What’s not to love about ThirdLove?

Discussion
Source: ThirdLove
May 01, 2020
Patricia Vekich Waldron

It’s a fact. Finding quality, comfortable, flattering and beautiful lingerie, jeans and swimsuits are women’s top apparel challenges. I was impressed when I heard ThirdLove present at the pre-pandemic eTail West show.

Since I have some spare time on my hands these days and lingerie is apparently non-essential, I decided to give them a try. Here are the five reasons I am now hooked.

  1. Fit: Answer a few online questions with explanatory images and video clips and get recommendations for the best fit(s). The FitFinder tool was easy (and accurate) although, at first, I did think it was odd that the recommendations were emailed and not rendered while I was on the site. As I look back, however, it is good to have the email as a reference.
  2. Ease: There are free shipping and returns, so one tries on garments at home, not waiting half undone in a dressing room for a store associate to bring another size. The payment process was seamless with the usual options, as well as Apple Pay, Amazon Pay and installments.
  3. Selection: Eighty (!) sizes for each style — nearly twice as many as most other brands — including half-cup sizes for optimal fit. They also offer many shades of “nude” so customers can find garments that more closely match their skin color.
  4. Donations: ThirdLove takes back any product for up to 45 days. Returned bras are laundered and donated to women in need.
  5. Product: Bras are attractive, comfortable and becoming, which is the most important thing of all, especially during confinement.

For me, ThirdLove lives up to its “Bras for every body” brand promise. I’m not the only one who feels this way as there are over 50,000 five-star reviews from other customers.

 

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There’s no specific mold for beauty. Art by @handsomegirldesigns

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DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: What factors do you think are the biggest keys driving ThirdLove’s business success? Are there other retailers and consumer-direct brands that stand out to you for having similar strengths?

Please practice The RetailWire Golden Rule when submitting your comments.
Braintrust
"Celebrating diversity and body acceptance drives ThirdLove’s success. "
"I applaud ThirdLove’s straightforward approach to providing an alternative to the dreadful retail store bra fitting room experience."
"ThirdLove checks a lot of boxes, and I love its commitment to diversity."

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5 Comments on "What’s not to love about ThirdLove?"


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Neil Saunders
BrainTrust

Unlike some in the segment – I’m looking at you Victoria’s Secret – ThirdLove looked at the market, saw what problems women had in buying bras (fit and comfort), and built a business model around solving those issues. This customer focus earned them loyalty.

The model also creates a number of advantages. Margins are good because returns are low thanks to well-fitting bras. Founder Heidi Zak has acted as a spokesperson in advertising and has become an authentic voice for the brand; her story about starting the business resonates with many women. The app-based measuring process has proved popular, both because it is convenient and because it means women don’t need to subject themselves to uncomfortable in-person fittings.

All in all, it’s a really sound business!

Lisa Goller
BrainTrust

Celebrating diversity and body acceptance drives ThirdLove’s success. Its inclusive positioning contrasts with lingerie rivals whose narrow, exclusive beauty ideal excludes the vast majority of women.

At ThirdLove, variety abounds, giving women more choice for an accurate fit. Personalizing the online customer experience ensures a proper fit and satisfaction to reduce the need for returns. Yet even the returns process is hassle-free and compassionate, helping less fortunate women.

Direct-to-consumer apparel brand ASOS has also showed decisive leadership in this area. The brand deliberately included consumers of all sizes, across a rainbow of ethnicities, in its marketing campaigns to reflect its diverse, inclusive assortment.

Georganne Bender
BrainTrust

It’s a fact that the majority of women are wearing the incorrect bra size. If you haven’t been fitted by a professional bra fitter, trust me, you are missing out because it’s a life changing experience.

ThirdLove checks a lot of boxes, and I love its commitment to diversity. Maybe buying a garment as important as a bra online works for some people, but it doesn’t work for me. I’ll take the fitters at Nordstrom and the retailers that specialize in true fit over an online quiz any day.

Cynthia Holcomb
BrainTrust

Modern feel website, interesting experience to self-profile for a bra fit. The process points out what is wrong with the decades-old bra sizing, shape, and fit based upon the “perfect” female shape. I applaud ThirdLove’s straightforward approach to providing an alternative to the dreadful retail store bra fitting room experience. Their product looks pretty, yet it is limited in styles, which makes for good margins. ThirdLove is heroic in offering sizes to fit all women, with special attention to how a bra feels when one wears it. Many consumer-direct brands now have retail outposts. Warby-Parker comes to mind as one of the best.

Shikha Jain
BrainTrust
ThirdLove’s success comes down to three factors. First, the physical trial. The option to do a physical trial with relative ease is important because once this is complete, the reorder and replenish process can be completed effortlessly online. Second, filling a hole in the market. Women are tired of uncomfortable bras that don’t *really* fit. And going into stores to try on one after the other that doesn’t quite work is exhausting and demoralizing (“what’s wrong with my body that nothing fits me?”). Third, using the right messaging. ThirdLove tells consumers that the problem isn’t with you, it’s with a market that has failed women at large, and their wide selection embraces a body-positive message that resonates with the values of today’s buyers. Other companies that are similar in terms of incorporating social commentary into their products: Thinx (dispelling the social stigma around periods and making sure their portfolio is inclusive), Spanx (with their product line expansions to be accessible in different store formats, they made sure that all women could feel confident and empowered)… Read more »
wpDiscuz
Braintrust
"Celebrating diversity and body acceptance drives ThirdLove’s success. "
"I applaud ThirdLove’s straightforward approach to providing an alternative to the dreadful retail store bra fitting room experience."
"ThirdLove checks a lot of boxes, and I love its commitment to diversity."

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