Babb’s Holiday Gift Guide: Monthly Subscriptions Edition, Pt. 1

Subscription services have seen a surge in subscribers over the last few years.  The ease, choices, and availability of the types of services you can subscribe to monthly is so diverse.  If you are someone who needs to try things before buying a large quantity of something, then a subscription service might be for you.  They are also a great way to keep giving to your loved one or friend all year.

Today is part 1 of our subscription services edition of our Holiday Gift Guide.  We are highlighting products including streaming services, beauty and style, food, and book subscriptions.  Enjoy!

Steaming Services

Netflix, $7.99-$11.99/month depending on plan:  If you don’t already have a subscription to Netflix you are seriously missing out.  Not only do they offer you a wide variety of TV shows, movies, documentaries, etc., but there original programming is some of the best out there.  There are 3 plans to choose from:  basic, standard, and premium, and when you join, your first month is free.  The best part?  You can watch on your TV (smart TVs, gaming consoles, Chromecast, Applte TV, etc.), computers, tablets, and smart phones.  And, now you can download shows and movies to watch later when you aren’t in a WiFi capable area.  All in all, Netflix is a great gift not only for your loved ones, but for yourself as well.

Hulu, starting at $7.99/month:  Similar to Netflix, Hulu offers you the ability to watch almost every TV show immediately after it airs on television.  They have also stepped into the original programming market and offer a wide variety of shows that Hulu has produced themselves.  If you have television shows that you love to watch but aren’t always capable of catching them when they air, Hulu is definitely a great choice for you.  Plans start at $7.99 and those include commercial breaks, but you can choose to pay a little more each month for commercial free programming.  Plus, when you sign up, you get your first week free.

Amazon Prime, $99/year:  When you subscribe to Amazon Prime, you get so much more than just free 2-day shipping on anything you could possibly ever want.  With your subscription you get Amazon Instant Video as well, a service that offers TV shows from all different networks, movies, documentaries, and Amazon Originals.  You also have the ability to purchase additional packages for specialty channels including HBO, Starz, Showtime, Cinemax, and more.  They are additional costs to your yearly Prime membership, but they are a great deal especially if you only pay for cable each month to get those premium channels.  Check out Amazon Prime to see all of the amazing benefits.

Beauty 

Scentbird, $14.95/month:  Each month you get to try a different designer perfume.  Once you sign up, you get to pick which perfume you would like to choose from over 450 options.  When you have made you selection, they will send you a 0.27oz sample of your selected scent with a refillable case to put it in (the refillable case comes with your first order).  If you love or know someone who loves trying new scents, this is the subscription to buy.

Ipsy, $10/month:  When you sign up for Ipsy, you are asked to take a short beauty quiz that helps the beauty stylists curate the perfect monthly glam bag.  In your glam bag you will receive 5-6 deluxe samples of makeup, perfume, makeup brushes, skincare, hair car, etc.  Some of these products will be sample sizes and some will be full size products.  The best part is that it is only $10 a month and you get a cute and stylish makeup bag to reuse.  If there are products that you really like, as a member, you can log on to the site to purchase them at a discount.

Stitch Fix, pay for what you keep:  Are you someone who just doesn’t have the time to go shopping for work or street clothes?  Stich Fix is definitely a great idea for you.  It is a personal styling service for men and women that pairs you with a stylist who will help pick out clothes, shoes, and accessories based on your tastes, needs, and your lifestyle.  All you have to do is let them know what your style and sizes are and what you are willing and able to spend.  Each delivery you will get 5 pieces to try and test out.  You can keep and buy the pieces you like and send back what you don’t.  This is a great tool for people who just don’t have the time to shop for themselves or honestly just don’t like to do it.

Food 

Winc (Formerly Club W), $13 per bottle:  Do you like to drink wine but have a hard time picking out new brands or styles of wine?  When you sign up for Club W they ask you to answer 6 easy questions to determine your palate and then send you wines based on your profile.  Once you try the wine, you can rate them to help them give you better recommendations in the future.  If you don’t like a bottle, you don’t have to pay for it and you can skip a month at any time in your subscription for free.

Graze, $11.99 for 8 snacks (first sampler box is free):  If you are tired of the normal snack options (chips, cookies, etc.) Graze is a great idea for you to try.  You get to tell them what types of snacks you enjoy and pick a box size and then they pick different snacks based on your preferences for you to try.  Then all you do is wait to receive your box either every week or every two weeks.  The snacks chosen are not only tasty, they are also all good for you in some way and you are also able to let them know if you have any allergies.  Check out their story and their mission to providing delicious and beneficial snacks to you on their site.

Blue Apron, $59.94 for 2-person meal plan (after $29.94 first week discount), $69.92 or $139.84 for family meal plan (after $39.92 or $109.84 first week discount):  Love to cook but don’t know how to make the incredible recipes you see all over Instagram?  Blue Apron is a weekly meal service delivery that sends you a box full of farm fresh, seasonal, and no added hormone ingredients to create 3 specially crafted recipes.  They take the hassle and anxiety out of shopping for meal ingredients to create gorgeous and tasty meals for you and your loved ones.  You are able to tailor your ingredients and recipes to your tastes with the best ingredients that are already pre-portioned so you don’t have to worry about getting portion sizes right.  You can choose from 2-person or family meal plans, and get 2-4 recipes to make per week.  If you want to step up your cooking game, this is the service for you or anyone you know that loves to cook.

Reading

Book of the Month Club, 3 months for $14.99/mo, 6 months for $16.99/mo, and 12 months for $11.99/mo:  On the first of each month, The Book of the Month Club release its list of books to choose from for that month.  You have until the 6th to choose what book you would like to receive that month.  If you want, you can buy extra books for an additional $9.99.  If you decide you don’t like any of the books offered, you can very easily just skip that month.

Muse Monthly, $29.50 monthly:  If you love to cuddle up with a good book and a cup of tea, this subscription box is for you.  Every month you will receive a new book and box (or tin) of tea.  Muse Monthly specially pairs your book with a tea that provides a unique experience for the reader.  There is almost nothing better to an avid reader than spending an afternoon with a hot cup of tea and a great read.

The Book Drop, ranges from $9-$90 depending on what level and package you choose:  The Book Drop is a subscription service run by an independent bookshop located in Bethany Beach.  Each month they choose a new book based on what your preferences are and what option you choose.  There are 4 options to choose from:  the Jane, the Ernest, Young Adult, and Children 8-12.  Within each box you will receive a book, a note about why they love and chose that book, a list of books for that month, and at least one extra present.