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GQ Best Stuff Box Subscription Box Review – Winter 2019

Megan K.
ByMegan K.Nov 12, 2019 | 55 comments

GQ Best Stuff Winter 2019 subscription box review

GQ Best Stuff Box
3.1 overall rating
26 Ratings | 8 Reviews

The GQ Best Stuff Box is a quarterly men’s subscription from GQ magazine that features products the editors have tested and love. Although this box is geared towards men, I personally find most of the items to be delightfully unisex! Each box is promised to be valued at over $200.

open black box

My Subscription Addiction paid for this box. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)

About GQ Best Stuff Box

The Subscription Box: GQ Best Stuff Box

The Cost: $49.99/quarter + free shipping

The Products: “The GQ BEST STUFF BOX is a quarterly subscription box featuring the things we love—rigorously tested and loved by GQ editors. It includes our favorite electronics, grooming products, and accessories—every box valued at over $200 each”

Ships to: The US (including Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico)

GQ Best Stuff Box Winter 2019 Review

There’s a little fold-out information card/poster.

Cotton Citizen Gift Code – Potential Value $90.00

Ok, let’s start with this big-ticket item this round! A $90 gift code to a very high-end site selling loads of extremely expensive cotton clothing. I never imagined owning a $90 tee, but maybe I am peaking here. This site also sells both men’s and women’s clothing, so I have a quandary. Will loves comfy tops, but isn’t ever really interested in high-end brands. I, on the other hand, totally am! Do I use this gift card on myself? Do I do the unselfish thing and use it on a shirt for Will? Do I buy a men’s shirt “for Will” and then just steal it to wear for myself? What would you do? After way too much time spent figuring this out, I got us both something:

Presley Long Sleeve in Moss Half & Half – Retail Value $100.00 (currently on sale for $50.00)

Will is going to love this shirt! I love that instead of being solid moss gree, it is hand distressed which makes it a lot more interesting than his normal solids.

Jagger Henley Shirt in Vintage Blush – Retail Value $95.00 (currently on sale for $47.50)

Of course, I snagged myself this blush beauty. Technically it is from the men’s section, but a henley is a henley, at least in my book and I found that some of the women’s items looked a little cropped.

Wait, items don’t have to be full price for this code to work? You bet you can use that code on the sale section!! My total came to $97.50, meaning out of pocket I paid $17.50 (shipping is $10.00) for two shirts with a retail value of $195.00. I will take that ANY day! I am really thankful that this was just a flat amount I could put towards anything because it gave me so much flexibility and choice while shopping.


S’well Traveler 16 oz – Retail Value $35.00

FYI: Colors may vary.

I have quite a few reusable bottles in my home and my number one issue with them is the small opening. Sometimes you just want to take some soup to work, am I right? This 16 oz S’well bottle is perfect for my fave hot tea, Will’s morning coffee, or a right amount of warm soup. I am really happy that I received a white one because I love minimal accessories. These handy bottles are designed to keep contents cold for up to 24 hours or hot for up to 12 hours.


Tabio High-Standard Pile Crew Socks – Retail Value $25.00

Is it weird that I am always super appreciative when Will gets any sort of dressier sock in a sub? He never, ever seems to have them since he doesn’t need them that often, but when he does I always feel like I end up at Target buying more than I need. I might just steal these Japan-made light blue beauties for myself though! The color palette of lavender, white, and light blue is speaking to me and technically, by law, one sock is legally mine anyways.


Wyze Plug – Buy 2 for $14.99

FYI: If you are a new member, you will receive a Mophie Power Boost Mini Portable Charger instead of this item.

Will recently installed these beautiful lights on the underside of our porch and with the nights getting darker faster these days, I love the idea of pulling up after work to a well-lit house. We are fortunate enough to have a completely dry outlet so I decided to try this gadget on those lights. I can schedule my lights to turn on automatically or even turn them on and off through my phone. These plugs also work with Amazon’s Alexa, so if you feel like turning your lights on just by the sound of your voice, you are in luck! We plan to buy a few more of these for inside the house because Will sometimes works nights and he likes the idea of some of them being on a timer when I am home by myself. I also want one for our Christmas tree this year!


