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Whether you’re into all the glitz or not, every woman deserves to have her Cinderella moment. A chance to get dolled up, glammed out, and of course, wear a gown worthy of your gorgeousness. But, unfortunately, with the average designer price point being an insurmountable expense, so many women are left wanting. Enter: Rent the Runway.
Rent the Runway launched with one idea in mind: to bring designer fashion to the masses. Jennifer Hyman, CEO and co-founder, knew that the average woman could not splurge on high-end dresses, even for a special occasion, so she created an innovative rental process that allowed women to feel fabulous in a designer gown at a fraction of the original cost. But, she realized early on that her mission was “inauthentic.”
With the largest dress size topping out at a designer (read: smaller) 14/16, Hyman was preventing more than half of American women from being able to shop her site. But, this wasn’t for a lack of trying to stock plus sizes. Hyman explained that she was “literally laughed out of the room” when she requested designers to provide her with sizes 0-22.
“When we launched Rent the Runway, we didn’t fully understand that our business was going to be about so much more than saving money, but rather, feeling empowered. Every woman deserves to feel beautiful before the most important occasions in her life and every woman regardless of her size should have her choice of the designer dress that gives her the most self-confidence,” said Hyman. “Until now, we have only been able to follow through on this undertaking for virtually half of the female population. We are so proud that our business has grown enough that we are finally able to make designer fashion not only accessible to, but also inclusive of, women of all shapes and sizes.”
Thankfully, Hyman has been able to influence and encourage designers including Badgley Mischka, Carmen Marc Valvo, and Theia to expand their size range, and has increased her stock of dresses from Adrianna Papell and Kay Unger (who both already designed plus sizes). With a full stock of over 40 options in sizes 14 to 22, from chiffon evening gowns to flirty sequined sheaths in prices ranging from $50 to $200, full-figured women can now enjoy the accessible luxury of Rent the Runway. (Glass slippers not included).