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Easy, Last Minute Gifts

No time to gift shop? Check out these black-owned subscription boxes

Want to truly give a gift that keeps on giving? Consider a subscription box. And, no, we’re not talking the fruit-of-the-month clubs your mom gifted people at church. Today’s subscription services offer all kinds of options—monthly, quarterly, food, beauty, celeb-curated, hobby-based. There is something for everyone in your life at prices up and down the scale. All you have to do is choose the box you like, set up payment and delivery online and the receiver gets the joy of opening new treasure for months.


There are literally thousands of boxes out there. Here’s six that offer the added bonus of supporting entrepreneurs of color.



Ujamaa ($25–$33/mo)

Have someone with Afrocentric leanings on your list? Give them a subscription to Ebony Costain’s monthly Ujamaa Box, which will bring a specially curated assortment of products designed by Black artisans and entrepreneurs to his/her doorstep. Choose from men’s, women’s, or combined memberships. The boxes include everything from skincare products to books and hand-crafted jewelry.


Just Like Me

Just Like Me  ($25/mo)

The parents of the tiny tots in your life will appreciate the Just Like Me Book box. Sign those under–12 nieces, nephews and little cousins up for a  monthly delivery of books filled with characters who look just like them. The boxes contain two to three age-appropriate works from African-American literature plus educational tools and toys. You can also donate to Just Like Me’s shelters, nonprofits and library fund so kids from all walks of life can enjoy a good book.


My Best Box

My Best Box ($24.99/mo)

That friend who’s always trying to get you to live right will love My Best Box. Gift them with regular holistic experiences, including nutrition guides, yoga and exercise supplies, skincare products, natural sleep aides and coupons for other natural products. Plus part of the subscription fee includes a monthly donation to charities supported by My Best Box.


Brown Toy Box

Brown Toy Box ($34.99/mo)

Terri-Nichelle Bradley, Andrea Young, and Doretha Franklin created Brown Toy Box with the mission of “culturally affirming Black children through play and fun.” Each box includes a toy, a book, and a game. Customize by age and gender and knock off all the remaining kids on your list

Color Grind

Color Grind ($19.99–$34.95/mo)

For those who like their pop culture with a bit of color, choose Color Grind. Goodies might include full-size beauty products or office supplies, jewelry or greeting cards, books or music—all created by people of color. And, for an added feel-good bonus, know this: Color Grind’s vendors give back.



Call Number

Call Number ($35/mo)

Jamillah R. Gabriel’s Call Number box is brand-new to the subscription-box scene. Curated by the Purdue University librarian herself, monthly boxes will contain four to five books or book-related items, including current releases by authors of the diaspora, including the America, the Caribbean, and Africa

Looking for more gift ideas? Check out  the 2016 AT&T Holiday Gift Guide.


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