The real deal behind 5 popular kids’ clothing subscriptions
We tested Stitch Fix Kids, Rockets of Awesome, and more
Recommendations are independently chosen by Reviewed’s editors. Purchases you make through our links may earn us a commission.
Back to school shopping can be stressful. From opinionated kids, to supply chain issues, to just life itself being busy, it can be tough to get enthused about carving out time to go to a mall. In fact, does anyone still go to the mall?
If you're looking for an easier way to stock up on new clothes before school starts, a kids' clothing subscription box could be the answer to your prayers.
We had real kids test five clothing subscription boxes to see which ones really delivered on convenience, style, and value. Skip the hassle of dragging a whiny kid through the mall this year and fill their closet with new clothes from one of these services instead.
How we tested kids' clothing subscription boxes
I roped both of my kids into testing the majority of the boxes. My 9-year-old son tested out a selection of "boy" boxes, and my 8-year-old daughter tested out the "girl" boxes.
When it came to assessing the boxes, I evaluated them on the quality of the clothes, how well the company did at hewing to my kids' specific style guidelines, and whether or not they actually liked (most) of what they received in their boxes.
I also took into account how much the clothing cost, and whether it felt like we got a good deal on the items that were kept. I love beautiful, high-end clothes, but paying full price for designer duds is not practical when we're talking about a piece of clothing that your kid is going to grow out of—or get paint on—in a matter of weeks.
1. Stitch Fix Kids
- Best for: Comfortable, practical everyday clothes
- Sizes: 2T to 18
Stitch Fix is one of the original clothing styling services—they started out just styling women—and they introduced kids boxes a few years ago. I used Stitch Fix for myself a few times when they first launched, but I ended up canceling my subscription because the overall quality of the clothes they sent wasn't very good.
I was really interested to see what Stitch Fix sent for my kids, especially because the initial "style profile" that they ask you to fill out is pretty in-depth.
How Stitch Fix Kids works
Stitch Fix offers the option of signing up for a subscription, or just ordering one-off boxes when you want them.
If you decide to opt for regular styling boxes, you can choose a frequency of every month, every other month, or every three months, and Stitch Fix notifies you via email about a week before your next box ships. It's very easy to cancel or skip a fix, but if you don't remember to do either of those, you'll be sent a box—and charged for it.
You have three days after you receive your box to try on everything before you're expected to send back what you don't want, but it's incredibly easy to extend the try-on period. Stitch Fix sends a reminder email when it's time to return the pieces you don't want, and shipping is free both ways. The Stitch Fix site is really easy to navigate, and it's simple to skip or cancel upcoming Fixes.
What Stitch Fix Kids costs
There's a $20 styling fee for each box—or "Fix," in Stitch Fix parlance—but the fee will be credited towards anything you decide to keep. If you don't keep anything, you forfeit the $20. If you keep every item from your fix, you receive an additional 25% discount.
As far as how much the clothing costs, that really depends on the pricing parameters that you specify when you set up your child's style profile. Item prices range from $15 to $50+, though those prices don't include the discount you'll receive if your child keeps everything in the box.
What's inside Stitch Fix Kids
Each Fix includes between eight to 10 pieces of seasonally-appropriate clothes. Since our boxes arrived during the heart of the summer months, they included mostly shorts and T-shirts for my son and shorts, skirts, tank tops and a dress for my daughter.
While the Fixes we received each included a pair of shoes, you have the ability to choose not receive shoes or other specific garment types when you sign up for your Fix.
Stitch Fix Kids review
Honestly, Stitch Fix really hit it out of the park with both of my kids' boxes. My son is difficult to shop for because he will only wear clothes that are very soft, so I didn't have high hopes, but he loved almost everything that came in his Fix. The stylists did a great job picking out items that fit my kids' styles, and my daughter kept every single piece that her box included.
Another thing I appreciated about Stitch Fix is that they did an amazing job finding brands that fit both of my slender children. When I signed up for the service I noted that both of my kids are long and lean, and all of the items that they received in their boxes fit them well. Considering that's not the case when I shop for them I was really impressed.
