December 9, 2020
It’s safe to say that subscription gifts have evolved in the decades since Clark Griswold looked in disbelief at his one-year membership in the Jelly of the Month Club.
Of course, he was looking for a giant Christmas bonus from his employer, so maybe it had more to do with expectations.
Regardless, using the power of e-commerce and machine learning, subscription services have developed some incredible and fun ways to get new products into the hands of customers who love them but never would have found them on their own.
How do subscription gifts work? They’re usually a monthly subscription—but many services allow you to adjust the frequency to a bimonthly or quarterly box. So every month, a new shipment arrives with the featured coffee or theme box with a curated selection of cheeses matched to the subscriber’s taste. This happens every month or so until the subscription runs out, and then is canceled or renewed.
In the wise words of Cousin Eddie, “It’s the gift that keeps on givin’ the whole year.”
Giving subscription gifts for Christmas is also a great way to give gifts from a distance. Subscriptions are also ideal for someone who “has everything” or the ones who are just hard to buy for. If you know they’re into sneakers or jewelry, but have no clue what exact item to give,, let the subscription company do the heavy lifting.
Many subscription services use a survey or questionnaire to get a baseline for the subscriber’s tastes and preferences. From there, they let their algorithms do the work and match customers with the right products.
Still, maybe you’re wondering what subscription gifts are available. You know the old saying that there’s an app for that? Well, there’s also probably a subscription for that. What do you like? Shoes? Clothes? Cheese? Wine? Fragrances? Video games? Coffee and tea? Self-care items?
Yes, all available as subscriptions. That’s just a tiny sampling, and we’ve got some of the best subscription gifts to share with you below. You can even get and give the Jelly of the Month if you want.
Best Subscription Boxes to Give as Christmas Gifts in 2020
1. Bean Box Coffee Subscription Box
Starting at $16.50 per month.
Do you know a coffee lover but have no idea what kind of coffee they like? Buying coffee for a coffee connoisseur can feel like trying to buy jewelry or clothes for someone when you have no idea what they want to wear.
Don’t buy them an ugly sweater (unless it’s supposed to be an ugly sweater) and just give them something to return. Let the coffee experts at Bean Box select the beans and roasts most likely to hit the right notes.
Get the details at Bean Box.
2. Birchbox Beauty or Grooming Skincare Subscription Box
Starting at $45 per month.
Beauty products can be another tough gift to buy for someone, even if you know them really well. Birchbox gets this. They know that women and men are interested in beauty and grooming products to help them start or maintain their own beauty or grooming ritual.
The good news is that all you have to do is buy the gift package, give it to your friend or loved one (or yourself) and let the Birchbox experts do the rest. Help them enjoy the high-quality products that they might not find or buy for themselves.
Explore your beauty and grooming box options at Birchbox.
3. Monthly Book Subscription Boxes
Monthly subscription rates vary.
Books are another one of those highly personal gifts, and unless someone tells you exactly what books they want, it can be more than a daunting task to choose the right title.
The best option here is to find out if they want to choose their own books or if they like surprises. So, check out these different Book of the Month subscription box options:
- Choose your own books from the original Book of the Month Club (and see how you can pair books and wine)
- Be surprised by books from The Book Drop
- Read books by Black authors from Call Number
- Celebrate diverse voices and characters with children’s books from Equal Opportunity Book Box
- Start a child’s library with Bookroo
4. Wine of the Month Club Subscription Box
Starting at $139 per month.
Help your friends and loved ones broaden their horizons in the world of vino. You could even get a subscription of your own and see if others want to join you for an elaborate virtual wine tasting at home.
It’s a great reason to drink wine (as if that was necessary) with your peeps on a monthly basis, and to stay connected no matter the distance. Plus, it’s one more item off your holiday shopping list.
Look into the fine options at the Wine of the Month Club.
5. Cheese of the Month Subscription Box
Starting at $53 per month.
With wine goes cheese! But cheese is as varied and interesting all on its own. With the Cheese of the Month Club, you’ll be gifting (getting?) a selection of hand-crafted artisan cheeses from around the globe.
Peek into the cheese cellar for more info about the Cheese of the Month Club.
6. STEM Science Discovery Boxes for Kids
Starting at $24.95 per month.
Foster a child’s curiosity and scientific mind with this STEM science kit designed for children ages 7-12. Remember the classic chemistry set? Take that, add kits for building and conducting experiments in engineering, physics, computer coding and turn it up to 11, and you’re getting the idea.
7. SketchBox Subscription Box with Art Supplies
Starting at $25 per month.
Buying a piece of art for the artist in your life may be a tall order when last you knew they were into the Impressionists, but now it’s entirely possible that they swear by the Surrealists. Plus, they want to make their own art.
For your favorite artist, you can’t go wrong with a monthly subscription in which a box full of awesome art supplies shows up on their doorstep. This can be for a solitary artist, as well as for families who enjoy making art together.
Every SketchBox has a guide video for artists to see how the art supplies can be used.
Compare the Basic and Premium SketchBox subscription options.
8. TheraBox Self Care Subscription Box
Starting at $30.99 per month.
Like many, we’ve been talking about the importance of self-care this year. If there were ever a year in which self-care is warranted and welcomed, it’s certainly 2020.
Curated by therapists, each box is based on wellness research, and contains items to help you relax, de-stress and live your best life despite a world in chaos and the high-pressure, high-speed demands of everyday life and endless to-do lists. Help yourself or a loved one remember to decompress. At least once a month, anyway.
Check out the TheraBox Self Care Subscription Box.
9. Stitch Fix for Women, Men & Children
Subscription varies according to what you keep.
Stitch Fix has been a popular clothing subscription service for a few years now, so they were pretty far ahead of the curve when brick-and-mortar stores closed in 2020 and consumers turned to online shopping and other contactless options such as subscription boxes.
Although Stitch Fix started out just for women, the service has expanded to include curated styling for men and children as well.
Take the style quiz. Receive your shipment at home. Try on the threads. Keep what you like and send the rest back.
With no subscription required and free shipping on returns, Stitch Fix works hard to make the process as easy and affordable as possible.
Explore Stitch Fix and see if a subscription to a friend, loved one or yourself seems like a good fit.