Best Subscription Boxes for Boys

Boxes of fun for your little ones, with Tinker Crate coming out on top

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Some boys love to read, or draw, or otherwise quietly occupy themselves in a way that doesn’t leave you fearing for their safety. However, if your boy likes to run and build and take things apart that they’re not supposed to, it can be a challenge to find stimulating and educational activities to keep them busy. If your boy is one of those kids, then we've got you covered! A subscription box is a great way to help your tiny human torpedo of destruction play and grow. With one opportunity after another to challenge your kid’s mind and body, here are the top subscription boxes for boys.

The Best Subscription Boxes for Boys of 2022

Best Overall : Tinker Crate


Tinker Crate

 Tinker Crate

Key Specs

  • Price: $17 per month
  • Ages: 9-14
  • Box Contents: STEM-based activities and projects
  • Subscription Plans: 3, 6, and 12-month

Why We Chose It

Tinker Crate earned our best overall title for its cool, project-based kits and kid-friendly instructions. This is an easy and affordable way to get your kids interested in STEM activities and keep them interested.

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Lots of materials and resources in every crate

  • You can choose the contents of your first crate

  • Affordable

Cons
  • You can't customize which crate you get after the first one

  • Not as much variety as other subscription boxes

  • Not suitable for very young kids

As part of the outstanding Kiwi Crate line of subscription boxes for kids, Tinker Crate is a hands-on STEM exploration kit made with kids ages 9 to 14 in mind. Each month, a new box is mailed to you with everything your kid needs to build an awesome project from scratch, from walking robots to spin art to mechanical claws. In each kit, your child receives all necessary materials, detailed but super kid-friendly instructions, and a link to an online video tutorial in case they need extra help. They also get a copy of Tinker Zine, the company's magazine, stuffed with expanded information and facts about that month’s topic of learning and additional project ideas. Everything is constructed—and explained—in a way that makes it possible for your tween-ager to assemble and test out their work completely solo.

These cool experiments and machines not only challenge your kiddo to think outside the box - literally - but they also teach them about science and math in an engaging and practical way. Your kid will learn about physics and engineering whether they meant to or not, and have hours of fun doing so!

Despite how much you get in the box and the possibilities for exploration, the Tinker Crate is also one of the most affordable options on the list. Crates start at roughly $17 per month, with recurring subscription plans offered for three, six, and 12 months at a time. Kiwi Crate frequently runs discount promotions and offers coupons to new and existing customers, which can often lower the price even more.

Best Budget : Bitsbox


Bitsbox

 Bitsbox

Key Specs

  • Price: $17 per month
  • Ages: 6 to 12
  • Box Contents: Coding activities and projects
  • Subscription Plans: Digital subscription option

Why We Chose It

This subscription service, with no extra materials necessary other than an internet connection, gives you the most bang for your buck. Your kid will learn computer skills that will be invaluable as they grow up surrounded by technology.

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Affordable

  • Specializes in coding

  • No materials required besides internet access

Cons
  • Might require more parental supervision because it's online

  • Means more screen time for kids

  • Very niche activities

Teaching kids how to design unique, customized computer programs and apps is a valuable skill, but it’s also a fairly new trend, so there aren’t many activities out there to keep coding-crazy kids happy. A Bitsbox subscription, though, gives you an endless supply! If you choose their digital subscription, it can even be extra budget-friendly.

Every month, your kid will get a new set of app-based projects to work on, covering everything from variables to arrays to motion loops. The projects range in difficulty, so your child can start easy and work their way up from there, and the kits include a grown-up guide so you can help your child too. Still, Bitsbox knows that kids are the audience here, so they make sure to use simple, easy-to-understand directions that allow kids to build their coding knowledge from the ground up. Not only is this an activity with which your child can spend hours challenging themselves, but it also strengthens the technological tools required to grow up in an age where computers are omnipresent and necessary for everyday life.

You’ll need an internet connection for this subscription so your child can access the Bitsbox coding website and share or use its custom apps on a desktop, tablet, or smartphone. But you don’t need anything else, and the digital option, which lets you receive all your monthly projects via PDF for only about $17, makes this a great budget-friendly choice for the 6- to 12-year-old kid in your life.

