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Nina Garcia Quarterly Subscription Box Review #NGQ03

Liz Cadman
ByLiz CadmanJul 7, 2014 | 113 comments

Nina Garcia Quarterly Subscription Box Review #NGQ03 Box

I’m always one of the last to get the Nina Garcia box each quarter, (Quarterly ships from the West Coast and I’m on the East Coast), so I had seen the spoilers and comments on this box before I had it in my hands. It seems like #NGQ03 isn’t as popular as previous boxes, but I wan’t to hold off on making opinion about the box until I had it in my hands.

Maybe it was because so many people told me I wouldn’t like this box and I had low expectations, but I really like Nina’s Brazil/Summer box!

Nina Garcia Quarterly Subscription Box Review #NGQ03 FIrst Look

A first look as I opened the box – I love that Nina has her own personalized tissue paper!

Nina Garcia Quarterly Subscription Box Review #NGQ03 Items

The Subscription Box: Nina Garcia for Quarterly

The Cost: $100 a box every 3 months

The Products: Items hand selected by Nina Garcia!

Ships to: Free to the US. (Canada +$30; rest of world +$40)

Check out all of my Quarterly reviews and the Women’s Subscription Box Directory!

Nina Garcia Quarterly Subscription Box Review #NGQ03 Letter

Each Quarterly box comes with a letter from the curator describing the theme for that quarter, and background on every item they selected. I always read these letters after I unbox everything (I probably should do it the other way around), but I think they are excellent for giving context on each of the items selected for the box.

Nina Garcia Quarterly Subscription Box Review #NGQ03 Sapien

Hawaiian Tropic Silk Hydration Broad Spectrum SPF 30 – Value $13

Joico K-PAK Intense Hydrator – Value $16

Surya Brazil Sapien Women Organic Shave Gel – Value $20

This Surya Brasil brand is completely new to me, and probably my favorite discovery in the box. This shave gel is organic, vegan, and free of sulfates, parabens, phthalates, etc. Plus it smells wonderful! I know we’ll use the sunscreen too, but I think I may end up swapping the Joico K-PAK – I’m not a fan of the scent.

Nina Garcia Quarterly Subscription Box Review #NGQ03 Red Flower

Red Flower Italian Blood Orange Refreshing Hand & Face Towelette – Value $1

Melissa Shoe Desk Ornament – Value $5?

This Red Flower Italian Blood Orange Towelette is definitely refreshing (I love citrus scents) – I just wish I had more than one!

I’ve been a little obsessed with the Melissa shoe brand since I worked at ModCloth. (These all rubber vegan shoes are so unique and smell like raspberry bubblegum! (I noticed they also have a collaboration with ShoeMint). Anyway, this little shoe isn’t the most practical item, but it looks cute on my desk!

Nina Garcia Quarterly Subscription Box Review #NGQ03 Nest

Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray – Travel Size Value $22

Nest Candle in Orange Blossom – Value $14

This Oribe spray is a luxury item for me – I love the texture and volume it adds, but it’s really pricey, so I’m thrilled to get more of it in a box!

I believe the Nest Candle scent varied box-to-box, and I definitely feel like I lucked out with this Orange Blossom scent. It’s a wonderful sweet citrus scent that isn’t too strong.

Nina Garcia Quarterly Subscription Box Review #NGQ03 Earbuds

FRENDS In Ear Headphones – Value $99

I’ve already tried these headphones thanks to Birchbox and I love them! They look beautiful and the sound quality is great too. Plus the added microphone for phone calls is great too.

Nina Garcia Quarterly Subscription Box Review #NGQ03 Clutches

Print All Over Me Palm Tree Print Clutch – Value $30?

Koku Pouch – Value $110

I was surprised to see two pouches in this box, but I really like the canvas palm tree print one. (It reminds me a lot of the one from the Limited Edition POPSUGAR Must Have box, but I don’t mind having another one). This shark clutch is a little out-there for me though. (I feel like this is one of those fashion items that could look really chic or really cheap depending on who’s wearing it, and I’m not sure I could pull it off!)

