My Honest Le Tote Review
Le Tote is a clothing rental subscription that gives you access to an endless closet of fresh styles without breaking the bank. I signed up to discover the good and the bad and here are some of my #hottakes!
Update 5/22/19: After over six months of ordering and reviewing Le Tote, I’ve learned a thing or two about rental clothing! In this post, I go over the basics of signing up (as well as my first box) but if you want to follow my journey more in depth, you can check out my tips for getting the right fit, styling your items with your existing wardrobe, or even tackling transitional seasons. I’ve come to really look forward to picking out and receiving my Le Tote each month and have discovered a lot about my personal style by trying new things or sticking to my tried and true faves.
|Is It Worth It?||
|I’d Recommend Le Tote If You||
- About Le Tote
- Getting Started
- Unboxing My First Le Tote
- Making Purchases and Sending Items Back
- Is Le Tote Worth It?
- The Verdict
About Le Tote
The Cost: $79/month for 8 items, $99/month for 10 items, $119/month for 15 items. Subscriptions get cheaper with the omission of accessories.
Ships to: Contiguous 48 States in the USA (no Hawaii, Puerto Rico, APO/FPO, or Alaska, unfortunately).
What You Get: Rent 8, 10, or 15 pieces of clothing and accessories for as long as you like with the option to purchase with a discount.
Go to Know: They also offer a maternity subscription.
What We Think: Le Tote is a great way to breathe new life into your closet without commitment or try new trends before you take the plunge and purchase.
My Subscription Addiction paid for this box. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
First things first- Le Tote wants to know what clothes you’re into and a bit more about your style so they can suggest items you’ll love. You’ll go through a short survey to answer various questions about what you wear and what styles you prefer, as well as sizing.
They offer a “classic” and “maternity” subscription, so you’ll start here. Don’t worry, you can change this at any time if your life changes!
All you have to do is click on each top you like which will put a little heart on it. I like almost all of these except for boho, ruffles, and off the shoulder. I can sometimes do button downs but can be really picky about them so I left those off as well.
Next up are sweater types. Give me all the stripes and oversized things, please!
Then my favorite: jackets! I own so many already but there are so many cute ones out there to try!
After that, bottoms. I don’t love shorts even in the summer, but I can always update my profile if I change my mind next year.
Dresses are another tough one for me, but I’d like to “up” my fancier side, so I went with a few different silhouettes.
As far as jewelry goes, I can do subtle and statement pieces, so I chose both.
Lastly, they have some sample brands you can choose as ones you like to wear. I rather like Kate Spade, French Connection, Calvin Klein, Nike, Rebecca Minkoff, and KUT From the Cloth.
One unique aspect I noticed about Le Tote is their sizing options. Here, you put in generic sizing (always dreaded for me), but they get more speicific later on. More about that futher down!
They also want to know what clothes you’re looking for by occasion. I’m a super casual gal, so that’s an “often” for me, but I don’t have to get too dressy for work and don’t dress up too much for nights out either, so I left those as a “sometimes”.
Another smart thing they ask is where you’ll be wearing these clothes so that they can suggest pieces based on the current weather in your area. Even though it’s Fall in Pittsburgh, it’s been going back and forth with cool and hot weather. Ugh. Hopefully, this helps!
The last thing you’ll need to do is choose the size of your plan. They break out clothing and accessories within the plan but you can pick from 8, 10, or 15 pieces each month with accessories. I went for the middle 10 item plan which is $99.00 and sends 7 clothing items and 3 accessories. You can choose to omit accessories if you’d like to receive more clothing and those prices are slightly cheaper (see below).
(PS- You’re always able to switch your plan or skip a month right from your account. It’s super easy!)
After choosing your plan, you’re ready to fill out all of your shipping and billing info. *Since I live in PA, I don’t have to pay tax on clothing, but you may have to based on your location.
There’s another quick measurement screen afterward that pops up. Since I am hellbent on getting the best fit, I filled it out right away. This will help later when the site suggests the right sizing for me!
Then you’ll get this screen telling you to keep an eye on your email.
