Whatever your interest, there’s a subscription box for that
Subscription boxes have been around for a while, but their popularity has skyrocketed in the past couple of years, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, when people were sheltering in place, and needed pick-me-up, without the hassle of leaving home to risk infection at a store. Subscription boxes conveniently bring trendy, curated items catering to the subscriber’s interest, right to your doorstep.
The range of subscription boxes – and price points – are as varied as the people and interests out there. From food to beauty, home to travel, kids, pets, book lovers, collectors, men, women, foodies, snack lovers, and essential oil users, there’s a box for every interest. Read on for our picks of the most interesting and innovative boxes for every member of the family. This story is not sponsored – there is no pay for play.
For baby and expectant moms
Born out of a desire to make the lives of expecting mamas easier, Oh Baby Box curates six to eight goodies in each box. Ranging from all natural and organic wellness, skincare, maternity essentials and fashion, and other unique lifestyle products for the mom-to-be, each box treats expecting mamas to a month’s worth of pampering and relaxation. The boxes are geared toward the recipient’s trimester of pregnancy and after birth, the boxes automatically transition to postpartum self-care boxes. “Each product included in the box is extensively researched, tested, and vetted for efficacy and safety so that we can nourish your body, mind and soul while you go about creating and caring for your incredible little human(s),” says Tony Koo of Oh Baby Box. With subscriptions from a single month to six months, we can count this as one of the perks of being pregnant.
Prices range from $35.99 to $39.99 per box.
For the kids
There’s no question that COVID-19 affected our children the most. Many summer camps – the highlight of the season for many kids – have been cancelled, leaving parents struggling to find worthwhile fun and educational opportunities for their children.
The National Inventors Hall of Fame’s leading summer STEM camp has adapted its in-person program into a new at-home program called Camp Invention Connect, which is based on its 2020 in-person summer enrichment program, Camp Invention Elevate (which was mapped to the Ontario curriculum standards).
Camp Invention Connect was developed as a virtual alternative for parents seeking at-home learning opportunities that are hands-on, fun and engaging, says Ottawa’s Shelley Jones, vice-president of National Inventors Hall of Fame (Canada).
It’s science camp in a box – bringing Camp Invention’s programming, science, active, independent hands-on exploration, discovery and even socialization with other campers directly to children, without the risk of attending a physical camp. Camp Invention Connect is a five-day program consisting of a different themed activity for each day from Monday through Thursday, with an online component with local educators and fellow campers. This at-home package is supplemented with daily challenges to motivate kids to go outdoors, get active and stretch their imaginations. Friday is the showcase day where participants share their inventions. Each participant receives a box delivered directly to their door containing all of the materials needed for each activity.
The result? A COVID-19-safe, screen-free, self-led experience where campers can get support from local educators and connect with fellow campers for online collaboration sessions, all without leaving their homes. If you’re a frontline worker, your child may be able to participate for free. The U.S. Embassy in Ottawa has enabled the company to provide some fully funded virtual camp spots for the children of frontline healthcare and EMS workers as well as other children in need.
For the moms
We put this in our For the moms section, but you don’t need XX chromosomes to benefit from this kit. In the stressful, uncertain times of this pandemic, self care and taking care of your mental well-being are paramount, no matter who you are.
Enter a box that recognizes the benefits of old-fashioned pampering. Founded by a therapist to make it easy for people to discover and maintain self-care rituals that inspire joy and fulfillment each month, TheraBox includes a happiness activity meant to be practiced throughout the month (or longer!) in addition to six to eight full-sized wellness items for the mind, body and soul. Packed with over $120 in value, products are curated by therapists and include aromatherapy, natural/organic bath, body, skincare products, and other lifestyle goodies.
“It’s been quoted that ‘happiness is a journey, not a destination,’” says Erika Reyes of TheraBox. “We firmly believe that you are able to enjoy this brutal yet beautiful journey called life, without having to wait for the next promotion/relationship/accomplishment or even the next week/month/year. You deserve to live your best life now.”
Called ‘Happiness Plans,’ TheraBox starts at $30.99 per box.
For the dads
He’ll go to the ends of the Earth to take care of the family, but when it comes to himself, he can be rather… frugal. Treat dad with a monthly box that four to six curated items themed around a mystery gentleman (e.g. April’s was Jamie Foxx). The Gentleman’s Box contains treats like high-end ties, socks, cufflinks, watches and more, always totaling a value of over $100 for just $29.99 per month. Also in each shipment is an issue of The Gentleman’s Post, filled with information and photos of how to mix and match so you look your best, exclusive product discounts, and more.
For the dog
Many people consider their pets to be as much a part of the family as mom, dad and the kids. Make sure your fur babies aren’t left out with a subscription box of their own. There are many dog box choices out there, but the Woof Pack is proudly homegrown – a Montreal-based subscription box for dogs that delivers fun and themed toys, healthy treats and delicious chews to dog owners across Canada.
“As a dog owner ourselves, we know how difficult it is to find the perfect product for our dogs,” says co-founder Hani Auran. “When we walk into pet stores, we’re overwhelmed with hundreds of products. We don’t know if they’ll make our dogs happy, where the ingredients are sourced from or if they’re even good for our dogs. This doesn’t include the time it takes to go to the store and the money spent on inflated costs.”
Woof Pack does the research for you – allowing you to tailor to your subscription to your dog’s size and preferences – and ships a box, each with a fun theme, every month. Each pack contains five to six items: two engaging toys, two natural treats, and a tasty chew. Boxes start at $35 a month.