Brickell Restoring Eye Cream, 0.5 oz – Full Size! Retail Value $40.00

If you read any of my reviews that include Will’s opinions, you know he isn’t really one for skincare. I have been working on this for years and it might finally be starting to pay off. He does regularly enjoy a charcoal spot mask and a non-scented moisturizer when he starts to feel dry. I am hoping this eye cream might be a new addition to his routine because it is seriously simple and easy to use. Just a few dabs of this cream on his under eyes and he did remark that it “felt great.” Will is a man of few words, so this is actually a big compliment. He would actually be really terrible at writing reviews for this reason, but I digress… I didn’t go into how the peptides, caffeine, and hyaluronic acid were great for his skin in the present and the long term, because I knew I would lose his interest, but I know most of you reading this care about things like that!


Headspace 3-Month Subscription – Potential Value $40.00

There are typically quite a few code-based items in this sub but they usually are 100% worth the time and effort to claim them. Headspace is an app that promotes modern meditation and healthy sleep for busy people. It has loads of themed exercises and even super short ones for you on the go. Will actually has never had an easy time sleeping and has expressed very casual interest in meditation, so I plan on loading the app and this 3-month subscription onto his phone for him and seeing if it takes.


Caldera + Lab The Good Facial Serum, 0.16 fl oz – Estimated Value $15.52 (Buy a full-size 1 fl oz for $97.00)

Just like me, this sub seriously wants to make it easy for Will to add a few healthy products to his skincare routine. Will they take long term? Who knows! The man is a mystery to me. I certainly hope this serum takes because I really, really like it. It has 27 different botanical ingredients clinically proven to improve the health of your skin. Some of my favorite ingredients? Sure: Jojoba oil, fireweed, seabuckthorn, and frankincense! It also has a beautiful woodsy/herbal scent. This little vial and dropper make it easy to dispense the perfect amount. I recommended to Will that he rub a few drops between his palms then pat it onto his face for coverage that doesn’t feel too heavy. As a side note, this also makes an incredible beard oil.


Huron Body Wash, 4 fl oz – Full Size! Retail Value $14.00

Bodywash is a product that Will loves and understands. I merely have to put a wash like this in the shower and he automatically uses it like magic! I really like the branding of this product. Something about the chubby white bottle and red and white details makes me smile. The scent is also really fresh and masculine. Huron is dedicated to creating men’s basics that are clean and effective, which I can totally get behind. Just because Will isn’t super ingredient-conscious doesn’t mean I can’t help him out by making sure there is good stuff in those shower bottles.


Dove Men+Care Dandruff Defense 2-in-1 Shampoo and Conditioner, 20.4 fl oz – Retail Value $6.49

Will is definitely a conditioner type of guy, so I wasn’t sure how he would respond to a 2 in 1 product. The good news is that he doesn’t usually have a dandruff problem, so I might reserve this for the dead of winter when both of us find ourselves a little flakey and dry.


Complimentary Upgrade to Expedia Rewards Gold + $50 in points – Potential Value $50.00

This might be the only item this month that is kind of wasted on Will (and myself) because we don’t do much air travel. We have dogs who generally road-trip with us whenever we go home to see my parents, which puts us in the car a lot more often than in a plane. If you do consider yourself a frequent flyer, you will be happy with this code that upgrades your Expedia account to Rewards Gold and gives you $50 in points.


Hill City Shop Voucher – Potential Value $50.00

Finally, our last item is a $50 gift code to Gap-owned City Hill. This site features high-end performance basics for the active man. I ended up using it on a cashmere blend beanie since Will wears beanies all winter long, and most of the other items were way more than $50! Here is what I bought:

Merino Cashmere Beanie – Retail Value $48.00

Here is the one I selected for him. I went with the grey because it goes with everything and I know Will likes wearing it. I did still have to pay for shipping, which was $7.00.

