By Sama Ilyas

Junior, Biology major 

A month ago, I discovered the vast world of subscription boxes. Subscription boxes are what I think of as college care packages… but to yourself! Basically, you sign up for a membership, and each month, a box is mailed to you full of goodies. Each box company usually has a survey or questionnaire that you answer about yourself so that they can personalize your products. I am going to go over some subscription boxes I have researched and think are worth it… and include some codes so you can score free stuff! (Because who doesn’t love free stuff?)

subscription boxes
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Birchbox  – $10/month including shipping

This is probably the most famous makeup box out there, since it caters to the US and to the UK. Every month you get 4-5 makeup products. You can also earn points by buying a product from the online shop or writing a review of your box.

Bonus tip: They also have Birchbox for Men!

Ipsy – $10/month including shipping

Even though I haven’t received mine yet, this will probably be my favorite. From the reviews I’ve seen, this bag probably gets the most stuff for your $$$. Every month, the products – including various brands from Urban Decay to NYX– come to your door in a little cosmetic bag for you.

Julep Maven – $19.99/month including shipping

This is a beauty box specialized in nail care. You take the quiz and find out your beauty profile, and then each month, you get a box with about 3-4 nail products. I got my first one a few days ago and received two nail polishes, cuticle care oil, and a little sample of hand cream. The quality of the nail polishes is incredible.

Bonus tip: Use the code FREEBOX or JULEPVIP or FREEMAVEN to get your first box free. (not including $3.99 for shipping.)

Love With Food – $12/month including shipping

This one has about eight samples of gourmet food. The thing I like most is that for every box bought, this company donates a meal to a hungry child. You get fun samples, and you get to feel good about it.

Bonus tip: Use the code FBGIFT or FBFOOD to get your first box free! (not including $2 for shipping).

Bulu Box – $10/month including shipping

This one has healthy food, and you can choose between two options, one being a weight loss box. The samples are a great mix that include vitamins, energy, protein, digestion, weight loss, and sleep samples. You can also earn reward points for reviewing the products.

Bonus tip: Use the code FIRSTFREE or BULUGAN131 to get your first box COMPLETELY FREE, no shipping cost or anything!

Warning: If you sign up for any of these boxes, remember that it is a membership. If you don’t want to be billed for the next boxes, please set a reminder to cancel your subscription. (This is really easy to do; most are online cancellations, but with some, you have to call.)

I hope you try out at least one subscription box. There are many, many more boxes out there, ranging from dog accessories to DIY crafts to underwear boxes (seriously). I find that the makeup boxes will value out more than the food ones (but the food boxes do have a variety of samples that are not easy to find). Also, there is currently a waitlist for Birchbox (about two weeks) and Ipsy.Feel free to leave comments if you have any questions!