By Jami Gibson

Products and services that offer convenience and time-savings are quickly becoming the norm in today’s fast-paced world. Online and mail-order retail has steadily been taking market share away from brick-and-mortar stores over the past decade, but a niche that is recently making strides is subscription boxes. These services offer anything from groceries, clothing, and pet products to beauty aids, hobby kits, and books. Subscribers are usually able to set their delivery terms (weekly, monthly, etc.), price point, and other parameters, and they are treated to a box of goodies delivered to their doorstep. Some box items, like prepared meals, can be hand-picked by the subscriber, while other services surprise their clients based on their preferences. Subscription boxes not only satisfy the consumer’s need for convenience, but they also add a bit of novelty.

I, and others I know, have used some of these services with great success to save time on shopping, meal planning, or making returns. Here are a few tried-and-true subscription boxes that may appeal to you.


Hello Fresh
Fresh, quality, pre-measured ingredients to make simple but delicious recipes. They offer vegetarian and kid-friendly meal plans.

Blue Apron
Similar to Hello Fresh, but also offers wine as well as kitchen gadgets.


Stitch Fix
Once you fill out an online “style profile,” 5 items will be shipped to you. Keep what you like, return (for free) what you don’t. Update your profile to let the company know what you liked or did not like about each item, which will help tailor the pieces that are picked for you in your next shipment.

Trunk Club
This service will help you build a wardrobe based around your needs and preferences, and offers various price points.


Bark Box
Toys, chews, and treats to surprise and entertain your dog each month.

All-natural, eco-friendly toys, treats, and accessories for your canine.


For $10 per month, you receive a box of five trial-size beauty products tailored to your skin, hair, and style. Reviewing these products earns you points toward a discount on full-size products.

Dollar Shave Club
Receive a razor handle and cartridge for $1. Cartridges automatically ship at the interval you specify. Other grooming products are also available.