Nina Garcia Quarterly Subscription Box Review #NGQ03 CK

CK One Lipstick in DollFace – Value $16

Formula X for Sephora Nail Color in Push The Limits – Value $10.50

In Nina’s letter she mentioned that summer beauty is all about bold colors. I love it for my nail polish, but no so much for my lipstick, so I’m glad I got these shades!

Nina Garcia Quarterly Subscription Box Review #NGQ03 Hat

OtterBox Brazilian Pop! Symmetry Series Phone Case (For iPhone 5/5s or GALAXY s5) – Value $50

Spenglish Muito Cool Hat – Value $30?

This hat is not for me, but I love this phone case! (This card had a unique coupon code I redeemed to get my iPhone 5 case – no credit card info required). Plus I love that this is an exclusive design inspired by Nina!

Verdict: I paid $100 for this box and received over $430 worth of items. There are more than enough items I love and will use to make this box worth the cost for me, even though the more adventurous fashion items I probably won’t use. I also just love that Nina gets exclusive items just for her subscribers.

What did you think of the #NGQ03 box?



Liz Cadman
Liz Cadman
Liz is the founder of My Subscription Addiction. She's been hooked on subscription boxes since 2011 thanks to Birchbox, and she now subscribes to over 100 boxes. Her favorites include POPSUGAR Must Have, FabFitFun, and any box that features natural beauty products!

Liz Cadman
Liz Cadman
Liz is the founder of My Subscription Addiction. She's been hooked on subscription boxes since 2011 thanks to Birchbox, and she now subscribes to over 100 boxes. Her favorites include POPSUGAR Must Have, FabFitFun, and any box that features natural beauty products!
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Liz, any idea when the “October” box will ship?


I really hope the next box delivers, because NG03 was a tad disappointing. I was hoping for something special, I cannot buy myself, but received a lot of beauty items (if I wanted those, I’d subscribe to another brand/type of box), which can easily be bought at any drugstore. The “Spenglish” items are plain tacky (more so when you are living in Europe).


I too got the email about the delay in Box #4. The reason given, Nina is busy with Fashion Week, didn’t quite pass the smell test. When is Nina Garcia not crazy busy?? I’m planning to cancel my subscription. Box #1 was a small jewel box of wonderful, special products but the last two boxes have been quantity over quality and I’ve ended up selling quite a few items on eBay. So at least I recouped a good $70 back from the $200 it cost to subscribe to the last two boxes. It may be Quarterly Co can sell more boxes with these broader themes, but then there’s much less of a curated feel and less brand discovery as well.


Not sure if this is the place to mention this, but I just received my Creativebug box from quarterly.
It contained a sketch pad and two pens with a link to a doodling video. Um – does anyone Not already know how to doodle?
There was also a fabric swatch (?) and some washi tape thrown in.
For $50? You’re kidding me!
I’m returning it and cancelling immediately. Annoyingly, I’ll never get back the $8 shipping fee. For $8 I could buy my own sketch pad and pens.

PA Anna

I’m glad that I did not order the CreativeBug box. I figured out from the spoiler that it had to do something drawing based since it was an illustrator picking out her favorite items. I’m not good at drawing and would had been disappointed.

I saw what came in the Quarterly Box 1 Toy and Collectible and showed it to my 15 year old boy. The theme for the first box is the love of video games retro style. It’s not what I imagined. You can check it out on Quarterly Twitter. I will be posting what we receive on the other gaming thread. I’m 90% sure we will be sending it back.

Liz Cadman

Oh no! I subscribed to this one but since I’m on the east coast my box hasn’t shown up yet. Sad to hear it is a disappointment. 🙁


I must one of the few that love Nina”s boxes. I saved up the stuff I really wasn’t crazy about and gifted big boxes to my twin daughters who, with different personalities, loved it. A Fall box would have been nice but I’m sure there will be some super stuff this time, hopefully from Fashion Week. I kinda like pushing ithis one forward so the next box won’t be at Christmas but after the holidays, January needs a surprise . Anyway, the other Texans will agree, September isn’t Fall here.


