How a clothing rental subscription helped my body image issues
When you have an eating disorder or body image dysmorphia (or any body image issues at all), facing the closet every morning can be a real problem. Everything’s all well and good when you’re getting dressed until you look in the mirror and one of the following happens:
Nothing looks good at all, and you have to start over or…
The outfit feels fine until you look in the mirror and zero in immediately on that thing about your body that never fails to disappoint or…
You are so paralyzed at the thought of choosing clothes that you simply melt down, put on a hoodie, and call in sick.
The struggle is very real. Here’s what I’ve learned about clothes and how using the clothing rental subscription, LeTote helped me face my closet. (P.s. This is not a paid sponsorship or partnership. I’ve just been genuinely helped by this service.)
First things first - your clothes have no power
Before you get carried away and begin to think that having a fantastic wardrobe will solve all of your problems, let me just dash that dream. Your clothes have no power. Whether you’re wearing Old Navy or Dolce & Gabbana, if you are looking in the mirror in order to figure out your worth, you’re going to come up empty.
Your identity and value are not found in what you look like. (Read the Body Image Blog for more about this.) For those of us who struggle with body image anxiety this can be hard to believe. Because we still have to get dressed every day. And sometimes that brings with it an unwarranted amount of pressure.
How Clothing Rental helped my body image issues
While there are a variety of clothing rental companies, my favorite is LeTote. So for the sake of example and illustration, the processes that I mention pertain to that particular service.
Here’s how it works: Through LeTote, I pay a flat monthly rate to receive my clothing rental boxes. Each box contains several clothing items and accessories (according to your subscription level). With the virtual closet and box approval process, I find that I’m able to be very selective about the items that I receive in my box. Each time you receive a box of clothes, you can wear the items for as long as you want, then return them. Your new box is automatically generated as soon as the post office scans your return package.
THE BENEFITS OF CLOTHING RENTAL SERVICES
You don’t have to decide what to wear. Did I mention that you don’t have to decide what to wear?? This relieves so much of the pressure that the closet usually triggers. There’s no agonizing over what will make your body look best or feeling guilty about that old sweater that doesn’t fit anymore. Instead, you simply wear what you’ve been sent. As long as you choose styles that fit your personality and daily demands, you’ll be able to skip the perfectionistic 5-outfit-change morning routine, and just get dressed.
You’ll be sent clothes that fit. When you create your account on LeTote, you create a profile according to your measurements and sizes that you wear at other retailers. As you wear your items, you can rate the fit that you experience to ensure that your size remains accurate. For those of us who change size often as we struggle with weight loss and gain, this is a huge relief. It means avoiding spending money on clothes that might not fit several months later.
You can wear anything once. For those of us who struggle with body image anxiety, clothes get more power than they should. Because sometimes we (wrongly) rely on them to feel good, rather than finding our identity as a loved daughter of God. When you open your clothing rental box, you are given the opportunity to just wear what you see without thinking twice about whether it’s perfect or not. Even if you don’t love every piece of clothing, you can wear anything once. You might even be surprised how much you like that macaroni yellow that you would have never bought for yourself.
You can narrow down your core wardrobe. While you can get a wide variety of pieces through clothing rental subscriptions, you will still need a few core items of clothing at home. Black dress pants, some exercise gear, and your favorite pair of jeans, for example. This will keep you comfortably humming along without clothes-induced anxiety in between subscription boxes, and will keep your closet tidy as well.
No laundry. Just thought I would throw that out there. All of the items are dry cleaned by LeTote, so no laundry for you.
It’s fun. When you’re facing body image issues, getting dressed can be a chore because of all of the emotional baggage that ensues. But when you get a new box of clothes approximately every week, it can actually be something simple and fun to look forward to.
If you want to try out LeTote for free, here’s a link for a free box: https://letote.com/freetote/JANELLE544
(This is a referral link. If you love LeTote and complete a month with their service, I will receive a small referral credit.)