The rise of subscription services

Photo by Diana Akhmetianova on Unsplash

Like most people these days I have tried my fair share of subscription services, from Netflix to Ipsy to Blue Apron to Stitch Fix.

Forbes writes that the main demographic for those buying subscription boxes in 2017 were those who have a college degree, were politically liberal, female, have a household income over $100,000 and have children aged 3-5.

There are many reasons for the increase in use of subscription services. First, with the rise of technology it makes sense that more people are shopping online. Now people can have someone else shop for them and get the products shipped directly to them.

These services are typically affordable too. Around $10 a month for an Ipsy or Netflix subscription is relatively cheap. Services like Disney Plus even allow you to bundle Disney Plus, Hulu and ESPN+ for only $13 a month.

Out of the services my family and I have tried, there are definitely some that are better than others.

First off, you can’t go wrong with Netflix. Probably most people reading this have Netflix and can vouch that it is a good service. For one, you can watch Netflix on virtually any device, anywhere and can watch different shows on several devices at the same time. You can even download shows to watch later.

Blue Apron is a meal prep delivery service that has options for vegetarians, Weight Watchers users and diabetics, as well as meals that include Beyond Meat. The dishes are often delicious, but many factors can go wrong here. First, the package can get lost or delayed. Second, sometimes they include two of one item instead of two separate items, but usually that is not the end of the world. Third, sometimes items come broken or beat up, such as flattened bread or an opened can of beans. Meal prep services are convenient, yet kind of pricy and not always reliable, no matter the company you choose.

Stitch Fix is fun and convenient, but not for the money saver. You fill out a survey online with styles you like and your sizes, and five pieces of clothing will be shipped to you. You keep and pay for what you like and send back what you don’t. Each piece of clothing can range from $25-500, but I have never encountered a piece of clothing under $50. If you have the money, this service is for you, but your average college student probably wouldn’t benefit from this service.

Last is Ipsy, which I cannot rave enough about. For just $12 you can receive five sample sizes of high-end products for hair, skin and beauty every month or every other month. You take a preference quiz to indicate what products you want, and then after you get your products, you rate each one so they can personalize your preferences even more. I’ve gotten products from brands like Tarte, First Aid Beauty and Pixi Beauty. This affordable service is perfect for college students who love skincare or beauty.

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