I have searched the entire Internet (okay, almost the entire Internet) for the best box subscriptions out there, and these are my favorites. I didn’t pick a clothing box for women because we know you Snobs out there have that area covered. New discoveries, the opportunity to experiment, and a bit of creativity are what I was looking for. Needless to say, these five boxes are so much fun, offering the best products with a unique point of view.
1. The Clean Beauty Box by Art of Organics: The unique difference of The Clean Beauty Box is the cleanse-specific category, which makes sense for a subscription, but the best part is, these are all organic and sustainable products that are truly luxurious. You spend more for it; it’s $58 a month for the subscription, but you get full-size products or deluxe-size samples. Many of the boxes come with tools, whether it be a cleaning brush or jade facial stimulator. They come beautifully boxed and wrapped in gorgeous paper that reminds me of Japanese prints, all of which, of course, are recycled or environmentally sound. Even though this isn’t a customized box, you do get to make some decisions. Before they send them out, you get a chance to skip the month or swap with a previous box that you missed, and all the products are spelled out for you so there are no surprises. That way you are sure to get things you love!
2. Raw Spice Bar: This box is for the adventurous cook who’s always looking for distinctive flavor profiles from different countries. Each month for only $6, you get three freshly ground spices and blends fitting a specific regional theme. Delivered with each spice or blend is a recipe, along with related stories and a culinary history of its region.
I love experimenting with flavors. We all get in a rut once in awhile and we end up cooking the same things again and again. This is a surefire way to kick-start some fresh creativity in the kitchen. The best part is the sense of discovery that comes with it; there are so many unique flavors I’ve never tasted, and that’s what makes it so exciting. Three spices a month for $6.
3. Forbes Wine Club: Unless you’re joining a wine club from a specific winery, you just don’t know what you’re going to get each month with a wine subscription. I’ve tried so many to date, and I’d say at best, I only like half of what’s sent to me. There are few things as specific or personal as wine preference. That’s why the Forbes Wine Club is the best – and the most fun.
When you sign up, they will send you a tasting kit with six sampler size bottles of wine (for $9.95). You taste and rate them to get a specific tasting profile suited to your exact preferences. From there, every three months you will receive 12 full-sized bottles for only $149. That’s only a little over $12 per bottle, and 37% off the retail price! This is an exceptional deal for wines that are guaranteed to be suited to your palette. There are plenty of good wines out there that don’t cost a fortune; the trick is finding them. Now you can have all the enjoyment without taking a huge risk. $9.95 for a six-bottle tasting kit; 12 full-size bottles every three months for $149, plus $19.99 for shipping.
4. Din: Want to make restaurant-quality meals without the hassle of shopping for hard-to-find ingredients, chopping up everything, and ending up with a dish that’s not quite right? I was so inspired by my meal at Gjelina in Venice Beach last night, I was determined to make their sunchoke dish myself. Three markets later, I still couldn’t find sunchokes.
Enter Din. It’s for those of us who want to cook like pros but don’t have the time, nor the pro training. They charge $15 a meal, and you can choose how many people to serve and how many days a week you need. The first four meals are free when you join (a $60 value), and each week, using their app (or website), you can choose which meals you want. Best of all, they work with top chefs and source their ingredients locally, and they prep everything. Whether it requires pickling, fermenting, smoking or sous-vide, they do all the hard parts. Everything is delivered perfectly measured in the proper portions, so you won’t break a sweat or end up with waste, and it’s delivered at a pre-determined time so you know when to expect it. They promise each meal only takes 20 minutes on your end.
5. Trunk Club: Most men can really use some help when it comes to dressing themselves; there are so many clueless men out there who just can’t be bothered to get a clue. As a wife, I love dressing my husband. The reality is, we never have the time to do this fantasy shopping together. With kids, long days at work and a busy social life, shopping is at the bottom of his priority list. Then there’s the single guy who doesn’t have a live-in stylist to help.
Trunk Club sets up his profile with size, style preference (Bold, Dapper or Casual), preferred fit, color profiles, and more, and then gives him a personal stylist who will work with him going forward. There is an initial call to meet so she/he can get a better idea of what he’s looking for. She/he will adjust with each shipment based on what’s returned and the feedback that’s given. He can keep it all or nothing or a few pieces. He just needs to tell the company why he’s returning so they don’t repeat the mistake, whether it’s because of price, color, fit, etc. Each box comes fully coordinated, so there’s no guesswork. Everything works with everything else, including shoes, which is brilliant because we all know matching is the hard part! Every man I spoke to who’s tried this subscription really loves it.
6. Ipsy Beauty Box: Beauty boxes get another mention because of how specific they tend to be. My other absolute favorite is Ipsy. These kinds of boxes are the trickiest because everyone has unique needs and preferences, and as fun as it is to get a surprise package each month, your subscription ends up as a waste of money if you can’t use anything in there…Or if the brands are not up to your standards (that’s a nice way of saying you’re a Beauty Snob!).
As for me, I don’t use lipstick or self-tanners, and those are the usual suspects in most boxes. Or if I do get something I need like shampoo, it’s for fine hair which mine is not. The point is, the only beauty boxes that make sense are those that are customizable and the one I found to offer the best brands with the most variety to curate from is Ipsy. For $10 a month you can’t go wrong. You take a quiz and you get a list of products to choose from based on your results. You can change your profile at any time if the products don’t seem to be matching up with your needs. The bonus is, each month’s products come in a differently designed pouch!