The concept and service of handbag rentals has actually been around for a few years, but it’s just now starting to pick up steam. With the often absurd price tags attached to high-end luxury accessories, a lot of fashion enthusiasts are resolved to merely window shopping and doing without the quality products that they would like to own. On top of that, even when one can manage to scrape together enough cash to purchase an extravagant purse or handbag, it’s not uncommon for it to go out of style by the next season.
Possibly taking cues from Netflix, a couple different companies have answered the call and made designer handbags available as rentals to those who probably could not afford them otherwise. The two companies dominating the handbag rental business right now are Bag, Borrow, or Steal and From Bags to Riches. The former of the two recently landed a prominent product placement in the new Sex and the City movie, which has served to boost the company’s popularity and brandability, considerably.
By offering purse rentals for as little as $6 a week (in some lower-end cases), these companies have made it possible for the “average” American to walk down the street carrying the latest Burberry, Chanel, or Louis Vuitton bag (and just about every other designer you can think of). The renter may keep the bag for as long as they like, and when they’re finished they either return it or exchange it for a new bag. In the event that their customers become terribly attached to the rented purse, they take into account a few factors pertaining to the purse (age, condition) and then give the customer a fair price that they can purchase it at – usually significantly less than it would cost to buy the purse brand new.
In the past, many who wanted designer handbags have settled for counterfeits. Some counterfeit bags are created so masterfully that the average handbag aficionado can’t tell the difference. Of course, there are those that can tell the difference, and that fact alone makes many people hesitant to be seen wearing something that may be obviously fake to someone. Handbag rentals are an ideal alternative because you still get the huge price break, and to sweeten the deal you get a 100% genuine designer bag to tote around.
On the downside, the most popular bags (specifically the ones that celebrities have been spotted with that month) tend to get snatched up quickly, and in order to get your hands on one you might have to get on a waiting list.
In addition to their handbag collection, Bag, Borrow, or Steal also recently added jewelry, as well as sunglasses to their roster. The idea of renting sunglasses doesn’t seem quite as clever to me, but I suppose designer sunglasses can also get into pretty daunting price ranges.
If you decide to rent a purse from another purse rental company (aside from the two reputable ones mentioned above), be sure to do your research online and make sure they are a legitimate company that is lending out authentic handbags. With all the attention handbag rentals are getting lately, it’s inevitable that the crooks will be trying to get a piece of the action soon. So, do your homework, and happy borrowing!