I came here to post about the email I just received, but PA Anna beat me to it! Boo to having to wait an extra month for NGQ04 and boo to them completely skipping a fall box and going straight to winter… either way, the next box hopefully will make up for the items that a majority of subscribers hated in NGQ03.

Liz Cadman

Hopefully it is worth the wait! Every time I watch Project Runway I get re-excited about this box! 🙂

PA Anna

Email from Quarterly Re Nina Garcia

As you all know, Nina has been busy preparing for Fashion Week, jetsetting around and constantly thinking of new things to share in her next Quarterly shipment. We are working on securing items for her next box with a focus on winter essentials. It will be ready to ship in October, just in time for the holidays. You’ll see a charge and a tracking email from us once it is en route.


P.S. For those who received Nina’s previous box, the Otterbox code will expire at the end of this month, be sure to redeem it soon!

Not sure if I am going to keep it now it is a winter box.

PA Anna

I’m amusing myself while the plumber is working. I looked online and saw that her next box is shipping in October.

I think the favorite thing from this box is the Joico K-Pak Intense Hydrator which I used up. My hair is long, wavy, and color-treated so anything hydrating is good. I’m still using the shave gel. I passed along a lot to my sister whose favorite item is the headphones. My younger son loves his shark pouch will has a spot of honor in his upcoming shark birthday party.


I was on vacation when my box finally shipped, and was worried when the reviews started pouring in…This was not my favorite box, and I will not use $430 worth of products in the box, but I will us more than $100. of the products. The earphones, I never would have spent that much on a set of buds, so that is a treat for me, the hat I will never wear, I like the palm tree clutch but it is so close to the popsugar one I got last month, so I will gift that to my sister, the shark with plastic fringe is just hideous and I will never use it, I have it up for swapping, the lipstick while perhaps a nice quality, I don’t use lipstick and I did not get a summer color, the nail polish was fine but not new or exciting, I can always use sunscreen, I used the phone case code to get a new case for my phone, but would have been frustrated with that one had I just not traded in my droid for an iphone, candle ok but small, single wipe silly…all in all an ok box


This is my first NG box and while I think it is not as great as the first two boxes, I really liked it. My mum liked it, too, because she received most of the cosmetic items (bright red lipstick / nail varnish is really not for me).

I am MASSIVELY annoyed with Otterbox.

Not only do they charge USD 25.00 for shipping the case overseas, they do not even bother to process the order. It has been two days now since I placed my order, but I have not even received a confirmation email. Contacting their custumer service is via email does not work, the waiting time for a phone call is more than 25 minutes.

I tried to reorder, but it said “code already redeemed”. This company is utter rubbish to say the least!

I am so annoyed that I will try out the next box. Should there be another “non-performer”, I will cancel my subscription.


After the initial shock of not really liking the box, my opinion has changed just a bit…
I am loving the shave gel and hair product. However, I still cannot wrap my head around the plastic shoe and the unattractive fringe clutch. I am a fan of project runway and cannot help but think this clutch came out of the dollar store challenge.
I am hoping the fall box is more on target for what is expected of someone who is so chic, like Nina.

Debra Luciew

I did not understand the shark pouch either- at least mine was navy blue with the green fringe. I do not understand the fringe, but it was ok. I received the white shoe? Ido not understand these two picks. I also miss my magazine not being in the box, Marie Claire. I love everything else. The K shampoo/conditioner is great, shave gel, and the suntan spray on. The box was worth $100., I did not like the clutch or the plastic shoe. I feel like I got 2 pouches.


You can get any SYMMETRY series case with the code!!!
i chose the pink cheetah and it worked!


Thank you for the tip! I got the pink cheetah too! Much more my style 🙂


I’m a bit shocked that people are so upset on this… seriously, they want high fashion, beauty and accessories for $100? I thought there were plenty of fun and useful products in the box… and I’m very pleased.

I’m honestly amazed that she is able to get such good deals on all these products (just ordered the phone case and it was $49… for free w/no shipping!) and that was just part of it all. I haven’t seen anything else out there that is up to these standards.

