Beauty gurus, this one is for you.
If you’re all about discovering the newest product launches, what’s worth your buck and the hottest must-have products, then you’ll love a monthly makeup subscription box.
That’s because subscription boxes are the easiest way to try new products without spending a fortune on full-size options.
So go ahead and dive into cult-favorite lip tints, silky shampoos, cream blushes, Korean skincare and more.
However, knowing which beauty and makeup subscription box is right for you (and your wallet) can be tricky.
Each box caters to an individual audience, offers specific products and rings in at a different price.
To ensure you find the best makeup and beauty subscription box for your lifestyle, we reviewed the six most popular boxes out there.
Click below to go to a specific box beauty review:
What is FabFitFun?
“FabFitFun is a lifestyle membership that is best known for its flagship product, the FabFitFun box,” said Katie Rosen Kitchens, said FabFitFun’s co-founder and lead curator.
In addition to the box, which includes full-size products from both premium and emerging brands, subscribers can look forward to the brand’s social network, the FabFitFun online community, members-only shopping experiences and special e-commerce sales.
“I think they look forward to the moment of excitement and discovery when the box arrives at their door,” continued Kitchens. “For those five minutes they are unboxing, it’s as if the world stops and they get to enjoy a perfect gift of self-care and fun.”
Who is FabFitFun made for?
FabFitFun is made for the individual who wants full control over their products. This is because each box is 100% customizable to each member’s individual needs and preferences.
“Each season, our members can select their favorite products within the seasonal curation — whether they are looking to upgrade their home decor, try a new pair of chic sunnies or find a moisturizer that is perfect for their skin,” said Kitchens. “If members are looking for more surprise and delight, our team of data scientists can choose for them. We are not just finding the world’s best products, but specifically finding the best products for you!”
How are FabFitFun products chosen?
“Every season we start with a trend forecast focused on the ingredients, materials, styles and colors that we want to highlight,” shared Kitchens. “Our merchandising team then works with brands across the world to bring the vision to life.”
To ensure these practices are best executed, the FabFitFun team looks at thousands of products each season to ensure sure they are effective and work on different skin, body and hair types.
FabFitFun also focuses on brands making a difference. This includes brands that use clean effective ingredients, focus on sustainability, give back, are female founded, BIPOC-founded and small businesses.
What makes FabFitFun different from the rest?
FabFitFun stands out from the pack, as they are dedicated incorporating customer feedback.
“I like to say that our members are our fourth co-founder as we really listen to their feedback and try to incorporate that into our decision making around everything from product curation to shipping providers,” said Kitchens.
- Pricing: $50 to $180 plans available
- Shipment frequency: Seasonally
What is Allure Beauty Box?
The monthly beauty subscription “helps consumers discover the latest and greatest in beauty,” said the Allure editors. “Think Allure Best of Beauty and Readers’ Choice Award winners delivered right to your door every month.”
Allure Beauty Box subscribers can always look forward to six or more products, which includes three full-size items, valued at over $100 per box. Further subscriber perks include a mini magazine with beauty tips and promotional codes, free shipping, a new member box and access to the member store, where you can purchase items up to 80% off.
Members can also take advantage of limited-edition boxes before they are available to the public, new product launches before they hit shelves and events with the Allure editorial team and industry experts.
Who is Allure Beauty Box made for?
The Allure Beauty Box is made for the beauty maven who is on the hunt for the latest and greatest. According to Allure editors, it’s also perfect for “all skin types and tones.”
How are Allure Beauty Box products chosen?
When choosing products to include, editors at Allure handpick the best in beauty.
“We select products that are universally flattering and combine that with our editorial knowledge of products and ingredients,” shared the editors.
What makes Allure Beauty Box different from the rest?
“Allure Beauty Box is the only editorially-driven monthly beauty subscription,” said the editors, and they’re right. Therefore, you know you’re getting the real deal each month.
Allure Beauty Box details:
- Pricing: $23 to $228 plans available
- Shipment frequency: Monthly
What is GLOSSYBOX?
“GLOSSYBOX is the perfect beauty surprise – a monthly subscription box always filled with at least five hand-picked beauty products straight to your doorstep from an array of international brands,” said head of GLOSSYBOX US, Amy Forsythe.
With each box worth at least $75, subscribers can always look forward to exciting global brands, newly launched products and ways on how to use each item.
Subscribers can also collect GLOSSYCredit by completing product surveys, writing reviews and sharing GLOSSYBOX with friends and family. This credit can then be used to purchase limited edition boxes or items at LOOKFANTASTIC.com.
Who is GLOSSYBOX made for?
With over 300,000 global GLOSSYBOX members, these pink boxes are made for all. To ensure this standard, GLOSSYBOX regularly survery their members to understand their needs, wants and interests.
“Their direct feedback, along with our own expert trend analyses, largely determine the overall curation of upcoming boxes,” said Forsythe.
How are GLOSSYBOX products chosen?
Along with customer feedback, GLOSSYBOX also selects products based on their own trend analyses and research.
“We scour the world for the best products, which our team personally tests, to determine the best fits for our GLOSSIES,” explained Forsythe.
What makes GLOSSYBOX different from the rest?
