Saturday, 29 August 2015

Review: SprezzaBox

In which G.M. Norton receives a box of goodies for the discerning chap.


Please allow me to introduce SprezzaBox to you, a monthly subscription service for the modern gentleman.

The way SprezzaBox works is you pay $28 per month (£18) and in return, you receive a box of five to six surprise goodies.

After a while, each box then becomes available to buy as a one-off purchase through the SprezzaBox website. 
An American enterprise, SprezzaBox is currently unavailable to subscribe for those in Blighty. Although I do hear that plans are indeed afoot so I thought it was worth making interested parties aware of their existence.

If like me you live in the UK, you can still order one-off boxes and have them shipped to you from across the pond. Alas, you will need to factor in the pesky import duty (unlike the pocket square gods at Pretentious Pocket, who laugh in the face of import duty). 
I was sent their ‘York - Pink/Purple’ box, which is currently on sale at a reduced price of $20 (£13). It comprises of:
  • SKINNYFATTIES limited edition necktie - retail $60 (£39)
  • Pair of socks from Sock101 - retail $7-12 (£4.54-£7.79)
  • The Tie Maker bracelets (2-pack)— retail $12 (£7.79)
  • Jack Black buff and skin serum 2ml samples - full-size retail $18 and $62 (£11.68 and £40.24)
The box was sent out to subscribers back in March so it is quite Spring inspired. 
I absolutely adore the tie that I received. 
Pink and white hues, it is lovely and summery and would look just the ticket worn with a cream linen suit or blue blazer.

The tie was definitely the stand-out item. Would I pay the full retail price for it though? No, I wouldn’t. But to receive it in a box that cost me £18, I’d be very happy indeed.
The bracelets offered by The Tie Maker are not something I would usually wear, I must admit. However, I’m always happy to try new things so slipped them on my wrist without too much thought. One is black and the other is a dark red. They arrived inside a super velvet pouch. I simply adore different textures so couldn’t help running my excessively hairy hands over it, appreciating it’s softness. I think I should stop now, before you become aware of my texture fetish. Ahem.
The purple and white striped socks complement the tie nicely. Soft to the touch and light on my feet, I was positively charmed by Sock101. Big thumbs up (or should that be toe?).
For me, the two skin samples added very little. I’m all for samples but these were most definitely on the tiddly side. I’d rather have one larger sample bottle than two teeny tiny things.

A monthly subscription box service has both it’s advantages and disadvantages.

For me, the idea of being sent a little box of treats each month is really quite appealing. The other benefit is that it introduces you to different suppliers. Of course, it's also a rather spiffing gift idea for that hard to buy chap in your life.
The downside of course is if you don’t like the things in your box. I’d wager that this will happen from time to time and if it should happen more than once, it may be a better option to order a one-off box that you know you want, rather than rely on the lottery of the subscription service.

Overall, I’d have to say that SprezzaBox offers exceedingly good value, especially if you take advantage of those boxes on sale.
I’d love to see a British version emerge aimed at gentlemen, with Made in Britain products. I did consider launching such a business last year but it didn’t really get any further than my initial idea and then getting roaring drunk. 

Perhaps one day, unless somebody else beats me to it! 

G.M. Norton
Protagonist of ‘Norton of Morton’


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