The Rise of the Beauty Box

Written by Alex Bates 31 October 2023
Over the last 5-10 years, the beauty industry has rapidly evolved, becoming a highly competitive market, especially in the beauty box and advent calendar space. With new products, trends, and influencers constantly emerging, staying ahead of the game can be a daunting task for retailers.
In this blog, we’ll explore five main reasons why retailers should continue to offer beauty boxes (or another gifting retail solution!) and how they can benefit both the business and their customers.

For context, Relish have been helping retailers and brands produce boxes, advent calendars and gift sets since 2016, and in that time we have produced well over 600,000 different retail solutions. Although all of these have been different styles and concepts, these SKUs all contained a mix of full-sized and sample-sized products, allowing customers to try new brands and products, without making a financial commitment before knowing if that product works for them!

Now let’s jump into why you should consider adding (or keeping!) beauty boxes in your lineup.


Attracting and Retaining Customers

Beauty boxes can serve as a powerful customer acquisition and retention tool. By offering a curated selection of products, retailers can attract customers who are interested in trying new items, but don’t necessarily know what to go for. A lot of consumers are loyal and so even if it isn’t a subscription box, they will likely re-purchase the different boxes/calendars/gift sets on each launch, which also provides retailers with a consistent revenue stream. While this provides constant revenue, we have seen frequent new customer acquisition, even in a busy marketplace. Based on one of our projects, in 2022 40% of customers were repeat purchasers (data courtesy of our Try.Love.Buy platform!), indicating that it was successful in both reaching a new audience, as well as growing the customer base.

Showcasing New Products

Introducing new products to the market can be challenging, but beauty boxes provide an ideal platform for presenting these items. This can benefit both the retailer launching a new brand or product on site, as well as brands introducing new products to market. Retailers can include upcoming or lesser-known products in their beauty boxes, as well as the beauty heroes, giving customers a firsthand experience and increasing the chances of product adoption. Not every product is going to be a winner, but we saw that 70% of customers kept all products received, with the remaining being gifted to friends and family! This in itself increases the reach of featuring in one of these boxes.

Market Research

Beauty boxes offer a unique opportunity for retailers to gather valuable data on customer preferences (have I mentioned our Try.Love.Buy survey?). By monitoring which products receive the most positive feedback and which generate the most buzz on social media, retailers can gain insights into the hottest trends and adjust their inventory accordingly. Beauty boxes also give you the opportunity to include collateral, link back to sales pages and track sales data accordingly, further indicating what has performed well for you.

Brand Exposure

For both established brands and newcomers, beauty boxes provide an effective way to increase brand exposure. There are infinite ways to get brands and products into the market, but beauty boxes provide a route direct to home, targeting consumers when they are in the right mindset to trial that product. When customers receive a beauty box with a product from a particular brand, they become more aware of it and if they love the product, they are likely to re-purchase (as high as 94% of consumers!), as well as seeking out other products from the same brand, therefore boosting sales and brand loyalty for both the brand, and the retailer they purchased from. Beauty boxes, calendars etc. are also often picked up by organic press, blogs and influencers looking to review unboxings and the options on the market. This can provide retailers and brands with invaluable reach and exposure, opening consumers up to everything else they offer.

Tailored Personalisation

Consumers nowadays seek personalised experiences, and beauty boxes can deliver just that. Retailers can use customer data to customise box contents, tailoring each box to the individual preferences and needs of the people buying that box. This level of personalisation can lead to higher customer satisfaction and renewal rates. Each box theme and contents can also be curated based on previous feedback, to ensure each box keeps up with the most recent trends. PR and influencer boxes are also something that can generate a lot of social engagement, by sending out personalised messages directly to individuals.

To summarise: The beauty box trend is more than just a fad and while it is ever-changing, and retailers/brands need to adapt, it is still very much a strategic opportunity for retailers to enhance their business. By showcasing new products, increasing brand exposure, promoting customer engagement, you can attract and retain new customers, therefore enjoying recurring revenue and gaining a competitive edge.


If this is something that could be of interest, please do reach out to – we would be more than happy to send you an example of our Relish Gift Set we have created

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