Geek Chic: Shop and Box
Those who know me know that patience isn't my strong suit. I want everything yesterday and that goes double for cosmetics. But when a new product launches in America or overseas it may not hit Australian shores for months or in some cases it is never released here at all - first world problems right!
But lately I have been hearing some great things about a global online shopping service called 'Shop and Box' so I wanted to give them a try! Shop and Box is a great concept and platform which allows you to shop (in store and online) from countries around the world that don't ship to your location using your own personal shopper or as they like to call them 'boxers'. You simply put in an order for the item/s you want and then you're assigned a boxer who does the shopping and ships the item/s directly to you!
I placed my first Shop and Box order last week and received it today so I wanted to share my shopping experience and opinions on this service.
Wednesday 11 May 2016
It all started last Wednesday when the Pat McGrath Labs Limited Edition 'Skin Fetish 003' was released online at Sephora U.S.A. This product is a highlight addicts dream and I had seen it all over social media but it had already sold out on Pat's website so this was my last chance to get my hands on this golden goodness! But the problem is that Sephora U.S.A doesn't ship to Australia and after doing some research and trying other freight forwarders, I soon learnt that the team at Sephora U.S.A are on to them and cancelling orders using third party shipping companies.
So even though I had heard the fees on Shop and Box were a little higher I decided to bite the bullet and give them a go.
I started off by going to the Shop and Box website www.shopandbox.com and creating an online account. I used the Facebook sign up option (because it is easy and one less password for me to remember), completed my profile and was ready to get shopping, YAY!
I started by filling out the form on the right hand side of the homepage describing the name of the item I wanted to buy, the type of product it was and where it was from. Then I clicked 'Find Me A Boxer' to get the process started.
You are then given a few options: 'Add To My Wishlist', 'Create New Order' or 'Add Item To Existing Order'. You can add as many items to your Wishlist as you would like and when you're ready to buy them you can turn them into an active order. But if you are sure you want to buy the item you described in the previous step go ahead and create a new order.
You already provided some basic details about the item you want to order but to ensure the boxer knows exactly what item you want some more information is required. This includes the item URL (if the item you want is online), colour, quantity, cost and any additional details (e.g if the item is part of a promo or if there is something specific the boxer needs to know). Once you have completed it click 'Add Item' and the item will be added to your order.
You can add more than one item to your order and they don't have to all be from the same website or store - your boxer will purchase them and consolidate them into one order and delivery.
Once you've finished adding the item/s you'd like to purchase, Shop and Box will work to find the perfect boxer to assign to your order. This is based on your profile, location and availability. You will get an email notification once a boxer has been assigned and accepted to look after your order so keep your eyes peeled. I placed my order at 9:40am and by 10:07am I was assigned a boxer who had accepted my order and sent me a message on Shop and Box to introduce herself.
The message read:
"Hi there! I'm Boxer Roshel from the USA and I'll be taking care of your order for you! I've confirmed your item and invoice 1 is all ready for you! Just so you know, you've got about 0.3kg left of space to fill up without the shipping fee rising! That's 3 foundations, 2 eyeshadow palettes, 10 eyeliners, and 4 lipsticks!"
At this stage I had only added the Golden Pat McGrath Labs Skin Fetish 003 to my order but now that I knew there was room for more items I decided to add a couple more to get the most out of my delivery. Once I had added the additional items, using the same process as above, I got another message from Roshel confirming the items and that invoice 1 was ready for me to pay.
The Shop and Box payment process happens in two stages: invoice 1 is for the cost of the goods and domestic shipping and invoice 2 is for international shipping of the goods and a boxer service fee.
To pay for invoice 1 either click the link in your email notification or by logging into your Shop and Box account and clicking the 'Pay Invoice 1' button. By paying for invoice 1 you're confirming with your boxer that you want them to order the item/s.
Shop and Box accepts payment via PayPal (either through your PayPal account or your credit/debit card) which was perfect because it is my online payment method of choice and is safe and secure. Once the payment has been made your boxer will get a notification and they will go ahead and order your item/s.
If you log into Shop and Box and click on your current order in the top right (under your boxers profile photo) you will also see a badge added to invoice 1 to confirm it has been paid.
Now you can sit back and relax while your boxer purchases your item/s.
If at any time you have a question or aren't sure what to do just refer to their FAQ page, it answered everything I wanted to know but if it doesn't they also have a live chat option.
Sat 14 May 2016
Today I received an email confirming my boxer had received my Sephora order and that invoice 2 (international shipping and boxer service fee) had been prepared and was ready to be paid.
For international shipping they give you two options: with and without insurance. Of course with insurance is a little more expensive ($31.78 USD compared to $19.37 USD) but I would prefer to know that I have the ability to track my order especially since it is coming from America.
There is also a service fee for your Shop and Box boxer which is determined by the cost of your online order. Because my order total was under $249.99 USD the fee was 14% (see above).
To pay invoice 2 simply click the link in your email notification or log into your Shop and Box account and click the 'Pay Invoice 2' button. I paid via PayPal again and like with invoice 1, your boxer will get a notification once you have paid so they can organise for your order to be shipped to you.
Once they have sent your order they will update the order status to let you know that your order is on its way and provide you with the tracking details and ETA.
Friday 20th May 2016
Today I received my order! I was so surprised because when I last checked the delivery ETA was Monday 23rd May. The delivery was sent via DHL and when I received it my order was packed in a well sealed cardboard box and the items were accompanied by packing air bags to keep them safe in transit.
My delivery was perfect and contained everything I ordered plus a couple of samples which was a nice treat! I am going to log back into Shop and Box now to let Roshel know my order has been received and leave her a nice review because she definitely deserves it!
Shop and Box was such a simple and seamless shopping experience! My boxer Roshel was absolutely lovely and provided a service which went above and beyond! Plus the fact that the whole process only took 10 days from the start of the order to receiving it was perfect, a time frame even my needy patience levels could handle.
I will admit I couldn't wait to receive this order before placing my next Shop and Box order, it has literally put the world of cosmetics in my hands!
Have you used Shop and Box or other third party shippers? Let me know about your experiences in the comments field below.
*This post is completely unsponsored and all opinions expressed are honest and my own.