Subscription Boxes for Women

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

By now, it must be clear I am developing an obsession with subscription boxes, especially those that send you products that are not so easily defined into one simple category. My bank account tells me it is best to just daydream for now, but the companies mentioned below have definitely piqued some interest from me. Also- if you are looking for even more interesting subscription box companies, look at this list and this list. If you want to see what subscription boxes are aimed at men, then don't forget to take a peek here too.

You know those lazy magazine reading days (be honest, you indulge ever so often in these, right?), and the article about "Must-Have" products? Now imagine a box full of those same products being delivered to your door each month, and you pretty much have the idea behind Popsugar Must-Haves. It is a subscription service that sends you a box of surprise-items, mostly featuring beauty supplies, accessories, and home decor items, as well as occasionally books and foodstuff. You can see what was in past monthly boxes by looking at their blog here. Your first box costs only thirty-five dollars; following boxes are priced at thirty-nine dollars. You can subscribe monthly, or you can choose to sign up for three, nine and twelve month subscriptions. Prepaying for months in advance results in lower prices for each box. Together the items in each box seem to have a value  well above the price one pays for the subscription. There is a limited amount of boxes each month, so one must sign up early; there is however, some type of waiting list program if a box has been sold out before you chose to buy one.

In addition to their monthly Must-Have Boxes, this company also does occasional special edition boxes, sometimes featuring one-time collaborations with designers or other companies, sometimes celebrating special events or times of the year such as holidays or seasons. These boxes are priced differently (generally more highly), and should have correspondingly higher value items inside.

Congratulations! You are not a kid anymore and don't want to wear the cheap stuff you used to. You want great shirts but hate the two hundred dollar plus sign so many seem to come with. That's where Elizabeth & Clarke steps in. Each quarter, they make a small collection of shirt designs. You sign up to buy one, two or three shirts. You choose which shirt(s) you want out of the collection they have for the season. This shirt will be mailed to you by a pre-determined date and you will likewise be charged on a predetermined date, usually one after the shirts have been shipped (you can find the exact dates on the website, based on when you ordered your shirts). If you order one shirt, it costs thirty dollars; two shirts cost twenty-five dollars per shirt; and three shirts cost twenty dollars per shirt.  They keep costs down by having no "middle man" and working entirely online. Find out more on their website. Once you sign up for one quarter, you are automatically signed up for the next quarter as well, but it is a quick process to bow out, making this subscription service seem like an easy one to use.

We pay a lot for our phones these days, and want to keep them safe from damage. Therefore an entire
industry of designer phone cases have popped up, with each case costing often as much as fifty dollars! I was resigned to my good-protection-bad-aesthetics case then, when I heard about the Phone Case of the Month subscription, and now I want to try this company out! For ten dollars a month, they send you a designer phone case. They do not share what the month's phone case looks like before hand. They do strive for "gender neutral" designs but ask buyers to have an open mind about what that might entail. The cases are made  with Carbonate and ABS with a silicone coating. Currently, they do only make cases for iPhones. It is a month-to-month subscription, meaning you are automatically signed up each month until you opt out, which seems an easy process.

This company is dedicated to seeking out the best Fair Trade beauty, accessories and home decor items there are. For thirty dollars a month, you get a box of 2-3 surprise items as well as information about what makes them fair trade and how they impact the community they were made in. It is a month-to-month subscription, but you may cancel at any time and if you prepay for three months, you get free shipping.

