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  • Writer's pictureMcWhat

Blogmas Day 3 - Subscription Boxes

*This blog post contains affiliate links*

In recent years, subscription boxes have completely exploded into the UK market.

A report by Royal Mail found that more than 27% of people in the UK have a current subscription to one of these services with over half of 25 to 34-year-olds being signed up.

The most popular types of subscription boxes are beauty and male grooming, male grooming is also the fastest growing category with the suggestion that they could attract more than two million members by 2022.

One of the reasons that subscription boxes have become so popular is the element of surprise in each delivery; these services generally offer a 3, 6 or 12 month offering.

Glossybox is live in more than 10 countries, engaging with premium and top end brands to bring the best products to subscribers. Each box contains five beauty products worth over £50.

Previous brands have included Illamasque, Avant, Wishful, Umberto Gianni, Huda Beauty and ModelCo and periodically there are limited edition boxes like their Zoeva launch or men's Grooming box.

With LookFantastic you can choose to subscribe for 1, 3, 6 or 12 month periods, each month you receive 6 products worth over £50 including some of the UKs top brands.

Previous brands include Balance Me, By Terry, ESPA, Eyeko and Caudalie; or instead of signing up for a subscription you can pick up one of their haul bundles.

Beguile Beauty Box is one I haven’t tried before, similar to others in the sense that you get four or five products, however their boxes contain full-sizes which is a lovely treat. You fill out a beauty profile at the beginning of your subscription in order to be matched to their products.

They offer a one-off box for £40 and then monthly terms ranging from 3-12 months from £30.99 each month.

This is a bit pricier than some other brands, however Beguile is a much smaller company you’re supporting and have included products in their boxes from brands such as YSL, Too Faced, Morphe and Real Techniques.

The OG box, and one that I’ve dipped in and out of in the past. At £12.95 for a one-off box, it’s pretty affordable, but both the 3 and 6 month terms are paid up front, so that’s something to be aware of if you’re thinking of gifting.

As with the other boxes mentioned above, Birchbox have have some fab brands in the past such as Anna Sui, Balance Me, Anatomicals and Benefit.

One thing I will say is that I often found Birchbox to be very heavy on sample sizes rather than full size products, but it’s still a lovely surprise whatever is in the box.

Something a little different for the person who has everything.

Bloom & Wild offer a letterbox subscription, with a deconstructed bouquet arriving as often as your request with full information on arranging and allowing the recipient to learn something new each month.

Long-lasting and quite frankly beautiful, from just £20 per bouquet you can gift a Seasonal Blooms or Classic Blooms subscription depending on your tastes and you can personalise the card each month too to pass on a message or note.

If I was a self-gifter this would definitely be something I’d be ordering myself.

Another subscription box, but with a sustainable spin.

A longtime partner with Fairtrade and determined to show their ethical stance by where possible using British-grown seasonal flowers and eradicating single use plastics, Arena plant a tree to support healthy forests for each bouquet or plant purchased from them.

Each bouquet comes with one or two types of fresh stems along with greenery to create a beautiful bouquet and with prices from just £20 these made gorgeous gifts.

Papergang is the go-to subscription box to support your stationary addiction.

Each month receive a box jam-packed with items like greeting cards, notebooks, desk accessories and art prints.

Each month is designed alongside an artist with a specific theme which means you’re always guaranteed something new.

Previous collaborations have seen themes varying from Fish to Neil Armstrong, so plenty of variety!

I came across this subscription service on Twitter with a girl I follow sharing her monthly box.

Launched through a determination to empower women and girls by drawing attention to books that represent them and putting unique reading experiences at the forefront.

Previous boxes have included An American Marriage by Tayari Jones, The Adventures of China Iron by Gabriela Cabezon Camara and We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.

Boxes also include little extras such as tote bags, keyrings, stickers, cookies and prints.

Monthly boxes are just £17 and include items from independent creatives in a beautifully packaged box; though longer subscriptions of 3, 6 and 12 months are also available.

This is another of those subscription ideas that just makes you think, “well, duh! What an amazing idea!” I can’t believe this hasn’t been around longer.

Each quarter, a selection of tools are hand-picked and a series of artist takes you through a new project with various materials and tutorials. Alongside the subscription service is an online community to engage with and drawing challenges to participate in.

A single box is £35 with a 12 month subscription (four boxes) costing £120 – but what an innovative gift for someone with a creative flair, and it’s the gift that gives all year round!

Iggy Box was founded in the belief that candles create calming, cosy spaces that can allow us to invest in our mental wellbeing and take a bit of time out. Encouraging kindness is the Iggy Box mantra and gives the space to talk about the importance of self care.

Supporting small businesses and local makers means that by shopping this subscription box you’re supporting an independent creators journey and buying beautiful, sustainable products.

There are two gift sizes available, The Little One and The Bigger One; but each box comes with a ‘little something extra’ and a box of matches – so it really does set you up for a bit of chill time.

Boxcitement is another service that I’m new to but like the concept of, they curate a collection of stationary, jewellery and other surprises to make you smile.

With a range of subscription terms, you can dip in and out all year round. Previous boxes have had an Eco theme and contained honeycomb earrings, cotton facecloths and biodegradable toothbrushes while the Sleepy Time box post-christmas contained washi tape and a shopping pad, greetings cards, fluffy sleep masks and hair clips.

You can sign up for a range of subscription terms.

Obviously one for over-18s the Little Gin Box is another flexible subscription where you can dip in and out as you want – for £10 a month you’ll receive 50ml of two specially chosen Gins with tasting notes.

You can sign up for a 3, 6 or 12 month subscription and also pay a little more for a bumper delivery on your first month.

So, that's my round up of the subscription boxes I think are worth checking out - but what do you think? I'd lovee to hear if you think I've made a glaring omission - or if you've decided to checkout one of my suggestions.

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