7 Hair Subscription Boxes That'll Give Your Tresses a Much-Needed Boost

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Prose

Hear us out: Subscription services are the best treat you can give yourself, but they’re also financially savvy. There are subscriptions for everything from wine to books, but if you haven't yet tried one for your hair, 2023 might be the year to get on board. Hair care subscriptions offer you the chance to try new products, save on your favorites, and even experience a customized, just-for-you hair care routine. 

Typically, you’ll fill out some sort of questionnaire (these vary in length from just a couple of questions to a deep-dive into your hair needs), then select your frequency and other preferences. Hair subscriptions are available for color-treated hair, clean beauty and sustainability aficionados, curly hair, and men’s hair. You can even find fun boxes filled with an assortment of products, perfect for those who like to switch up what’s tucked away in their showers as often as possible. 

To help you sort through all the options on the market, we reviewed more than a dozen hair subscription boxes based on factors like cost, product variety, and customization options. Spoiler: Prose earns our top pick as the best hair care subscription box because it’s so customizable and tailored to your unique needs. Ahead, check out our reviews of six other incredible hair subscription boxes for you to try — good hair days await.

Best Hair Subscription Boxes of 2023

Best Overall: Prose

prose best hair subscription boxes

Prose

Key Specs

  • Average Price: $27.50
  • Free Shipping? No
  • Featured Hair Types: All

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Extensive questionnaire for truly customized, tailored hair care

  • Choose a free product after every 10 you purchase

  • 15% off all orders when you’re a subscriber

  • Limited edition surprise gifts just for members

  • Opportunities to test new products and give feedback

Cons
  • Shipping costs a flat rate of $6.95 per order

  • Questionnaire takes a while to fully complete

Why It’s a Top Pick

Prose offers a fully tailored hair subscription box that begins with a questionnaire more intensive than any others we tested. Not only does Prose ask more questions about your hair, but the company also includes an (honestly, adorable) animated box on each question page that offers explanations of why it’s being asked. And there are visual examples to align with answers, and educational insights on things like the six types of split ends (yikes). 

You’ll answer questions about hair type, oiliness, hair length, amount of shedding and hair loss, frequency of hair washing, and scalp sensitivity to name a few. And after all those questions, Prose even asks you where you live and then provides a full breakdown of environmental factors for your area, like average UV rays, water hardness, humidity, wind, and pollution. These all should impact how you take care of your hair, so Prose truly takes everything into account when building your custom formula. 

Of course, you have a say in different elements of your new subscription. Choose from seven scent options or go fragrance-free, then select your frequency from every month, two months, or three months in delivery. 

We love that Prose offers cruelty-free products with zero parabens, sulfates, phthalates, mineral oils, or GMOs. You can customize your products to be vegan and free of gluten, silicone, or dye, so the options are inclusive for everyone. Even better, Prose is the first and only carbon-neutral custom beauty brand.

Best Clean Products: Function of Beauty

function of beauty best hair subscription boxes

Function of Beauty

Key Specs

  • Average Price: $50/month
  • Free Shipping? Yes
  • Featured Hair Types: All

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Always sulfate-free and paraben-free products

  • 100% vegan and cruelty free (Leaping Bunny certified)

  • Social mission in supporting women and girls in STEM with nonprofit Girlstart

  • New customer discount from $25 per bottle of shampoo and conditioner to $20 per bottle

  • Free shipping on every order

Cons
  • Less-extensive questionnaire than Prose

  • No refunds or returns if you’re unhappy with your order

Why It’s a Top Pick

Function of Beauty offers clean, vegan, and cruelty-free products (they’re Leaping Bunny certified) with a focus on science-backed ingredients. Like Prose, you’ll start by taking a quiz about your hair but on a less intensive scale. The questions on Function of Beauty’s questionnaire involve your hair type and structure, scalp moisture level, hair goals, and how you like to style your hair. 

One fun element of Function of Beauty is that you even get to name your bottle. The packaging looks luxurious and is personalized (so my bottles would say “Function of Kaitlin” instead of Function of Beauty), which stands out from other custom hair subscription boxes. Customers can choose from eight fragrance options (floral and fruity to soothing and beachy), in addition to a fragrance-free option for sensitive scalps. 

As a member of Function with Benefits (Function of Beauty’s subscription program), you’ll get exclusive perks like 10% off every recurring order, a free hair treatment every four orders, free shipping, and more. We really appreciate the company’s focus on sustainability (they use post-consumer recycled materials in their packaging) along with its social mission and charitable partnerships. 

