If you’re like me, you love samples. I would base my Sephora shopping sprees off of what cool coupon code came in via email. “Oh, is that a sample of Sunday Riley Luna? Let me see what I can add to my cart to nab that.” Chances were it was some collection of samples that Sephora put out… I told you, I just loooove samples. (I hope you read that in Krombopulos Michael‘s voice. You’re the best if you did. 💗)
On top of that, if you buy from almost any k-beauty site, you get to either pick samples or they send you some at random. It got to a point where I would collect them like the hoarder I am was. However, I’m here to help you not get like that. And by that I mean this. Now this isn’t a guide, but from what I’ve experienced as I’ve used each of these subscription services myself. I’ll also tell you which ones I’ll go back to once I’m officially off the no-buy. So let’s actually figure out, how do you choose the right subscription service for you.
Before even picking a subscription box service, you first need to think about what you want out of the service. Do you have specific needs that should be catered to? Are you a drugstore fiend? Are you vegan? Do you want customization? All are valid questions to be asking yourself. With that in mind, here are my thoughts on the subscription services I’ve personally tried:
Birchbox* | I initially signed up for Birchbox back in 2011 and it was the first subscription service I tried. I kept with it for quite some time and have been on an off since. The best part of Birchbox is the mix of products you get. Sometimes they eek in a mid-range product, but most are fairly affordable and newer brands. (website)
ipsy | If you’re young or you like Instagram makeup, this would be the service for you. I’m personally not a fan of the stuff I’ve gotten from ipsy and the little bags get annoying after a while. I’d love to have a different version of the service without the many makeup bags. (website)
Allure Beauty Box | A luxe to drugstore fan? This box is perfect for you. Each box has a theme and products are featured in Allure as well. I can’t wait to be off my no-buy so I can subscribe again. (website)
Petit Vour | If you’re vegan, love eco/green beauty or just want guaranteed cruelty-free products, this service is for you. These products are from mostly indie brands, but slowly they’ve been incorporating more mainstream brands. Another great service that I can’t wait to re-subscribe to. (website)
Glossybox* | This service is cool if you’re into trying brands you’ve never heard of. You do get some classic brands, but for the most part, you get a lot of Euro brands. I’m all about trying new stuff, but after a while I was unimpressed. (website)
Julep* | I would say its a go-to for the nail polish fanatic, but they’ve left a sour taste in a lot of polish lovers mouths. I’ve never had a bad experience with Julep and have stuck with them through the years. I’ve seen the polish improve greatly in formulation over the years. Also, the inclusion of makeup, skincare and a few hair care items is great. I personally love Julep and suggest it just for the discount on skincare. My only gripe is that their argan oil needs to be a permanent fixture. It is by far my favorite argan oil I’ve ever used. (website)
Play! by Sephora | If you’re a Sephora fiend, this is a must. I love this service and it helps rack up points! (website)
FaceTory | I signed up for this when I came across their booth at IMATS in January of this year. I love that they’ve introduced me to new k-beauty brands and masks I’d never have found on my own, but now that the prices have gone up in general, I’m not going to re-subscribe. (website)
Other than the services I’ve tried, the only other services I’d love to try out next are Olfactif (fragrance only) and the monthly Sisley box. Are there any subscription services you love? Let me know in the comments! I’m always open to looking into some after this no-buy.