I got mine like, 15 minutes later! I couldn’t believe how quick it was. They don’t use human stylists like other clothing boxes (just smart robots), so it makes things go a lot quicker.
Here’s my first tote! The best thing is that from here, I’m able to customize it to better suit my style. I like to have a jumping off point, but I am suuuuuper picky and honestly do love shopping, so I spent a bunch of time looking around their site for other items to replace ones I knew weren’t for me. The thing to keep in mind while swapping things out is that you can only swap accessories for accessories and clothing for clothing. Since my plan has 3 accessories, I need to keep it that way for this tote. I can change it for the next one though if I’d like. Can you guess which items I kept in the tote? There are only two!
While you’re browsing, you can “heart” things that add them to your favorites so you can save them for later or remember what you loved! This will also help the robots hone in on your style for future suggestions. My favorite part, though, is the sizing guide. It will automatically suggest a size based on your input, but you can override it if you don’t agree. I found this helpful yet tough with dresses since they can fit completely differently based on the silhouette. I have a smaller bust with larger hips so it can be hard to find the right fit. I’ll dive into specifics with each piece later on and I’m going to find out if I can “trust” this suggested sizing or not. There are also measurements for every size of the item right below the photo which is extremely helpful when choosing clothes online! The only downside is that there were some pieces (like jeans) that I wanted to try but were out of stock in my size so I had to keep looking.
Here’s where I landed! I finalized my tote and got a confirmation email that day. It shipped out the following day via USPS and arrived on my doorstep two days later. Again- very impressed with the speed from CA to PA!
Unboxing My First Le Tote
To my surprise, this did not come in a tote at all, but a box!
Right on top is the info booklet with MY NAME. #itme!
Inside, there’s some important info listed on the left including a tote sale (it disappears once I return it), my eligibility for my next tote (October 20th), plus the fact that if I love and purchase everything in my tote, my next month is free! The right side lists out all 10 items and their prices. There will be a retail price, plus the discounted Le Tote price listed.
The back has their social media handles, hashtag, and customer service email.
Since this was my first delivery, I got an additional info card that gives a quick overview of how it works. It says that you can wear the clothes as long as you like, but be aware that no matter what, you’re going to get charged $99.00 per month. It’s only once you send the items back that you aren’t purchasing that you can get a whole new tote for the next month. For instance, if you choose to keep the items for 2 full months, you’re going to be paying that second month’s fee even if you aren’t getting a fresh tote. Make sense?
The other side talks about the reasons you may want to try Le Tote. Since you’re only renting, you don’t have to own or purchase as much clothing. It’s also more green to simply rent and send back items instead of purchasing and discarding items that you may only wear briefly. As you continue getting new totes and rating your clothing, the robots will learn more about your sizing and style and suggest even better things for you. I also feel like this is a good way to kind of “try before you buy”. Sometimes it may take a few wears for me to really warm up to an item, or sometimes I purchase an item but find that once I’ve worn it for a full day, it’s uncomfortable and then I can’t return it. This should help with those types of things!
The last non-clothing item is the bag you’ll use to return your items. It’s got the shipping label already on there, so it’s no fuss no muss. Just drop it at the post office or have it picked up and it’s out of your hair.
Calvin Klein Jeans Funnel Neck Sweatshirt, size medium – Retail Value $69.00 (Le Tote Price – $54.00)
I don’t wear a ton of clothing with brand names on it, but I love the subtle black on black Calvin Klein logo on the sleeve of this boxy sweatshirt. Le Tote recommended a medium but I thought “no no, it’s so oversized and boxy, I need a small” and I kinda was wrong. It looks alright still, but I think a medium would have lent the more intended look and a bit of length that I wish this small had. You win this round, Le Tote! Even though I like this high neck with zipper, I realized it’s a bit tough to wear zipped up. It’s more comfortable unzipped and rolled down, but then I don’t love how it looks as much. Blerg. It is super cozy though and I’m waiting on some chillier weather to really break this bad boy out.
