My Rent the Runway Unlimited Experience

Today, I thought I share my experience with Rent the Runway Unlimited so far! I first signed up for RTR Unlimted a little over a month ago when I asked a good friend where she had bought a dress. She always has the BEST dresses, and I was obsessed with this one. It’s floral, a little lacy, dressy and casual at the same time. (It’s the ERIN Lilly of the Valley dress.) Her secret: RTR Unlimited.  

Rent the runway unlimited review

How Rent the Runway Works

-For about $130 a month you get access to 3 pieces at a time from the RTR Unlimited collection. 

-You can switch out the pieces as many times as you want during the month, exchanging for different options. This is free with your subscription. So, you can wear something once, send it back in your pre-paid blue bag, and get something new in a couple of days. Also, if you love something so much you want to hang on to it for the entire month, you can do that, too. (I wish I would have done it with this Tory Burch dress!) You can also purchase your fave items at a discount.

It was my first full month doing it, and I got 9 dresses during that time. The best part: they were all designer ($$$$), and I could wear them as many times as I wanted, whether it was for a wine date with friends, night out with the Pilot, or special event. 

Here are two from the current rotation for our Palm Springs trip:

Mara Hoffman Sunset Flight shirtdress

Mara hoffman sunset flight dress

Parker Pink Catamaran romper

Parker pink catamaran romper

and some of the ones I’ve worn previously:

This Mara Hoffman Maristar Lilic dress

Maria Hoffman Maristar Lilac Dress

This Tory Burch Gigi Shirtdress

Tory Burch GiGi Shirtdress

This ERIN Erin Fetherson Peach Beckley dress

ERIN Erin Fetherson Peach Beckley dress

Rent the Runway Unlimited Pros

I can try out items from different designers without committing to anything. If something doesn’t fit or I don’t like it, I just send it back. This only happened twice, and everything else was a keeper.

It allows me to try out trendy pieces without committing to buying them. I’ve found that I personally prefer to spend more money on classic pieces that will last, but I still love trendy pieces -just not always spending a lot of money for them. $130 is pricey, but for the cost of all of the clothes I wore (at least 3k worth of designer dresses and rompers), it was worth the cost to me. 

They have a great mix of casual pieces, dresses, formal dresses, and accessories. Also, there are usually reviews and pics from other users so you can decide how the sizing and fit runs on fellow non-models. 🙂

It got me out of my post-childbirth fashion funk. When you’re used to wearing maternity clothes for so long and constantly feeling uncomfortable, it’s a strange transition back to real clothes. It’s also easy to feel frumpy. This has definitely been a fun way to switch things up!

I love their efforts to be more green -they use a reusable blue bag for shipping instead of boxes/envelopes. Now if they’d just ditch the plastic wrap around the clothes…

I haven’t had a ton of luck with RTR for one-time rentals because the clothes didn’t fit my short body/torso properly. This way, I’ve been able to easily try out different sizes without the financial commitment each time. 

Rent the Runway Unlimited Cons

It’s expensive.

You have to wait a little while to get your new clothes, but it was shorter than anticipated. I thought I’d be waiting forever (and cancel it because it wouldn’t be worth it), and usually shipped my clothes and received new ones within 3-4 days. 

Not all of the items are available on Unlimited, but they constantly switch up the selection.

It could be weird if you don’t like wearing clothes other people have worn. (For the record, the company dry cleans them before shipping and everything smells fresh upon arrival. Some of my items have arrived with the brand new tags on.) My friends and roommates and I always shared clothes in college, so this is NBD to me. 

Have you tried this or anything similar? Where’s your favorite place to shop?



Heads up: I’m not affiliated with the company in any way, and pay for my subscription using my own dinero. If you use my referral link, we each get $20 to spend and you’ll get your own referral link to share with others after signing up.

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  1. Traci on May 12, 2016 at 11:35 am

    I love the concept, but 130 dollars per month is expensive. I believe that is likely a good value for the quality that you receive, but I wouldn’t do it unless I had a month with a lot of events coming up.

