Dress: Tanya Taylor via Rent The Runway (use code RTRJENNAD for a $200 discount off your first two months membership!) Clutch: Gigi New York Shoes: Sam Edelman (past season, similar here in suede) Tights: Spanx (my holy grail tights!)
I’ve been sharing so many outfits both here and on Instagram that I’ve received as part of my Rent The Runway Unlimited membership that I thought it was probably time to do a deep dive post on my experience with Rent The Runway Unlimited. I joined as a member of Unlimited about three and a half years ago. We had a bunch of friends’ weddings back-to-back weekends and a trip for my birthday added in. Instead of renting or worse buying a dress for each individual event, I decided to give Unlimited a try. I was instantly hooked! I remember after the first few months thinking I’d probably put it on hold or cancel, but different things kept coming up- whether it was the holidays or other vacations or just wanting to wear new clothes pretty frequently 🙂 Cut to about a year into my membership and I had just started a new job and found out shortly after that I was pregnant. Unlimited was a god send during my pregnancy with Nicholas. I really didn’t want to invest in a lot of maternity clothes, but I get really bored wearing the same thing over and over. RTR’s maternity options were amazing and I was renting different things each week to have new items to wear. I also was so grateful for my membership during the postpartum period. It is easy to feel a bit down on yourself then when you aren’t back in your “pre-pregnancy” size, but using Unlimited I was able to rent amazing pieces for both work and weekend for weddings or other formal events in in between sizes. This definitely helped me to feel my best when dressing my post-baby body. Fast forward to now, and pregnancy number two and I’m so grateful that a service like this exists!
A few of you have asked this so want to be 100% straightforward as I want you to trust any recommendations I give. I’ve paid for my own membership for the last 3 years. This fall Rent The Runway did gift me a few months to join on an ambassador. As an ambassador I’m eligible for perks- like extra spots or even a gifted month- depending on if others sign up using my code. While I am receiving those perks, I can fully say this is a service I LOVE, have paid for, will continue to pay for and I wholeheartedly recommend! This post is in no way sponsored- I’m sharing my personal experience, not being paid to share it at all! I’ll definitely mention my referral code a few times I am sure, but this seems like a good place to share that if you have any interest in joining, I’d love if you would use my code RTRJENNAD– if you sign up between now and the end of January 2020, you’ll receive $200 off your first 60 days making it only $59 a month (steal of the decade!) for the first two months. Last year alone I rented over $26,000 worth of clothes- I’m now determined to increase that value for this year 😉
Okay without further adieu, let’s answer your questions!
What is Rent The Runway Unlimited and how does it work?
Rent The Runway Unlimited is a membership that gives you access to an unlimited closet through Rent The Runway. As an Unlimited member you have four “spots” for rentals that you choose. You can switch out the items in those spots as many times as you want in a given month.
When you first join, you’ll get to pick four items from the thousands available in their closet. The items will ship out to you and at least in the Boston area I receive them within 1-2 days. Included in your shipment will be a garment bag and a return label. When you are done with an item, ship it back in the garment bag. As soon as it gets back to RTR, they will open up a new spot for you to pick your next item. You can send back one piece at a time, two at a time, or whatever combination- but you don’t have to ship back all four at once. This makes it easy for you to keep rotating items if you send back one or two at a time.
Do you choose the items yourself or are they pre-selected?
You choose the items yourself! Need a formal dress one week, but sweaters for brunch the next? You make the choice and can choose from your favorite designers, favorite colors, whatever items you want that are available. Over time I have favorite designers that I always look for when I go to rent- one of them is Tanya Taylor who makes the dress in the pictures above!
How is the selection of clothes? Is there a smaller selection compared to the one-time rental selections on Rent The Runway?
There are TONS of clothes, coats, handbags, jewelry and other accessories to choose from. What you will be able to rent from however is based on what is available at the moment you log in to rent. The selection is awesome and I’ve almost always had luck finding something that I want that will work for the event or needs I have, but there have been a few times when I’ve gone to rent a certain item or a certain brand, say for example a Lilly dress in August, and haven’t had luck because all the options in my size are out. I’d say these occasions are few and far between, but it has happened.
