I spent a month wearing Amazon’s discount clothes and found some hidden gems – NJ.com

Amazon's clothing line — called Amazon Essentials — is a brand similar to Costco’s Kirkland and Kohl’s Sonoma brands. (Graphic by Nicolette Accardi | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com)Amazon
Once nighttime rolls around, I fall victim to browsing the latest deals and trends on the internet.
I’m a reporter who covers the shopping industry and loves clothes, so it’s only natural — it must be in my DNA.
While fun, the habit certainly can make a dent in the wallet after awhile, but I was intrigued when I found a possible solution to ease that a bit in the long run: Amazon’s discount brand clothing.
The online retail giant is a powerhouse when it comes to slashing prices on big-ticket items, such as Apple’s AirPods and iRobot smart vacuums, but its own clothing line — called Amazon Essentials — is a hidden gem. To add some context, the brand is similar to Costco’s Kirkland and Kohl’s Sonoma brands.
I put Amazon’s Essentials to the test by committing to wearing the clothing line for an entire month. Here’s how it went.
The buying process
The in-house, affordable Amazon Essentials brand has a broad range of styles for various occasions. Whether you’re looking for business-casual attire or sportswear, the selection of basics is quite impressive for everyday wear.
Puffer coats, fleece, sweaters, denim, blouses — you name it, Amazon has it.
The prices are also fantastic. For example, the Lightweight Water-Resistant Packable Puffer Coat is just $39.90, compared to this similar $300 Stretch Down Parka from high-end outerwear brand The North Face.
Browsing the huge selection became overwhelming — like endlessly scrolling through Netflix trying to decide what to watch — so it’s best to search with a product in mind. I was on the hunt for good layering pieces I could wear while running in the cold weather.
When I settled on what I wanted and placed the order, the clothing was delivered quickly since I’m an Amazon Prime member.
If you want to test out the clothes before committing, Amazon also offers members a “Try Before You Buy” service (previously called Prime Wardrobe).
Comfort, quality and sizing
I’ve been wearing the Studio Long-Sleeve T-Shirt ($14.60), Brushed Tech Stretch Long-Sleeve Crew ($21.90) and Brushed Tech Stretch Full-Zip Jacket (price varies).
After a month of wearing the clothes, I’m pleasantly surprised by the quality.
Compared to my $50.97 Nike Element Half-Zip Pullover Shirt, which has similar features to all the tops, I’m certifying the Amazon Essentials pieces as great dupes for half the price.
The key component that makes these tops rock is a lightweight, soft, moisture-wicking fabric — you will not feel sweaty after working out. I also found them to be quite insulating, which is another plus.
Next up, bottoms.
I opted for the Brushed Tech Stretch Short ($14.30) and Brushed Tech Stretch Pant ($19.84), which are perfect for lounging, running errands or hitting the gym. Both pieces have pockets, a rare and exciting find on women’s clothing.
The shorts also have moisture-wicking fabric, while the pants are silky soft. And if leggings are more your vibe, Amazon Essentials has plenty of those, too.
As for sizing, that’s where the only con comes in. The clothing runs big.
I ordered an extra-small for all the clothing, but the fit was definitely more like a small. Even though the clothes ran large, the baggier fit does make them really comfy — especially when lounging around.
How to style
All these pieces have the potential to turn into a snazzy gym outfit or casual day look.
This is how I wore them — I stuck with the basics as you can see.
(Nicolette Accardi | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com)Nicolette Accardi
The final verdict
I’ve been sleeping on Amazon Essentials for far too long, and it’s not the first time I made that mistake with a brand.
The clothes I wore were comfortable, practical and affordable. The brand will obviously never replace sportswear giants such as Lululemon, Nike, Adidas and Under Armour, but it’s a great discount alternative.
If you’re ready to give the clothing line a shot, here is where I recommend starting the shopping process:
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Nicolette Accardi covers the online shopping industry, writing about commerce, daily deals and tips. She can be reached at [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter: @N_Accardi.
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