    • Zoe on May 12, 2016 at 12:01 pm

      You took the words right out of my mouth!

    • Fitnessista on May 12, 2016 at 12:47 pm

      definitely agree. i think because we had two weddings and were spending a week in tucson (family around = date nights happen!), so we’ll see how it goes over the next couple of months

  2. Andrea on May 12, 2016 at 11:52 am

    That’s an interesting service! I could see this being a neat service for someone who has a lot of events to attend or who is very fashion concious. I personally wouldn’t use it. Like you said, that’s pricey for just every day wear. Also, I couldn’t care less about wearing “designer” brands. I can never tell if someone is wearing a 5$ dress or a 500$ dress … and I’m guessing the average person can’t tell what brands I’m wearing either. I also dress very plainly, and I find that “designer” stuff is often just too weird for me! Thanks for sharing your experience!

    • Fitnessista on May 12, 2016 at 12:46 pm

      that is so true.
      i’ve found that their selection is beautiful- not a ton of extreme stuff 🙂
      it’s definitely more worthwhile if you have a lot of events to attend

  3. Marge on May 12, 2016 at 1:17 pm

    Ive been thinking about doing this…Are you able to try it out for a month without commitment? Or do you have to commit for a year?

    • Fitnessista on May 12, 2016 at 1:19 pm

      nope, it goes by the month. so if you want to cancel, you just have to do it before the next billing date

  4. Marybeth on May 13, 2016 at 6:11 am

    Where did you get those fabulous brown sandal heels you’re wearing with the 1st 2 dresses?

    • Erin on May 13, 2016 at 7:04 am

      Also need to know about these shoes, just what I’m looking for!

      • Fitnessista on May 15, 2016 at 11:11 pm

        they’re from justfab 🙂 i got them a few months ago

    • Fitnessista on May 15, 2016 at 11:13 pm

      they’re from justfab! they’re from a few months ago but i’m sure they still have them

  5. Amanda on May 13, 2016 at 6:20 am

    Just like you, I am currently doing RTR unlimited for one month because I have 3 fancy events this month so I like that I can have 3 dresses (plus options — each event is a different weekend) for $140, which is less money and time than shopping for dresses I only need to wear once. I have a reminder on my calendar to cancel the day before my next billing date.
    I agree the selection is beautiful and not crazy, and the non-model reviews are super helpful (like how the dress differs in person v. photos, the type of fabric, the event the reviewer attended, and how the dress met/failed a reviewer’s expectations).

  6. Jenny F on May 13, 2016 at 6:35 am

    You might be interested in trying out Le Tote. It’s $50/month to rent 3 items of clothing and 2 accessories at a time (you can return and get a new tote as many times each month as you want; you can buy items you want to keep for a discount; you don’t need to do any laundry if you don’t want to!). It’s not necessarily designer, but it’s all sorts of items (shirts, jackets, pants, dresses, jewelry, purses, etc) and I’ve had a really great experience with them for the last several months!

    • Fitnessista on May 15, 2016 at 11:12 pm

      i’ve tried it and loved it!! i just wish that you could pick out your own items. they choose for you, right? (i’m trying to remember because it was like a year ago when i tried it) i loved everything they sent, though

      • Jenny F on May 16, 2016 at 5:09 am

        They pick for you but then you have the option to switch any of them out for an item you pick instead (choosing from items that are available). So I’ve definitely had a tote where I’ve switched out all 5 items for ones I liked better.