How long can you keep the items?
You can keep your rentals as long as you want, but it will then use up one of your spots for however long you keep the item. When I was pregnant with Nicholas, I kept a pair of J Brand maternity jeans for two months basically because I did not want to buy something I was only wearing a few days a week (couldn’t wear jeans to work). I’ve had friends that have rented coats as part of their membership kept it for a month, returned when they were bored of it and got a new one. If you are going on a week or two week vacation, no problem, you can rent the pieces, bring em on vaca and send them back when you get home (or better yet, pack a garment bag and send them back to lighten your load ha!)
Can you change what size you are renting?
Yes! You can set filters to see what items are available in a certain size to help you make selections, but you can always change the size so you aren’t locked in to the size you signed up with. This to me is amazing for new moms- both during pregnancy and post-partum- to have a selection of sizes to chose from. Also, once you’ve been renting for a while you will start to learn how some of the designers run- small, large, true to size. The app is actually great and tells you what size you rented in the past so you can refresh your memory on how a certain designer runs as well.
Do you get a backup size with Unlimited the way you do with a one-time rental through Rent The Runway?
So you do not automatically get a backup size through Unlimited, but you could use two of your spots to rent an item in two sizes and then send one back immediately based on which one fit better. I’ve done that once or twice before a wedding or have also rented two different dress options and then pick the one I like best once they arrive. I know a lot of people get nervous with doing the one-time rental in case it doesn’t fit or you don’t like it. I like that I can get a few options with Unlimited and then pick once I’ve actually tried on.
Have you ever damaged an item you rented and how did RTR handle it?
I’ve luckily never had this experience, but your membership fee includes insurance for mishaps and general wear and tear. Not sure how they define that compared to significant damage- but the overall FAQs state that significant damage, theft or lost pieces are not covered.
Have you ever purchased an item that you’ve rented?
This is such a good question- I’ve never done it, but you can purchase items that you rent for a discounted price. The discount changes the older the item is I believe. I’ve never purchased because for items I wanted to I just kept them longer, like my maternity jeans example before, but in some cases depending on the price and how often you are wearing it may be more cost effective to buy to free your rental spot back up!
I’m 26 weeks pregnant. How are the maternity options?
I love having Unlimited for pregnancy! It was so helpful when I was working and pregnant. I invested in a few pairs of maternity work pants but could rent different tops and dresses from RTR and always felt like I had something new to wear. I love their app and you can filter by “Expecting” and it will give you different options for where you are in your pregnancy. I also like that you can sometimes rent non-maternity items that work with a bump. So great to have both choices. I would definitely invest in a membership for pregnancy as well as postpartum!
How quickly can you get new items once you’ve returned them?
Another great question! My experience is obviously specific to living in the North East and not being too far from the distribution center in NJ, but if I mail an item back, it is typically checked in the next day before noon. If you pick your new item by 1 PM EST, it will be shipped out that day so I’ll get a delivery the next day. That basically means I’m just without an item for one day! Of course you have to actually pick your new item before that 1 PM deadline (I try to do it as soon as I can after I get the notification) and this doesn’t apply for items picked on Fridays because they don’t offer Saturday delivery through Unlimited that I’ve seen.
Can you cancel at any time?
I haven’t cancelled mine yet (and don’t plan to!), but you can cancel at any time by speaking to the RTR Concierge. You will have to return your items prior to the end of your billing cycle to avoid any late fees. You can also pause your membership if you need to, but same thing, you need to return your items by the pause date.
How can I sign up?
Go to Rent The Runway, choose Unlimited from the membership options and use code RTRJENNAD at check out to get $200 between now and end of January! I know you will love it as much as I do!
Any other Rent The Runway Unlimited questions? Leave them in the comments below and I’ll be sure to answer!
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Photography by Caroline The Photographer