I’m a full-time traveler, minimalist, and extreme budget nerd, but I also love clothes and feeling good about myself. Living in an RV that I call my home on wheels, there is just not enough closet space for a variety of clothes. But I get pretty tired of wearing the same thing over and over again. I also hate spending money on clothes because I’d much rather spend it on experiences and travel. So I’ve always felt like it’s just a losing battle.
The Struggle is Real
I know I’m not alone. Whether you travel, live tiny, are a busy mom, or a working woman…we all share the same clothing struggles. Figuring out what to wear each day, wanting a wardrobe that has variety and a sense of style, but not wanting to put in the time and money it takes.
Let’s face it, we’re all still wearing the clothes we’ve had for years and years. Not exactly a confidence boost, putting on those same ratty jeans that are comfortable, have lasted 5 years and may still have another year or two left in them. Pair that with a top that you’ve literally worn to what feels like every social gathering the past year, and people are starting to notice it in most of the photos of you on Facebook.
Don’t we all wish we could look this glamorous shopping? Come on now, who is this and is she real?
What’s NOT Working
Subscription boxes became all the rage a few years ago. Stitch Fix is a big one, but even Amazon has “Prime Wardrobe“, their own clothing box service now, too! They are great for the convenience of having new clothes show up at your door, but with some of these subscriptions, you’re not only paying for the membership, but also the clothes you choose to buy. Plus, for me, this doesn’t solve the fact that I don’t want to keep filling a closet full of clothes I don’t wear very often!
Clothing Swap Parties
Over the years, I’ve been invited to parties where women get together and bring clothes they are willing to swap for their friends clothes. Great concept, it really is! But, I’m way to embarrassed to show up with my halter tops, turtle necks, and flare jeans that I still have from my 20’s that I’ve been holding onto in case they come back in style (which, sadly they actually have).
Okay, I know that’s dramatic and there’s probably plenty of things my friends would want to swap for in my closet. But, there’s something about your “trash” that just feels like trash and not another woman’s treasure. I guess I can’t really speak to this strategy because I haven’t actually tried it! But I’m not sure I really want to.
Thrift Store Shopping
Once upon a time, I thought, “I’ll shop at thrift stores!”. That way, I don’t spend that much money upfront and when I get sick of it, even after just a few wears, I won’t feel bad donating it again or tossing it. I see other women wearing cute stuff saying they found it at a thrift store and act like its no big deal. So, I walk confidently into Goodwill and beginning searching for my treasure, too. Then an hour later, I’m still searching and deciding if the pit stains are “really that bad” on the one thing I found that I sort of like. Ain’t nobody got time for that!
What Cured My Wardrobe Blues
I can’t remember how I even discovered Le Tote, but I know I was deep in the wardrobe blues. I had just switched teaching jobs and went from a very casual, jeans-everyday environment to a school where I felt like I had to wear cute dresses every day in order to fit in. I wanted to fit in as “the new kid”! But on a teachers budget…well, enough said.
I was super skeptical. What if the clothes are overly worn and smell? What if they look terrible on me because I’m tall? Is this really worth the money if I don’t get to keep the clothes? But I was desperate and even Target couldn’t solve my problem. So I tried LeTote and fell in love and have continued to use it even as my lifestyle has changed. Now, I don’t understand why any woman wouldn’t use LeTote!
What is LeTote?
LeTote is a clothing rental service. Here’s how it works:
- You complete a Style Quiz by providing your dimensions and style preferences. You select patterns you like and fitting preferences – flowy vs fitted, collared and professional vs. boho, wide leg vs. skinny jeans, trousers vs. leggings. The quiz even factors in the weather of where you live!
- You select a membership plan based on how many articles of clothing you’d like in your tote and you can even have the option to have a few accessories, too (purses, jewelry, scarves). Each plan has a set price, starting at $69/month for Classic and $79/month for Maternity. Shipping is free. You can add items into your tote for an additional fee.
- Your tote is styled for you, based on your Style Quiz results. You are notified when your tote is ready and you have 48 hours to swap items out if there’s anything you don’t like in your tote. You can browse from a wide variety of name brands and clothing styles of all types and for all occasions (athletic wear, cocktail dresses, business causal, etc).
- Once you’re happy with the items in your tote, you can finalize it and it will arrive at your home 2-3 days later. Then, you wear them as long as you want, as many times as you want, with no obligation (but the option) to purchase.
- When you’re sick of the clothes, you send them back in the pre-paid envelope that comes in your tote. You don’t even have to wash them! Once LeTote receives confirmation that your tote is on it’s way back, you can begin customizing your next tote. The turn around can be pretty quick!
What I Love About LeTote
First, here are my LeTote statistics, this shows up when I login and will show you how much experience I have with using the service. I’ve been a member for over 2 years and have worn over $6,000 worth of clothing and accessories!