Verdict: I really liked this GQ box and so did Will. It was filled with some great items loosely tied in with the winter season and other super useful items most guys (and likely gals too) would enjoy. Will is really excited about the S’well traveler and the Wyze plug, and I am pleased he has more skincare items to experiment with as he figures out what he likes and what type of routine he can commit to. He also liked the body wash and seems curious about the meditation app subscription. I am generally the one that buys most of his clothing (because he would literally wear the same things for years until they fell apart) and I know he will really love the green long-sleeved shirt and cashmere beanie. Because I was so savvy about the items I used my codes on, I feel like walking away with two really expensive shirts and a wool beanie adds even more value to this box. The only two misses for us were the Dove 2 in 1 (though this is not a reflection of the product itself) and the Expedia voucher because we are borderline hermits. Value-wise, we did great this round too! Without any of the vouchers being used, the total comes to around $143.51, which is already good for a $49.99 box. Use your codes and you have a total value of over $370, which is exceptional!

To Wrap Up:

Can you still get this box if you sign up today? Yes, this box is active right now! The FAQ notes: “The specific box you receive will depend on the date you signed up and how that corresponds with the shipping deadlines of the quarterly boxes. You may contact customer service at: 1-800-999-6536 for the specifics.” I would give them a call to be 100% sure!

Value Breakdown: Each of the 7 PHYSICAL items in the $49.99 box has an average cost of $7.14. Adding in the codes to reach 11 items, and they each have an average cost of $4.54.

Check out all of our GQ Best Stuff Box Reviews and check out some of our other favorite men’s subscription boxes!

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

What do you think of the Winter 2019 GQ Best Stuff Box?

The GQ BEST STUFF BOX is a quarterly subscription box featuring the things we love—rigorously tested and loved by GQ editors. It includes our favorite electronics, grooming products, and accessories—every box valued at over $200 each
Megan K.
Megan K.
I love natural/vegan beauty products, Korean skincare, unique jewelry, and weird candies from far away places. When I am not waiting for my next exciting box you can find me painting or taking photographs of interesting people. I never leave home without pug hair somewhere on my shirt and a bold lipstick on my smile.

Megan K.
Megan K.
I love natural/vegan beauty products, Korean skincare, unique jewelry, and weird candies from far away places. When I am not waiting for my next exciting box you can find me painting or taking photographs of interesting people. I never leave home without pug hair somewhere on my shirt and a bold lipstick on my smile.
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Tina L.

Overall the box was an ok value and nice surprise gift. Unfortunately Cotton citizen never shipped the shirt I ordered and doesn’t respond to email request for updates. Seems like they may have gone out of business due to COVID-19. I don’t want to bash a company that may have lost it all however no communication from them at all is unacceptable. If I ever do hear from them I’ll update this page, but after 4 requests for updates I doubt I’ll hear from them.


I placed my order with Cotton Citizen on 11.27 and still have not received anything. Kind of forgot about it actually, but just sent an email to see what’s up.
Is anyone else still waiting for their order?

Carol Pickersgill

Same issue for me with Cotton Citizen! Placed the order mid-November. I wrote to them on December 19th – and received a reply that all orders would be shipped between 12/15 and 1/15. Still no shirt. Three+ months for sending out an order is just insane!


I emailed them for a third time this morning, no response. Last response they said those shirts were “pre ordered items,” which was news to me since I didn’t see anything about it being a pre-order when I ordered it. Seems they just took the money from the GQ collab and don’t have any plans to fulfill orders…


I emailed just a few minutes ago and already received a response back:
“ Our GQ Box orders were pre-ordered items.
We estimate that the Classic Crew Shirt (M70011) will be ready to ship in about two weeks.”
Nowhere on the page or on my order did it say it was a pre-order. Sigh.


Update: it’s March 11 and I. FINALLY got a shipping notice, now that it’s nice outside and long sleeve shirts are no longer needed.


I got a similar email from them last week, I ordered a tee on 12/18. If it doesn’t get here soon it’s going to be too warm to wear it til fall! I used the hill city cert for a Christmas gift, and I used the Expedia credit for a trip in a couple weeks. So all in all, it’s a great box with great value. My opinion will change if I don’t get the tee soon.


