trial period is over, the pricing increases based on how many items you want to take out at a time. The priciest box allows you to rent up to 10 items and costs $199.
What customers are saying: “Gwynnie Bee is a good service for any woman sizes 0 to 32. I think it’s especially awesome for babes who work in an office environment and need to look put together on a daily basis. I think the business casual options on the site are my favorite of all… Now that I’m not in an office environment, I use it for date-night dresses and casual everyday wear. I use it to expose myself to new brands which can be quite helpful as a blogger, and I also like to use it to try trends that I know aren’t worth spending much money on given how quickly they’ll be out of style again. I think that apartment dwellers with limited storage space can also benefit greatly from the service. When I lived in New York I had to pare down my wardrobe tremendously, and Gwynnie Bee allowed me to still look stylish although I didn’t own much clothing.”—Miranda
The cost: starting at $49/month
Best for: Vince ultrafans
Why you’ll want it: The Pinterest girl closet you’ve been coveting is now within your grasp. Vince Unfold is a great way to try out the brand’s offerings, from breezy linens for an upcoming vacation to leather and velvet suits that’ll make you look and feel your best.
The details: Vince Unfold members are encouraged to maintain at least 10 items in their virtual closet; the company sends out four at a time. You can wear them for as long as you wish within the month and exchange them whenever you want, all month long. Vince Unfold also offers members a discounted price on all its offerings, so you can keep the ones you want or return your items for a new batch.
What customers are saying: “The way the service works is a bit different than Rent the Runway, but once you realize how to optimize the service to your life, it’s the most convenient one out there. I’ve been an Unfold member for over a year now and have loved every month! You can use the Return Notify feature to get your next shipment processing before Vince Unfold receives your current box back. And the more you have in your closet, the faster they are able to match you to your next box to increase the shipping time.”—Emma
The cost: $160/month
New York and Company Closet
Best for: Working girls
Why you’ll want it: Beat the mall crowd and get New York and Company’s latest arrivals delivered to your door.
The details: New York and Company Closet gives members the opportunity to add up to 25 items to their virtual closet so there’s a better chance of getting pieces you truly love. Three of those items will be shipped monthly; return and replace your selects as often as you want.
What customers are saying: “You should consider NY&C Closet if you need professional clothes to wear to work and/or want to expand your work wardrobe. This is New York & Company’s strong suit (no pun intended!). While they do have a lot of casual styles, they really excel at offering women trendy, sophisticated options for the office.” — Kathy
The cost: $49.95/month
RENT NOW ON NEW YORK & COMPANY CLOSET
Best for: Anyone who wants to rent their own items out
Why you’ll want it: Think The RealReal meets Rent the Runway. Style Lend allows members to rent designer items from other people’s closets. Hear us out: You get to rent designer bags, dresses, outerwear, and pretty much anything from brands like Zimmerman, Self-Portrait, Chanel, and Christian Dior instead of paying full retail price.
The details: If you’ve ever wanted to take Chanel’s signature tweed suit for a test drive or haven’t yet decided if you want to throw down and add a Louis Vuitton handbag to your collection, Style Lend has all the brands you could ever dream of in its inventory. You can rent a designer piece for seven days, return it, then rent again. The super affordable monthly fee might come as a shock, but unlike other rental services, the inventory isn’t as expansive, you’re only renting items for a week, and you can’t purchase the items you love (unless you speak directly to the seller and they’re okay with giving up that fur-trimmed Emilio Pucci jacket).
What customers are saying: “Get more out of your clothing. Whether renting or lending, the clothes you love can do more than just sit in a closet!” — Avra
The cost: $7.95/month
Frequently Asked Questions
Simply put, clothing rental services offer shoppers the opportunity to save money by renting a garment or an accessory for a limited time rather than making a one-time purchase. Some of these services are operated directly by designers or brands that are renting in-house items. Others, however, are run by third-parties who function like retailers by curating a variety of labels and brands for shoppers to browse.
Cost varies by service, so how much you spend is really up to you. Some rental services are à la carte, meaning you pay only to rent a specific garment or item. (This is most similar to the typical online shopping experience you’re accustomed to.) Other sites function with a membership-based model in which shoppers pay a monthly fee in order to access rental items. You can expect to spend as little as $5 per month up to several hundred dollars to rent a single coat depending on what you’re looking for.
This will also vary, but most sites will make this information very clear, so you don’t have to worry about missing a deadline. A rental window of 30 days is standard, but some more occasion-oriented services might have shorter periods.
Each service has different rules, but for the most part, you have the easy job. Your items will most likely come with reusable packaging and a prepaid shipping label so that you can easily mail your item back after you’re done with it. Check your site’s rules about washing or repairs, but most companies will take care of that for you. You can just ship back and relax.
Most services will you give you the option to buy any particular item you just can’t bear to part with. And better yet, it usually comes with a hefty discount.
Associate Fashion Commerce Editor
Meg is the Associate Fashion Commerce Editor at ELLE.com where she researches trends, tests products, and looks for answers to all your burning questions. She also co-writes a monthly column, Same Same But Different. Meg has previously written for Cosmopolitan and Town & Country. Her passions include travel, buffalo sauce, and sustainability. She will never stop hoping for a One Direction reunion tour.
Trang Trinh is ELLE.com’s freelance ecommerce writer.