What Luck Have You Had With Subscription Boxes?
July 5, 2013 3:58 PM   Subscribe

Just finding out about this amazing/ridiculous thing where you can sign up to have different companies mail you crap every month in a box they think you'll like! After a quick review scan online, I'm wondering if any of the Mefis have subscription box services that you would swear by?

My interests are in perfume (I know about Olfactif already), and any good men's cosmetics/accessories. But would be interested in any subscription box service that you feel you could honestly recommend to a friend for the quality of products and customer service you've received.
posted by Lipstick Thespian to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (22 answers total) 94 users marked this as a favorite
The people I know that use Graze and Tonx (healthy snacks and coffee, respectively) are all very big fans.
posted by box at 4:00 PM on July 5, 2013 [5 favorites]

Birchbox is hit or miss but fun if you are willing to share the products you don't want with your friends!
posted by These Birds of a Feather at 4:07 PM on July 5, 2013

I used to have a subscription to Sample Society (part of Beauty Bar), which sends you beauty samples every month for $15. I really liked it but decided to cancel because I'm trying to save money and it was WAY too tempting to buy full sizes of things I received as samples. I would say their samples tend to be more for women (feminine perfumes, hair products, floral candles, etc) but they do also send a good quantity of upscale skincare samples that could be of interest to men who are into things like hydration, sun protection and anti-aging.

I have friends who have subscriptions with Glossybox and seem to like it. I've heard that Birchbox is becoming pretty crappy.
posted by joan_holloway at 4:11 PM on July 5, 2013

Best answer: I tried Birchbox and Glossybox and unsubscribed from them both. My husband tried Birchbox Man and Box of Awesome (Bespoke Post), unsubscribed from Birchbox Man, kept Bespoke Post a little longer, and then unsubscribed. I think the selection of products was just too hit-or-miss. I have been liking Olfactif, though, especially since they listened to customers and increased the sample size.
posted by matildaben at 4:12 PM on July 5, 2013

We've been pleased with Barkbox. My wife really likes her stridebox.

She's got a few others, but those are the ones I look forward to. It's kind of dumb, but since we get new box of crap in the mail every few days, we don't shop anywhere near as much as we used to. It's actually saved us money, I bet.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 4:17 PM on July 5, 2013

Dollar shave club is like this, except it's the same thing every month. But it rules.
posted by oceanjesse at 4:18 PM on July 5, 2013 [2 favorites]

I love the pop sugar must have box. I've never gotten a box I didn't at least like a few things in and I have gotten a number of boxes full of stuff I love.
posted by amycup at 4:24 PM on July 5, 2013 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I've gotten a bunch of different things from quarterly.co which have really neat! but possibly a slightly more abstract version of the kind of thing you're looking for.

(This one sounds like one that sorta matches what you're looking for)
posted by ambilevous at 4:26 PM on July 5, 2013 [1 favorite]

Sorry, just realized you want men's boxes. Pop sugar occasionally does boxes geared toward men but the monthly box is definitely marketed to women. They just did a luxury box for men for summer and, despite revealing the contents, apparently it's still on sale.
posted by amycup at 4:28 PM on July 5, 2013

My close friend uses Wittlebee for kids clothing and raves about it.
posted by chiababe at 4:34 PM on July 5, 2013

I have a friend who gets Graze boxes in UK and she is very happy with them.

I occasionally get Julep Maven (nail polish) boxes, but while I think their polish is nice I also think it's pretty overpriced, and I tend to skip months more often than not. I've actually been meaning to cancel, but you have to call them for that instead of managing it online... So I just keep skipping.

I tried Birchbox once (cosmetics/skin care), but I received only 2 of the advertised 5 samples the boxes were supposed to contain that month and discovered that this is not at all an uncommon occurrence with them, so I canceled right after that.
posted by asciident at 4:39 PM on July 5, 2013

I get Birchbox and it's fun, to be honest I don't swear by it but at $10/month it's a nice little treat for myself. Some people don't like Birchbox because they have more skin/hair products than makeup most months.

but I received only 2 of the advertised 5 samples the boxes were supposed to contain that month and discovered that this is not at all an uncommon occurrence with them

Yeah, that's how they do it, different people get different samples.

Here's a subreddit dedicated to beauty boxes.
posted by girlmightlive at 5:04 PM on July 5, 2013 [1 favorite]

For makeup, I love Ipsy. $10/month, shipped, for a cosmetics bag with both sample and full sized makeup items. I've gotten 5 items/month for the past two months, with at least 2 things I love.
posted by mollymayhem at 5:34 PM on July 5, 2013 [2 favorites]

I am waiting for lost crates to come back. I had a subscription to the stationary box for a while and it was great. They were also flexible in that you could do bi-monthly, which was good because there's only so many notebooks one can fill.

They expanded and had additional boxes with different themes (food, coffee, etc.) then went on hiatus. But I'm hopeful they will return.
posted by pixiecrinkle at 5:47 PM on July 5, 2013 [2 favorites]

Here's a blog that reviews subscription boxes across multiple categories:


And from that blog is a big index of subscription boxes, organized by category:

posted by pocketfullofrye at 6:03 PM on July 5, 2013 [9 favorites]

If you even have a passing interest in coffee, mistobox is by far the best subscription coffee service out there (I've had to deal with both the business side, Working for roasteries, and the receiving side). They do a damn good job, and it's a really good way to try a ton of different roast styles. Nothing I've ever gotten from them was 'bad' as in low quality.
posted by furnace.heart at 8:07 PM on July 5, 2013 [7 favorites]

If i had the money, i would totally drop the $17/month on Steepster Select tea mailings.
posted by softlord at 9:28 PM on July 5, 2013 [1 favorite]

Yeah, that's how they do it, different people get different samples.

No, the box I was meant to receive had more samples. Their customer service did confirm that and they apologized, but it was a poor intro to the service, so that's why I canceled.
posted by asciident at 3:02 AM on July 6, 2013

Do you like cooking? I tried Hello Fresh on the recommendation of someone on this thread.

I've loved it so far because I don't have to grocery shop or think about what to make for dinner. Also, I'm learning how to make things I'd never thought to try before. The food they send has been very high quality, and the recipe cards are super easy to understand.
posted by thebrokenmuse at 8:30 PM on July 6, 2013

Mod note: Hey all, please don't use this thread to ask for invitations. Thanks.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 9:15 AM on July 7, 2013

I Just started with frankandoak, a Montreal based men's clothing site and like it so far.

You sign up for 45$ a month, but you can opt out any month where you don't like the selection. Free returns.

I like it so far. The catalogue changes every month and its pretty convenient.
posted by cacofonie at 12:23 PM on July 7, 2013 [1 favorite]

I had Tonx, and my ex, my roommate, and I were all in agreement that it was terrible coffee.

Lots of the boutique roasters have subscription plans and/or online ordering, and far better coffee at generally better prices than Tonx.
posted by schmod at 10:16 AM on July 10, 2013

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