I love getting monthly subscription boxes–it’s a fun surprise you get each month in the mail! The amount of subscription services available has grown like crazy over the past couple years; there’s really something for everyone out there. Here are some of my fave subscription box services along with information on one of their previous boxes. Sign someone up for a gift that keeps on giving throughout the year, or start the new year off right by treating yourself once a month!

Birchbox

Birchbox

Price: $10/month

Description: “Birchbox delivers high-end beauty, grooming, and lifestyle samples once a month, customized just for you.”

Items in August 2014 Box: 

  • Acure Organics Brightening Facial Scrub (Full Size $14.99)
  • Atelier Orange Sanguine Cologne Absolue (Full Size $65-105)
  • LAQA & Co. Sheer Lip Lube Pencil (Full Size $18)
  • Marcelle BB Cream Golden Glow (Full Size $27)
  • Supergoop! Forever Young Hand Cream (Full Size $11-29.50)

Notes: Birchbox is the only monthly subscription box that I’ve consistently paid for. The contents of the boxes can be hit-or-miss, but I’ve found that even things I don’t think I’ll love end up being terrific once I’ve tried it. The only problem? I’ve gotten hooked on some higher-end products and ultimately ended up buying full-size versions. (I love anything from Beauty Protector and Eyeko now, and had to have No. 4’s Volumizing Shampoo after trying it.) Luckily, reviewing the sample products you receive in your box gets you points which turn into Birchbox.com store credit. If you review each item each month, your box ends up paying for itself. This is great for anyone who loves to try new makeup/hair trends, pamper themselves, or just learn more about grooming products in general. Get it here.

Board Game Bento Collage

Board Game Bento

Price: $50/month

Description: “A box of board games every month.”

Items in May 2016 Box: 

  • Burger Boss (with Board Game Bento exclusive “Settlers of Kitchan” order card ($50)
  • Foodfighters ($20.99)
  • Foodfighters: Grain Faction expansion ($16.75)
  • Sushi Go! ($14.99)
  • Gingerbread Kaiju
  • Geeky Hostess Recipe Cards

Notes: Board Game Bento is like a game night delivered to your door each month. If you have friends that enjoy playing games and are up for trying new ones often, this is the box for you. The value is great: the box is $50 a month, and the May 2016 box had over $100 worth of games in it. (Plus, they had the excellent taste to work with me on creating special recipes for each game!) The games included in this box are award winners, new games, and games that are hard to get in the US, and they look like they’d all be great for families. I would highly recommend this.  Get it here.

Candy Japan

Candy Japan

Price: $25/month

Description: “Japanese candy surprises in your mailbox twice a month. Free shipping even to United States.”

Items in August 28 2014 Box: 

  • Chocolate CalorieMate
  • Baby Star Yakisoba Snack
  • Soft Ramune Balls
  • WakuWaku Zukan Gummies

Notes: If you like Japanese culture or (like me) you just love candy, this is a great box to try. For $25, you receive 2 shipments each month. The shipments include some interested Japanese candies and snacks, and shortly after the package is sent, you receive an email with information on the candy and some info and fun pics from the shipper about his time in Japan. It’s like you have an awesome pen pal who doesn’t expect you to send anything back! Get it here.

 

 

Carnivore Club Collage

Carnivore Club

Price: $50/month (Use code “GEEKYHOSTESS” to save 10% off your order!)

Description: “Carnivore Club is the world’s first curated cured meat of the month club featuring artisans from around the world. Each month our members receive an impressive faux-wood box filled with 4-6 handcrafted cured meats from top artisans.”

Items in March 2016 Box: 

  • Del Duca Prosciutto
  • Sliced Chorizo
  • Sliced Sopressata
  • Sliced Capocollo
  • Whole Hard Salami
  • Whole Hot Sopressata

Notes: If you’re a meat lover or someone who likes to entertain often, this box is a must. I was incredibly impressed with the variety of cured meats, and love that they’re all vacuum sealed and relatively shelf stable. This means throughout the month I’ll always have some nice meats to pair with crackers and some cheese for impromptu parties and gatherings. Plus, the presentation of the box is beautiful and the guide the box comes with will make you sound like an expert on the supplier and meats you’re sampling. You can subscribe or gift the boxes, making this your go-to gift for co-workers, clients, your wedding party, your siblings, yourself…anyone who loves meat. They’ll love you for it. Get it here.

 

FabFitFun FabFitFun

Price: $49.99/season (Get $10 off with code TT10.)

