With more fashion brands focusing on sustainability, it was only a matter of time before renting clothes became the “in thing” to do. To date, there are already a few fashion houses that allow consumers to rent their favorite pieces, return them and then rent something else.
But with so many people wondering whether this really helps decrease their carbon footprint and help aid in the exploitation of factory workers, understanding the process means weighing the pros and cons of rental clothing.
From Couture To Fast Fashion
By far, Rent the Runway is one of the top fashion rental lines that allows consumers to wear designer duds at a fraction of the cost. There are also others that offer the same business model but on a smaller scale. Gwynnie Bee, Le Tote, and other brands also offer subscription-based rentals, which allows customers to rent a specific number of outfits each month.
The idea is to create an environment where fashion is affordable for everyone. The issue is, even with the lower price point, not everyone can afford it. However, with so much positive focus on the decreasing waste that often accompanies clothing manufacturing, rental clothing seems to be on the upswing.
In terms of scalability, the rental clothing business model seems sound. It allows brands to profit from traditional sales but also cater in a new genre of consumers who don’t want to commit or leave a negative mark on the environment. Especially when it comes to water usage and the direct correlation between fashion and a younger demographic, rental clothing lines seem to be the most popular choice.
While rented fashion may not be for everyone, it’s not surprising that so many brands are jumping on the rental bandwagon. And not everyone brand will make it when it comes to renting couture, it can reduce their carbon footprint.
For consumers, renting clothing does allow them to save money, change their style and do their part when it comes to decreasing what ends up in a landfill. But with so many still unanswered questions about clothing rental, the only way to know if it will become mainstream or simply be thought of as a passing fad is time.
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