Bethany Biron/Business Insider
- Amazon launched a personal styling service called Personal Shopper in July to compete with popular subscription services like Stitch Fix.
- Personal Shopper is an extension of Amazon’s existing Prime Wardrobe feature, a "try before you buy" program for Prime users to ship prospective clothing items to their home, keep what they want, and send back the rest.
- I tried the styling service and was fairly unimpressed. The overall presentation was lackluster, shipping was slow, and the platform itself — which can only be accessed on mobile — was glitchy.
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Amazon may be vying to be my personal stylist, but I don’t think I want it to be.
The tech juggernaut launched Personal Shopper in July as an extension of its existing Prime Wardrobe "try before you buy" program that allows users to order items online, try them on at home, and send back whatever they don’t want. The styling service is currently available to Prime members and costs $4.99 a month for one customized, curated shipment of up to eight items.
The new service is an effort by Amazon to capitalize on the success of algorithmic styling companies like Stitch Fix, the e-commerce site that filed its initial public offering in 2017 at a valuation of $1.6 billion. Along with companies like Trunk Club that were early entrants to the subscription market, Stitch Fix helped pave the way for the rise of similar apparel services and inspired new categories like lingerie and jewelry.
I tried Personal Shopper and experienced several frustrations and glitches along the way that ultimately made it difficult for me enjoy the service — even though I did manage to score two new skirts and a blouse in the process.
Here’s what it was like using the new Amazon service and why I don’t plan on using it again in the future:
In order to join Personal Shopper, you have to create a style profile on the Amazon app and pay the $4.99 fee.
My first major grievance about Personal Shopper is you can only access the service via the Amazon app, and you can’t use it on desktop.
Once I signed up, I was asked a series of questions regarding personal style, budget, and body type. This took around 10-15 minutes.
Amazon then takes a couple days to process this information, pairing it with previous purchases and browsing data to determine recommended products.
The first series of questions focused on my personal style. For each style of clothing, which included "classic" and "boho," I was asked to rank how frequently I wear them.
The survey also included a few more specific questions on particular types of clothing, like these bolder options.
I would maybe do a ruffle, even though this top is giving me Seinfeld puffy shirt vibes. However, I don’t think I can pull off an animal print skirt, despite The Cut deeming it the skirt of the summer this year.
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