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I’d say that quite a bit of my wardrobe these days comes from Stitch Fix or Trendsend. I’m a (mostly) stay-at-home mom who homeschools. To say that I have very little time to myself to go shopping and try on clothes would be an understatement. Heck, it was an understatement even before I started homeschooling. So these services are a blessing for me. I pay $20 for a stylist to pick things out for me based on a styling profile that I fill out. They ship it to me at no cost. I try it out on my watch with all the things already in my closet. I keep what I want and pay for it minus the $20 I already paid for the styling fee, and I send back the rest with a little feedback so that my stylist can use that for the next time. Shipping is free for me both ways, I get the service as often as I like, and I have a closet of clothes that are on trend and work with my existing wardrobe and FIT.
My husband, on the other hand, has a wardrobe that consists mainly of a few items for work, two pairs of jeans, and a sh**load of graphic tees. After nearly 13 years of marriage, I’ve just stopped looking at it and worrying about it. (After all, I don’t have that much room to talk. My wardrobe was mainly yoga pants and t-shirts until I started working again.) This particular nightmare is now mostly reserved for when we get invited to a wedding or party.
This in mind, I decided to start tackling it over the winter months. First, I looked up some capsule wardrobes aimed at men and incorporated a few things. THEN, I dug through the clothes he had. After weeding out what he couldn’t wear anymore, we determined what he needed, and I started looking to a service for him that’s similar to the ones I use.
And it’s now that I realize… While there’s a great deal of inequality in this world where women get the short end of the stick, men are really an overlooked market when it comes to affordable styling services. I looked at box after box after box, and so far I haven’t found much that’s come close to my beloved Stitch Fix and Trendsend.
Enter Frank & Oak Hunt Club. The fee is actually a lot better in that you only pay $20 per year for membership. After that it’s the same deal as Stitch Fix and Trendsend. They send you clothes in a box, you keep what you want and pay for it, and you send back what you don’t want.
Frank & Oak fortunately lets you try the service risk free for 90 days. If you’re not satisfied, you get your $20 back. We ended up cancelling after the second box. It just wasn’t going to work for us. (That said, it’s great if you think it might be for you.)
Now for a small disclaimer… I have no idea how well my husband knew his way around the service. So keep that in mind with what I’m about to say. Also, no modeling pictures of my man, unfortunately, so bear with me.
My husband isn’t a very large man. This is a guy who lifts and runs over 3 miles on a near-daily basis. We’re pretty familiar with his clothing sizes. But everything he was sent seemed to run super small. There’s a saying about a 2 lb. sausage in a 1 lb. casing that goes here. That was the look we kept running into. Nothing worked, and this was with the largest size available. (Is there a huge difference in U.S. and Canadian sizing, maybe?)
Now, this could still work for a smaller man, but then we ran into some billing issues as well. I absolutely recommend using a credit card when dealing with this service, because here’s the biggest issue I had. F&O charged our card for the entire cost of each box before it even arrived– before we’d even decided whether or not we were keeping anything. With all other similar services I’ve tried for me, I’ve only been charged the styling fee and then later charged for everything else once I’d decided what I was keeping. This wasn’t such a big deal with the first box, as the charge simply stayed in “pending” status until we returned everything. With the second box, however, the charge went through. Since we’d already sent everything back AND cancelled, we had to dispute the charge.
It’s also pricey. How pricey? for the price of three simple button-down collared shirts, I was able to get an entire order of five items from Stitch Fix or a complete outfit from Trendsend. Last week, we hit the department store sales racks and got two button downs and two sweaters for less than the price of one button down shirt from F&O. They all fit in his regular size, and I honestly can’t say that the quality of the shirts from F&O were any better.
Bottom line… I think this could work if your man has a lot of money to throw at clothes and can fit into the clothing. I still caution using a credit card just in case. But for us? Nah. We’ll pass.