Culture

I've Been Converted from a Costco Addict to a Lover of Boxed.com

I spent my entire adult life living in big cities. That means that everything about my entire adult life had to be downsized. My bedroom in my twenties, while I was living in the SoHo section of NYC, was the size of a small walk-in closet. When I got married, the apartment my husband and I lived in had NO hallway closets. None. The only closets in the whole place were tiny bedroom closets that could maybe accommodate a winter coat, at best. There was no room for “stuff.” We didn’t have knick-knacks or superfluous kitchen appliances (sorry stand mixer), and we most certainly didn’t have room for extra household supplies.

When we bought toilet paper, we bought two rolls at a time. Same with paper towels. Same with everything. If it wasn’t going to be used in the immediate future, it had no home in our home.

And then we had a baby.

And then we moved to the suburbs.

Cue the angels singing.

Like any good suburbanites, my husband and I quickly made our inaugural trip to our local Costco, with our son strapped into the oversized cart.

Cue the angels singing again.

We bought more toilet paper than we knew what to do with. We bought enough garbage bags to last a year. We bought a 10-can case of imported Italian tomato sauce. We bought a gallon of nuts. Why? Because why not??

We were suddenly spoiled by an entire house-worth of space, chock-full of closets and basement shelving. We were in consumer heaven. Our monthly trips to Costco truly became an addiction.

And then we had another baby.

And things got way more complicated.

I recently saw an article about Boxed.com, and how it was planning on automating certain types of deliveries. The idea was to take the hassle out of needing to run to the store at the last minute because you ran out of things like toilet paper or garbage bags. While the automated feature wasn’t yet rolled out, I was intrigued by the site and decided to try the wholesale online retailer. I knew that it sold curated items in bulk, like Costco, so I figured there was nothing to lose (except for a meltdown from my infant in the frozen foods section).

Can we cue those angels again?

I tried a little bit of everything that Boxed.com had to offer. I got some lotion and individual bags of cheddar popcorn. I got a case of sparkling water. (This is my guilty pleasure. And no, I don’t get out much.) Of course I got a giant pack of toilet paper, but I tried Boxed’s private label brand, Prince & Spring, for this instead of a name brand. It was a better value and I figured it was worth a shot. I also got a ton of coffee. (Did I mention that I have two small children?) Here I tried Prince & Spring as well. Not only was it cheaper, but it was organic and Fair Trade.

Let’s just say that my life genuinely changed for the better. Yes, this was life-changing. Not only did these products show up at my doorstep without me needing to load the kids into the SUV and then play bumper cars with the other Costco customers, but they were good. The coffee (we tried the Breakfast Blend, French Roast, and Colombian) is delicious and far less bitter than a certain brand that shall not be named…. My husband has even begun making cold brew from it for daily afternoon consumption.

The toilet paper was the same. I didn’t lose out by getting “generic.” And since a giant container of nuts was a regular purchase for us at Costco, I decided to try the Prince & Spring almonds. They were simply delightful. Have you ever had a really good, fresh almond? I know this is a strange question, but if you have, you know what I’m talking about.

An unexpected perk of getting some of the Prince & Spring products was that I wouldn’t be embarrassed if someone came over and saw them on my counter. Have you ever bought, for example, a box of tissues from a pharmacy and felt the need to put them in a tissue box cover to hide how ugly and plain, and generic-looking they were? There is no need for that with this stuff. I know this might seem shallow, but it’s the little things in life, isn’t it?

Do you want to know the best part? I was able to order WINE through Boxed. Yes, a box of wine showed up on my doorstep. No, not boxed wine, but a box of high-quality bottles of wine. Suddenly, all of the tantrums and diaper blowouts that I endure on a daily basis seemed to become more manageable because the fine people at Boxed.com have made it possible for me to order wine along with my paper towels and laundry detergent.

Now after the kids are in bed, I enjoy putting my feet up and taking care of a few necessary household purchases on my computer. I don’t miss walking through those giant aisles filled with palates of everything I could ever need or want. In fact, the idea of going to Costco right now gives me anxiety. I’d much rather sip my organic coffee and eat the dry-roasted almonds that the nice deliveryman left for me on my porch. And I’ll use that extra money I saved to add another bottle of wine to the delivery!