Best for Science : Club SciKidz


Club SciKidz

 Club SciKidz

Key Specs

  • Price: $40 per month (less with a recurring subscription)
  • Ages: Not specified
  • Box Contents: STEM-based activities and projects
  • Subscription Plans: 3, 6, and 12-month

Why We Chose It

These boxes have tons of resources in each one and the boxes cover a wider range of topics than other subscriptions. With these boxes, your child can acquire and set up their very own science lab at home.

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Lots of variety between boxes

  • Tons of supplemental activities and bonus content

  • Save money on 3-month, 6-month, or 12-month subscriptions

Cons
  • It's unclear whether you get to choose the box's subject

  • More expensive than other subscription boxes

  • Website is not specific and missing pages (e.g., information about subscriptions)

Got a future Einstein or Bill Nye on your hands? The subscription box from Club SciKidz is a little scientist’s dream, loaded with enough goodies to get them building their own science lab—and running experiments—right in your own home.

Each kit comes with STEM-based projects and experiments, easy-to-follow instructions and all the necessary materials, lab-quality supplies, and a bunch of fun supplementals like jokes, crafts, secret formulas, and science fiction stories. Whether your kid is into the solar system, fossils, zoology, or forensic science, there’s a box for them. And, as they continue receiving their subscriptions, they’ll be able to keep adding to their collection of quality lab equipment. This subscription box makes science fun, and keeps your kid thinking and learning with every new activity.

Your first Club SciKidz package is the Welcome Box, which includes a bunch of cool experiments along with what you need to get started, like safety glasses, a lab notebook, and a magnifying lens. After that, you’ll get boxes curated around specific themes or scientific challenges, like Grossology and Electromagnetism. Month-to-month subscriptions of the SciKidz box cost roughly $40, with the monthly price dropping slightly when you sign up for recurring three-, six-, or 12-month subscriptions.

Best for Explorers : Think Outside


Think Outside

 Think Outside

Key Specs

  • Price: $40 per month
  • Ages: Not specified
  • Box Contents: Outdoor activities
  • Subscription Plans: Monthly, quarterly, and annual

Why We Chose It

This comprehensive subscription box encourages outside play and is unique in its focus on the outdoors. Rather than just solo projects, this box has activities for the whole family to take part in.

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Encourages outdoor play and exploration

  • Family activities

  • Can include multiple children in one subscription

Cons
  • Requires access to nature

  • Not all activities appropriate for just one person

  • More expensive than other subscription boxes

The benefits of outdoor play are clear: kids who spend generous amounts of time outside are not only healthier, they also have better executive functioning skills, such as planning, time management, and organization. Whether your kid already spends half their day in the backyard or you want to encourage them to get out there more often, the Think Outside box—with its outdoor gear, family challenges, and skill-building potential—is a great place to start.

In your first introductory kit, your child will get an Initiation Box, which includes a backpack filled with hands-on activities and gear to help you start exploring. After that, the boxes are designed with the seasons in mind; in summer, for example, you’ll get gear and activities to keep you cool in the blazing heat, while spring seasons might deliver rain gear and water investigation challenges. Meanwhile, each box also aims to teach your child an outdoor skill or concept, like fire-starting, navigation, and stargazing.

What we love about the Think Outside box is that not only does it help your kid get outside more, it encourages your whole family to spend time in nature. Many of the activities and challenges work better with more than one person; plus, you can take advantage of subscription discounts when enrolling siblings (or, if you just want your kids to share a subscription, you can order an extra backpack with your Initiation Box). In terms of pricing, a monthly subscription is about $40 per month, and you can also enroll quarterly or yearly.

Best for Superhero Fans : Superpower Academy


Superpower Academy

 Superpower Academy

Key Specs

  • Price: $33 per month
  • Ages: 5 to 10
  • Box Contents: Social-emotional learning and STEM-based activities
  • Subscription Plans: 3, 6, and 12-month

Why We Chose It

This superhero-themed subscription is great for young kids who love superheroes and who need to improve and practice their social-emotional skills. With activities that promote things like empathy and identifying feelings, your little superhero will develop social superpowers of their own.

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Encourages social-emotional learning as well as STEM skills

  • Wide array of activities

  • Subscription options and discounts available

Cons
  • Aimed at younger kids (ages 5-10)

  • Literacy-heavy - not the best for struggling readers

  • Niche theme

Don’t let the superhero theme of this subscription box trick you into thinking only serious DC or Marvel fans could appreciate it. Superpower Academy digs down deeper into what it means to be a superhero—by sending your child a box full of confidence-building activities every month.

