6 Times You Should Always Rent Clothes Instead of Buy

While special occasions often require you to dress to the nines (and who doesn't want to look their best on a big day?), it isn't always economical or smart to run out and buy new clothes. (See also: 10 Ways to Acquire Cheap Formal Wear)

Often, expensive clothing will only be worn a few times — or worse, only once. (Unless, of course, you're a professional socialite.) Thankfully, we now have designer clothing rental sites like Rent the Runway, where it's possible to rent that $1,000 Badgley Mischka dress for a mere fraction of retail. Neighborhood consignment stores, or tux and bridal rental shops are also good alternatives. Here are six times when you should always rent, rather than buy.

1. Weddings

Finding true love and standing before family and friends to attest your commitment to each other is one of life's most important celebrations. But the cost of a wedding dress or tuxedo can run up to thousands of dollars — and you'll only wear it once in your life. Rent instead of buying and put the extra savings toward starting your new life. Members of the wedding party should also consider renting, if possible.

2. Anniversaries

It should always be a priority to look our best for the one we love. What better way is there to keep the spark alive than by being creative and trying new things? A simple way to mix things up is by changing your look. Rent instead of buying to experiment with different looks and surprise your spouse.

3. Proms

Sure, prom dresses can be re-used at other formal events — but unless you know your social calendar is full of fancy galas, you should avoid permanently investing in expensive attire. Prom is a one-time event; don't splurge on buying an outfit, and put the savings toward making the night even more memorable in other ways.

4. Class Reunions

Most of us dread class reunions. Although they present an opportunity to reconnect with old classmates and friends and catch-up, we know our former classmates can't wait to size us up, so we often feel pressured to look our best. But don't fall prey to this mentality. Class reunions are yet another time when we should rent instead of buying. Instead, consider working on your physical fitness or personal accomplishments if you really want to wow your old friends.

5. Black Tie and Red Carpet Events

Everyone looks their best at black tie and red carpet events. Often, these types of events are well photographed for marketing purposes and receive lots of press coverage. This is definitely a time when you should rent instead of buy, because chances are you will get your moment in the spotlight. And most of us can more easily afford to rent a fabulous designer outfit than buy one. (see also: 6 Things That Seem Like Splurges But Are Actually Savvy Buys)

6. Photo Shoots

Glamour photography, corporate photo shoots, and family portraits are all occasions to look your best. If your wardrobe isn't already equipped with clothing well-suited to the task, consider renting an outfit that will highlight your best features. Photos live forever, but dollars wasted on unnecessary clothing purchases don't.

Have you ever rented an outfit for a special occasion? How'd it go?

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Kimmy Burgess

Very effective ideas suggested above reg. renting out clothing for special occasions, since it is not only economical, but also makes better use of things which is required to be used only once or twice in life.