Their email back to me on Jan 10 said, “ All GQ Box orders are expected to ship within the next few weeks.“ Still no shipment for me though…

Michael B

I love this box and the value makes it almost too good to be true. There always seem to be a big ticket item with a value much more than $50. Last quarter it was white leather sneakers. This quarter it was high end cotton shirts. (I chose a plain black T-shirt, and it’s honestly the most comfortable well fitting T-shirt ever.)


I am liking this box. My husband chose the advertised shirt for the Cotton Citizen and the code worked as expected for that shirt. The only thing that was a dud was the pair of socks. I also got the light blue and purple colorway, which no one was a fan of.


No one at Expedia seems to have ever heard of this reward code! Unfortunate.

Evgeny Lesov

+ 1, it is been 2 weeks since I applied and nothing happened so I contacted support and this is what they. sent to me:
In regards to your gift card issue; The situation as you have described it is a scam. Expedia never offer an upgrade offer via gift cards. Based on the information you provided, our security and fraud team is working diligently to determine how this happened and are exploring options that may help to prevent future instances of this type of fraud.

I bought that box only for that code cuz we r planing our vacation in February


I just ordered one for each of my sons as Xmas gifts. No place to enter gift giver info.

Only received 1 email confirming one of the boxes. Charged listed in email Is incorrect. Bank shows the charge for the 2 separate boxes, the correct amount .

Contact number in email. Told to call another number. Lady at GQ tells me she only sees the one order. She Checks around.

They are cancelling one of the boxes bc I can’t send more than one to same address. I ask if They expect ne to send my son his, at college despite him not being there over the holiday. Yup. That’s my only option. Ask to speak with supervisor (no where in questions /answers section does it state 1 per ). Call is terminated.

First subscription I ever tried. I’m just so mad.


I would like to warn everyone that the cotton citizen gift card is a scam. It says on it that we can use it towards any item on site but it is not true!! I am getting a response that my code is not valid for items I selected. I am reporting GQ and Cotton Citizen to the BBB for false advertising. This is beyond shameful! I only bot this box after reading this review and because I wanted that gift card.


Not a scam. But it’s not a $90 gift card for just anything (wish they clarified it on the card). The code is NOT good on women’s or AW19 or tie dye, ect..?. You can use it on sale items. I used it for an $85 shirt and shipping was $10. Total cost $15. I did not get $5 credit. If you’re getting ‘code not valid’ it’s because you have items that don’t qualify for the gift card. Customer Service is excellent BTW. They got back to me same day. I ordered Nov. 25. and not received shipping notice yet. They said shipping is taking longer than usual due to busy season.


The card and GQ website say “any item”. There are no restrictions listed. This is misleading and makes it false advertising. I am glad you had good experience but it doesn’t make it right that they didn’t list all the restrictions on their website. BTW – I couldn’t even purchase a regular $85 shirt and have screenshots to prove it. Ended up buying $75 classic shirt in the only color that still had XL size – vintage black. I have sent the screen shot to their Customer Service and never heard back from them. This was my experience!


Correction: Total cost $10 not $15.


Did you contact them? I was having an issue with being charged for shipping when it should’ve been free, and they were quick to respond and very helpful. I didn’t have any problems. They may just need to fix an issue on their site.


Did they let you purchase any item you wanted or only from the GQ list?


Also–the box this came in was nice. Similar to a picture box. I wish we could customize and get the plug–but new subscriptions got the charger–but it was really nicer than I expected.


I just got a response from CS that they are shipping in LATE November. So it’ll still be a little bit before they send them out. 🙁


I bought it on the 15th and received the box today. Really fast!


Not a fan of how long the sleeves look on the green shirt but box looks interesting.


I called GQ in the winter box is still available. In theory it’s available until December 5 but it could sell out first. She didn’t have any information as to how many boxes are left. I’d love a coupon code or BF deal but I don’t want this to sell out either! She also doesn’t know if they will do a black Friday deal but she knows that their sister company Allure does…but I don’t think these boxes are comparable.


