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Cairn Subscription Box Review + Coupon – November 2019

Cairn is a monthly subscription box that sends members outdoors, adventure, and fitness gear. Cairn’s goal is to enrich your outdoor adventures by connecting you with best-in-class products. 

This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out our review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)

About Cairn

The Subscription Box: Cairn

The Cost: $29.95 per month with discounts for 6- and 12-month subscriptions

COUPON: Use code COTOGIFT to get a free Cotopaxi Luzon 24 Del Día with a 6- or 12-month Cairn subscription!

Check out our review of the “Hammock Collection” welcome box to see what will be included.

The Products: Outdoor gear, including apparel, nutrition/energy products, skincare, and other essentials to keep you prepared and comfortable on your adventures.

Ships to: The US for free, Canada for $5, and internationally for $10

Cairn November 2019 “Safe and Sound” Review


Cairn always includes a copy of their newsprint informational sheet Cairn Scout, which gives the lowdown on the month’s products, subscriber perks, the Adventure Upgrade, the Obsidian box, and more. Check out the Cairn blog for some great tips and pieces on outdoor-related topics.


LifeStraw Flex – Retail Value $34.95

Cairn could have gone in any number of directions with the “Safe and Sound” theme this month, and I’m pleased with the unexpected products they chose to include. The first is this great new iteration of a product I already own, a water filter called LifeStraw. I can’t emphasize enough how crucial this tool is to have on long hikes or backpacking trips. Like, have you ever been on a rainy stretch of trail and run out of water? One of the more cosmically cruel situations to be in, but with this gadget’s ability to filter out “heavy metals including lead as well as bacteria, parasites, microplastics, and organic chemical matter like pesticides, and herbicides,” you can just scoop some stream water up no problem. File it under one of those things you may not need not every adventure, but if you do, you’ll be glad you brought it. I’m thrilled to have an updated LifeStraw, especially in this ultralight version, weighing in at 3.15 oz!


Adventure Athletics K2 Hydration, Hydrate + Defend, 1 Tube – Retail Value $6.99

Most months, Cairn sends a trail snack, and I’m kind of thinking of this tube full of effervescent electrolyte tablets as a hydration version of that situation. For those familiar with the Onnit electrolyte powder, this tastes very similar. My husband often fills 1 of 2 water bottles with this drink for long bike rides or races. I just drink it occasionally after workouts or if I’m not feeling well. I like that these tabs are portable and fortified with vitamin C. We’ll get great use out of them!


Cairn App 1 Year Premium Membership Retail Value $26.99 

I know I’m not alone in being a little wary of free trials and similar such things when they appear in subscription boxes, but after looking into it more, I’m actually pretty pumped about the free year of this app! It’s kind of like a combination of Strava in that it records your activity using GPS, AllTrails (except instead of showing you routes it shows you where others found cell service), and a device I got as a gift a few years ago called ROAR Athena in that it notifies contacts of your choosing when you’re due to return from your outing, and if you’re overdue. Isn’t it lovely when multiple services you use are combined into one? A feature it has that I especially like is that it uses GPS info to offer you an ETA.

Verdict: The November Cairn box really delivered. A water filter is such a necessary item to have in your adventure supply kit, and truly is at the core of safe exploration. The electrolyte tabs are awesome for a little boost, and the app is explicitly a useful app for safe solo outings. I will definitely use all three items I was sent!

This box costs $29.95, including free shipping, and the contents add up to about $68.93, which is higher than the typical monthly Cairn value.

To Wrap Up: 

Can you still get this box if you sign up today? Based on their subscription model, your items may vary based on your survey responses and boxes you have received in the past. 

COUPON: Use code COTOGIFT to get a free Cotopaxi Luzon 24 Del Día with a 6- or 12-month Cairn subscription!

Check out our review of the Hammock Collection welcome box to see what will be included.

Value Breakdown: This box cost $29.95 + free US shipping, but I estimate it contained $68.93 worth of product. That comes down to approximately $15.66 per item. Or, here’s how it would break down per item:

  • LifeStraw: $15.19
  • Electrolyte Tablets: $3.04
  • App Free Year: $11.73

Check out all of our Cairn reviews, and learn more about our readers’ favorite fitness boxes.

Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!

What do you think of Cairn this month? Did you get the same items as I did?


How do subscribers rate Cairn?

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Written by Christen Russo

Christen Russo

Christen is a smile collector, outdoors enthusiast, and appreciator of soggy French fries. Her favorite subscriptions involve eco-friendly products and clothes, nature supplies, stationery, and coffee. She can be easily won over with a good sheet of stickers.

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