Tara B

Would you feel the same if the phone case didn’t fit your phone? I thought the shark purse is NOT worth the money. My 10 year old said she could make the same purse. why there are 2 clutches? The phone case I can’t use… The white shoe… huh?? A black cap… once again Huh?! They reason she got such a great deal on all this stuff is because no one wanted these items! lol. it is nothing like the first 2 boxes… Think my FFF was better by far. 🙁 maybe if the phone case fit I would not have been so upset.


Couldn’t agree more. The case made me angry. I dont expect high fashion for $100. But I also dont expect plastic scented shoes or a case I cant use because I didnt upgrade my phone right away (I did order one and gave it to a friend). That Muy stuff is OLD already, I do love the headphones but dont wear gold so I will trade them. I think overall the complaint is that it totally doesn’t fit the vibe of Ninas other boxes.


The Otterbox thing was the last straw for me. My new iPhone 5C arrived the same day as the Nina Garcia box!
I emailed Quarterly and said the items this season are, frankly, below standard and not anything I could imagine a grown woman could have use for.
They emailed me a return shipping label and I sent the whole thing back.
I will still get the Fall box however, surely it must be an improvement?


What a disappointment! I’d pay money to see Nina in an ugly baseball cap and a shark bag with cheap fringe! HA!


This was my first Nina Garcia box and I was very disappointed. Quite a let down after seeing the first two! I think what bothers me most is the Otterbox and how it’s just assumed everyone upgrades the second a new phone comes out. I have the Galaxy 4s. Oh the horror, I didn’t get the 5 in Spring, guess that makes me unfashionable. So that’s a waste
The hat (Rolling eyes), when she said Brazil I wasn’t thinking yet another Spangle sh
Item. I like baseball hats but this is just dumb all around.

The headphones are nice but not my taste, if I could have gotten these in black sure. I’ll probably trade or sell them. I love my candle, I got Vanilla orchid and Almond. Yum. I definitely love the Kpak, shave cream and spray spf, but as someone pointed out this is supposed to be a fashion box.

Oddly one thing i did see spoilers before i got mine so I was really hoping to get the shark Koku pouch. I am a diver and think it’s fun for my dive bag or just on the beach (don’t really need to be terribly fashionable). So envious of yours Liz! Red and white are the dive flag colors. I got the fish in gray and lime green (the colors don’t look nice together at all). I got a strange little black high top shoe not sure what to do with it. Lol.

Seriously thinking of this being a one and done. Too expensive for this. 🙁


Hey Jenn,

I feel ya on the otterbox case. I have the iPhone 4s.
It would have been nice I they had left the option open for all iPhone and Galaxy models. They would have a few more happy Customers, if they had.
I went ahead and orders the iPhone 5, I’ll either sell or keep for when I upgrade.

You should order it anyways, otterbox has a bonus item that comes with your order “dry case” if it disappears from you cart after you’ve placed your order just call CS and they will send one out to you.
The dry box you could use for your current phone and the case you could keep, sell or gift! Hope that helps you decide

I’m hoping the next Nina box is amazing, I didn’t hate this one but I didn’t LOVE everything either so for 100 the next one better have that WOW factor or I’ll quit and put that 100 towards a diff sub!


When I first heard the theme of the box I was skeptical & ended up cancelling before I was charged & I’m soo glad I did!! The best box I think was the 1st one which sadly I didn’t get. I got the 2nd one which was eh and swapped/giving away a few items (still trying to swap the shark necklace). Seems like her boxes aren’t improving.


I didn’t even realize that trading or selling an entire box was a possibility. I unfortunately used the otterbox code and unwrapped everything but otherwise, this box is completely intact and I’d be more than willing to part with it. If anyone is interested in one my email is [email protected].