Perhaps the most iconic part of GLOSSYBOX is the box presentation, as the brand wants “every box to feel like a beautiful gift for our GLOSSIES,” said Forsythe.
The box construction is also noteworthy, as it’s durable enough to keep for beauty storage.
- Pricing: $18 to $210 plans available
- Shipment frequency: Monthly
What is Birchbox?
According to Candance McDonald, chief impact officer at Birchbox, “Birchbox is a customizable monthly beauty and wellness curated box of samples” that range across categories such as “beauty, haircare, skincare, body, makeup, fragrance and wellness.” The box is delivered straight to your home and allows users to test new products without having to purchase full-size options.
Birchbox customers can also choose how they want to receive their monthly boxes.
“It can be a total surprise, they can choose one sample or they can choose a curated box where they know every sample they receive each month,” explained McDonald.
Who is Birchbox made for?
Birchbox was created for everyone and strives to meet each customers’ needs every single month.
“We are building a long term relationship with our customer and ask for feedback regularly,” shared McDonald. “We aim to thoroughly understand each customer’s needs and wants at any given moment in their discovery experience.”
How are Birchbox products chosen?
Birchbox products are selected based on relationship and connection.
“Our team creates relationships with industry partners to curate products for our customers that provide experiences of high quality, value and scientific integrity that align with our company values,” said McDonald.
What makes Birchbox different from the rest?
Brichbox doesn’t just offer fun finds, but the brand is transforming the commodity of beauty products into a personal experience.
“We aim to thoroughly understand customer’s needs and wants at any given moment in their discovery experience,” said McDonald.
Birchbox also stands out from the pack, as the box itself has launched many new brands and cult favorite products such as Beauty Protector.
- Pricing: $15 to $156 plans available
- Shipment frequency: Monthly
5. IPSY, $12 to $55
What is IPSY?
“IPSY is the preeminent beauty subscription that inspires self-expression and strives to make beauty more inclusive and welcoming to all,” said Emine ErSelcuk, senior vice president of merchandising at IPSY.
We agree, as the brand delivers customized Glam Bags by using IPSY Match, “a proprietary machine learning technology that analyzes hundreds of attributes to delight each member with beauty products fit for their lifestyle,” said ErSelcuk.
Subscribers can also look forward to products from leading brands, curated themes and sustainability, clean formulation and diverse representation.
Who is IPSY made for?
ISPY really is the subscription-based service that has something for everyone.
“Our membership is a cross-section of beauty enthusiasts from Gen Z to Baby Boomers,” said ErSelcuk. “We aim to have a diverse assortment of products to appeal to a varied member base.”
This is made possible through member information. First, the member shares what he or she wants. Then, the brand uses their IPSY Match algorithm to personalize each member’s bag.
How are IPSY products chosen?
When it comes to the offered products, IPSY looks at item appeal, brand values, product efficacy and more. The brand also surveys customers themselves to see what will stick.
“We survey our Ipsters and ask them how excited they would be to receive a product and only include in our assortment those products that rate the highest from our members,” shared ErSelcuk. “Our member community actively participates in ratings and reviews; that feedback is leveraged to help us select brands that are proven to be beloved by our community.”
What makes IPSY different from the rest?
What sets IPSY apart? Their dedication to building community.
“With an avid beauty community and more than 200 million product reviews, IPSY has created the ultimate beauty discovery platform to enjoy an endless exchange of beauty ideas and inspiration,” ErSelcuk explained. “We aren’t just delivering boxes, we are building a community and supporting the next generation of beauty entrepreneurs in building their brands and reaching new audiences.”
- Pricing: $12 to $55 plans available
- Shipment frequency: Monthly
What is BoxyCharm?
“BoxyCharm is a leader in beauty box subscriptions, offering members five full-size products from the hottest brands like Fenty, Anastasia Beverly Hills, Glow Recipe, Tarte and more,” said Deanna Caceres, vice president of merchandising at BOXYCHARM.
Members can also gain access to new products, exclusive drops and member-only online shops up to 70% off retail.
Who is BoxyCharm made for?
BoxyCharm wanted to create something for those that are beauty-obsessed — and boy didn they.
“Our Charmers are beauty aficionados,” said Caceres. “They are trend-focused, beauty-obsessed and comfortable with makeup.”
How are BoxyCharm products chosen?
BoxyCharm uses a formula for sourcing products such as the brand’s monthly theme, trend forecasting and product selection from both well-known and underground brands.
“Our team of seasoned merchandising experts test and vet every product that goes into the box to ensure it meets our criteria for high performance,” Caceres shared.
The brand also surveys subscribers “to gauge excitement about each product before featuring it in any subscription, to ensure that every product featured is Charmer approved,” Caceres explained.
When it comes to product allocation, the brand uses a Beauty Quiz to gauge each Charmers preferences and wants.
What makes BoxyCharm different from the rest?
BoxyCharm was one of the first to offer five full-size products from prestige, indie and emerging beauty brands. Best of all, BoxyCharm is always on the hunt for innovative beauty experiences.
“[BoxyCharm] works to push the envelope with unparalleled product selection, exciting partnerships and incredible deals to give [Charmers] a subscription experience like no other,” said Caceres.
- Pricing: $28 to $40 plans available
- Shipment frequency: Monthly
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