The benefits of working with an online stylist vs. subscription stylist

March 4, 2022

So you are considering a personal stylist online.

Congrats on taking a step towards improving your wardrobe, confidence, and personal style!

While subscription boxes, store stylists, and online personal stylists all have benefits, there are some strong reasons to opt for an online personal stylist (like my online services for men and women).

Luckily, there are styling options for every budget from those that just want a few additional stylish pieces to others who want a full fashion education and closet overhaul.

Keep reading to find out which service is best for you.

Who could benefit from a subscription box stylist?

You may be familiar with popular subscription style boxes, such as Stitch Fix and Bento Box. These companies mail you clothes to try on and purchase after filling out a questionnaire about the types of clothes you need, your sizing, and your body type.

In a review of the top subscription boxes, one Glamour writer notes that the questionnaire took just a few minutes.

While that seems like a positive, and a time-saver, what it really means is the subscription service hasn’t truly taken the time to get to know you, your needs, and your body type on a personal level.

Most boxes give you a few days to make your selections, purchase the ones you want to keep and send the rest back.

These boxes are a subscription-based model, so once they have your initial information– they’ll send you a box delivered every month.

Sounds easy, but is it too easy?

If you just need a few pieces as an update to your wardrobe or a quick fix, a subscription box stylist may be the way to go.

It can also be a good choice for beginners who are looking for a very basic, ad hoc upgrade of their current fashion choices, especially those who aren’t concerned with cleaning out and repurposing pieces they already own.

However, if you want in-depth advice and are looking for a long-term strategy for your closet, then another option (like an online wardrobe stylist) will likely be a better fit.

Who should use a store stylist?

Photo Credit: @NextLevelWardrobe

A store stylist is someone employed by a store (like Nordstrom or Saks Fifth Avenue) that gives style advice to clients of the store. They work one-on-one with their clients and usually build at least a basic relationship with them.

For example, at Nordstrom, you will have a quick 30-minute meeting where your stylist will get to know you. Because of this, they should have a better understanding of your needs than a subscription box.

A store stylist may work with clients in-person or as an online stylist for the company.

Stylists who work in department stores usually have access to a fairly large selection of brands. This means you’ll have more options.

But, they’re limited to only what they have in store. That means you may not have access to as many brands as you need. They also most likely work on a commission wage, which means they make a % off of what you purchase.

One benefit of a store stylist is that you can tell them exactly what you want and they can help you find it. In my experience as a personal stylist online, it’s not uncommon to try one 5-10 brands to find the perfect fit and they’ll pull various options for you to try in store.

While this can be a positive, it can also be difficult if you don’t know exactly what you want or need.

A store stylist also might not fully understand your needs and they won’t know what’s already in your closet either. Most of them don’t begin a styling experience with evaluating your closet.

In short, if you’re someone who knows exactly what you want, then a store stylist may be the right choice for you.

Similarly, store stylists also work well for people who just need to pick up a few new pieces. If you don’t want a full closet update or long-term plan, consider a store stylist.

For individuals who want a more in-depth style strategy that works with what they already have, a personal stylist online may be a better option.

What does a personal stylist online do?

Photo Credit: @NextLevelWardrobe

It’s essential to not just seek personalized fashion advice, but to truly build a relationship with a professional who knows your goals and unique personality. Someone who you can work with for years and form a lasting relationship with.

Anyone can recommend certain clothes, but a personal stylist online spends time learning how you feel about the clothes you wear, and what recommendations will fit your lifestyle long after your sessions with them end.

In particular, an online stylist is a great option for busy people who don’t have time to go into stores.

If you’re like any of my personal styling clients— you may not have a lot of time, feel overwhelmed by the whole shopping experience, and have hired other expert coaches to help you reach your goals.

Clients have hired me because they don’t have enough time to spend hours in stores or online figuring out through trial and error what styles, colors, and fits do and don’t work for them.

We take the guesswork out of that difficult process. If you are overwhelmed by options (some even find the subscription box surveys tough to figure out), a personal stylist online is for you.

What Makes Next Level Wardrobe Online Personal Styling Different

As an online stylist, we get to know you, your body type, your lifestyle, and your style goals as well as dream scenarios. From there, we use our proprietary ‘Next Level Wardrobe Style System™’ to edit and build your ideal wardrobe.

(In fact, our style system has helped us become one of the top rated stylists in the United States.)

Our process starts with a complete closet edit to figure out what you already own, what we can keep, and what we need to get rid of. Because we truly believe that great style begins and ends with what’s in your closet.

We drill down into a closet, looking at various sub categories of it to ensure that you’re investing in the right pieces to make great outfits consistently, every single day.

We shop for our clients- keeping their preferences, age, lifestyle and style goals in mind and they receive a very detailed shopping guide with our selections. Completely customized to them.

A big part of the styling experience with us is education. Given our team’s experience in the Fashion Industry, we teach our clients the ‘why’ behind a great outfit, how to dress up or down and even the smallest details- like what socks to wear and whether to tuck or not.

You’ll leave our sessions with a go-to list of brands that work well for you to help you purchase clothes well into the future, making online personal styling an investment that you’ll use for years to come. And you’ll even learn to have fun with your style again!

If you’re ready to hire a stylist, apply for our Men’s Personal Stylist Online service or our Online Styling Services for Women.

Still not sure if a personal stylist is right for you? Check out these resources:

8 Reasons To Hire A Personal Stylist
7 Important Questions to Ask A Personal Stylist
4 Myths About Working With A Personal Stylist

About the Author - Cassandra Sethi
About the Author - Cassandra Sethi

Personal Stylist & Image Consultant

Cassandra Sethi is a Personal Stylist and Founder of Next Level Wardrobe, a luxury Personal Styling and Shopping Service that helps successful professionals of all ages and sizes. After working in the fashion industry for over 25 years, she used her expert knowledge to create a proprietary styling system called ‘The Next Level Wardrobe Style System' which guarantees clients more outfits with less items in their closet. NLW has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, The Tamron Hall Show, NY Mag, Huffington Post and more.

*Disclosure: Next Level Wardrobe only recommends products that we’d suggest to our clients or personally wear ourselves. All opinions expressed here are our own. This post may contain affiliate links that at no additional cost to you, Next Level Wardrobe may earn a small commission. Read the full privacy policy here.

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Cassandra Sethi

is a NYC Personal Stylist and Image Consultant. She is the Founder of Next Level Wardrobe and 'The NLW Style System' that guarantees clients more outfits with less items.

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