- Best for: Budget-friendly fashion
- Sizes: 12 months to 16
Another kids' clothing subscription box that you may have had targeted to you on social media, Kidpik initially only carried girl clothing for ages 7 and up, but they now offer subscriptions for boys and girls, and the size range is larger, too: from toddler to teen.
How Kidpik works
Kidpik is a subscription service that offers subscribers the choice of receiving a box every 30, 60, or 90 days. It's very easy to adjust the frequency of your Kidpik shipments, and cancelling is easy, too—everything can be done through the account portal on the site.
How much is Kidpik per month?
There is no styling fee, and shipping is free both ways. Once you receive your box, you have seven days to try it on before it needs to be returned. All of the items that Kidpik sends have a price tag under $30—the average cost is $22— and if you keep everything from the box you get a 30% discount.
What's inside Kidpik
With Kidpik, you have the option of selecting whether you want an eight or a 12 item box—you can adjust the box size through your account portal—and each Pik contains a pair of shoes and an accessory. If you don't want shoes or accessories you can specify that they not be included in your child's box.
Our boxes included shorts, T-shirts, and swim trunks for my son, whereas my daughter received several dresses, a skirt, a couple pairs of shorts and a few T-shirts. They each also received a pair of shoes and an accessory—my son got a cool fanny pack, and my daughter a pair of pretty hair clips.
Kidpik really nailed it with the accessories and the shoes but, unfortunately, the clothing was a miss, save for a few pieces. The items included in my son's box really didn't fit his style, and almost every single thing in my daughter's box was way too big.
Knowing that the brands that Kidpik stocks tend to run on the larger side, I would suggest sizing down when inputting information into your child's style profile. My daughter liked almost all of the items that were in her Kidpik box, but they were so big that they literally fell off of her.
The accessories and shoes, on the other hand are awesome. My son got a pair of classic white sneakers that he loved—and that are perfect for dressier occasions—as well as a cool fanny pack that he loves wearing when we go to the farmer's market. In fact, we'd been searching (unsuccessfully) for a boyish-enough fanny pack for months, so the fact that Kidpik was able to deliver one was a major win.
The silver shoes and pearly-pink clips that my daughter got in her box are so pretty, and the perfect complement to the dress and crop top that she also received—and kept—from her Pik.
If you have kids who aren't as particular about the clothes that they wear, Kidpik could be a great choice. The price point is reasonable, and the included accessories certainly set it apart from other services.
3. Rockets of Awesome
- Best for: Durable everyday clothes
- Sizes: NB to 16
Rockets of Awesome does a lot of social media advertising, which is how I heard about it initially. The company was started by a mom of two kids, and is one of the few subscription clothing companies that manufactures their own private-label garments. According to their site, all of the clothes are designed in-house, so you won't receive any recognizable brands in your box, though the clothes on the whole were nice quality.
How Rockets of Awesome works
If you sign-up for the Rockets of Awesome subscription, you'll receive a new box every season, or four times per year. You can also order single items of clothing, which is great if your child gets attached to a particular item from their box and they want a duplicate.
Rockets of Awesome also offers the option to preview what's been selected for your box, so that you can say "no thanks" to anything that you or your kids don't particularly like. I loved that we had a chance to get a sneak peek at what our stylist planned to send, because there were a few items that both I and my kids didn't like, and we were given the opportunity to swap those out for similar pieces that were more in line with our tastes.
What Rockets of Awesome costs
Rockets of Awesome charges a $5 styling fee for each box, the cost of which is then credited towards any clothes that you keep. You also get a discount of 20 to 40% if you keep everything from your box, with the amount of the discount contingent on which size box you select. The clothing items range in price from $22-$39—not including the discount—and the shipping is free both ways.
Rockets of Awesome also offers a "Rockets Reverse" program, that allows subscribers to send the company outgrown clothes for which they receive credit that can be used towards future orders. While we haven't tried the program yet—we're die hard Swoondle Society fans—I appreciate that Rockets of Awesome is doing some small part to stem the tide of clothing that ends up in landfills every year.
What's inside Rockets of Awesome
Rockets of Awesome offers three options for the number of items in each seasonal box: five, eight, or 12. We opted for the 12-item box in order to have the largest selection to choose from, and to take advantage of the 40% discount if we decided to keep everything.
Our Rockets of Awesome boxes included several pairs of soft pants for both of my kids, as well as T-shirts, sweatshirts, and a cute sequin skirt for my daughter.
Rockets of Awesome review
Overall, the Rockets of Awesome boxes were a success. The clothes included in the boxes fit well, and almost every piece was soft and comfy and something that the kids wanted to wear. The quality of the fabrics was also impressive, and all of the Rockets of Awesome clothes that we tested have held up well through multiple washes and tough hands-on play.
Our one complaint about Rockets of Awesome is that a lot of the items included in the boxes have the brand name printed on the garments. Granted, the word "awesome" isn't especially offensive, but I don't love my kids being walking brand advertisements.
However, you really can't beat the 40% savings you get if you keep all of the items that come in your child's box, so if you're primarily focused on your kids having fresh clothes for everyday wear, Rockets of Awesome is a good choice.
- Best for: Designer pieces at a discount
- Sizes: NB - 14
Dopple is one of the newer entries to the kids' clothing subscription box landscape. It sets itself apart with its focus on smaller, more unique brands and offers those same brands at discounted prices.
How Dopple works
Dopple sends your child a box—called a “Drop”—full of new, seasonally-appropriate clothes every three months. Your child has a week to try everything on and decide what they want to keep, and whatever doesn’t work can be easily returned to Dopple with the free prepaid return shipping label.
Dopple is a subscription service, so your credit card will be automatically charged before each Drop ships. However, you can postpone a Drop at any time. Canceling your subscription requires sending an email, but Dopple’s Customer Service is prompt and responsive, in my experience.
What Dopple costs
Dopple charges a $10 non-refundable service fee per child, which gets credited towards any items that you decide to keep. The total cost of each drop varies depending on the budget you enter when filling out the style quiz, but Dopple offers high quality designer pieces—think Bonpoint, Molo, Splendid—at majorly discounted prices. Plus, if you keep everything in a Drop, you save an additional 25% off of Dopple’s already reduced prices.
The pieces in our recent Drop ranged in price from $22-$64, not including the discount.
What's inside Dopple
Each drop contains anywhere from four to 15 different items of clothing, depending on which you select. Our most recent Drops each included nine pieces of clothing, with a mix of pants, shorts, and T-shirts, as well as several dresses for my daughter. My son also received a cool pair of Bonpoint + Vans sneakers, though you can opt out of receiving any shoes.
Your account portal also enables you to select specific pieces of clothing that you'd like to receive in your Drop, so you can tailor your child's box to the season or any events you may have coming up.
We love, love, love Dopple. In fact, we love Dopple so much that after testing it out, we signed up for the subscription! Dopple consistently sends unique clothes for both of my kids, and the pieces that we've kept from Dopple have become favorites in both of my children's wardrobes.
Dopple did a great job selecting pieces that fit my children's styles, and the pieces that they sent were really interesting and not what you'll find in an average store. What I liked most about Dopple is that the prices are incredible. I love that Dopple makes it possible to dress your kids in designer clothes without having to spend a fortune.
If, in addition to your back to school shopping, you have any special events on the horizon, it's worth trying out Dopple just to see what gets sent in your child's box. The two times I've requested clothes for a special occasion, Dopple has come through splendidly with "fancy" clothes that weren't so uncomfortable that I had to bribe my kids to wear them.
5. The Collective Child
- Best for: Instagram-worthy fashion
- Sizes: NB to 12
For truly unusual items that you're not likely to find in an average kids' clothing store, look no further than The Collective Child. Started in 2015 by a former Vogue staffer, this subscription bills itself as the choice for "contemporary parents" who want "unique pieces from the most coveted designer brands and emerging vanguard labels." This is definitely not the right choice for parents who want functional, affordable clothes for everyday wear, but if you're committed to dressing your child like a page out of Kinfolk, you won't be disappointed.