With the goal of helping your child become more resilient and creative, Superpower Academy packs its boxes with comics and fictional stories to enhance their literacy, STEM projects to encourage kids’ innovative sides, and social learning challenges to grow their emotional intelligence. Since everything is superhero-themed, kids won’t even realize they’re developing important life skills as they (figuratively) leap tall buildings in a single bound.

If you have a child who loves superheroes but needs help growing their own set of “superpowers” (like identifying feelings, tackling new things, and showing empathy), this is the perfect box to make practicing those skills fun. Month-to-month subscriptions are roughly $33; there are also three-, six-, and 12-month prepay options and a variety of discounts.

Best for Comic Book Lovers : Comic Crate


Comic Crate

 Comic Crate

Key Specs
  • Price: $30 per month
  • Ages: "All Ages," "Teen," and "Teen+" options
  • Box Contents: Comic books
  • Subscription Plans: 3, 6, and 12-month

Why We Chose It

This box is perfect for fostering a love of reading in young comic enthusiasts. With different reading levels to choose from, your reader will be happy no matter what their skill.

Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Encourages reading

  • Different subscriptions available for different age groups

  • Your child can send feedback to further customize the comics they receive

Cons
  • Parents do not pick the comics (but they can send feedback if necessary)

  • No price difference between month-to-month and 3-month subscription

  • Not "traditional" reading materials

Comic books often get a bad rap, even though there are just as many complex characters, plots, and themes in them as there are in traditional novels. Boys, in particular, are often drawn to comics, and then discouraged from reading them, since they’re “not real books.”

This subscription box proves that wrong. You can absolutely foster a love of reading in your kid with comic books, and the makers of Comic Crate want to help you do just that. Run by comic book shop owners from Sacramento, Comic Crate will send your child six full-size comics each month based on your rating selection. Getting a slew of new comics every month will have your child begging for more reading time!

The rating system is the most important element of choosing a Comic Crate, so here’s how it breaks down: There is an “All Ages” option perfect for young readers, with comics like Star Wars Adventures and My Little Pony; a Teen option for slightly older readers who can handle more advanced themes, language, and artwork, like Batman and Fantastic Four; and a Teen+ option, which still keeps things relatively “clean,” but may sometimes have profanity or more mature themes, like Wolverine and Justice League.

Pricing for all of the crates starts at roughly $30 per month, with three-, six-, and 12-month plans as well.

Best for Nintendo Gamers : Mario’s Mystery Block


Mario’s Mystery Block

 Mario’s Mystery Block

Key Specs

  • Price: $25 per month
  • Ages: Not specified
  • Box Contents: Merchandise such as clothes and toys
  • Subscription Plans: 3, 6, and 12-month

Why We Chose It

No matter your Nintendo fan’s gender or size, this subscription box will deliver items they’re sure to love. Unlike other subscriptions that come with activities, this box sends your video game enthusiast clothes, toys, and memorabilia that they're sure to love.

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Gender-specific and gender-neutral options

  • Size-inclusive

  • Covers a wide range of topics and characters within the Nintendo world

Cons
  • Merchandise rather than activities

  • Fairly few items per box

  • Specific to Nintendo

It doesn’t matter if your child’s favorite video game is Super Mario’s World, The Legend of Zelda, or old-school Donkey Kong - they’ll love a subscription to Mario’s Mystery Block, a monthly delivery of licensed Nintendo merch including tees, hats, toys, collectible coins, and other gaming goodies.

Featuring anywhere from three to six hand-picked items in every shipment, the Mystery Block sends around $35 worth of official Nintendo gear to subscribers every 30 days. One month, your items may be Mario themed, and the next month it could be all about Luigi (or Link, Yoshi, or the vintage Nintendo 64 system). This is perfect for the Nintendo fan who is interested in expanding their collection beyond just the video games.

You choose a subscription box plan based on your T-shirt size, ranging from youth X-Small all the way up to adult XX-Large; you may not get a tee every month, but when you do, you can be sure it will fit. You’ll also get the option to request gender-specific or gender-neutral items in your Mystery Block. Month-to-month plans cost roughly $25, with slight discounts offered for prepaying upfront in three-, six-, or 12-month intervals.

Final Verdict

Tinker Crate wins for our Best Overall subscription box because of its fun, science-based, and kid-friendly projects. At just $17 a box, it provides the most content for a very affordable price, and is a great choice for both burgeoning scientists and kids who need more exposure to STEM subjects. Whether your child likes science experiments, coding, outdoor activities, or collecting scientific specimens, the subscription boxes in this list are sure to deliver hours of fun every month.