PA Anna

My box arrived today. My 5 year old eagerly waited to see what type of shark pouch was in the box. He also wanted the baseball cap. It was fun unwrapping each item. My sister will love the earbuds which are gorgeous. The Koku clutch is blue with yellow fringe with a shark on it. My son’s eyes lit up when he saw it. He loves it. I’m looking forward to trying the shave gel which is paraben and sulfate free. Also the hair products. Nest fragrance is grapefruit. Formula X is nailpolish is Push the Limits. CK lipstick is kiss it. My teenager is planning to replace his phone with an iPhone 5 so I ordered him the case. I also received a pink shoe. I do like the palm tree clutch and will use it in my travel bag.

I’m going to give the fall box a try.

Debra Luciew

I just opened my box. It was interesting to say the least. I will definitely use all of the items. I hope that her Fall box is more “stepped up.” I will have to see what the next box is like. If there are not more wows, I will probably cancel. The items were all very nice, but they did not seem like Nina. We will see.


I just sold an assortment of items from this box and the Spring box for about $55 + shipping on eBay. Could not agree more, this has morphed into a different subscription box altogether since the first box. Where is the taste level?? I will stick around for the September box, but if it’s not back to the “wow” on quality and discovery, that will be it. $100 is too much to be disappointed.


I disagree with the majority. I like the box. It does feel like summer to me! It smells like summer, too! I don’t like a few items, but overall, it was very nice!

Plus, at MUT, we decoded what the big ticket item was going to be, so it shouldn’t have been any surprise! I think anyone who visits that thread should have known where a big portion of the value was going to come from!

I think the box was appropriate. While I do hope the fall box is better, I didn’t think this one was bad!


I missed this box but would love to buy it if anyone wants to sell it! My daughter LOVES the shark pouch, if nothing else! Anyone want to part with theirs?

PA Anna

My 5 year old son loves his shark pouch.


Lynne, you’re welcome to buy mine from me, I was about to sell it on eBay anyway.
I’m very active on Liz’s swap site and have tons of feedback if you’re concerned about Paypalling money to a stranger. Plus, we have all these witnesses, lol.


Sounds great! What’s your email address? We can sort it out there if that will work?


I have a shark pouch and would be willing to sell it. My email is [email protected]. Message me and we can discuss. 🙂


Doesn’t Quarterly let you return your box if you don’t like it?


Yes. I asked them if I could because the otterbox was not offered for an HTC One or an IPod Touch and they sent me a return label. Plus I wouldn’t have used most of the other items in the box other than the phone case. If I had paid anything less than $100…I wouldn’t have bothered with it. But I was kind of frustrated at the time.


I don’t understand why people are trying to sell it or put it up on ebay since they can just return it and get their money back. I am very curious about this because I just signed up for Liz’s box for September and Quarterly said that you can always return a box you don’t like for free. I am wondering if there is a catch.


I got the same variations as Liz and I’m feeling ugh about spending so much on this box, I’m happy and can use the items in this pic, the shave gel smells great and my hair could use some hydration, and I could always use sunscreen for the beach. I think the shark pouch can be used for miscellaneous items for the beach, as well as the other pouch, but are not fashionable items in my opinion. Not a fan of the lipstick color for summer I like nice brighter pinks or , not a fan of the red orange nail polish, love candles but don’t like the orange blossom scent of mine. Putting up the hair texturizing spray for trade. Hat and shoe items are silly I threw them to my dog to chew up. Headphones, who needs fancy headphones again? Angry that this box cost $100 Where is the fashion?


I was going to start this sub and I forgot until now. But I have to say something is very off here. If you know Nina, look at first two boxes, this looks like a different sub.




While I wasn’t crazy about every item (the pouches, hat and shoe mainly) I thought this box was LOADS better than the last one. Additionally, thanks to the swap site I am always able to trade the things I don’t like for great goodies and get my money’s worth that way (thanks Liz!) I do really wish I could get that phone case for my iPhone 4 tho, I think its really cute.


This was a miss for me…I’m especially mad at myself because I’m moving and need the money! If anyone wants to buy it, let me know!

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Our reviewers research, test, and recommend the best subscriptions and products independently; click to learn more about our editorial guidelines. We may receive commissions on purchases made through links on our site.