Have you heard about monthly subscription boxes? It seems like the topic is popping up everywhere. I have several friends and family members signing up to receive a wide range of materials right at their front door each month. And who doesn’t appreciate a good piece of mail, especially when it’s a box full of goodies?

These monthly subscription boxes come in all sorts of shapes and sizes—but more importantly, they come in varied genres. Animal lover or pet owner? Treats and toys can be delivered each month to subscribers of companies like BarkBox and meowbox. Makeup maven? Ipsy and Birchbox (which has a “grooming” box option for men and a “beauty” box option for women), offer the chance to try new cosmetics with trial and full–size samples. Constantly crocheting or knowledgeable about knitting? Yarnbox and Fiberista Club both offer supplies for the craft–minded.

There’s a wide range of options out there, many of which guarantee entertainment. Green Kid Crafts delivers boxes with games, crafts and even STEM–focused kits. Companies like Brilliant Books allow subscribers to essentially have their own book club—a different book can be delivered each month depending on a subscriber’s preferences.

Food lovers seem to have the most options. Choices range from snacks to diet–specific options to entire weeks’ worth of groceries and recipes. Companies like Blue Apron and Plated make meal prep easier and give subscribers a chance to try new recipes. Others go international: Kitchen Table Passport not only supplies the spices and recipe for a meal from a different country each month, it also provides information about the country and its culture, as well as two mementos from that country.

For the most part, these companies seem to cater to subscribers’ specific tastes. The contents of pet boxes are determined based on the qualities of the owner’s dog or cat, cosmetic boxes cater to skin type and personal preferences, and food boxes also take into account subscriber favorites. Prices range based on the company and the subscription level chosen, but for some, the price is worth it.

Maybe subscription boxes are just the latest fad, or maybe they’ll stick around, but it seems like people still love to hear, “You’ve got mail!”

Did You Know?

The voice for AOL’s “Welcome. You’ve got mail!” notification came from an actual person, not a computer. Elwood Edwards recorded a handful of phrases for AOL’s email services in 1989. The iconic phrase certainly caught on, inspiring pop culture in many ways, including the title of Nora Ephron’s 1998 film starring Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan.