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FYI: Swaps Have Reopened + Take Our Swap Survey!


I’m happy to announce that swaps are officially reopened!

If you’re currently on the waitlist, we are planning to open the waitlist at the beginning of July!

For those of you that I haven’t met (most of you!), my name is Lacey. I’ve been working with the team at MSA for a little over four years. I have written some reviews, but I’ve also been behind the scenes helping projects run smoothly, like our annual subscription box awards and Galentine’s Day event. My main focus is on making sure our website experience is the best it can be for everyone who visits MSA every day, no matter if they are a regular reader or finding us for the first time.


Take Our Feedback Survey

I’d love to get your feedback on how swaps is working for you, and get your ideas for how it can be better. If you have 5 minutes to spare and participate in swaps, please submit your feedback using this survey:

Click Here to Take The Survey


Can’t Wait To Swap? Or, Not Ready Yet?

Since so many people have been paused on swaps, you’ll notice a lot of “This user has not been active for more than a month” messages in swaps right now.

If you plan to jump right back, I’d recommend that you log in ASAP and make sure your listings are up to date! That will also clear the inactive message, and let people know you are ready to swap.

If you’re still limiting trips out of the house or prefer not to participate in swaps for any reason right now, you can set yourself in vacation mode on your swap profile page to let other users know that you aren’t actively swapping at the moment.

Have other questions? You may want to review the Swap Site Rules and our Swap Guide & FAQ.


Feel free to comment on this post with any other questions you may have about swaps, and I’ll do my best to answer them. Thanks so much! Happy Swapping!

Written by Lacey Volk

Lacey Volk

Lacey’s introduction to the world of subscription boxes was Julep Maven, but she quickly moved on once she discovered there were subscriptions for cooking, coffee, and art supplies. Current favorites include Crate Chef and Ecocentric Mom, and she’s looking forward to trying more.

Posted in Subscription Box News| 61 comments

Comments (61)

  1. Hi. I would like to be able to “un-follow” items from my list that have been “flagged or merged.” It has made my followed list annoyingly long. Also, there should be oversight in allowing items to be flagged as some items I specifically remember the MSA review these were in and which box it was from. Also, I have received some of these items and was following to swap for a second. I wonder if people accidentally hit “flag item” or if someone is upset that their swap is declined and then flag the item. Either way, if I can not swap for the item because it has been flagged, I would like it off my followed swap list. Please allow us to un-follow these. Thank you. 🙂

    • If you go to My Swaps and in the left hand side there should be a Followed Listings option. You should be able to unfollow items from there. ETA posted in the wrong comment before 😆

      • It does not give you the option to un-follow if the item is “flagged” & states only “unavailable.”

  2. yay! so excited!

    • We’re excited to have everyone swapping again! 🙂

  3. Lacey,
    Is there ever going to be an official announcement about change of ownership of msa.

    • Whatttt? I’ve read this site nearly every day for 6 years! How did I miss a change this huge? I mean I’ve noticed that Liz and her husband have stepped back from reviewing any boxes themselves for a few years now, but when did they sell?

    • Hi Anna,
      I don’t understand?! I just saw that a new CEO has been appointed in March, but I can’t see anything about new ownership? (Which I guess is your point!). But now I’m wondering if Marne is ok? I haven’t seen a review from her in a little while and I miss her! And OuiPlease is still no.8 on MSA’s ‘21 Best Splurge-worthy Boxes’ list. What’s happening? So much I don’t understa-a-and….. (cue me wailing off into the sunset)

      • I did see the post from Liz, but ampush is listed as owning MSA. If you check their linked in. Since there’s been no post or anything I was curious if we’d ever get clarification.

      • I’ve replied several times but my comments haven’t posted. I have seen the post Marion.

      • It’s true, Marne stepped back for now, but we hope she comes back to write about a few of her favorite boxes in the future. You’ll notice most of her reviews have shifted to Megan going forward. As for Oui Please, we did remove them from most lists (thanks to community feedback!) but it appears we missed a few. Thanks for pointing this out, we corrected those lists this morning.

      • Please don’t change the results from past “Best Of” lists that were fairly voted by everyone because a few people are not happy. I voted and I still think my vote should count. MSA will not have any content left if you delete or stop posting about each box that upsets people.

      • Lacey, thank you for coming here to address issues with us. I am concerned about removing boxes from voted on lists based upon the complaints of a group of people. My understanding is a lot of people voted to make these favorites. Doesn’t seem equitable to those voters. Why not just put a warning on the boxes? This sort of selective response is what was the beginning of the end for the Forum

      • Thanks Chloe and Sara, I’ve shared your feedback with the team, and I totally understand your concern. After talking directly to the brand, we felt this was the right move in this specific case. We never want anyone to have a bad subscription box experience because of us, and many people who are new to subscription boxes learn about new brands from our lists. Removing them is not a permanent change, we plan to be in touch with them regularly to reassess.

      • Hi Lacy,
        Thanks for the response. In that case, have you addressed similar concerns about Macy’s? I paid for a Jo Malone box in March based on information from your blog. It is almost July and I haven’t received anything. Have you also reached out to Macy’s? Will you also be removing Macy’s from your “26 Best Beauty Subscription Boxes – 2020 Readers’ Choice Awards“ ?

      • Thanks for the feedback, Chloe. We did handle Macy’s a little differently, since you can’t actually sign up for that box at all right now and we linked to the latest information about their pause. We will be looking to standardize how we handle this in the future.