Ava Striped Rib Trim Top, size medium – Retail Value $58.00 (Le Tote Price $48.00)
How supes adorbs is this striped sweater?? It’s one of the two suggested items that I kept in my tote and even though I wouldn’t normally choose a 3/4 length sweater on the fitted side, I just adore this. Stripes are just the best and then the little pink embroidered heart brings a special flair to it. This fits really well and I listened to the suggested size, so that’s another round they win for sizing! I had a moment of thinking I may look like the Hamburglar wearing this, but my crush assured me that it was a cute Hamburglar, so okaaaaay! I ended up wearing this piece the most in the month I had it but did not steal any hamburgers while doing so.
818 Knit Wide Leg Pant, size large – Retail Value $70.00 (Le Tote Price $58.00)
These pants. I don’t know how I feel about them! They are way looser and athletic-like than I was envisioning when I put them in my tote, but now that I re-read the “knit” part of their name, I should have known. These are insanely comfortable but the material is so thin that there isn’t enough structure for me and they feel more like pajama pants than the business-casual I was hoping for. I think they do look good on and the shape of the leg is flattering on me, but I may just need to wear them more to get “comfortable”. What do y’all think? Le Tote suggested a large and I think they’re the right fit, so once again, they know.
Hayes Geometric Necklace – Retail Value $28.00 (Le Tote Price $16.00)
Well, this gold necklace is my favorite item from this tote for sure. I am drawn to geometric patterns and I like that this is sort of busy but simple at the same time. It’s really delicate but holds it’s own against my similar-shaped chest tattoo. I’ve worn this a handful of times and get compliments on it when I do so. I think this might be a keeper.
August 1 Eight Pleated Skirt, size medium – Retail Value $70.00 (Le Tote Price: $58.00)
Le Tote suggested I get this skirt in a size small, but I ended up going with a medium and I still think it looks a little tight on me. I love the length of it and the pleats are super cute but I’m not sure it does anything for me. As for the fabric, it’s pretty sturdy and feels well-made. I typically have a hard time understanding how skirts are supposed to fit me so I’m not surprised that this wasn’t in my comfort zone. I like a high-waist but this one was a bit awkward.
Octavia & CO. Stacked Criss Cross Cuff – Retail Price $44.00 (Le Tote Price: $36.00)
The next accessory I swapped one of the originals out for was this silver criss-cross cuff. I really like cuffs even though they’re not conducive to typing at a desk all day so this would be more of a going out accessory for me than a workwear one. It has a nice clean design that I like and even though it’s large, it doesn’t feel heavy or bulky. It can also be paired with a dress or something more casual. The construction seems solid on this piece as well.
Noir Open Back Dress, size medium – Retail Value $82.00 (Le Tote Price $68.00)
This dress was just too cute to pass up. I love the open back and the tie at the back of the neck, as well as the detail on the chest. Le Tote wanted me to order a small, but I sized up to a medium because I have wide hips and was afraid I wouldn’t be able to get a dress in this cut over them. The fabric is really thin and stretchy, so I probably could’ve gone to a small, but this already shows every little lump and bump so I wouldn’t have felt too comfortable in it. I wish the fabric was a bit heavier for that reason, but overall it’s really cute on. I really like that it looks like two piece even though it’s one and the drapey-ness of the top is forgiving. Now I just need somewhere to wear it!
Noir Luxe Classic Leather Belt – Retail Value $38.00 (Le Tote Price: $30.00)
I chose this belt as one of my accessories because I had a specific need for it! I bought the dress shown a while ago but don’t currently own a belt and felt that it needed to be belted to look less like a sack. The belt is nice and simple with a gold buckle and it worked great for exactly what I needed. My roommate also borrowed it since he didn’t have a black belt to wear to his nephew’s christening, so it’s a unisex win as well! 😂
Hayes Lace Up Side Cardigan, size medium – Retail Value $66.00 (Le Tote Price $54.00)
Here I am, in my comfort zone. Big loose cardigan over a cami with jeans and some heels. This was the other item from the originally suggested tote that I kept. I love cardigans like this for fall and winter because they are so darn cozy. This one has a cool lace-up detail on each side that sets it apart from the average sweater like it. It’s cozy and not too heavy so it’s great for fall. I think the fit is great as well and it’s the size that was suggested.
