A whole lot has happened in the world of subscription boxes, since we first announced Birchbox in 2010, the week they launched. (Really!) Now as you well know, there’s pretty much a subscription box for everyone on your list — including those practical friends and family on your list.

Or hey — maybe even yourself.

Check out these 4 ideas for smart, stylish, but still very practical subscription boxes on our radar right now. I love that they give you that joy of a parcel in the mail, coupled with the joy of not running out of the stuff you kind of hate shopping for.

 

Skura Style antimicrobial sponges: Stylish and practical subscription box idea

Antimicrobial Sponge Subscription from Skura Style 

I honestly never considered having sponges delivered. In fact, I don’t think about sponges much at all. And then I read the report about the bacteria on sponges and it freaked out even this totally-not-a-germaphobe. Skura Style (full disclosure: it was started by a very smart friend of mine and her childhood BFF) will deliver 4 of their stylish sponges — and yeah, I just said “stylish sponges,” go figure —  every month or every other month for $12.

They’re a little spendier than the no-brand stuff, but they work nicely and they’re packed with technology to inhibit the growth of bacteria, mold, mildew and odors. I gave one a shot and it’s amazing what a difference it makes to wash dishes with a sponge that doesn’t stink to high hell.

I know I’d be more inclined to toss mine when it’s time knowing I have a fresh one waiting; and if you’re not sure when it’s time? The “fade to change” pattern on top slowly disappears to give you a nudge that the sponge is overstaying its welcome on your countertop — kind of like those toothbrushes with the color-tip bristles. See? Smart.

Keep an eye out from more offerings from Skura Style, that will help make some of the other practical stuff around your kitchen just a little more clever and a little more chic.

Quip toothbrushes and other practical subscription box gifts

Toothbrush Subscription from Quip 

Speaking of toothbrushes, I find that’s another one of those things that I should be changing more frequently, and a subscription box would definitely help me cross that off my list. Quip will send you a swanky looking vibrating battery-operated toothbrush with your choice of a colorful ABS plastic or brushed aluminum base, plus a travel cover mount with a suction strip, batteries, and toothpaste.

The initial bundle starts at $25 — or $40 for the metal which is pretty great looking. So much so that it feels like the right balance of gifty and practical.

Every three months you’ll get a new brush head and more toothpaste, plus replacement batteries for just $5-10; or prepay for a year and get some decent discounts. You can even order a couple set or a family set for up to four members of the clean-teeth club.

I haven’t tried it myself but reviews are impressive. And I must say, I’m glad to see they only carry soft-bristled brush heads because hard bristles freak me out and people who like them freak me out.

Soft bristles, people!

Related; The subscription box gift for kids that inspires pure imagination.

Angel Shave Club: Practical Subscription Gift Boxes

Women’s Razors from Angel Shave Club 

Razors are seriously one of the most annoying necessities ever. They cost way way too much (or at least the ones I like do), and so I tend not to replace them until I’m all, “hey! That shave kind of sucked.” Enter Angel Shave Club, a brand new service that seems to be like a Harry’s Shave club for the ladies.

Pick one of two shaving systems including the color you like, then get 5 or 8 new blades every two or four months, depending how often you shave. They suggest you change blades every 5-8 shaves but…what?

Honestly, do you all change blades every week?

If so, I’m way way out of it.

Now I will say the names of the shavers “The Angel” and “The Little Lady” are not the name I might have chosen, but I am grateful for a blue option in addition to the pink and purple. (Also a good way to keep yours differentiated from your daughter’s, should you have kids of shaving age.) And the price is pretty great with blades around $1.50 each.

Plus I really like that they’re donating to the Malala Fund for each subscription, to help support girls and education, making this a great gift for any woman, but especially for tweens and teens. Also, check out their new First Shave Kit which is like the .Hello Flo Period Starter Kit or  Dot Girl First Period Kit only…for shaving

Mrs. Meyer's Subscription Service: Practical, smart gift

Household Cleaners from Mrs. Meyer’s Subscriptions

I have been a fan of Mrs. Meyer’s Natural Cleaning Products forever, and perhaps because I don’t visit their website much, I never realized they offer subscriptions. Yes!

If like me, you get a little twitchy when you’re out of their Lemon Verbena Dish Soap or Rosemary Multi-Surface Concentrate, just order from them online. At checkout, specify what you’d like, how often you’d like to receive it, and they’ll just keep it coming.

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