Obviously, this is most important. The clothes are in good condition and are good quality. I never got an article of clothing that didn’t look, feel, and smell darn-near close to brand new. I also only had a handful (maybe 3-4) articles that I didn’t like or that didn’t fit me. Let me do the math.
21 totes with 4 articles of clothing in each = 84 total articles of clothing that I’ve tried. Disliking 4 of those 84 articles means 95% of the time I had clothes that I liked and wore, and also fit me, despite my challenging body type. I’d say that’s pretty darn good!
Also, with each tote you get, you have the opportunity to rate each article of clothing that came in it. You can explain why you did or did not like the clothes. This helps the styling professionals get an even clearer idea of what style and fit you prefer.
Did you catch the part where you don’t have to wash the clothes? Major bonus. But don’t worry, they get professionally cleaned before being sent out to someone else!
Here are a few of my most recent favorite LeTote outfits:
In my experience, the moment the envelope is scanned at the post office, I would get alerted that my next tote is ready to be customized. So some days, I’d drop the clothes off and confirm shipment of my next tote in the very same day! I was dropping off my totes at the post office on my way home from work on Thursday or Friday morning and coming home from work on Mondays with my new tote waiting for me in the mailbox. So, I had a new tote every week!
The Ability to Place a Hold on my Membership
You’ll see from the image above that my account is currently on hold. That’s because right now, we are traveling from city to city every week for work. It’s too much, at this time, for me to keep track of finding post offices and changing my address in the system every week. Some places we stay don’t even allow us to get mail.
But, when I go home for long periods of time, I can reactivate my account and have a tote in 2-3 days. This is perfect because typically when we go home, I get dressed more often because I see more people than when we’re on the road .Also, we have more special events that I want cute outfits for. And lastly, I can keep most of my wardrobe in our RV when we are staying with our family. I don’t have to move my entire closet into a suitcase.
What I Don’t Love About LeTote
In order to maximize the membership, you really gotta wear your clothes back to back each week and stick to a schedule. If you want 4 totes a month, it feels like a hustle. I literally would wear the clothes consecutively, and on Thursdays I would bring a change of clothes in the car and after work, I’d stop at the post office on my way home. This would ensure that my tote was scanned at the post office Thursday evening so I could confirm my next tote and have it shipped on Friday. My new tote would then show up Monday. I’d wear, return, repeat as quick as I could.
That being said, it’s probably more realistic for most people to aim for 3 totes a month. But that still gives you the possibility of having 12 new outfits a month, or 3 per week, like the title of this article suggests! That’s only 2 days a week that you have to plan out your outfit. And I know you already have “casual Friday” down pat.
While there are TONS of cute clothes and name brands, not all of the articles are available when you want them. So sometimes you’ll see something you really want in your tote and have to wait days or weeks for it to be in stock to send you. Also, it can sometimes take extra time to sort through the clothes and find what you want in your tote, especially if you are looking for something specific for an event. Naturally, you’re not going to love everything they have – just like you don’t love everything in clothing stores.
It takes a little “browsing” to find what you want. But overall, I feel the selection is pretty good! Plus, they are adding new articles and styles every month! I recently saw their website said “209 New Styles Added In The Last 30 Days“.
At times it was a hard pill to swallow that I was spending $70/month without keeping anything. But I started to value my sanity and not having to frustratingly search for something to wear every day and stare in my closet as if something was going to magically appear. I also didn’t have to waste my time on the weekends shopping and then getting frustrated when I couldn’t find anything I liked or was in my size or fit my body type and budget. And finally, my minimalist heart would sing when I didn’t have to add to the clutter in my closet.
I realized that prior to LeTote, even though many months I may not spend anything on new clothes, when I would go on a little shopping spree, I’d usually spend around $150 and get maybe 5 outfits. So spending $150 every 2 months would be $900/year. My LeTote membership costed $840/year, so they were pretty similar. But instead of 30 outfits I owned that I would eventually get sick of and more laundry, I got 144 that I borrowed and didn’t have to clean. To me, it was worth it.
This article on Forbes makes so it all clear. Here’s the gist of the article in my own words:
American’s are wasting too much of our time on shopping, spending money on things we want but don’t need, paying extra to store those belongings we don’t need, and wasting our mental energy and time on organizing and cleaning that clutter!
Is LeTote a Good Service for YOU?
LeTote is for you if …
- You hate shopping or don’t have time for it
- You get sick of clothing items after just a few wears
- You prefer to spend your money on other things than clothes
- You struggle to stay current with fashions while also finding clothes that fit your body type
Still have questions?
Feel free to leave them in the comments or check out LeTote’s FAQ page.
If you need one more reason to sign up, here’s a special offer!
For a limited time, LeTote is offering our readers $10 off your first 2 months!
(this is our affiliate link, so you will not only receive the discount, but we will receive a small commission for referring you at no additional charge to you).