Description: “Over $200 in Beauty, Wellness, Fitness and Fashion Finds for only $49.99 per season!”

Items in Summer 2014 Box: 

  • Sonya Dakar Flash Facial ($95)
  • pur~lisse pur~protect SPF 30($55)
  • Thursday Friday Away Mini Clutch/Makeup Bag ($35)
  • Balanced Guru No Frizz Oil ($25)
  • FabFitFun Water Infuser BPA-free Water Bottle ($15)
  • Zoya Nail Polish ($9)
  • KISSTIXX Lip Balm ($5.99)
  • POPchips ($1.29)
  • Skintimate Shave Gel ($1.99)
  • Always Xtra Protection Long Daily Liners ($1.50)
  • Slimfast “Have Your Cake…” Meal Bar ($1)

Notes: FabFitFun is like a MEGA subscription box. It’s a bit more expensive ($50), you only get it 4 times a year, and it’s FULL of stuff. The products vary quite a bit: this one had higher end beauty products along with items you could find at your grocery store. It was a fun chance to try some new things (I ended up really liking the Flash Facial and KISSSTIXX lip balm, for instance), but it would be tough to guarantee you’ll love everything in the box. (I wouldn’t normally spend $35 on the clutch that was in the box.) However, for the price, the box is definitely a good deal. Get it here.

 

Flaviar

Flaviar

Price: $48.99/quarter (Other options available)

Description: “Try & discover drinks you otherwise wouldn’t and save a fortune compared to buying full bottles.”

Items in Star Spangled Bourbon Box: 

  • Four Roses Single Barrel Bourbon (45 ml)
  • Elijah Craig Small Batch Bourbon 12 YO (45 ml)
  • Woodford Reserve Kentucky Bourbon (45 ml)
  • Booker’s Kentucky Straight Bourbon (45ml)
  • Willett Pot Still Reserve (45 ml)

Notes: If anyone is ever looking for a gift idea for me, one of these tasting kits is it. A Flaviar kit comes with 5 glass test-tube-like bottles that hold 45 ml each of a different spirit. The tasting kit comes complete with instructions on holding a tasting (it comes with enough for 3 people), trivia and important info on the spirits you’re about to taste, tasting notes, and even a link to a soundtrack to play while tasting. It’s a mini, delicious party in a box. You can select and purchase tasting kits whenever, or you can sign up to have them sent quarterly or monthly. (P.S. This makes a fantastic host/hostess gift, and you may even be invited to try it out with them!) Get it here.

Julep

Julep Maven

Price: $24.99/month

Description: “Each My Maven Box includes over $40 worth of new beauty innovations and/or limited-run nail colors. We create at least five new boxes every month—one for each Style Profile, plus monthly exclusives. If you have a fully customizable subscription, you can personalize your box by picking exactly what you want.”

Items in September 2014 Box: 

  • “Erin” Nail Polish (Oyster grey creme)
  • “Mary Lee” Nail Polish (Oxblood satin)
  • Plush Pout Lip Crayon in Magenta Plum
  • Two candies

Notes: Julep Maven boxes allow you to choose from a collection of new nail colors and beauty products. Their products are quality and exclusive to the Julep brand. (And I love it because it started in Seattle!) I only get this every few months, because I quickly got more nail polish than I knew what to do with. Each box also comes with an extra treat (past boxes have included candy, flower seeds, rings, hair accessories, etc.) and a cute card with an inspirational quote on it. Get it here.

 

Kitchen Box

A Kitchen Box

Price: $30/month (Use code “geekyhostess” for $10 off a new subscription or gift subscription)

Description: “The subscription for food lovers and home cooks who want to stay inspired: a curated food, art, and music experience designed to inspire creativity in the kitchen and encourage you to try something new every week.”

Items in the “Farm to Table” Box: 

  • Fall Soup & Salad Recipes by Andrea Bernis
  • We Got The Beet Postcard by Andrea Bernis
  • Organic Whole Grain Emmer Farro by Bluebird Grain Farms
  • Portland Farmland Honey by Bee Local Artisan Neighborhood Honey
  • 3.5″ Pairing Knife by Tovolo
  • Flour Sack Towel
  • Music Downloads

Notes: A Kitchen Box is the ultimate gift for a home cook. Each box has a theme (mine was “Farm to Table”) and includes recipes, art, songs, and ingredients to help you create meals in that theme at home. They also include a favorite tool of theirs (my box included a fantastic pairing knife) and a flour sack towel each month. The contents of the box were beautiful and thoughtfully curated, and left me inspired to cook. Plus, with each box purchase, $1 is donated to RVOO Orphanages of Kenya, to help change the life of a child. Get it here.

