11.7.16 7

Best Rent the Runway Dresses for Holiday Parties

Not quite ready to deck the halls?

I figured as such. Even though I caved and watched Love Actually on September 29, I’m holding out and skipping all my favorite Christmas songs on shuffle and avoiding watching my favorite Christmas movies, namely The Family Stone, until after Thanksgiving. But, before we break out the holly, the ivy, and the mistletoe, I figured there is one thing we can all get a jump start on—our holiday party outfits.

My company always has the best holiday parties that my coworkers and I look forward to year round. We start the night out heavy on the Michael Buble and raw bar, and end up tearing up the dance floor after a few hundred photos in the Photo Booth. (I’m not exaggerating.) For this year’s soiree, which is going down in early December, I’ve rented this Elizabeth & James Freedom Sheath dress—it has feathers!

Though I’ve purchased formal dresses for holiday parties in the past, it’s no secret I am a huge fan of Rent the Runway.

Because I like to wear different dresses to every event, I’ve found that Rent the Runway allows me to do that without breaking the bank. And no, this isn’t sponsored—this is just me trying to help you save a few bucks during the most wonderful time of the year.

At first glance, it can be hard to rationalize spending anywhere from $40-$100 for a dress you only have in your possession for four days. But I think of it like this—generally speaking, the quality of dresses I like to wear cannot be purchased for that amount and if I do buy a formal dress, I wear it two or three times max, so the cost-per-wear is still very high. As a result, I’ve found RTR fits my needs extremely well. A few tips if you’re afraid of giving it a shot for the first time:

  • I’ve found that generally, RTR dresses run on the smaller side, so order your normal size and then select the next size up as your backup size. There’s no charge for the backup size and no one sees the number but you!
  • When considering which dress to rent, take advantage of the customer reviews! I think this one of the best features on the RTR site as you can see a dress on real people, not just the model. To get a good idea of how the dress will look on me, I find reviewers who have similar body types to mine, which helps to inform my decision on what to rent.
  • Now is the time to book for holiday party dresses! Popular dresses often sell out in certain sizes, especially on popular dates, like Fridays during the holiday season, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and New Years Eve. (You can book dresses up to four months out from your event.)
  • If you’re going to rent two or more dresses a year, it makes sense to sign up for Rent the Runway Pro. This is seriously the best $30 I’ve spent all year! You save $15 on each order as shipping and insurance is waved—hence, if you’re renting two or more, you should become a Pro member—and are gifted a free $50 gift card for your birthday!

I’ve rounded up my favorite picks for you in this post, but would love to know what RTR dresses you’re loving this holiday season. In an effort to be budget conscious, all of the dresses linked here are under $100 to rent! So if you haven’t locked in your look for your company holiday party, formal fete with friends, or NYE—definitely procrastinate some work this fine Monday to do so! (Holiday) Cheers!

PS. Throughout this holiday season, you can click on any of the graphics I make to be taken directly to the product to shop itTest it out above—fun stuff!

Leave a Comment


  1. Monica wrote:

    Seriously loved the one you rented!! Also yes re: Love Actually in September. I’ve already watched it twice #noshame.

    Published 11.7.16
    • Katie wrote:

      Thanks so much, Monica! I need to watch it again to keep up ;]

      Published 11.9.16
  2. Kristyn wrote:

    Such a great post idea Katie!! I’m always on the hunt for a good RTR dress for the holidays!! Will definitely be skimming through your picks. Xo

    Primp and Proper

    Published 11.7.16
    • Katie wrote:

      Thanks so much Kristyn! xo

      Published 11.9.16
  3. Alissa wrote:

    RTR has THE best dresses for the holidays! I’ve rented items a few times and they’ve never disappointed. Man, your company holiday parties sound fun! lol


    Published 11.10.16
  4. Rachel wrote:

    Thanks for sharing your experience! I’d be most worried about making sure I get the right size! I’ve never tried RTR myself, but I know several people who have and loved it.

    Published 11.15.16
  5. Thanks for publishing blog about dress rental, this is a great and knowledgeable blog to everyone. Publish this type blog again in future.

    Published 4.6.17