This is one subscription company that has been intriguing me. They offer two subscription options. For forty-nine dollars, you can get a "tote" with two or three clothing items, one of which you get to pick out, while the other two are surprised curated for you based on a style survey and your buying history. They also have a more expensive option; for one hundred and forty-nine dollars you can pick out two clothing items and have four or five  surprise clothing items. Each month, Golden Tote has a limited supply of unique clothes, some exclusive to their retail and others brands carried by such stores as Anthropologie. Both the clothing items you choose and the surprise items are culled from this monthly selection of clothing. Interestingly, which price option you chose for your tote dictates what items you can choose from. Choosing the  pricier one-hundred-forty-nine dollar tote means you have more options to pick your choice of clothing from, and the items tend to be a better quality. No matter which price range you choose though the company promises you will get double or even triple the value in products (meaning that your tote will have items who's value could be up to either one hundred fifty or three-hundred some dollars, respectively). You can return items, if you are unsatisfied with your tote, but must choose to either keep all the items, or return all the items. You cannot keep just some. Furthermore, though the same collection of clothing is on sale all month, Golden Totes sends out packages weekly (meaning your package will be shipped to you within a week of ordering it), so items may run out! Overall, it can be a big gamble in whether one will like the items, but the value of the items versus the amount you pay might make this subscription company worth trying out.

This subscription service aims to give you a mini vacation by sending a monthly box with items from or based around a specific travel destination. You can expect spa and beauty items, foodstuff, travel books, and entertainment. Also included are travel tips about the destination and discounts for businesses in the area. In addition to that, getting a box automatically enters you into a monthly giveaway; the winner gets a trip to the travel destination highlighted in that month's box. All the product samples are full-sized and are from local artisans or brands. Each box is forty-nine dollars, and is guaranteed to have at least a fifty dollar value in terms of products.

This subscription company actually has three types of boxes you can buy- a box of full-size beauty product samples, a box of accessories or a box of "intimates." You will get three or four items in the accessories and make-up boxes, and four or five in the intimate box. Boxes cost forty dollars as a one time purchase and thirty-six if you choose to sign up with an on-going subscription. Boxes ship monthly. Before ever receiving your box though, you first take a survey about your style. Just to try it out, I took the accessories survey and was pleased to see it was a relatively quick survey to do and yet was very through going through questions of size, and length preferences, material preferences, clasp/closure preferences as well as detailed preferences about every kind of jewelry. One would assume equally detailed surveys for both the beauty product and intimate lines. What goes into each customer's box is therefore unique to them. The company uses curators and your style survey to decide what goes into your own box.

The Thing advertises itself as a quarterly "object-based publication" that you subscribe to. Its like a magazine except you get a box with an object inside of it... which is basically how I'd describe every other subscription box ever. Despite that, this subscription service is a cool concept which is convenient because rather than being based around a certain type of object it is based on sharing concepts as developed by certain work. Each quarter they pick a different artist, writer, filmmaker or musician to create some sort of object and a concept as embodied by that object. Past contributors have created clocks, wallets, shower curtains and cutting boards, just to name a few. All impeccably made and unique to the limited run of the quarter, these are high end items. As such, they are not cheap either. You can either subscribe for a "run" (4 quarters or a year's worth of "issues"), or, if there are any unsold "issues" from past quarters, you can buy those individually. The year's worth of objects costs a total of two hundred forty dollars for the year; individual box prices vary.


  1. I've never tried a subscription like this but it seems fun to get surprises in the mail each month! I had the last case on my phone for 2 years because I was too cheap to get another one :)

    1. The first case I got was very nice, but I figured it was worth it to protect my phone. A friend broke it taking it off, so now I have a cheap one. Sometimes worry if it will really be a good protection though...

  2. Subscription boxes are so addicting! I want to sign up for Popsugar again :)

    1. Oh! Lucky. That is one I REALLY want to try... we'll see if it is in the cards soonish..

      Any other subscriptions you'd really recommend? I like finding out about new ones.

  3. Wow...what an awesome write up about these subscription boxes!! There's so many that I've never even taken the time to figure it out. I've definitely bookmarked this:) xo Andrea
    Boho Bunnie

    1. So glad to be of help Andrea. I hope you take a look at my other lists of subscription boxes for more great companies too; it is impressive how many companies are out there these days!

  4. I had no idea there were so many different subscription boxes out there! I love your addiction because you totally did the leg work for us haha ;) That phone case one sounds really fun

    xo marlen
    Messages on a Napkin

    1. Haha! Well, I haven't had a chance to try any of these, but when I get some pocket change, I definitely want to!


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