  7. Missy on June 14, 2016 at 6:05 pm

    Be warned – the unlimited service is the worst! Before paying I scrolled through the unlimited options to make sure there were things I liked but unfortunately they don’t show you what’s actually available at a given time, just what is hypothetically available. As soon as I paid and created an account I realized that none of the dresses I wanted to try were actually available in any size close to mine and some disappeared altogether. I understand that you’re not always going to get your first choice with a service like this, but the lack of options in my size was really disappointing. The website is counter intuitive to what you’d like to be able to do (like maybe make a list of the choices you’re considering before you pick your final three) and the shipping/exchange is incredibly slow! It took a full 8 days to ship back my items, get the email to select 3 new items (which I did immediately when I received the email), and then receive those 3 items. When you’re paying on a monthly basis it’s not a great value to be without anything for 8 days every time you want to exchange. It’s also hard to know how things will fit so I ended up feeling like I was paying to try clothes on and exchange them – I never actually ended up wearing anything during the month I tried it out. Worst of all though every piece of clothing I received was musty and unfresh. While they claim they dry clean everything, I wonder how thorough of a job they do. My final straw came when one dress I ordered smelled so strongly of BO that I gagged before even taking it out of the plastic bag. I immediately contacted their customer service and was told that they could ship me a replacement (not of the actual dress that I had liked and ordered, but a different one of the currently available options) but that they could not expedite it which meant no chance of me receiving the replacement in time for the trip I was going on which was the whole reason I’d signed up for the service in the first place. Really disappointing and a total waste of money!

    • Fitnessista on June 14, 2016 at 9:26 pm

      it’s interesting that you posted this because initially the return and ship process was FAST. i noticed it’s getting slower and slower, and this last time, it took about 7 days. if it takes that long this time, i might cancel it. i’m going to give it a couple a times, but if it continues to be slow, it’s worth more to keep the $$ and use it to buy things i can keep

    • Trudy on January 2, 2017 at 11:29 am

      I had the same problem. I browsed the unlimited selections and they make it look like dresses are available in your size. Then as soon as I joined this morning, only one of the 5 dresses I liked was available in my size. They went from being available under Unlimited to only being available as a regular rental once I signed up. I tried getting an explanation via chat, but was giving multiple excuses, such as the dresses were rented in my size for New Year’s, even though they disappeared in the minutes it took me to sign up this morning. I was able to find 3 other dresses in my size, which is difficult given I need a petite, but not really excited about any of them. I think the company needs to be very clear about the fact that you are not seeing actual availability for your size under the Unlimited plan until you sign up.

  8. Katherine Nazario Diaz on June 16, 2016 at 10:57 am

    This RTR unlimited is great for any woman that has a packed agenda and love to always look great. In my scenario I am a 30 year old professional working in finance in NYC, I am single and during the weekends I love to go out and have fun dancing and going to different events. RTR is cheaper than buying new outfits every month. I live in midtown NYC, I received my order within 2 days. Taking the 2 days shipping in and out, we are talking about 3 dresses per week. 12 different oufits per month. Each outfit at a average price of $300, thats a total of almost 4k in outfits. The service is totally worth it for a girl that has a busy agenda.

    • Fitnessista on June 16, 2016 at 1:53 pm

      that is so true. i LOVE it, and i can imagine how much it would be worth it to a professional + social butterfly in NYC. for me, i really enjoy getting to try out the different brands and styles without committing

  9. Ewww RTR on July 13, 2016 at 6:14 pm

    I just cancelled my Unlimited subscription after over a year and a half with the program and I’m SO glad I did! Here are just some of the downsides once you’ve seen the program in action for a little while:

    – It takes AT LEAST 7 days from when you send back an item to when a new item is at your door if you’re on the west coast.

    – if you send back 3 items, you have to choose a new 3 items all at once. You can’t choose 2 today and 1 in a couple of days when the selection is better.

    – Speaking of selection, even though they have a lot of items, many items are lame and look like they’re from Free People. The nice dresses that are actually fashionable are hard to come by,
    especially once you’ve rented for 6 months or more and gone through most of their best pieces.

    – The search functionality on their site is hard to use and sometimes I would be looking for an hour for my next item. I just don’t have time for that with work and all.

    – When trying to get out of Unlimited, they don’t say by when you should send your items in so they’re in RTR’s hand in time. They just say when the item needs to be in RTR’s hand. How am I supposed to know how long shipping is supposed to take or when your fulfillment center actually gets the item?

