Fashion

Renting an outfit is the new sustainable way to tackle party season

Rental fashion services are fast becoming the answer to occasion and everyday dressing.

No matter the season, there’s an event that you’ll need an outfit for. Wedding guest dresses may be peak in the summer, but winter weddings are definitely a thing too. Then there’s party season to think about. Do you go for a statement sequin number for the office Christmas do? Should you opt for that fail-safe black number for after-work festive cocktails, or is it time to give the 90s silky slip another go? The possibilities are, quite frankly, endless, and this is why rental fashion services are now more popular than ever.

The idea of renting that wardrobe you’ve been lusing over on Instagram, or getting to wear the designer dress of your dream (despite that it may not be within budget) is what creates the instant appeal. Throw in the fact that most of these going out outfits would only usually be worn once or twice at a push, and there’s even more reason to love the idea. . This is what essentially makes the idea of lending clothes or renting other people’s a sustainable (and affordable) option for everyone.

We have fallen for many rental fashion sites over the years: there’s Girl Meets Dress, which boasts over 4000 frocks to hire at a click of a button. There’s even the option of a VIP ‘infinite’ monthly service which vows to have you switching up your wardrobe more regularly than your breakfast cereal. Then, there are the sites like The Endless Wardrobe that let you order an outfit up to three months in advance, for those of you who prefer to plan ahead. Peer-to-peer rental services are also available and allow you to borrow someone else’s outfit, with Hurr only allowing items over £150 to make sure users are spending more wisely, buying less and renting more.

It’s not just websites getting in on the action: By Rotation is the first rental app where you upload images of you (or a pal) wearing the item to show the true fit, and the items can be sent to members to get more wear out of them. You’ll be able to turn up to any occasion looking a million dollars wearing anything from Gucci and Lanvin, to Ganni and Rixo, without having to spend the £££.

Be prepared to want to lend your wardrobe and rent someone else’s in 3, 2, 1…

By Rotation

What it is: The first (and only) rental app in the UK with over 3000 users already.

How it works: Sign up for free membership, become a ‘Rotator’ and loan pieces you don’t want and rent pieces you do. The inclusive peer-to-peer service focuses on circulation as the new sustainable way to shop. Everyone uses their own images of the item being worn to show fit, and it only takes two minutes to upload on the app. The amount of time you require the item is then decided and delivery and returns are either done by in-person drop-off or tracked postal shipping.

Brands: Focusing on mid to high-end brands including Rixo, Jacquemus, Ganni and even a Hermès Birkin bag for just £75 a day.

Price: The rental day rate is usually 5% of the item’s original retail price.

Where to find By Rotation: Download on Apple app store, Google Play and iTunes. 

Hurr

What it is: A fashion-forward community of women sharing their wardrobe through the online rental website. 

How it works: Sign up for free membership, once an ID check is completed you can only upload pictures of items that are £150 or more (promoting users to buy less, but buy better) and rent them out. Members have to say the location of the item and can then choose post, bicycle courier (for same and next day delivery) or arrange meetups to get and return the item. Renters can find items easily by searching by brand, product, size and even type of occasion and lenders have been known to make up to £500 a month. 

Brands: Contemporary, niche and designer labels including Chanel, Realisation par, Rejina Pyo, Zimmermann and Gucci. 

Price: The rental price per day is decided by the member lending the item, but Hurr suggests 20% of original retail price. A dry cleaning and delivery charge are also added.

Where to find Hurr: Sign up at hurrcollective.com

The Endless Wardrobe

What it is: A rental website that has all the stock themselves so multiple sizes of the same item are available. 

How it works: No need to sign up, just browse the brands (filter by size) and choose from a four, six or ten day rental period. Everything can be ordered up to three months in advance (for the organised ones) and up to 2pm the day before (for those less organised) Mon-Fri. Wear the chosen item as many times you want over this time and return using the pre-paid label by post or DPD drop-off point.

Brands: De La Vali, ALEXACHUNG, Free People, Essentiel Antwerp. 

Price: The rental charge is from 10-20% of the rrp and delivery and dry cleaning is including in the fee. Stains and damages will not be charged as they’re fixed in-house. Note: any items you order that you don’t wear, you can get a full refund – helpful if you’re in-between sizes. 

Where to find The Endless Wardrobe: Visit the website theendlesswardrobe.com

Girl Meets Dress

What it is: One of the largest rental services in the UK founded back in 2009.

How it works: No registration needed, just browse and select the dress you want to hire for two nights or a week. Dresses are then delivered within 24 hours or same day if you live in London and they offer free returns. You can also order up to three dresses and only pay for the one you actually wear.

Brands: Over 4000 dresses from 200 designer brands including Stella McCartney, Victoria Beckham, Temperley London, Lanvin. And high street brands from French Connection and Whistles to Ghost and Free People.

Price: Two day rentals start at £19 and go up to £119. You can also choose to become a VIP member and get unlimited dresses (three at a time) each month.

Where to find Girl Meets Dress: Check out the website at girlmeetsdress.com

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Opening image: Getty

Images: Courtesy of brands

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