Culture Sustainable Fashion Best Clothing Rental Services Rent the Runway is the most environmentally friendly clothing rental service By Kiah Treece Kiah Treece University of Toledo College of Law University of Florida University of Miami Kia Treece is a writer, scientist, and sustainability coach specializing in environmental policy, off-grid living, zero waste, and vegan lifestyle. She holds a J.D. with a certificate in Environmental Law from the University of Toledo. Learn about our editorial process Updated March 21, 2021 Fact checked by Elizabeth Brownfield Fact checked by Elizabeth Brownfield University of Iowa Elizabeth Brownfield is a writer, editor, and researcher who specializes in food, travel, home, and lifestyle content. Learn about our fact checking process Share Twitter Pinterest Email Culture History Travel Sustainable Fashion Art & Media Holidays Community We independently research, test, review, and recommend the best products—learn more about our process. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission. Treehugger / Design by Amelia Manley People are buying more clothes than ever before and keeping items for shorter periods of time than in the past. In fact, it’s estimated that the average consumer throws away 70 pounds of clothing every year. Clothing rental services can help reduce this waste by letting you rent clothing instead of buying it. Then, when you’re ready for your next outfit, simply send it back, and receive a shipment of new looks in return. Not only does this give shoppers a constantly revolving wardrobe, but it also reduces the volume of clothing sent to landfills every year. Luckily, there are a ton of great options to choose from, ranging from affordable everyday looks to luxury items and accessories. We compared a number of services based on cost, selection, and available perks and identified the best clothing rental services for you. Best Clothing Rental Services of 2022 Best Overall: Rent the Runway Best Budget: Haverdash Best Range of Sizes: Gwynnie Bee Best Maternity: Le Tote Best Curated Outfits: Armoire Best Jewelry: Rocksbox Best Accessories: Bag Romance Best Overall: Rent the Runway Rent the Runway Learn More Rent the Runway (RTR) specializes in designer clothing rentals and is one of the most popular services on the market. However, Rent the Runway has our hearts because of its dedication to green practices. RTR has never used halogenated cleaning solutions like perchloroethylene (PERC) in its free dry cleaning service and is reducing single-use plastics by recycling and reusing materials used in shipping. Members can choose from three options: one swap with four items per month (about $69 for the first month, then roughly $89), two swaps with eight total items (around $99 per month for the first two months, then approximately $135), and unlimited swaps with unlimited items (around $149 per month for the first two months, then $199 monthly). Customers with the two-swap or unlimited plan get access to a larger number of styles with a higher retail value. Plus, you can pause, cancel, or add extra spots to your plan if your clothing needs change. Like other services on our list, there are no return dates with RTR so you can keep clothing for as long as you want. When you’re ready to switch styles, send them back with the reusable (and recycled) garment bag and free shipping label—just be sure to return them on time and via the correct shipping service or you’ll be subject to late fees. Why it's a fit for Treehugger: Rent the Runway is Treehugger’s overall top choice for clothing rental because of the company’s use of green cleaning methods and dedication to recycling. Best Budget: Haverdash Haverdash Learn More Haverdash is our best choice for shoppers on a budget. Users get access to unlimited clothing each month for around $59 per month. Options include brands like Calvin Klein, French Connection, ModCloth, and Vince Camuto. Just build your virtual closet with a minimum of eight pieces at any time; then, get three styles delivered at a time and keep clothes for as long as you want. As with many options on our list, you can also purchase what you want to keep at a discounted price. Unlike Rent the Runway, you don’t get to pick exactly what you’ll get in each shipment, but the items will come from your virtual closet. Plus, you can use the Prioritize feature to mark items you’d like to ship first. Then, when you’re ready to send things back, use the "Return Notify" feature to give Haverdash a heads up so you can get your next shipment sooner. Dry cleaning is always included and you can cancel anytime, so you’re not tied to a recurring monthly fee. Why it's a fit for Treehugger: Haverdash made our list because it’s an affordable way for shoppers to ditch fast fashion in favor of more sustainable rentals. Best Range of Sizes: Gwynnie Bee Gwynnie Bee Learn More Once an exclusively plus-size clothing service, Gwynnie Bee now offers items ranging from size 0 to 32, with memberships costing between $49 and $199 per month. In addition to providing access to popular clothing brands, Gwynnie Bee improves the member experience with its Size Advisor Tool, which helps identify your perfect size based on what you wear in popular clothing brands. You can also take advantage of the First Fit Reviews to see how individual items fit on other members. Like Haverdash, Gwynnie Bee lets customers add favorites to their online closet. Then, when it’s time to ship, Gwynnie Bee’s team of stylists chooses items based on your plan and sends them to you with free shipping. Once you receive the items, wear them for as long as you’d like, and return or purchase them at a reduced price. Gwynnie Bee membership starts at about $49 per month for one item at a time and goes up from there. Pricing depends on the number of clothing items you want to access in a single shipment, but members can send items back as many times as they like. It’s estimated that users who choose one item at a time typically receive between four and seven items each month; those who opt for the largest plan usually get 16 to 28. Why it's a fit for Treehugger: We love Gwynnie Bee because its Size Advisor Tool and First Fit Reviews make it easier to find the best fit the first time—thereby limiting unnecessary swaps and reducing your overall carbon footprint. Best Maternity: Le Tote Le Tote Learn More Le Tote offers a huge range of modern, designer clothing, including everything from casual and athleisure to business casual, professional, and event. The service made our list, however, because of its maternity-specific membership that’s available at around $79 per month. Not only can Le Tote help you save money on maternity clothes, the maternity membership also gives you full access to non-maternity items so you’re sure to find something flattering and comfortable. For those who aren’t expecting, Le Tote offers standard memberships that include one box of clothing per month for between $59 and $109 per month—depending on the number of clothing