Best for Color-Treated Hair: Madison Reed

madison reed best hair subscription boxes

Madison Reed

Key Specs

  • Average Price: $80/month
  • Free Shipping? No
  • Featured Hair Types: Color-treated hair

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Save 15% or more on every box as a member

  • Adjustable auto-delivery

  • Free birthday gift as a subscriber

  • Deluxe multi-piece kit for new subscribers

  • No annual membership fees

Cons
  • Free shipping is only available for new customers on their first order; after that, you’ll need to pay

  • Clunkier hair quiz with fewer questions than competitors

Why It’s a Top Pick

Madison Reed is an expert on hair color. The company has a popular service called the Hair Color Bar that focuses on everything you’d need, from roots touch-up to all-over color — it’s honed its skills and services down to a tee. The brand is also Leaping Bunny certified for cruelty-free beauty, offers “Smart 8-free” products (free of toxic ingredients) to prioritize clinically proven, safe ingredients, and is dermatologist tested — this is rare for permanent hair color formulas. So it comes as no surprise that it’s our choice for the best hair subscription boxes for color-treated hair. You’ll be able to maintain your salon or at-home color with quality products while saving money and earning unique perks as a member. 

Madison Reed subscriptions are mainly tailored to the company’s “Radiant Cream Color” and “Color Reboot” products, but you can also subscribe for more general products like shampoo and conditioner (regularly $44 per bottle, $40 per bottle for subscribers). 

To start, you’ll need to take a hair care quiz, but be warned that this quiz isn’t as pretty, functional, or in-depth as the others on our list. It’s straightforward and mostly centered around your hair’s color goals. 

Best for Men’s Hair Care: Hims

hims best hair subscription boxes

hims

Key Specs

  • Average Price: $23/month
  • Free Shipping? Yes
  • Featured Hair Types: Hair loss, men’s hair

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • FDA-approved hair loss treatments for men

  • Nonprescription options available as well

  • Streamlined health consultations with medical professionals (and unlimited access to follow-ups)

  • Specialized products available for receding hairlines, bald spots, and overall thinning

  • Free, discreet delivery on orders

Cons
  • No general hair products (all focus on hair loss)

  • Could be expensive to build a whole routine

Why It’s a Top Pick

Hims is a personal wellness brand shifting the narrative that men shouldn’t prioritize self-care or wellness through “beauty” treatments. It’s helping eliminate the stigma around hair loss while making treatment easy, convenient, and discreet. 

Hims offers prescription products that are FDA-approved with ingredients like finasteride and minoxidil that target receding hairlines, hair loss, overall thinning, and bald spots. You’ll also find a variety of nonprescription products at Hims, all still tailored to hair loss. These include a Max Volume Shampoo and Conditioner duo ($32, or $18 per piece when purchased individually), a Thickening Shampoo ($19), and Conditioner ($22) with ingredients to support full-looking hair, regrowth treatments, and biotin gummies to support hair health from the inside out. 

You’ll start with a free consultation with a medical professional to determine your needs and address your hair loss. All subscribers will continue to have access to the medical team even after you’ve digitally swiped your card, as they will continue to support you through your hair journey with follow-up visits and progress check-ins.

Best for Curly Hair: CurlBox

curlbox best hair subscription boxes

CurlBox

Key Specs

  • Average Price: $25/month
  • Free Shipping? No
  • Featured Hair Types: Curly

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • 4+ full-sized products for $25 per month

  • Fun and affordable way to try new products

  • All products work for curly hair types

  • Experts help curate your products for you

Cons
  • Website is somewhat tricky to navigate

  • Subscriptions go through periods of open and closed sign-ups

Why It’s a Top Pick

It’s so important to learn how to take care of curly hair, but more importantly, to have access to products specifically for your curly hair type. CurlBox fully supports those with curls by curating boxes of full-sized products (each box includes at least four products) at affordable prices. For just $25 per month, you’ll receive premium products at up to 70% off, all hand-chosen by experts to work for your hair. This is the best way to try out a variety of new products without spending your whole paycheck.

Your box will ship on the 12th of every month, but be aware that CurlBox goes through periods where subscriptions are open and then closed. Currently, subscriptions for February boxes are scheduled to open starting January 20th. When subscriptions are closed, you can join the waitlist and score early access the next time they open. 

Best Home Hair Color Subscription: eSalon

esalon best hair subscription boxes

eSalon

Key Specs

  • Average Price: $26/month
  • Free Shipping? Only on first order
  • Featured Hair Types: Color-treated

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Custom-mixed color by a professional colorist

  • Includes personalized step-by-step instructions and all the materials you’ll need

  • 100% color happiness guaranteed

  • Quiz offers you the opportunity to add photos and even write notes directly to your colorist

  • At-home highlighting kits, gray coverage, men’s color, styling and color care in one, and more

Cons
  • Only your first order ships free; after that, you’ll pay $26 plus shipping

  • Limited control over your products and formulas

Why It’s a Top Pick

eSalon offers salon-quality coloring and individualized expert support at home, making it so much more affordable to consistently color treat your hair. It’s most famous for its Custom Hair Color subscription, which includes made-to-order custom hair color, instructions, and materials. 

eSalon’s color treatments are now available in ammonia-free formulas, but all of its products are vegan, cruelty free, and free of parabens. And they’re made and packaged with sustainable materials. These kits give you everything you need to successfully DIY your hair color at home. eSalon also has a 100% color happiness guarantee, so if you need to make a change, it will take care of you. 

