My mom was in Paris for a month earlier this year, and when she came home she brought me a nice little pile of snacks and trinkets from the city. There were cookies, candies, a beret, and an Andy Warhol giraffe mug. (Because my husband loves giraffes - not because there's anything inherently Parisian about them.) So I thought, it's going to be really interesting to compare what she, a tourist, selected for me from Paris vs. what Escape Monthly chose for the subscription box.
So, just for fun, here's a side-by-side comparison:
Mom's choices definitely skew toward food, while Escape Monthly has a strong skincare component, but there is overlap in an oval-shaped tin: L'Abbaye de Flavigny Candies.
So what did Escape Monthly have to say about the world's fashion capital?
This month, we're bringing you the best from the shining lights of Paris and the green fields of France. Rich in enchanting history and modern delights, it's no wonder France is the most visited country in the world.
From Toulouse to Normandy, French artisans create some of the world's finest foods, wines, and bath & body care in the world. We've scoured the countryside in search of local favorites, and we hope you love what we've found.
RICK STEVES' Pocket Paris Travel Guide: Interesting. Every other Escape Monthly box I've received contained a Moon Handbook trael guide - did their contract with Escape Monthly end and the company chose another provider? Interesting. My mom loves Rick Steves and his travel guides, but I've heard mixed things - namely, that places mentioned in his guides get packed-to-the-gills with tourists and lose the atmosphere that made him recommend it in the first place! That's a testament to Steves' popularity, to be sure. $12.99
INSTITUT KARITE PARIS Almond & Honey Hand Cream: This fancy little hand cream came in a variety of fragrances, so I feel really lucky that the one in my box was Almond & Honey, because I find the scent extremely comforting. This formula pays tribute to Queen Marie Antoinette, and one of the Institute's other products reveal the beauty secrets of Queen Nefertiti...or so the packaging claims, anyway. €19.50
NUXE Shower Gel x 2: The box was supposed to contain one Nuxe body scrub and one Nuxe shower gel, but I ended up with two shower gels. I guess someone at the box-packing plant wasn't paying attention - or Escape Monthly ran out of scrubs and just started throwing extra shower gels in. They've been known to sneak unannounced substitutions before - see the California box and the Italy box. $5.00 x 2
EDMOND FALLOT Tarragon Dijon Mustard: I've never been a mustard eater. I think my mom must not have liked it, because we never had it in the house when I was a kid, and as a result I didn't develop a taste for it. One time, when I visited my aunt in England, she made the most delicious mustard chicken dish - and I've always meant to try and recreate it. Now that I have this jar of fancy mustard, I suppose I no longer have an excuse not to do it. Edmond Fallot has been making mustard since 1840, so they know what they're doing! $6.25
PIERRE BISCUITERIE Sables Pur Beurre: Butter cookies! My mom brought a box of butter cookies back from Paris, and they were delicious! Hers weren't chocolate-dipped like these ones, so these are pretty darn exciting, too. $1.50?
L'ABBAYE DE FLAVIGNY Orange Blossom Gourmet Candy: Mom brought me a rose-flavored tin of these candies and I love them. The floral candy is sweet and then there's that tiny little anise seed in the middle that is so much fun to bite down on. I'm really excited to try another flavor. €2.60
BONNE MAMAN Strawberry Preserves: I've seen this brand in grocery stores for as long as I can remember. This tiny jar is cute, but 1 oz of jam? That sure won't last long. If my husband and I both spread it on toast, we'll eat this up in a single breakfast. $3.00
This box seems so...empty. At seven items, it is one of the smaller Escape Monthly boxes. (For comparison, Italy had nine, as did California.) The boxes have become increasingly disappointing to me over the past few months - the India box didn't contain items from India, the California box didn't represent the state very well, and Mexico's products were all extremely easy to find Stateside. If they don't improve their offerings with Puerto Rico next month, I'm probably going to unsubscribe - it's a fun idea but lately it just hasn't seemed worth the box's price.
Escape Monthly is a vacation-themed subscription box. Each month, one subscriber is randomly chosen to "win" a trip to the themed location! The subscription rate is $49.95 a month, but if you use the coupon code "YOURESCAPE" your subscription will be 20% off each month. If you want to know more or wish to subscribe, please consider using my referral link: http://mbsy.co/hjDG