How The Collective Child works
The Collective Child deems itself a membership service, so once you become a member you can select whether you want to receive monthly, quarterly, or just on-demand boxes. When you sign up, your membership has to be approved—which felt oddly exclusive and takes about three business days. Once my membership got approved, it took another two-and-a-half weeks to receive the box, which was exceptionally slow, so if you're planning to order a Collective Child box in advance of a specific event, plan accordingly and allow plenty of time.
What The Collective Child costs
The Collective Child charges a $20 styling fee for each box, the cost of which is then credited towards any clothes that you keep over $20. Shipping is free both ways.
The pricing of the clothing itself ranges widely—from $30-$300—and there's no additional discount if you keep everything from your box.
What's inside The Collective Child
Each Collective Child box (or bundle, in our case), contains five to eight pieces of clothing. My kids each received six items of clothing, including a mix of pants, T-shirts, and long-sleeved shirts, plus a dress and skirt for my daughter.
The Collective Child review
The Collective Child is not the clothing subscription box to choose if you're looking to save money. That being said, if you want to fill your children's closet with designer pieces, this company delivers (literally). On a whole, the quality of the clothing we received was excellent, and the higher pricing didn't seem completely out of line when I took into account the caliber of the fabrics.
Unfortunately, my kids didn't love the items they received in their Collective Child box. The pieces selected for my son were mustard yellow, white, and grey, and the styles were odd, and not pieces that I could see appealing to the average kid's tastes.
I did appreciate that everything fit both of my slender kids well, but my son didn't want to keep any of the clothes he received, and the only thing my daughter wanted to keep was a Stella McCartney tutu skirt with silver stars, which had a price tag of $108.
Overall the clothing choices for my my daughter were much more appealing than those for my son, and I felt that she would have gotten a lot of use out of almost everything—if we had a budget that allowed for expensive clothing.
The Collective Child is definitely not the type of kids' clothing subscription box that will have wide appeal, but if you're interested in discovering new-to-you brands and truly unique clothing pieces, you won't be disappointed.
What are kids' clothing subscription boxes?
Much like the adult clothing subscription boxes that first gained popularity, the subscription boxes for kids send subscribers a box full of clothing items that children can try on in the comfort of their own home, and at their own pace. Whatever doesn't fit or that kids don't like can be shipped back to the company, and then parents are only charged for the items that their child chooses to keep.
How do kids' clothing subscription boxes work?
When you sign up for a kids' monthly subscription box, you'll be asked to put together a "style profile" for each of your kids. Let me point out that you can't be in a rush when you first sign up, because you'll be asked a lot of questions about your child's height, weight, sizes, and favorite colors. You'll also be presented with a selection of sample outfits and asked to rate how likely your child would be to wear each one.
Some of the companies also ask you to select how much you prefer to spend on various types of apparel. It would follow that the more specific you are about your child's distinct likes and dislikes will result in a clothing box tailored to their particular tastes, but I found that this was not always the case.
A number of the companies are actual subscriptions—meaning that unless you cancel, they'll send you a box every one to three months, and charge you accordingly. Others offer both one-time-only boxes and subscriptions, but you'll need to be on top of it when you order, because some of the one-off boxes are not easily returnable.
How much do kids' clothing subscriptions cost?
That depends on which service you choose. Some companies have a styling fee ranging between $10 to $20, which is charged before each box is shipped. The styling fee is credited towards any items that your kids decide to keep, but if you decide not to keep anything, you forfeit the fee.
All of the companies we tested also offer a discount if your kids decide to keep every item in their box. While this sounds like a good thing, we sometimes found that we ended up keeping clothes that we didn't really like just because it was less expensive than only purchasing the items we liked.
How to pick the best kids' clothing subscription boxes
The answer to this question is really going to depend on what matters most to you and your kids when it comes to clothing. If the only thing you care about is getting as much bang for you buck as possible, you're not going to be thrilled with one of the more fashion-forward companies. On the other hand, if you're hoping to add some less run-of-the-mill pieces to your child's wardrobe, you'll want to opt for one of the subscription services that carries smaller brands.
No matter what your priority, you'll get the best results by being very specific about your needs, wants, and budget when you fill out your child's style profile and sizes.
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.