Valentine's Day is coming, and while it might be easy to go for the usual flowers-and-chocolate, why not shake things up with a creative gift for the woman of your dreams? One of the hottest gifting trends of the past several years has been subscription boxes. Most are delivered once per month, and you can find everything from records, to cosmetics, to fragrance, luxury items like candles, designer accessories, and even cooking gear for the gourmand. With so many options, it can be overwhelming to figure out where to start.
Every gift should come from the heart, so consider your lady love's lifestyle, interests, and needs. Sure, she may love make-up, but does she already treat herself to the hottest new products? If so, maybe skip the cosmetics boxes. Does she love books? Little treats and surprises? The occasional luxurious addition to her wardrobe? No matter her taste, we have rounded up some of the hottest subscription boxes on the market, including testimonials by our friends who subscribe.
So leave the boring gifts behind and embrace a gift that keeps on giving, treating your bae with reminders of your love every single month. And hey, if she hates it? You didn't really pick it out, right...?
For the woman who loves cosmetics:
"For $10 a month, you can't find cuter, trendier products than Ipsy. I always get an adorable bag filled with things I actually USE. Unlike other cosmetics subscription boxes, I feel like Ipsy actually uses the client profiles to determine what to send out. Last month, I received an amazing lip gloss, a gorgeous metallic nail polish, a dark plum eyeliner I've fallen in love with, and a super cute lip balm. The value always exceeds what I pay, and even though I've been a member for a year, I still haven't received the same item twice." -Janelle Peters, 28
"I'm a huge fan of Play by Sephora. It's reasonably priced, and the best part are the Beauty Insider rewards I receive. I mean, the samples are fantastic of course, but I always look forward to heading into my local store to learn about the products I received. It's always, always high quality stuff--name brand, full sized products more often than not, and an awesome assortment. Sign up immediately!" -Delia Haringer, 32
For the woman who loves jewelry:
"I signed up with Bijoux Box last fall, and it's something I look forward to every single month. It costs $35, but the quality of the items far outweighs the cost. I'm a savvy shopper, so I know I'm definitely getting a great deal. With every box, you get three coordinating pieces. Not matchy-matchy, but items that look great together or individually. You can request not to receive earrings, just in case you don't have pierced ears, and I get so many compliments on my pieces from them. Last month, I got a stunning lariat necklace, a statement necklace, and the cutest rhinestone embellished hair ties. It's a win!" -Amanda-Jo Springer, 27
"Have you heard of Emma and Chloe? It's the best! They send you one piece of French jewelry every month, and let me tell you, it's so well-made. No cheap earrings or crappy necklaces, just beautiful, eye-catching jewelry. My most recent score is a gorgeous gold plated statement ring with an onyx stone and gorgeous details. It was adjustable, classic, and so elegant. It costs $35 a month, and not only do you get a piece of jewelry, but you get a certificate of authenticity with the value of the item."-Ellena North, 38
For the woman who loves snacks:
"I have a sweet tooth, so Candy Club is my absolute favorite box. You get three pounds, three full pounds, of gourmet candy once per month. It's perfect for entertaining or gifting, but honestly I end up munching on most of it myself. I see a lot of movies, so this is the perfect treat to take along with me and actually saves me money at the concession stand. You get to pick what you like: sweet, sour, chocolate, gummies, and so many more. Plus it has the cutest packaging ever!"-Alya Kimball, 41
"One of my New Year's resolutions was to cook more, so I signed up for RawSpiceBar. It's only $8 a month, and you get three or four ground spices plus recipes featuring them. It's so cool, because I've been exposed to flavors I'd never experienced and am actually learning how to effectively use spices in my recipes. The packaging is awesome, never had any explosions, and their customer service is beyond wonderful. Last month, I received licorice salt, which I'd never heard of but has become a staple in my pantry. I can't wait to receive it every month, and it really does feel like a special, inexpensive indulgence. My kitchen has never smelled better!"-Terry Lang-Reed, 33