Company Subscription Box Companies

Compare the Best Subscription Boxes for Boys
 Company  Price per month  Age Range  Contents  Subscription Plans
Tinker Crate Best Overall $17 9-14 activities 3, 6, and 12-month
Bitsbox
Best Budget
$17 6-12 activities Digital option
Club SciKidz
Best for Science
$40 N/A activities 3, 6, and 12-month
Think Outside
Best for Explorers
$40 N/A activities Monthly, quarterly, annual
 Superpower Academy
Best for Superhero Fans
 $33  5-10  activities  3, 6, and 12-month
 Comic Crate
Best for Comic Book Lovers
 $30  "All Ages," "Teen," and "Teen+"  reading materials  3, 6, and 12-month
 Mario's Mystery Block
Best for Nintendo Gamers
 $25  N/A  merchandise  3, 6, and 12-month
 Matter
Best for Curious Minds
 $49.95  Older kids  collector's items  one-time delivery or monthly/quarterly

FAQs

What Are Subscription Boxes?

You pay a monthly fee and the makers of the subscription box automatically send you a selection of hand-picked items, many of which are curated around a single theme or concept each month. There are subscription boxes for nearly every kind of person, from foodies to Disney fans to lovers of collectibles. All ages are represented across the world of subscription boxes, too. Basically, if you love something, there’s probably a subscription box for it.

Is There a Benefit to Ordering a Subscription Box Versus Individual Items?

Packaged together, you often spend less money to receive a monthly subscription delivery than if you tried to purchase the same or similar items individually. With some boxes, the items sent out in monthly deliveries aren’t available outside of the subscription—which means you get access to things you might not have otherwise. Subscription boxes make fantastic gifts, even if you only choose to order one box and not commit to a recurring delivery. If you know a child who loves Star Wars or Pokemon but you have no idea what individual items to buy, a single-purchase subscription box does all the work for you.

How Often Will I Receive One?

Most subscription boxes send out a new selection of goodies every 30 days, but some are bimonthly or quarterly, depending on how much stock there is to choose from and how accessible items are to be shipped out. You can sign up month-to-month or prepay for several months at a time (usually 3, 6, or 12). 

How Much Do Subscription Boxes for Boys Cost?

The average cost is between about $25 and $40 per month, with some as low as $10 and others as high as $100. How much you will spend depends on what type of box you’re subscribing to, how high-value or in-demand the items shipped out are, and which plan you choose (some boxes have basic or standard plans at the lowest tier of their price range and then expand from there to luxury plans). There might be shipping costs as well, though often those are included in the cost of the box. In most cases, you can cancel a subscription at any time without being charged, even if you’ve prepaid.

What is Included in Each Subscription Box for Boys?

It depends on the subscription. We’ve never seen a box send less than three items; most aim for anywhere from four to seven, though some boxes may have deluxe plans that send you as many as 10 items. While you may not be able to find out ahead of time what each box is filled with specifically, a good company should tell you how many products to expect, the types of products available, and where the products come from. Activity kits should come with most, if not all, of the materials you need to complete the given project. Other kits should specify how many items will be delivered or what the overall value of your items will be each month. If your box sends more high-value items, you may receive fewer items total than if your box focuses on lower-value items.

Will Girls Like These Subscription Boxes Too?

Yes! All of the subscription boxes discussed here are appropriate for any gender - some even come with gender-specific or gender-neutral options for subscriptions. Whether your girl is interested in science, the outdoors, or superheroes, she is sure to love these boxes just as much as any boy.

Methodology

We started with the quality of the items provided in the subscription boxes. There are dozens and dozens of subscription boxes for kids out there, but some of them lean pretty heavily on items like stickers, candies, and tchotchkes. All of the boxes here send more open-ended fare, inviting kids to build, explore, and imagine to their hearts’ content. Kid-friendly instructions were also a draw for us. You might have to lend a helping hand here and there, but we made sure to choose subscriptions designed for kids, not their parents. We also looked at cost: subscription boxes are an investment, but they don’t have to break the bank month after month.

Article Sources
Verywell Family uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Harvard Health Publishing. 6 reasons children need to play outside. Updated October 27, 2020

By Sarah Bradley
Sarah Bradley is a freelance health and parenting writer who has been published in Parents, the Washington Post, and more.