The celebrity stylist has come of age. No longer restricted to the back-end of celebrity affairs, the stylist is getting his/her share of the limelight and here to stay. The Internet has made their lives and celebrity shopping that much easier. Several stylists have joined the e-commerce bandwagon for their shot at fame and fortune. Most of these stylist sites offer shoppers products and merchandise tailored to their preferences, either through an algorithm or through stylists that personally select the products.
Jessica Paster who has styled the likes of Jennifer Hudson and Emily Blunt recently joined JustFab.com as the chief stylist for the shoe and handbag site. And Paster is not alone. Fashion designer Christian Siriano serves as chief curator for SendtheTrend.com. Head here for cool sunglasses, scarves and headwraps. Meanwhile Kate Bosworth and her stylist Cher Coulter design products for JewelMint.com. Their products are packaged in black velvet satchels with a note that is signed “Kate + Cher XO”. We also have Kim Kardashian heading a group of ten stylists on ShoeDazzle.com – one of the first stylist sites. Then there is SoleSociety.com, which is where you should go to catch interviews with the likes of Mad Men stylist Janie Bryant.
As I mentioned earlier, these sites provide fashion products tailored to a given consumer’s preferences. Some like JewelMint require you to take a style quiz. Then, each month products are sent based on an algorithm. But at JustFab.com, Paster heads a team of 35 stylists who make the selections personally.
Moreover, in addition to offering products tailored to a shopper’s style quotient, customers get a reasonable deal as well. Most of the new stylist sites offer customers one stylish fashion product each month for a monthly subscription fee that could range between $29.95 and $49.95. This kicks in only after a shopper has booked her first order (and mind you, most of the shoppers are female since the sites cater to women between 25 and 45!). Thereafter, the consumer must click “skip” by the fifth of the month if she does not want to order anything, or a fee is automatically charged. This amount accumulates to credits with a year’s validity. Of the lot, only Nordstrom-owned SoleSociety allows you to cancel your membership via email.
Do not expect to find the utmost in luxury and you will not be disappointed. You are probably not going to find gold and silver jewelry and most of the footwear will not be genuine leather, but if you are looking to purchase high fashion at a bargain, these sites are ideal. For instance, JewelMint’s founders sell jewelry on the site for as little as $29.95. But the same items would cost $100 and more anywhere else. Similarly, SoleSociety’s General Manager Andy Solomon says that the $49.95 shoes sold via the site generally come with a price tag of $150. Owned by flash sales site HauteLook, SoleSociety has its own Italian inspired in-house brand, Marco Santi.
The Internet has really brought stylists into their own via blogs and social networking sites. Coming up is StyleMint, another site from the JewelMint group that will offer tees designed by Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen. And watch out for still more Mint sites in the coming months. Plus, the stylist sites are set to break into the international market as well – UK gets its own ShoeDazzle in June this year.