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Amazon has unveiled Prime Wardrobe, a subscription service that lets users try out clothing and accessories. Prime members can use the new service for free.
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SAN FRANCISCO —Amazon wants to make clothing purchases easier with a new program it plans to launch called Prime Wardrobe, a service that allows customers to order clothes, keep them for a week and return whatever they don’t like for free.

Prime Wardrobe shares some similarities with other “try before you buy” programs such as Stitch Fix and Nordstrom’s Trunk Club, though these choose clothing options for customers. In Amazon’s case, the customer makes all the choices.

Any Prime member in the United States can choose between three and 15 items of clothing, shoes or accessories, which will be shipped to them for free.

They then have up to seven days to try the clothing on. Anything they don’t want, for whatever reason, can be shipped back in the same reusable box, which comes with a prepaid label. Amazon picks up the shipping cost.

There is no upfront charge; payment only comes after the seven days. Customers get a 10% discount if they keep three or four items, 20% off for five or more items.

The consumer is already using the bedroom as the new fitting room so that’s not so much what’s new, said Amit Sharma, CEO of Narvar, a company that offers delivery and return support to online retailers.

“This is more of an effort to drive consideration for Amazon as a legitimate outlet to buy clothing, and to gain visibility for their apparel offerings from well-regarded brands like Calvin Klein, Adidas, Theory and Hugo Boss,” he said.

The play will probably be profitable because apparel has some of the highest margins in retail, which will help offset the return shipping costs, he said.

Items for Prime Wardrobe include children’s, women’s and men’s clothing.

The service is similar to online shoe store Zappos, which became a success story by making buying shoes online painless with free returns and exchanges, a process that had previously been fraught with hassles. Amazon bought Zappos in 2009.

The Prime Wardrobe service is currently in beta mode, but customers are encouraged to sign up for an email notification when it launches to the general public.