Though summer is supposed to be about relaxing, sometimes it feels like summer is the busiest season of them all. Our weekends seem to be filled with weddings, backyard grilling, and of course trips to the beach so I know its hard to find time to shop around for the latest trends. However, sometimes it’s not always a time issue, some people feel stuck in style ruts and need help revamping their look and discovering new brands. And not all of us can shell out the big bucks for a personal stylist.
Luckily there are companies popping up left and right to help you discover cool new brands, give style advice, and deliver clothing right to your doorstep. For men, a couple popular options are Trunk Club and Bombfell and for women, Stitchfix and Tog + Porter. The concept of these sites are deliver clothing to your doorstep they are hoping you love and want to buy.
Like True & Co, you only pay for the items you decide to keep and the others are sent back without penalty or charge. In order to achieve this, the sites try to get to know you by giving you a style quiz of your likes, dislikes, needs, and wants of clothing and style. Then they will pair you with a ‘personal’ stylist who will source and send you clothing.
VIRTUAL STYLISTS FOR GUYS
Let’s face it, most of the men in our lives appreciate a little style advice from time to time so when you’re too busy or not around, an online style guide could be the perfect solution. Bombfell and Trunk Club have slightly different aesthetics and seem to cater to different types of men, age, and salary ranges.
Bombfell: Bombfell seems to provide guidance to a younger man by carrying brands like Ben Sherman, French Connection, and a lot of up and coming designers. Since they only send you one item at a time, they are great for men in their 20’s who are trying to slowly build up a nicer wardrobe and the price range is very affordable at only $69 per item.
Trunk Club: Unlike Bombfell who literally market to “lazy-men” and help men find “girl-friend approved” style, Trunk Club is a little more sophisticated and carry brands like Jack Spade, Jeremy Argyle, and Billy Reid. Their price range is a bit higher and cater to men who prefer shopping at places like Barney’s, Sak’s, and Nordstroms. They provide all the convenience of online shopping but with the same service you would find at a high-end clothing store. Trunk Club sends several different clothing items to choose from and you only pay for the items you decide to keep.
VIRTUAL STYLISTS FOR THE LADIES
As a fashion stylist, my job is to be up to date on the latest stores, brands, styles, and upcoming trends therefore, shopping is an easier task for me than it is to most of my friends who I see struggle with finding time to shop or finding themselves in style ruts needing advice. There is clearly a need for sites that offer women style assistance and brand discovery consequently decreasing stress regarding shopping.
Stitch Fix: Stitch Fix is exactly that site to help women discover brands and styles at very affordable price points, averaging at only $75 per item. They are similar to Trunk Club in that they send several different clothing options to choose from, only paying for the items kept and no charge to send back the remaining pieces. They get to know their customer by giving a style quiz and then assigning an online stylist who then chooses the styles you receive.
Stitch Fix definitely seems to have found a good niche solving some of the basic problems women have with shopping, but Tog + Porter takes it to the next level.
Tog + Porter: Instead of asking their customers to take an online style quiz and assign them a face-less stylist, they make appointments to video chat with their clients to discuss style related issues. The chat will consist of getting to know the woman, go through her existing closet and discuss what she is needing in terms of style related help. It’s only after this appointment will you then receive hand selected clothing for you but instead of leaving you to your own devices, they once again schedule a video chat session with to talk through their choices which can be incredibly helpful.
I’d be willing to bet their response rate of women keeping items versus sending back is much higher due to this extra personal touch. With Tog + Porter you set your own budget with them whether its $250 or $1500, they work within the confines of your budget to help you look your best.
Like the sites above, Keaton Row is set out to provide style services but for the professional woman. Even if most of your days are filled with boardroom meetings, their goal is to ensure you look your best in your pencil skirts, blouses, trousers, and blazers. They are still in beta but if you need style advice for your office attire keep an eye out for their launch!
Have you tried out any of these style sites? Do you have any particular style problems that need solving? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below or tweet it up.