    – When I finished my Unlimited subscription, they charged me over $200 for an item I had returned 1.5 years ago. I have a confirmation email from RTR that the item was returned. It was unbelievable that they would, unbeknownst to me, charge my card without looking at their records or having some common sense. For example, why would they be sending me 3 additional items for the past 1.5 years if I hadn’t returned one of the items earlier?

    Really disorganized company that charges way too much money for a disappointing product.

    • Olivia on August 22, 2016 at 11:11 am

      Your long-term review was extremely helpful…subscription plan companies usually have a misleading policy where they start the plan out with a bang so that you’re happy and you write great reviews but then they slowly start phasing in the bad parts, when it’s too late…like the protracted shipping and the “accidental” credit card overcharge.

    • Jennifer on September 2, 2016 at 12:28 pm

      I subscribed to RTR Unlimited for 4 months. At first, the service was fun and I enjoyed having so many options. However, the longer I used the service the more issues I experienced. These included longer shipping times, fewer outfits available in the size I needed (4/6), damaged items and as another reviewer noted, some very less than fresh scented garments.
      However, the worst issue I experienced when I attempted to cancel the service. My billing date was on the 20tj of each month. I first emailed RTR to cancel on 7/15. They informed me that my subscription was cancelled and I would not be billed. Subsequently, my card was billed on 7/20. I contacted RTR and the refunded the charge and assured me that my subscription was cancelled. However, about a week later I received another email telling me I was “in” and prompting me to pick three items. Again, I contacted RTR and was assured this was an error and that my subscription was cancelled. On 8/20 my card was charged for another month! At this time I was beyond angry. Their staff could offer no reasonable explanation as to why I was dealing with a zombie subscription. So, I decided to remove my card info from my account and found that you CAN’T! You cannot remove your card information from your account, without asking RTR for PERMISSION! I had to write and email to their collection department explaining the reason behind removing the card. After about two weeks they finally removed all of my billing info from the account. This situation has been a nightmare.

  10. Molly on January 22, 2017 at 9:57 pm

    PSA the Mara Hoffman shirt dress is on sale on her website for $85!!! And there’s a new pattern of the same dress on Anthropologie.

    • Fitnessista on January 23, 2017 at 11:13 am

      aaaaaand you win the internet today. i just bought it + a really cute jumpsuit. THANK YOU 🙂

      • Molly on January 23, 2017 at 11:27 am

        I want one of everrrryyyything!!!!

        • Fitnessista on January 23, 2017 at 11:58 am

          it’s ridiculous. i’m glad they’re out of a lot of sizes, or things would have gotten messy fast LOL

  11. Anne on April 19, 2017 at 11:23 am

    I didn’t have a good example like you did. I tried this out because I gained some weight over winter and didn’t want to buy all new clothes while I got back into shape. I live about 2 miles from the warehouse yet it still took them about 19 days of processing time before I could get any new items. Most of what I received was sent back immediately because it was in such bad shape I would be embarrassed to wear it in public. I tried to leave reviews letting other people know the condition of the items I received but they only posted my positive reviews. When I contacted customer service ab this I received an email telling me that my reviews about the condition of the items weren’t relevant. I tried to cancel because it was taking so long to get my items but they told me I needed to wait to receive them and send them back before I could cancel, which took just long enough for them to charge another month. I am generally a very patient person, but I feel like this service is a scam, or just so poorly run that it feels like being scammed.

  12. Anne on April 19, 2017 at 11:25 am

    Oops that’s a typo, it took 10 days, not 19 days.

  13. Amy on June 21, 2017 at 11:37 pm

    Found your review as I’m gearing up to cancel my RTR Unlimited subscription after 2 months due to issues. Three times in one month have items been “returned damaged or late” and they never once informed me. I’ve had to stalk my orders and ask for the status before they admit that there is a problem. I don’t understand why they release items into inventory that aren’t definitively available! I was told today that items appear on the website as soon as they are scanned at the delivery dock, before they have been cleaned or inspected by QA. Unlimited made sense for me to do for one month instead of a 4 day Saturday delivery rental, but I should have stopped after that. I’m starting the cancellation process now and will make sure to have my items back to them by July 10 so I can be done with them.

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