Luxury Items for Less? We Put Italic to the Test

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Have you ever browsed through your favorite home brands' sites only to have your heart completely crushed by the price tags? Same. But guess what? There's a company out there that's set out to take direct-to-consumer to a whole new level, and it's called Italic.

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Founded in 2018 by Jeremy Cai, the Los Angeles-based company was created to connect consumers with top manufacturers and ultimately offer luxury products (minus the name brand) for a fraction of the price. Initially, Italic was a members-only platform but, as of October 13, has expanded its services and product selection to allow anyone to score the affordable prices. Along with the new and improved marketplace, Italic is also launching over 100 new products and adding even more categories in 2022.

Hunker's commerce team had a chance to test out a few Italic products — here's our honest review.

​(While we did receive the Slumber Cotton Sateen Duvet Cover and Whistle Kettle in exchange for an honest review, all of the following thoughts and opinions expressed below are our own and are not influenced by Italic, in any way.)

The Specs

Traditionally, brands source their products from manufacturers, up the price, and sell them to customers. But Italic cuts out the price bump and offers its products — which range from cashmere throws to marble serving boards — at factory prices, which can be anywhere between 50% to 80% lower than what you'll pay when you buy from some of your favorite brands. If you're worried about quality, Italic gets its inventory from leading manufacturers around the world; these are the same ones that major retailers like All-Clad, Le Creuset, West Elm, and Williams Sonoma use.

Italic may have transitioned into a marketplace that everyone can shop from, but it still hasn't completely gotten rid of its membership opportunity. The new Italic Bold Membership has an annual fee of $60 and includes perks like a $120 credit, double referral bonuses, credit for product reviews, exclusive sales and events, early access to new products, and an on-demand shipping concierge.

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The Pros

In line with Italic's mission, the biggest pro is the affordability compared to the quality of products. You really can't beat going 50% to 80% below standard market prices, so I'll take the price cut to the name brand any day.

I also love the product selection. Italic does a great job at curating its portfolio to a select few within each category. For example, they only have one kettle available as opposed to 20 different varieties. However, some may consider that a con and wish there were more of each kind of product to choose from.

The Cons

Italic has hundreds of products in the fashion, home, fitness, travel, and lifestyle spaces, but the biggest con is the limited color variations of each product. For example, the Whistle Kettle only has two colors, and many of the bedding products only come in white, aside from a handful of items like the Slumber Cotton Sateen Pillowcase Set, which has three options to choose from.

The Products

While we couldn't test everything in Italic's lineup, Erin Lassner and I — Hunker's associate commerce editors — were able to test out two.

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Whistle Kettle

I'm all for brightening up my space with pops of color, so when I saw the Whistle Kettle in light blue, I couldn't resist. At $28, the Whistle Kettle is a steal compared to other big brands like Chantal and Le Creuset, which have more of a $60 to $100 price range. But in terms of the manufacturer, it's made from the same factory as Williams Sonoma, Tramontina, and WMF.

The Whistle Kettle has a 2-quart capacity and is made with a steel body and silicone handle and spout lever, which happens to be what I love most about it (aside from the adorable pastel color). My old kettle is from a big name brand and lacks the heat-safe spout lever, so I would have to use a kitchen towel to open it. The silicone spout lever allows me to skip that step and saves me from potentially burning my hand whenever I want to enjoy a cup of tea. I haven't had the Whistle Kettle for too long, but my only con so far is that the spout itself only opens up at maybe a little more than a 45-degree angle. Since it doesn't open all the way, it makes it slightly awkward to pour when you don't have much water in there.

Slumber Cotton Sateen Duvet Cover

Here's what Erin had to say about one of Italic's sateen duvet covers:

"Out of all the bedding choices on the marketplace, I went for the Slumber Cotton Sateen Duvet Cover. It's made by the same manufacturer as Frette, Four Seasons, and St. Regis. My $55 queen duvet cover from Italic is comparable to the $1,000 duvet cover sold by Frette, which I truly cannot get over.

I opted for the light gray color and it looks just as cloud-like in person as it does in the picture online. My cat — who is very particular about his nap spots — spends the entire day burrowed under the comforter. And I don't blame him — if I didn't have a job, I'd be doing the exact same thing. It's just so soft and airy.

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Crafted from 400-thread count 100% cotton, the look and feel of the fabric certainly do not disappoint. The one con I've found is that I prefer a duvet cover that buttons at the bottom and this one has ties. The ties are super fast and easy to use, but I just slightly prefer the cleaner look of a buttoned material. Other than that, I truly can't think of a single other thing I would change."

The Verdict

Overall, we're excited that Italic has opened up its platform to non-members and will surely expand our Italic collections with a few more luxe-for-less goods.

Top Italic Picks

1. Whistle Kettle, $28

2. Slumber Cotton Sateen Duvet Cover (Full/Queen), $55

3. Grecian Marble Round Serving Board, $30

4. Zest 4-Quart Cast Iron Dutch Oven, $60

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5. Soy Scented Candle, $16

6. Cashmere Ribbed Throw, $145

7. Zest Stainless Steel Tri-Ply 10-Piece Cookware Set, $140

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Pauline is Hunker’s Associate Commerce Editor. She covers all things home and shopping, whether it's the next must-have product launch or a roundup of the best home and decor sales. You can reach out to her at pauline.lacsamana@hunker.com.