Just ordered based on your review. I was super-tempted when the spoilers came out, then forgot about it. But your review really brought it to life (I LOVE that henley; hope it’s still in stock when I get my code). I’m only allowing myself one box this season, and this is it.


Thank you to the people that commented on their experiences waiting on shipping of what must have been a coupon code, like the t-shirt. Was going to order this for the men in my family, but do not feel like having to deal with waiting and waiting for items. The code idea is great in theory, allowing people to choose, but not if the items from the previous box have not arrived by the time the next quarterly box does.

Megan K.

Hey H! The code last month was for a specific site set up to process the New Republic shoes. The codes this month for Cotton Citizen and Hill City are codes you can use directly on the brand’s official websites during the normal checkout process (like a promo code), so shipping will follow the normal guidelines for shipping. My Hill City order actually shipped next day!


This is what Cotton Citizen posted on the web site:

Welcome GQ Customers! Please note shipping on GQ box orders have a ship window from 12/15 – 1/15. Thank you for your understanding.


Thank you for the very encouraging information, Megan. That makes total sense now that I know how it worked last time versus this time. It’s a good box, so thank you for the review and also for easing any fears that I had about those coupons that have started to become more common, like in the Ellen box a few boxes ago. I don’t think I have ever used any of those, but these, I know my guys would. Thank you, again.


Megan, can you please give more info regarding the Brickell sample kit mentioned on the insert card? I’m wondering if it’s a free kit with a certain purchase amount.
I ordered this a while back (10/03), so I’m curious when it’ll ship. It’s going under the tree since I’m gifting a year subscription to my husband. This looks like a great box!


It’s like 10 bucks. I keep forgetting about it, and am going to order it now. I got the one from Eight Saints. Recommend for the samples, they are generous, but a lot of the products just don’t do it for me. I got my 10 bucks worth though, and they’re perfect for travel.


Thank you both, Amber and Carol!


You can get a free sample kit direct from Brickell, without any purchase. It keeps tempting me…

Heather K

Are there/when are the expiration dates for each of the vouchers?


You can also book hotels on Expedia, or rent a car. It’s not just for flights.

Megan K.

Totally! We literally road trip everywhere in our own car and regularly Air BnB though. I am going to pass it on to someone who can actually use it.


I was wondering about this sub. I was surprised to see another charge so soon after receiving the the fall box. Looks like they moved up shipping of this box by a few months. The winter box looks promising; the items in this box look more useful than what I received in the summer and fall boxes. Thanks for the review!


Have you received the shoes from the Fall Box yet?? Still waiting on mine and received very unhelpful response from New Republic saying they hadn’t shipped yet with no timeframe for shipment. It’s been almost two months.


Got an email with shipping notification for my New Republic shoes today, yay!

Megan K.

Hey Lbb! Mine haven’t arrived yet but generally, I find these promos can take a little time. I reached out and was told about 60% of them have shipped with the rest staged for by the end of this week. Hope this helps!


I just got shipping confirmation this afternoon about the New Republic shoes.


No, I haven’t received the shoes I ordered them at the beginning of October.


When I saw this specific box mentioned on MSA, I ordered it for myself. After seeing your review, I cannot wait until it is in my hands….LOL


Great deal on the shirts! But I’m curious how was the fit and quality?

Megan K.

Hey Michele! I don’t have them in hand yet, but hopefully can update the review with that info soon!


Do you have the shirts yet? How do they fit?


I ordered this on Oct 3, and have no idea when they’re going to send it. The Conde Nast website is useless.


On the website it says that they were preselling them-and they would ship in November. So hopefully we will get them soon!


Thanks! Hopefully soon! Especially if it’s going to take a while to receive any of the items we will be redeeming. Normally it wouldn’t be a bit deal, but my husband isn’t in the country a lot, so I’m hoping to receive it while he’s home. Shipping to where he is takes about a month

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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.