items and whether you want to add accessories. Users can also opt for unlimited four-item totes for $79 per month. Once signed up, share your clothing preferences and Le Tote makes suggestions based on your style, trends, and even weather in your area. Then, you choose what ultimately arrives in your tote. A quick browse of Le Tote’s inventory reveals a ton of great pieces from brands and designers like Max Studio, Sanctuary, and Rachel Roy. And, like other top clothing rental services, you can purchase anything in your tote at up to a 50% discount. There’s also no commitment, so you can change, pause, or cancel your membership whenever you want. Why it's a fit for Treehugger: Le Tote’s maternity service is a top Treehugger pick because it lets women reduce their environmental impact by renting maternity clothes instead of buying new pieces they may only need for a few months. Best Curated Outfits: Armoire Armoire Learn More We love Armoire because it takes the guesswork out of choosing clothes. Using an algorithm and professional stylists, the platform suggests items for you each month. Then, you select the styles you love and request deliveries based on your membership plan. Plus, unlike other clothing rental services, unused shipments roll over so you won’t lose money if you have a slow shopping month. Armoire’s four-item capsule membership costs about $49 for the first month (roughly $79 per month after that). This basic plan includes one shipment and can include around $1,000 or more worth of clothing each month. Users can also upgrade to the seven-item capsule plan (about $59 for the first month and $119 per month after that) for clothing valued at at least $1,750 or more in per month. Finally, the unlimited plan (about $99 for the first month, then $249) includes unlimited swaps with access to more than $5,000 in clothing per month. Like other options on our list, Armoire’s membership pricing includes complimentary dry cleaning and insurance to cover minor damage. Users also get access to members-only discounts to purchase clothes they want to keep. Why it's a fit for Treehugger: Armoire made our list because its flexible plans and curated selections make it more likely customers will stick with the service and break their dependence on fast fashion. Best Jewelry: Rocksbox Rocksbox Learn More Rocksbox is a dedicated jewelry rental service that gives members access to thousands of designer pieces, including brands like Sophie Harper, Kendra Scott, and gorgeous layered necklaces from Aster. Once you sign up for Rocksbox, create a wish list of jewelry you’d like to try and a personal stylist picks three pieces to send you for about $21 each month. Then, you can review and approve each of the items so you’re guaranteed to love what you receive. Items in each box typically equal roughly $200 in retail value and, depending on your preferences, may include a necklace, bracelet, and earrings. You can swap boxes out at any time. Plus, your membership fee acts as a credit toward purchasing anything you decide to keep—so you don’t have to worry about your monthly fee going to waste—and you get access to a member discount on many items. You’ll also get free shipping both ways. Why it's a fit for Treehugger: We love Rocksbox because it reduces the demand for—and waste of—natural resources like gold and silver by letting members test out jewelry before they buy it. Best Accessories: Bag Romance Bag Romance Learn More If you’re looking for the perfect bag to complete your outfit for an event, big trip, or just a week at work, Bag Romance has everything from micro bags and clutches to totes. Unlike other options on our list, Bag Romance does not offer a monthly service, so you won’t get revolving items each month. However, it’s a great choice if you’re looking for a specific accessory and don’t want to pay full price. To get started, browse Bag Romance’s selection of coveted designer bags and check the availability of your top pick. Then, choose whether you want to rent the bag for seven or 30 days. Rental costs vary depending on the designer and style, but you can expect bags to cost between around $140 and $350 for a seven-day rental and from roughly $200 to $500 for 30 days. When you check out, you’ll pay the rental fee plus applicable shipping costs and a refundable down payment. Shipping is free for orders of about $150 or more; otherwise, there’s approximately a $25 flat-rate standard shipping fee. When you’re done with the bag, enjoy free returns and cleaning. Or, if you’re not quite ready to part ways, bag rentals can be automatically renewed at an additional cost. Why it's a fit for Treehugger: Bag Romance made our list because renting luxury bags can help reduce demand for new items and limit the environmental impacts of animal production and leather manufacturing. Final Verdict Rent the Runway is our top pick because of its selection of on-trend designer clothing and dedication to environmentally sustainable policies. Not only does RTR offer several flexible membership and pricing options, it includes rental insurance and quick shipping. You’ll also rest easy knowing that Rent the Runway doesn’t clean items with toxic PERC and aims to reduce the amount of plastic that goes to landfills. Frequently Asked Questions What Is Clothing Rental? Clothing rental services allow you to rent clothing rather than buying it. Rent a dress or tux for prom night or a special event, or everyday clothing that is in fashion at the time. You simply rent what you want, pay for it, and then return the items at the specified time. Every clothing rental company is different in its pricing, type of clothing available, and how long you can keep your rentals. Is Renting Clothing Cheaper? It sure can be. That piece of clothing you're only going to wear one time for an important occasion will cost less to rent than it will to buy and have it sit in your closet, taking up space. It's also a great way to wear the latest fashion look and spend less money on those clothes while staying in style. How Much Does It Cost to Rent a Dress? The cost of renting a dress will vary depending on the type of dress and the rental company. A prom dress, for example, might run around $45 to $50 (instead of buying one for $100 to $500). At the same time, a wedding dress could be rented for anywhere from $50 up to $2,000, with higher costs for designer gowns. On average, a wedding gown runs around $2,000 to $5,000 to purchase. If it's a designer dress, it can cost $10,000 or higher. Methodology To choose the best clothing rental services, we looked at monthly fees and the overall selection of clothing, including brand and designer availability. We also considered how frequently members can swap out clothing each month and whether customers can choose to purchase items at a reduced price. Finally, we tried to include options that provide free shipping and returns, insurance options, and—of course—environmentally friendly policies. View Article Sources Council for Textile Recycling. The issue.