You all know I love a good subscription box, right? Well, waaaay back in December, I caught an amazing deal where a subscription box company, Le Tote, would send you your first box for free.
Le Tote is kind of like the Netflix of clothing, or a rental version of Stitch Fix. When you sign up, you fill out a style quiz, and also have the opportunity to peruse all the clothing Le Tote has in their closet- and they have a lot, many from very reputable brands like Anne Taylor and Nasty Girl amongst others. You "heart" the clothing items you like to have them appear in your own closet. Then, stylists will pick a combination of items in your closet and others they think you'll enjoyed based on those choices and quiz. They send them all to you. You can wear them as much of as little as you like and then send them back, free shipping, to the company. Viola- a wardrobe to rent!
Le Tote aims to make itself very easy to use, but there are certain tricks and unexpected tips that will make your experience with them better.
First off, it is important to remember you are paying for the service, not the box. This means, you pay forty-nine dollars every month to be a member. You are sent one box of five items (generally a mix of clothing and accessories) at a time and may keep the items for as long as you want (even more than a month if you really like them!), or you may return the box and another will be sent to you. If you get two or more boxes in a month, it is does not cost you anymore; it is covered under your forty-nine dollar membership fee. They have two-shipping, which means a four day turn around, so realistically, you are unlikely to get more than two boxes a month, but it is a nice option to have. If you like an item enough to want to purchase it, you simply send back your Le Tote without that item in it. The cost of the time is then simply charged to your account. It is important to remember that Le Tote is a continuing membership, though that membership can be put on a temporary hold if your wallet is feeling a bit thin some months. You can cancel your membership all together, but it is a bit of a pain, because you have to email a representative and the correspondence generally takes a few days from start to finish.
Another useful ability is the being able to evaluate each Le Tote box and the individual items in the box. As you can see below, you can rate whether you liked or disliked an item; ask for the item to resend; and even upload a photo of you in the item for other Le Tote costumers to see. These photos can also be useful when you go to pick out items for your own closet. You can also check the price of any item, which may be helpful if you are considering keeping something from a box.
I got three Le Tote Boxes over two months, and personally had mixed feelings about the results. I quite liked a number of items in my first box, including a snake-shaped bracelet I probably wouldn't have bought on my own, but which felt fun to try "renting." That's the nice part of this subscription, you can experiment with different colors and styles. Of course, you can do that in any dressing room, but I enjoyed having the time to see if items really fit with what was in my closet and lifestyle already. My second month I got two boxes; the first box went back right away! Almost nothing fit well. This was due in part to not looking at either the sizing charts nor the material of the items, but was very disappointing nonetheless. I had also chosen a large array of items just to to experiment with too. Le Tote recommends keeping about forty items in your online "closet' for them to choose items to send you from; I think one might be happier with 20-30 very well chosen items. The second box came in about four days, just as advertised. It was a bit better than its predecessor, but still no winners I kept in my closet after sending the Le Tote back.
Top row was the contents of my first box; middle row the contents of my second box; third row has the contents of my third and final box
Forty-nine dollars a month every month seemed a bit too rich for my blood, but having learned how to pick a bit more strategically and look at the sizing, I might give Le Tote another round ( ETA: I have tried Le Tote again, using what I learned. See my newest review of it here). Le Tote also seems ideal if you really enjoy the novelty of new things in your closet, and might otherwise be shopping alot/too much. It would also be a great way to try out a new style, especially if you've gone through a life change like a new job or a move and don't have a lot in your closet to work with. Would you or have you ever tried Le Tote? If you're looking to try it out, use this link to get twenty-five dollars off your first month!