How To Get FREE Subscription Boxes
Updated on October 22, 2019!
“How can I get free subscription boxes?” I’ve been reviewing subscription boxes for 8 years, and that’s the question I hear the most! Good news! I’ve got all the answers for you – whether you have a blog or not!
Here are 5 different ways to get free subscription boxes, from easiest to hardest:
1. First Month Free Subscription Boxes
If you haven’t already, make sure to take advantage of all the first-month free subscription box offers. You aren’t committed to keeping these subscriptions (you can always cancel before you are charged for the next month), so this is the easiest way to start getting free subscriptions immediately.
FYI – some of these offers are completely free, some are free but you have to pay shipping. I’ll indicate on each box what type of offer it is. Also, keep in mind that you need to enter credit card info for all these offers, and companies may place a small charge on the card to verify it’s working. (This charge is immediately refunded, but still may show as pending for a few days.)
Here are some popular subscription boxes with free first-month deals:
Love With Food ($9.99 a month) is a snack and food sampling subscription box. They send only natural and organic snacks and donate a meal to charity for each box sold.
Use this link to get your first Tasting Box for free. Just pay $4.99 shipping. You will get 7+ items.
This deal is free, but you do have to pay $4.99 for shipping charges.
Nadine West is a subscription styling service for women sizes Small to 3X.
Subscribers fill out a style quiz and are sent an outfit (2-4 items, usually 1 apparel item plus accessories) every month based on their style preferences. There is no styling fee, but there is a shipping fee ($9.78) that is credited toward the cost of anything you keep. Their items are priced lower than other styling services, ranging from $10 – $25 per piece.
Use referral code NADINE to waive shipping fees on your first box. That means you can get your first box totally risk-free, with no styling fee and no shipping fee (normally $9.78). You’ll pay only for items you decide to keep!
Check out our Nadine West reviews to see what you can expect from this subscription box.
This deal is completely free, no shipping charges. But you will have to pay for any items you want to keep. Think of it as a completely free way to try a styling service.
Dollar Shave Club is a monthly razor blade subscription service. (And they now offer grooming products like shave cream, hair products, etc.) Subscriptions start at $6 a month for their most popular model (the 4X) and you get a free handle with your first month.
Get a starter kit including razor handle, blades, and trial sizes of several shower & shave products for free – just pay $5 shipping! No coupon needed, just use this link!
Check out our Dollar Shave Club reviews to see what you can expect with this subscription!
This deal is free, but you do have to pay $5 for shipping charges.
Rocksbox (regularly $21/month) is a monthly subscription box for jewelry rental.
Receive 3 pieces of hand-selected jewelry in every box. Wear them as long as you like, and then return them in a pre-paid shipping envelope to swap them out for a new set. Subscribers also get $21 in “Shine Credit” each month that they can use towards buying the jewelry to keep (Shine Credits do not roll over).
Check out our Rocksbox Reviews to learn more about this subscription!
This deal is completely free, no shipping charges. This is a rental service, so you do not get to keep the items, but you have them for a month.
Curology (regularly $19.95/month) is a unique and totally personalized prescription skincare subscription service that targets acne and pairs you with a licensed dermatologist and sends you prescription medication every month or every other month.
Get your first month of Curology for free, no coupon needed!
Check out our Curology Reviews to learn more about what to expect from this box!
This deal is free, but you do have to pay $4.95 for shipping charges.
Second Nature (formerly Filter Easy, $12 a filter) is a furnace and air filter subscription service that ensures you always have clean air in your home. Choose your size and whether to receive deliveries every 1, 2, or 3 months, and you’ll never forget to change your filters again!
Use this link to get your first month for free. (Free shipping, too!)
This deal is completely free, no shipping charges.
And if you want even more deep discounts + cheap boxes, check out our list of 39 subscription boxes you can try for $10 or less.
One thing to keep in mind: Some subscriptions will email you a reminder before you are charged after you free trial, but not all of them. Make sure to add the date you’ll be charged again to your calendar so you have a reminder to cancel if you decide you don’t want to keep it.
Here’s one extra strategy for boxes you are interested in that don’t have a free box offer: Create an account! This doesn’t work with every subscription, but I’ve found that occasionally I’ll get a completely free offer to try a subscription via email if a company sees I’m interested and have already created an account but didn’t finish signing up + paying.
2. Subscription Box Referral Programs
Take advantage of referral programs. No blog needed for this one! Just share your referral links with friends and on social media. (Before I even started MSA, I was getting free boxes through referral credits just for sharing my referral links on Pinterest!)
Here are some popular subscription boxes that have referral programs:
- FabFitFun: Get $15 in credit for every friend that signs up.
