I'm not exactly a woo-woo newbie: I've spent many hours om-ing in my walk-in-closet-turned-meditation-nook, flowing at the yoga studio down the street, and cleansing my crystals. But I'll be the first to attest that all things spiritual, metaphysical, and mindful can be intimidating at first. Hey, there's a good chance you'll feel weird the first time you play with a Tibetan singing bowl. And that's okay! It's also why a slew of new subscription boxes have cropped up to help you discover your inner goddess, find your center, and get Zen, all while learning the difference between your mala beads and your Nag Champa.
Since there are so many different options available, I took the liberty of trying every ritual, burning every smudging stick, and brewing every tea mailed to me as part of seven services. The results?
Here's the lowdown on 7 popular woo-woo subscription boxes.
1. Goddess Provisions Monthly Box, $33
The basics: The hand-made, high-vibe goods within this box are curated according to a monthly theme—something like "sleep" or "the outdoors." The box I tried was dedicated to cleansing your aura, a lofty endeavor suddenly made easy.
The best part: The sandalwood- and lavender-scented aura mist from Kate's Magik is totally dreamy. After spritzing it in my apartment, I gifted it to my mom. (She needed a smoke-free way to smudge her office space—you know what they say about apples and trees...)
The one miss: I don't own a loose-tea strainer, so I wasn't able to sip the detox blend. But I did toss it in a muslin bag and steep it in a bath instead, which was prett-ay, pretty-ay, good.
The basics: This New Moon box is perfect for those wanting to learn about the moon and its cycles. (In 2018, that's likely going to be you—and everyone you know.) The jam-packed box I received included a candle infused with real herbs and flowers (specially blended for the month), a mini kit of four crystals with cards explaining how they'll help this new moon, an essential oil rollerball, and a mini tarot card deck.
The best part: As a new tarot reader, I'm not entirely fluent with the 78-card deck yet, so the eight-card set was much breezier to go through. (And did I mention it was illustrated with pictures of kittens? Because it was.)
The one miss: Not a one; I loved this box. Maybe it because it was the first one I tried or maybe because I needed to really vibe with my lunar cycle, but regardless, it ruled.
3. Chakra Balancing Box, $36
The basics: If you've ever stepped foot in a yoga studio, you might've heard an instructor talk about the chakra system and the flow of prana, or life energy. But with seven different chakras—each related to a different physical, emotional, and spiritual bodily function and center—it can take a minute to keep them all straight. The box I received was related to the root chakra, which is located at the base of the spine and responsible for feeling grounded, balanced and centered—all definitely issues I have, but especially so during the busy holiday season.
The best part: I really dug how all the pieces of this box worked together: I felt grounded after practicing tree pose (as instructed), sipping on a balancing tea blend, and trying the enclosed meditation. I also appreciated how they included seven chakra-balancing oils to give you some insight into the other six energy centers.
The one miss: The box claims to have a minimum retail value of $77, but the bracelet I received didn't feel like actual carnelian stones.
The basics: This is far and away the witchiest of the boxes I sampled. It comes complete with almost all the fixings required to set up your own home altar: loose incense, bath herbs, smudge sticks, ritual candles, a vintage-inspired journal, and a few spells to get you started. Not included? Clear instructions. I really could have used a tutorial on burning the loose incense (turns out, you need ash sand and a charcoal disc).
The best part: Being a bath girl through and through, I've gotta go with Purification Ritual Bath herbs. Thanks to ingredients like valerian root and lavender, this bath tea knocked me out every time I tried it, straight into a solid eight hours of sleep.
The one miss: Oddly, the sage smudge stick in this particular box didn't burn very long—I had to relight it a few times just to purify and cleanse my one-bedroom apartment.
5. Awakening in a Box, $14
The basics: Out of the seven boxes that I played with, I found this one to be the least interesting of the bunch—AKA, not much of an "awakening" at all. Maybe because I'm already pretty familiar with crystals and own a few stacking mala-bead braclets, but I found the entire kit blasé. I'd say this one is best-suited for rookies.
The best thing: More crystals to add to my collection. I never say no to crystals.
The one miss: There was hand sanitizer in this box—unclear why.
6. Calmbox, $35
The basics: Calmbox calls itself "your very own Zen retreat in a box." I don't know if it achieved retreat status, but it was a pretty solid meditation session. Featuring a slew of relaxing essentials to toy with monthly, my box featured some cool stuff like a calming tea blend and, of course, another smudge stick. (The more the merrier!)
The best part: As it goes with crystals and smudge sticks, same applies for candles with me: More candles are always better. This pint-sized candle didn't have the proper casing to be burned without a container, but I loved its rose and chamomile scent.
The one miss: In no way do I find anything with apple—lest alone an on-the-go bar—relaxing, so I'd say the Rx Bar in Apple Cinnamon was a big giant miss.
7. Kelsey Patel Magik Vibes Box, $135
The basics: This quarterly box, the heaviest of the seven, was packed to the brim with the good stuff. Along with serious style finds like a hand-woven scarf and a mantra-etched bracelet, the box included candles, essential oils, sage, stones, and more in order to set intentions for both the new and full moons.
The best part: I can't pick! There were so many beautiful elements to this box, I think it would be ideal for either a newbie who's really looking to dive into a monthly intention-setting and lunar practice or someone like me, who's kinda well versed in this stuff but looking to grow my collection of spiritual finds and knowledge.
The one miss: Everything hit, but it's definitely more of an investment than the other boxes. (Although I'd say well worth the price tag, that's for sure.)
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