Ask Elle: Best of Beauty Boxes

Do you have any monthly subscription boxes? I've tried out several, and I get asked this question fairly often, especially since it's a new year. Today I'm sharing favorites. Enjoy.

Birchbox--This was the first sub I ever had and I was a member for a year!
  • High-end beauty and lifestyle samples
  • $10 month ($20 for men)
  • Questionnaire profile
  • Samples and full-size
  • Point system to redeem on items in the shop or you can purchase them as well
  • Best For: Fans of and occasional makeup users; you get to try high-end products you might not have been exposed to otherwise
    •  I received mostly skincare samples, even after changing my profile, so I didn't like all of my boxes. However, most people are huge fans
      • Similar sub I'd like to try: Glossybox

Wantable--Features subscriptions for makeup, intimate apparel, and accessories
  • The best in beauty, curated by an industry insider
  • $36 month ($40 one-time purchase)
  • Very detailed questionnaire--the best I've ever tried. You never have to worry about getting something you don't want!
  • 4-5 full-sized products hand-picked to match your preferences
  • Best For: Beauty fanatics, especially beauty professionals, who want exclusive products

Beauty Box 5--Makeup, hair care, skin care, nail care, fragrances and beauty accessories
  • 5 beauty samples--deluxe, travel, full-sized
  • $12 monthly with additional quarterly and yearly plans
  • Discounts on brands featured
  • Mixture of luxury, commonly known brands, niche brands, eco-conscious and even vegan brands
  • Best For: Beauty fans and beginners

PopSugar Must Have Box--Hand-selected items in beauty, fashion, home, fitness, and food
  • Full-size products and premium items
  • $39.95 a month
  • Best For: Those who want a little of everything. It's not a beauty box, but has something for everyone, so I had to include it!
    • My favorite "everything" box.

Ipsy--The longest sub I've had, since 2011!
  • Full-size and deluxe beauty samples in a themed bag
  • $10 month
  • Questionnaire
  • Active online community (for example, members will swap items)
  • Discount on brands featured
  • Point system with gifts offered at different point amounts
  • Best For: Makeup fans
So those are some of my fave sub boxes.
What are yours?

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  1. I must admit I haven't purchased any of these sub boxes, but they all do look fab! T. http://tickledpinkwoman.blogspot.com

  2. I've never subbed to a beauty box before. That Wantable one sounds great.

  3. I have never try any of these out. So of these I look in to and can't get them ship to my address. Also some will take longer to get to me too.

  4. I think I'd be more open to trying some of these if they offered a "skip" feature--I just don't need a box every month! I like watching your Ipsy unboxings though :)

  5. Great post! I'm always looking for new boxes to try out...u have ipsy but beauty box 5 looks promising too!

  6. I used to get the Ipsy box but decided to end my subscription because I was getting mostly drugstore items I could just run and pick up, I switched to birch box and I love it! Its a little treat and even though there isn't much makeup included its always stuff I've never heard of which is what I want!


  7. thanks for this review recap! i've been tempted to subscribe to these but i think i'd rather just pick the things i want to buy :) xo

  8. I subscribed to Birchbox for a little over a year, but I never felt like it was worth the money. Occasionally, I'd get a full-sized product and decent sample, but it was rare. I want to try Ipsy (I've heard it's the best for the money) and the PopSugar Must-Have Box! Sounds fabulous!

    Diary of a Debutante

  9. I have a Birchbox sub and have only received one box so far so I can't completely give my opinion yet, but I definitely want to try a different sub once it is up next Christmas. Thanks for sharing your opinion on each of these! I am thinking of going with Ipsy next.

  10. Happy New Year! I have been tempted to take out a subscription. Interesting to read your thoughts about them.

  11. I've only done Birchbox but I'd like to try something new. Birchbox got kind of boring after awhile though.

  12. there was a stretch when I had subs to julep, tipsy, glossy, top box and luxe box. It was so fun to get mail all the time but then I noticed that I was collecting all this stuff I'd never use so I slowly got rid of them. I'm still missing the mail. Once I get through my back log of stuff, I might sign up for another. I still love reading blog reviews of them though :)

  13. I currently subscribe to Fit, Fab, Fun and Fortune Cookie Soap Box. They're both 4x a year, rather than monthly. The only monthly one I do now is Bestowed, which is curated by a Registered Dietician. I love it for healthy snacks.

    I've gotten Glossybox, Birchbox, Eco Emi, and Beauty Army before. Glossybox kept sending me things that weren't relevant to me (a LOT of oils) and a few things that wouldn't open. I found it to be a waste of money. Eco Emi kept sending lip balms and stuff that just wasn't appealing. Beauty Army had bad service. And I had the same issue with Birchbox that you had.

    Never heard of Wantable… looking into it now!

  14. Oh! And I do Le Tote, which is my all time favorite "box." It's CLOTHING! Three clothing items and two accessories, all chosen to fit my body and style. They're so sweet too. I love them.

  15. I used to subscribe... I think it was to Birchbox... some samples company... but then decided I couldn't afford it any longer. I do enjoy your reviews though!

  16. definitely want to subscribe one of the box!

  17. I've been toying with the idea of getting one of these subscription boxes forever now. I think Birchbox- sounds like the best fit for me.....when I actually do take the plunge that is :)

  18. I've been toying with the idea of getting one of these subscription boxes forever now. I think Birchbox- sounds like the best fit for me.....when I actually do take the plunge that is :)

  19. I've been thinking about getting one but I get so overwhelmed at how many there are! This is a good little cheat sheet! :D

  20. I don't get any boxes. However I think I'd like Ipsy best as it has brands I recognize

  21. So informative! I've only ever tried Birchbox and while I love it, I do tend to get mostly skin care items. I might have to try Ipsy next!

  22. This is a great list for those who want to try a lot of different products!

  23. I've heard great things about Birchbox but I've never heard of Ipsy! Thanks for the info!

  24. I've only done PopSugar once, but I really liked it!

  25. This was a great list. I have wanted to try one of these boxes for awhile.
    Thanks for visiting my blog.

  26. I feel like I'm the only gal in the world who seriously dislikes Birchbox. I was formerly a subscriber, and I found that they sent some great brands and great samples. My problem, though, was so many foil packets! You'd get one tiny little use of a product. And they also sent a bunch of junk like friendship bracelets and food, which I didn't like. I do, however, LOVE Ipsy. I haven't jumped the gun on any of the others since most of them are on the pricier side. I might try one though based on your review!

  27. Right now I'm just doing Ipsy and Graze (snacks) but I think when I have some money (ie when I'm out of the hole from Christmas and from fixing my car) I would like to at least try Wantable once. I like that you can get a single box to try out for a little more. I also kind of want to get the Fortune Cookie Soap quarterly soap box. I think I need another job...

  28. Sounds like Ipsy might be my type of beauty box!! thanks!!

  29. Just started Ipsy & I'm having so much fun!
    I haven't been a makeup girl much of my life - but I'm seeing that change.
    Girly girl here I come.

  30. Great round up! Glossybox is pretty awesome for those who have tried a lot of beauty products (like us beauty bloggers). People always ask if they should sign up for Birchbox and I tell them that the boxes are hit or miss every few months so if you can throw away $10 a month in hopes of getting one good product then go for it lol I haven't cancelled my subscription because there's a waiting list and I know once I do, there's going to be something I want #boxaddiction!

    Popsugar is my favorite box and I definitely recommend it for all. It has beauty, fashion and lifestyle.

    Julep is also great for nail addicts. I've had a subscription for over a year so polishes are getting repetitive but they have beauty products now so I'm trying those.


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