Universal Standard is a size-inclusive (00-40!) clothing brand carrying a proprietary catalog of high-quality clothing in shapes and cuts that are engineered to feel good and flatter. They have a broad range of clothing to choose from: everything from basics to dresses, jeans to outerwear!
Each year, Universal Standard offers a "Mystery Box" sale where you can choose from several curated mystery boxes that come with a range of styles and retail values. Each box varies in cost and the number of items inside, so you can find something to fit every style preference or budget! This year, there were 9 different boxes to choose from starting at $50 with 2 pieces valued up to $166 and going up to a $194 box with 3 pieces valued up to $534.
This is a review of the Essential Starter Box for $98.00 with 3 pieces valued up to $335.00.
This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
This particular box includes the "Best of US" with three styles that they are well-known for and that are best sellers. I was familiar with the shirt and dress and very excited about the colors, but I was definitely a bit apprehensive about these pants despite all of the stellar reviews they have received. I am also about 7 weeks postpartum at the moment, so my hips are a bit wider and I am carrying a lot of excess weight, so I wasn't sure how everything would fit at the moment.
One thing that makes Universal Standard so unique is its approach to sizing. They have what they call Universal Sizing and even though I have never been an XS in my life, this is the size I wear from them (which is actually a 10-12). As a curvy girl, I love the way that their clothing fits, as it seems to be so flattering and true to size. Even when my weight fluctuates a bit, I am always comfortable in this size range; in fact, I have one of their Foundation tanks and I was able to wear it comfortably through the third trimester of my last pregnancy, and this was probably the pregnancy I gained the most weight during which I think is worth noting!
Iconic Crew Neck Geneva Dress in Deep Aquamarine, Size XS - Retail Value $120
I actually received a version of this dress in my first mystery sale purchase from them, and while I was slightly unsure about the asymmetrical hemline, it has become one of my favorite dresses because it is so comfortable and so flattering! I was thrilled to receive a new one in such a beautiful color! I love green and this shade is kind of like a dusky sage green that I've never seen before. Even though I am carrying some extra weight right now, I still felt totally comfortable in this dress! It manages to (mostly) hide the extra belly weight and still felt as flattering to my figure as it normally does. The asymmetrical hemline no longer feels odd to me and I actually love the unique look of it!
V Rex in Camel, Size XS - Retail Value $50
Their V Rex and T Rex tees are great basic pieces, so I was not surprised to see one of these in the box. They are quality tops with just the right amount of stretch and the fabric is soft and comfortable. I love this neutral camel color, too! It feels like a top that I could also dress up with a skirt or blazer, but it's also great just paired with jeans any time.
Stephanie Wide Leg Stripe Pants in Black with Blue/White Stripe, Size XS - Retail Value $145
Lastly, we have the pants. I was surprised at how comfortable I was in these! They are a tiny bit tighter across the hips, but once my body settles back down, I feel like the fit will be really nice. These pants are so hard to describe as the material is thick and it has the feel of a nice pair of work slacks that are stretchy, but those sporty stripes down the side are what throws me off. It's like these pants can't quite decide what to be, which makes it really hard for me to figure out how to style them, but I guess that's what also makes them so versatile. They do have super wide legs, which is a style I haven't gotten back into yet, but I think they are on-trend in that aspect! I love the way they feel on and I like that they can look dressy even while still being pull-on (shouldn't all pants be this way?). Even so, I don't know if these pants will ever be my style or something I would wear, so this item is probably a bit of a miss for me.
Was My Universal Standard Mystery Box Worth It?
I love the clothing from Universal Standard because it has proven to be quality clothing that is comfortable, and it really does just make you feel good with the way it fits. I love the dress and the tee is very wearable, so I was pretty happy with my box this time around. The pants, while comfortable, are still outside my comfort zone as far as fashion goes, but I might give them a try with some other tops to see if I can find a look that feels right for me!
My Universal Standard Mystery Box cost $98.00, and I received three items with a total retail value of $ 315. That's a savings of $217 and it averages out to about $32.67 for each piece. I think that's a pretty fair value considering I know the pieces are quality!