 

Loot Crate

Loot Crate

Price: $13.37 plus $6 shipping/month (Save $3 with code GEEKYHOSTESS)

Description: “Get a box full of fun and unexpected gamer gear every month – valued at over $40(USD)!”

Items in August 2014 Box: 

  • TMNT Full Figure
  • Funko POP! Groot Exclusive
  • TMNT Mask Glasses
  • Sonic Air Freshener
  • Shoe Lightning Bolts
  • Deadpool Magnet
  • Monthly Loot Crate Pin
  • Bonus Digital Loot

Notes: Loot Crate, if you couldn’t gather, is for geeks and gamers. It focuses on a variety of fandoms new and old, with collectibles, t-shirts, toys, digital content, and more in each box. I often find one or two things I like in each box, and end up with other goodies I hang onto for gift giving opportunities. This was one of my fave boxes: I love the Groot exclusive, the TMNT glasses, and shoe lightning bolts specifically. This is great if you’re a collector or love toys. It would also be great for a family with a few geeky kids (and maybe a geeky grown-up or two): you can all split the contents each month (or keep the toys as prizes to reward good behavior). Get it here.

 

Love with Food

Love with Food

Price: $10 plus $2 shipping/month

Description: “A subscription of 8-10 delicious, all natural or organic, surprise snacks delivered monthly.”

Items in September 2014 Box: 

  • Simply So Sweet Chili Tortilla Chips
  • Lemon Rosemary Seasoning
  • Hemp Rules Roasted Hemp Seeds
  • Green Superfood
  • 5 Spice Caramels
  • Maruso Ghost Soy Sauce
  • Rich Chocolate Cookie Thins
  • Churro Kettle Corn

Notes: If you’re looking for new yummy and healthy snack ideas each month, this box is a must. For only $10, you get 8-10 different items in the box, and Love with Food donates a meal to a hungry child in the US. I like that you get a mix of pre-made snacks and ingredients to use in your next meal–it adds a bit of adventure to a variety of eating occasions throughout the month! Value-wise, I think this is one of the best subscription boxes out there. Get it here.

 

Mantry

Mantry

Price: $75 plus $10 shipping/month

Description: “Mantry (the modern man’s pantry) is a food-of-the-month club that helps you discover American Artisan Food and what to do with it.”

Items in August 2014 Box: 

  • Three Jerks Jerky Chipotle Adobo Jerky
  • We Rub You Korean BBQ Marinade
  • Olo Foods Olo’s Chipotle
  • Grey Ghost Bakery Cinnamon Pecan Cookies
  • Steven Smith Teamaker Big Hibiscus
  • Maya Kaimal Butter Masala

Notes: If you are serious about good, artisan food, then Mantry’s for you. The price point’s a bit steep for me, since I can be picky and am not guaranteed to love everything each month, but if you have some extra income or really want to try the best of the best, then subscribe. The crate it comes in each month is a huge added value: I now use my crate to hold important papers/things on the side of my desk.The Mantry I received was inspired by food trucks around the country. The Big Hibiscus tea is one of my new faves, and Mr. Geek and I both loved making the Butter Masala chicken. We’ve had this box for a couple months and still haven’t tried everything in it: it’s awesome that many of the items can be saved for a while, so you’re not pressured to use them immediately. Finally, although it’s called “Mantry,” it’s definitely not just for men. Any food lover will have a blast going through the contents and putting together some new recipes. Get it here.

Do you have a fave subscription box I haven’t included? Let me know in the comments!

4 thoughts on “The Ultimate Monthly Subscription Box Round-Up

  1. PetBox! For the pet lover in your life! There’s a cat version and a dog version. I tried the cat version and it was pretty awesome. We’ve used all but one item in the box, and that’s only because we’re incredibly picky about cat treats/food.

  2. nerdbrick.com they have themed boxes and promise a monthly t-shirt. got my daughter one for her birthday and she LOVED it, it even had a stuffed Boo, the internet famous dog. i’m hoping to get a boys box for her younger brother and an arcade box for her older brother for christmas presents.

  3. I love the accessories Level Up for Loot Crate, it’s awesome. I’ve gotten so many cute geeky accessories, like necklaces, that I wear all the time. My husband and I did the annual subscription as an anniversary present to each other, he gets the Loot Crate and I get the accessories!

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