- CURATEUR (formerly Rachel Zoe Box of Style): Get $20 in credit for every friend that signs up.
- Haverdash: Get $30 in credit for every friend that signs up.
- Birchbox: Get $5 credit to use in their shop for every friend that signs up.
- Ipsy: Get 250 points you can redeem for free beauty products for every friend that signs up.
- Boxycharm: Get $5 credit to use in their shop for every friend that signs up.
- Home Chef: Get $30 in credit for every friend that signs up.
- Gwynnie Bee: Get $25 in credit for every friend that signs up.
- Candy Club: Get a free box for every friend that signs up, up to 5 free boxes.
- Love with Food: Get a free bonus snack box and $10 in credit for every friend that signs up.
- Hello Fresh: Get $20 in credit for every friend that signs up.
- Winc: Get $26 in credit for every friend that signs up.
- Allure Beauty Box: Get a free gift when a friend signs up.
- Daily Harvest: Get 3 free cups when a friend signs up.
- Le Tote: Get $25 in credit for every friend that signs up.
- Kiwi Crate: Get $10 in credit for every friend that signs up.
- Nature Box: Get $20 in credit for every friend that signs up.
- Fabletics: Get $20 in credit for every friend that signs up
One thing to keep in mind: Most of these boxes require you to have an active subscription to earn free credits. If you’re thinking of canceling at any point, cash in your credits first!
3. Subscription Box Giveaways
Enter subscription box giveaways. This method isn’t a sure thing, but there’s no risk and your odds are pretty good in the subscription box industry vs other areas.
Just make a wishlist of all the subscription boxes you are interested in and follow them on social media. (You can create a wishlist on our site and add boxes while browsing the directory if you like!) There are lots of small-scale subscription boxes that want to beef up their social media following, and they use giveaways as a way to do that. Since a lot of these boxes have followers in the thousands or only hundreds, you have pretty good odds!
4. Swap Subscription Box Items
Swap the subscription box items you don’t want for the ones you do. If you subscribe to several boxes, you might have a stash of items that you aren’t going to use. Instead of letting them collect dust, trade them on our subscription box swap site to get the items you actually want!
One thing to keep in mind: The swap site is completely free to use, but you will have to pay for the cost to ship your items, so keep that cost in mind when making swap decisions.
5. Review Subscription Boxes on Your Blog and/or Instagram
Get companies to send you free boxes in exchange for a review on your blog or a post on Instagram. This is a lot more work on your end, but it will get you the most free boxes if you stick with it. (Companies are interested sending in bloggers/influencers free boxes to help build awareness/get exposure, build incoming links for SEO, etc.)
If you want to start a blog, here’s a very quick guide to get started:
- Go with a free service. I started out with Blogger, but eventually moved to WordPress and am still with them today. No technical expertise required!
- Once your blog is set up, start creating content! (If you want to do this at little to no cost, sign up for the free subscription boxes at the top of this post and review those.)
- Write the kind of review you would find helpful and want to read. You can get great pictures with just your phone and filtered sunlight. We’ve found that the more photos we take demonstrating items, the better the review. This Stitch Fix review is a great example:
- Post as consistently as you can. Learn how long it takes you to write and take pictures for a review, and how many reviews you can publish a week. When a company is considering sending you a free box, they’ll want to see that you have an established site. I recommend posting reviews for at least a month or two before you approach any company for a free box.
- Reach out to your favorite boxes and request complimentary boxes for review purposes. Here’s an example email you could send:
I’m reaching out to see if you send complimentary boxes to bloggers. I review subscription boxes on my blog: [make sure to include the link so they can check out your blog] and I’d love to review [name of subscription box].
In exchange for the box, I would provide an honest review on my blog. Reviews are typically posted within [amount of time you feel comfortable with] after receiving the box.
If you aren’t familiar with [name of your blog], it’s my favorite hobby and I’m especially proud of [one of your strengths – photography, Instagram followers, writing style, etc.]
Want to take the Instagram-only approach? Create a subscription box focused Instagram account, and follow all the subscription box companies you are interested in. Get noticed by tagging brands when you share pictures of their products and remember to use their brand hashtag. They may reach out once they check out your account and pictures. You can also DM them to see if they’d be willing to send you a box to share on Instagram. Even if you don’t have a lot of followers to start, if you take good pictures that can be a value to the company as well. (They may want to regram your pictures, and that can help you build a following, too!)
One thing to keep in mind: Make sure to disclose to your readers if you received a box for free in exchange for a review. We also always make sure to verify with the company that we are receiving the exact same box a paying customer receive.
P.S. If you start a subscription box blog or Instagram account, let me know! I’ll follow you!