Gwynnie Bee

Date Thu, July 24 2014

This review is a little different from others I’ve written recently because it’s absolutely not sponsored. Although you can sign up for Gwynnie Bee with my referral link, which will benefit me, I’m not affiliated with the company in any way.

In essence, Gwynnie Bee is a Netflix-like clothing service for plus-sized women. The site advertises specifically for women between sizes 10 and 32, so it covers quite a range. Brands include ASOS Curve, IGIGI, Kiyonna, Calvin Klein, DKNY, and many more. I’ll be honest, I wasn’t super familiar with many of these brands, but my experience shows they’re all rather high quality, and some of the price can be pretty expensive, which makes Gwynnie Bee a great option if you want to try and possibly buy clothes.

The site uses a tiered service like Netflix’s mailing DVDs (can you even still do that??). You can see the prices below.

Gwynnie Bee Plans and Prices

Gwynnie Bee Plans and Prices

Obviously, it’s a better deal if you want to try more clothes to get more items at once. If you “check out” 4 dresses worth more than $100 each month, you’re saying a lot of money with most of the plans. You can try the 1, 2 or 3-at-a-time plans for free for the first thirty days, which is what I did.

The number of items you receive each month totally depends on how long you keep them. For example, I sent a few items back right away because I didn’t like them or plan to wear them at all. It took between one and two weeks to receive a new item. If you want to wear an item but are waiting for a specific date or event to wear it, you’re going to receive far fewer items. I’ve received 6 items since I signed up in the last week of May, so it obviously takes a little time between the shipments. Gwynnie Bee sends out items when they have them in your size after they dry-clean them, so I understand it won’t be instant (more on this later). You’ll want to add many items to your closet to ensure you get items faster.

The closet is like your queue on Netflix. You add items you want to try. You’ll see what’s at home/in transit, what’s on the rack to be sent to you and what’s on hold. The hold section contains items you want but not just yet. So if it’s summer, you might put heavier items on hold. You might hold an item until you add something to your wardrobe to wear with it, so on and so forth. I use the hold section for items I’d like to try but I’m not as excited about.

The sort of items you’ll find from Gwynnie bee range from dresses to blazers to jeans to tops.  I focused on tops, skirts and dresses because I wanted to get out of my comfort zone. Most of the items were dresses; although, I’ve received one skirt. In 8 weeks, I haven’t received a single top. I imagine these are the type of thing that customers keep longer to wear multiple times if they like it. But I’m not the type of person to wear dresses all the time, and tops would be easier to wear on a daily basis. Unfortunately, there are just fewer individual pieces that I like on the site. Some of the tops are downright hideous.

All of the items I’ve ordered have fit, which is awesome! However, I’ve had issues with some of them being too long, which happens when you’re just 5’2″. Skirts and dresses that are too long definitely make me look frumpy and aren’t complementary. So I removed a bunch of tea-length skirts and dresses from my closet because, even though they’re cute, they just don’t work with my height and tailoring isn’t an option.

You can read reviews to learn more about quality, fit and style. I find reviews on Gwynnie Bee help me more than those on many other sites.

If you really like it, you can contact Gwynnie Bee about buying it at a discounted price. I haven’t done this; although, I would certainly consider it. Remember that you are getting gently-used clothes. One thing I like is that you don’t have to clean anything; although, you will if you want to wear it again. Every piece comes with instructions pinned to the tag to let you know how to safely do this.

White Floral Jacquard Skater Dress With Black Patent Belt

My favorite piece from Gwynnie Bee thus far

Because these are used, they may not be in perfect shape. I’ve read reviews where some people received ripped or damaged items. The dress I am currently wearing should have come with a belt, but didn’t. I would carefully look over any items before you send them back. However, the quality of most of the items has been impressive. Thicker/stiffer fabrics don’t show underwear, hold up to wear and are slimming. Lace has been pretty but thick enough to stand up to being passed around. One bummer is that I’ve signed in a couple times to find items removed from my closet because they’ve been retired. I can assume there were only a few in circulation and they are not longer in good enough shape. Some retired items wind up in the shop where you can buy them at steep discounts from MSRP.

When you’re done with the item, there’s a blue plastic envelope to send things back in. Because I’m on the lower end of the plus-size spectrum, everything has fit, and I drop it off in a blue mail box to be mailed back. However, some people have had trouble with larger sized clothing fitting into the bag.

And I’ll end this review with a few thoughts about shipping. Even though I was sending things back less than 24 hours after I shipped them and marking them as shipped so Gwynnie could “prep and ship” my next order earlier, it still takes over a week to get the next item. With my two-at-a-time plan, I’ve actually received the same number of items when I received only one piece at a time.

Part of this is due to the fact that they just moved to  a new warehouse. However, they’ve completed the move and shipping is as slow as it was when they were in the middle of it — even slower. I’ve complained on social media only to be told to email them, but I’m not sure what good this will do.

I’ve been told that Gwynnie Bee never issues any sort of refunds, which is a bummer. I would have loved to know this before I started paying. While I generally like the idea of this service, you’re not going to love everything, and it can be expensive if you’re like me and have only actually worn one thing.

I’m definitely canceling when my month is up, but you might love Gwynnie Bee. I encourage you to try it out.

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