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Rent the Runway Review: Is it Worth it?

I recently did a Rent The Runway review, and I’d love to share what I thought. Is it worth it?

Do you love having a new outfit to wear but don’t want to clutter up your closet with more clothes that end up just taking up space?   Do you find yourself needing a dress for an event but only wearing it one time?  These both describe me to a T, I love new clothes (I mean who doesn’t) but I oftentimes find they just sit in my closet while I pull out the same old thing.  

Don’t even get me started on dressy events.  I will think I have found the perfect outfit or dress to find I only wear it one time.   After all, for the next event, I want something fresh and new.   This seems like both a waste of space, money and bad for the environment.  I struggle with the whole minimalism thing, especially when it comes to my wardrobe.   Last year (2019) we had a few fun events, so I gave Rent the Runway a try.  I had been wanting to try it for a while and finally had a reason.

Before We Get Started…

As you may have guessed, I am not a super big fan of dresses.   I wear them for events and when it is warm out due to necessity, but I am more at home in a good pair of jeans.  Hence the title of my blog A Girl and Her Jeans.  As I am getting older, I must admit I am trying to branch out and not wear jeans every day.  

In March (2019) we had the school Auction and in April we were lucky enough to be invited on a cruise with The Hubs work.   I started shopping (mostly online) for dresses and needed a formal dress for the Auction and one night on the cruise and then some fun dresses for other occasions.  These events bring me such fond memories, I would do ANYTHING to be able to attend these events right about now.   It seems all of our lives have changed so much (but I digress).

One of the reasons I am not a fan of dresses is they can be hard to fit.   As you all know by now, I am a curvy girl with over a 12-inch difference between my hips and waist.  Add in a long torso and shorter legs and it spells disaster.  I tend to wear body-con styles as anything else can add volume to my already curvy figure.    After not much luck online, I ran to our local Nordstrom for some inspiration and finds.   I was able to find one black dress, but I wanted something fun and different.   This led me to Rent the Runway.  I thought why not, I will give it a try.  With Rent the Runway, you get to rent designer fashion for a fraction of the price.

I quickly discovered there are two ways to rent.  One way is an unlimited subscription where you can get up to 4 items on rotation.  The second way is to reserve items that you can rent by the piece and schedule it to arrive a few days before your event.  The items arrive a day or two before your event then you promptly return it within four days of receiving it.   This seemed to be too dangerous to chance, so I decided on the unlimited where I could order 4 dresses. Here are the Rent the Runway Different Membership Plans.

I was so excited to receive these dresses, I patiently awaited their arrival.   They all arrived together in a fancy garment bag, each individually wrapped and ready to try on.   Here comes the BIG FAIL – I pulled them out and there was a terrible dry-cleaning smell, we all know that smell.    I tried to get past it and then tried them all on.  Not one fit, they were either the incorrect size or just not right for my body.   Now I was in a bind since the Auction was a few days away.

I decided to give it another chance and do the Reserve – ordering a dress in 2 sizes.  It was a very cute black and white lace number.    It arrived very nicely wrapped and to my delight no dry-cleaning smell.   The size 10 fit and it was just perfect.  I was thrilled to have a dress to wear and ended up just loving it. 

Blue Rent the Runway Dress
I bought this one!

Since I had a terrific experience with the Reserve and received so many compliments on that dress, I decided to try to unlimited Rent the Runway rental one more time.  After returning my 4 dresses that did not work, I was able to order 4 more.  I read all the reviews and researched each dress to determine fit and sizing.    Picking out 4 new dresses was fun, and I waited again patiently for them to arrive.  I was hoping they would work for The Hubs work trip, a cruise the Bahamas. 

Once they arrived in the fancy garment bag, I could not wait to open them and try them on.  I had success with 3 out of the 4 dresses and was thrilled.  Important to note, 2 of the dresses I ordered were the same dress but in a different color, to my surprise I loved them both.  I even bought the one in blue.  I wore the blue one on the cruise one night and the pink one out for my birthday.  They made me feel great and also received many compliments.   In fact, I enjoyed all 3 of theses dresses so much, I bought 2 of them.  

That is also the nice thing about Rent the Runway, you can purchase ones that you love at a discounted price.   I just love a sale, so this is right up my alley.

So far, I think Rent the runway is amazing.  I was able to get new dresses for a fraction of the price.  In fact, one retailed for $1000.   That is another benefit of Rent the Runway, you can rent clothes that are a higher price point than you might buy.  You end up renting them at a fraction of the cost and the items are normally quite expensive.  You can also even rent handbags, which I did when the Hubs and I flew to Vegas on a whim in October to see Gwen Stefani perform at Planet Hollywood.  I rented a cute little black Tory Burch clutch.  Rent the Runway is almost like borrowing clothes from your best friends’ closet.

This is from Vegas at the Gwen Stefani show at Planet Hollywood – I wish I was back there!

   My advice when starting is to really look at the dresses and the reviews including the pictures to determine what will fit you best and then to be a bit adventuresome.   You might like something you did not imagine that you love.   During the last few months, I put my membership on pause since I was staying at home and not going to events.  Rent the Runway was very accommodating and let me suspend my membership until I am ready to come back.  I just love when a company has a great product but also amazing customer service. 

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