    • Thanks everyone for your questions here! We’d love to know more about your concerns–do you have any specific questions that we can address? Send us an email at [email protected]. The MSA team is still here, and our motivations have not changed: We want MSA to continue to be the best place for the subscription box community to find each other and stay up-to-date on all the latest spoilers, reviews, news, and more.

      Also, I want to acknowledge we have been slow to react in some areas lately. Swaps is a great example. Please know our intention is to make sure MSA continues to be an amazing experience for the community. We needed some extra time with swaps to make sure everything was up to our standards, thanks for your patience!

      • So sad. Marne is such a breath of fresh air. My favorite by a long shot. Her quirkiness and honesty will be missed.

      • Hi Lacey,
        Thank you for the clarification. I love all the MSA reviewers and will miss Marne’s fantastic reviews so much. Can you please just let us know if the new owners are intending to, or have, changed the way our personal information or even aggregated data will be used? One of MSA’s assets is the subscriber database, which would have a lot of value for marketing purposes (I.e. if data was sold to, or provided to other companies). Is there any change with how our information / information about us will be used, please?

      • Responding to Mimosa re: privacy policy, which is a great question! Nothing has changed about how MSA handles personal data. We do not sell user data. Here’s a link to our policy: We have no plans to make any changes. If anything regarding user data does ever does change, we’ll provide a policy specific to that program before you opt-in. We are really protective of our community and keep our privacy policy up-to-date.

      • Hi Lacey, thank you very much for answering my question(s). That’s good to know. (Although on my other point, I hope Marne comes back!)

  4. I see a 200 item limit. Is this being enforced? Lots of swappers have well over 200 items listed.

    • Agree the site needs cleaned up and enforced.

    • The limit was meant to begin right after the forum debacle but I think they let people wind down to a lower amount if they already had a lot of stuff listed.

    • That was put up some time ago and the response they got to it wasn’t good so they never enforced it. It seems like it would be better to have a time limit on cosmetics so that the old stuff would just fall off after time. I think the 200 limit didn’t address the tired old stuff but did effect swappers who ordered quite a few different boxes.

      • Thanks Teresa, this is helpful to understand some history that I’ve missed. 🙂 The note about a time limit on cosmetics listings is also really helpful. I’ll be digging into the survey responses this week, so be sure to fill that out if you haven’t yet!

    • Great question! It is not currently being enforced so I’ll make sure we update those rules. I believe there were plans at some point but as Teresa noted, the response from users was varied. I’m digging into all the survey responses this week to understand these types of problems better, thank you for calling this out! 🙂

      • People do pick the old stuff off the swap lists so having more items gives people more choices.

      • I want to have the option of picking old cosmetics (it would depend on the product and how desperate I am for it!), but maybe there should be a required line to put the date of when you’re posting it? Or which box it came from? The only problem with this is that for reswapped items, you don’t really know how long the person you got it from had it.

      • My suggestion of old stuff falling off was aimed at expired items old cosmetics and food. What Robin said about people wanting older stuff is true. I think it would be nice to have a way to purge expired items. 🙂


  6. I have been a member of Swaps for over a year but cannot find how to work it. Are there any detailed instructions on how to access members items, etc.?

    • Towards the end of the post above, MSA has provided links to Swap Site Rules and to a Swap Guide & FAQ.

    • DUH! Guess you can tell I don’t usually read the small print. Thanks for pointing it out.

  7. Yayyyyy!

    • If you go to My Swaps and in the left hand side there should be a Followed Listings option. You should be able to unfollow items from there.

      • Ah wrong comment to reply to! 😂

  8. I’m on the wait list any idea how long that will be?

    • Hi LizC! We are planning for the first week of July, but no exact date in mind just yet.

    • Hi LizC! I am also eagerly awaiting being moved from the wait list. During this work-from-home time I have subscribed to way too many boxes, and need to send some of my items to a new home. Receiving packages while stuck at the house has been a spirit-lifter!

      • Keep an eye on your email inbox tomorrow! 🙂

  9. Hi MSA Team –

    First, thank you for all that you do.

    Would you ever consider bringing back the Forum? I know it got a little crazy towards the end but it was truly one of the best things about the site.

    • I second this.

      • Third.

    • I really miss it!

    • I miss it so much!! Hardly visit MSA anymore, mostly only to swap.

    • Please!!! This would be great. I second this completely.

    • Thanks so much for the feedback! We have seen a lot of passionate comments about the forum lately! 🙂 We are starting to look at options, and (most importantly) thinking through how a new forum could operate in a safe and inclusive way for everyone. Be on the lookout for a survey about this topic soon!

      • Another vote for the return of the forum, although admittedly, not having it saves me a lot of time 🙂 It just ended so poorly and there wasn’t an opportunity to say goodbye to people with whom I had spent hours in conversation.

  10. Thank you!

  11. Thank you MSA!

  12. Finally finally finally! I’ve been checking the swap page almost every day for about a month! This is absolutely the right decision.

  13. So happy swaps are back! I have a huge bin of candles from sub boxes I need to finally take the time to list.

  14. So happy, but I can’t get “ This user hasn’t been active for more than a month.” off my page? I’ve signed out and signed back in about 10 times but I can’t get rid of it…any suggestions Lacey?

    • I think that goes away once you have swap activity on a finalized swap (finalize the swap, enter shipment info or enter feedback). I don’t think requesting or countering alone works to remove that banner.

    • Hi Kmunky! Great question. I believe you’ll have to make a change to an item listing in order to clear the message.

      • Thanks!!!

  15. YIPEE!!!!!

  16. Oh wonderful news!! Haven’t swapped since early February, so really am looking forward to getting back into it. Taking the survey now.

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