Once you’ve received your color subscription (or shampoo and conditioner subscription), a personal colorist will stay in touch with you to offer guidance and tips on how to use the products and to ensure that you’re happy with your hair. 

Best Assortment: Hairbox

hairbox best hair subscription boxes

Hairbox

Key Specs

  • Average Price: $39.99/month
  • Free Shipping? Yes
  • Featured Hair Types: All

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Top salon products matched to your hair’s unique needs

  • Free shipping throughout the continental U.S.

  • Specific email inbox where you can submit feedback and even request specific products to be included in your box

  • Review each item in your subscription for better matches later

  • One shampoo, one conditioner, and one styling product in each box (all full-sized products)

Cons
  • Less customizable than other options

  • No current emphasis on clean or sustainable beauty

Why It’s a Top Pick

If you believe in “more is more” and like trying out new things on a regular basis, Hairbox is for you. The curated box comes with three full-sized products: one shampoo, one conditioner, and one styling product (you can also add extra products, if you’d like). For the styling product, expect to see items like gels, texturizers, hair sprays, dry shampoos, or hair serums. 

Each monthly box comes with different products, but something we love is that Hairbox has a dedicated email where you can make special requests. This is in addition to being able to review all the products that come in your box; if you love something, you can ask for it to be included again as part of your subscription at no extra cost.

Hairbox costs $39.99 per box, but if you subscribe for a longer period, you can save extra. It includes brands like Bed Head, Biolage, Chi, DevaCurl, Hempz, It’s a 10, Joico, Kenra, Matrix, Paul Mitchell, Wella, and lots more. And if you’re looking to gift someone in your life a hair care subscription box, Hairbox makes it easy. 

Final Verdict

Prose is one of the very best hair subscription boxes because the company develops unique, individual formulas based on your hair needs, where you live, and more. The analysis of environmental factors feels like going the extra mile in addressing your hair care needs (that’s something most of us don’t know ourselves, let alone have the opportunity to address in hair care products). 

They offer a variety of customizations through scent while staying focused on environmental sustainability, quality ingredients, and inclusive options tailored to meet individual needs. It’s also affordable for 100% customized hair care — and customers agree: there are over 345,000 five-star product reviews on Prose’s website for one product set alone. 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Who Should Use a Hair Care Subscription Service?

    Anyone who’s looking to experiment and have fun switching up their hair care routine would enjoy a hair care subscription service. It’s absolutely exciting seeing what surprises come in the mail each month or quarter. It’s also a great way to help those who keep their lives organized — you’ll never have to worry about running out of hair products. But for those with specific hair types, needs, or goals, a hair care subscription box makes customization the standard, which can make a huge impact on your hair health overall. 

  • Can You Customize the Products in a Hair Subscription Box?

    Yes, you can customize the products! In almost every hair subscription box, there’s a level of customization, but it varies from brand to brand. Companies like Prose and Function of Beauty are the most customizable, while those like Hairbox or CurlBox rely on feedback after you use the products rather than full questionnaires before purchasing. 

  • How Often Can You Receive a Hair Subscription Box?

    You can receive a hair subscription box as often as you’d like. On our list, almost all of the companies offer you the option to select your frequency (and skip months if you aren’t quite ready for more) when you subscribe. Typically, options include once-a-month orders up to several months in between. The exceptions are CurlBox and Hairbox — and potentially Hims if you’re purchasing prescription products. 

  • How Do You Know What Type of Hair You Have?

    Your hair type is determined by the shape of your hair follicles, the tiny holes on your scalp, and it’s genetic. Oval-shaped follicles lead to curly hair, round ones lead to straight, and a mix leads to wavy. Prose offers a really thorough guide to help you determine your hair type.

  • What Subscription Box Is Best for Curly Hair?

    CurlBox is the best subscription box for curly hair if you’d like to try a range of curated products all tailored to curls. If you’re looking for customized hair care for your curls, though, Prose is the way to go. Its questionnaire prior to purchasing is very detailed, so you’ll end up with a customized formula made just for you and your unique curls.

Methodology

We reviewed more than a dozen hair subscription boxes to find the best ones for different hair types. Each service was judged using the following criteria:

  • Average cost
  • Shipping fees
  • Product variety
  • Customization options
  • Online tools
  • Delivery locations
  • Number of plans
  • Added perks
  • Access to customer service

Companies with a wide range of products for various hair types were given extra points in the scoring phase. Cost was also a leading factor, as was customer support and the ability to customize each box. Services with limited shipping capabilities did not make it past the initial research stage.

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