Making Purchases & Sending Items Back
The cool thing about renting is that you’re not getting stuck with clothes you don’t like and have a full month to wear everything in your tote multiple times before deciding if you want to just send them back or purchase them. I don’t know how many times I’ve made a purchase and then upon actually wearing it for a whole day realize it’s super uncomfortable.
Under “My Tote” in your account, you’ll see buttons with “rate this tote” and “select items to buy”. We’ll get to rating in a second.
If you click “select items to buy”, you’ll be taken to a checkout page that looks a lot like an online cart. By default, everything is marked to purchase, but you can of course change that. Like they mentioned in the paperwork, if you buy your entire tote, your next month’s rental fee will be waived. This page is also where you’ll see the “Tote Sale” prices. The cardigan was already cheaper through Le Tote, but I can buy it further discounted for only $27.00! This price disappears as soon as I send it back though, so I won’t see that discount again. The only other item in my tote that is part of the sale is the wide leg pants, also for $27.00.
Since I decided to send everything back this time and not make a purchase (goodbye, sweet necklace), I just used the included mailer with the postage-paid label to put all 10 items into and left it for our lovely mail carrier, Neil, to pick up from the office. You can also just drop it at the local post office too.
Now that I’m finished wearing my first tote, it’s time to rate the items. Out of five stars, I think I’ll give this one a three. While the sizing seemed pretty good and I liked some of the items, I didn’t fall in love with anything enough to keep and didn’t wear the items as much as I would have thought. It is my first though so there is a ton of room for improvement once I start rating things.
Once you submit your overall star rating, they want to know more!
It goes even more in-depth with rating each piece from your tote. It asks how much I wore it…
If I liked the style…
…and if there were any fit or style issues. This can be super helpful in vetting future items and letting them know how things are sized. Pretty impressive.
So, Is Le Tote Worth It?
It can be hard to determine the value of a subscription like this and a lot of it is really just personal preference and what your lifestyle is. If I were to purchase all 10 of these pieces at the full retail price, it would be $607.00. Le Tote offers a great discount on everything, so at their prices, everything would have been $422.00 which is a $185.00 difference! Even better though, wearing all of these clothes like I would if I owned them for a full month only cost $99.00. I can see this being especially useful for those who want an “endless closet” with fresh looks all the time. It’s quite a value if you want to look like you’re constantly rotating your wardrobe without actually having to purchase anything. This also allows staying up with trends that may not be your favorite in 6 months or getting a dress or outfit for a special occasion that you know you won’t need to wear often like weddings, job interviews, etcetera. If you want to break it down, it’s like paying $3.30 a day or less than $10.00 per item to have new clothes every month that you can mix into your existing wardrobe and try new things.
While my first delivery was mostly about discovery for me, I think I got some quality pieces that were super wearable. I didn’t wear the clothes as much as I would have liked, but I think it’s because I wanted to try a few new things out of my comfort zone (both pairs of pants, a pleated skirt) and I’m still getting a feeling for how this all works. Next time, I may try more familiar articles like jeans, jackets, and oversized sweaters (since I ended up liking the cardigan quite a bit). I also rolled the dice with some of the sizings but overall I think Le Tote‘s suggestions can be trusted and that’s a really comforting feeling when choosing items online. I think rental is a really good idea for someone like me who doesn’t like committing right away or owning too much clothing. I can also see it being great for someone like my bestie who is a RETURN QUEEN and can never decide on clothing to buy. With this, I get to try styles with zero commitment unless I end up falling in love. I’m definitely excited to see what the future holds!
If you’re interested in more check out all of our Le Tote reviews or our 2019 Readers’ Choice: Best Women’s Clothing Subscription Boxes list!
What do you think of Le Tote? What other questions do you have that I can answer in the comments or in my next post?
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