HOW TO CREATE THE PERFECT CARE PACKAGE
When something big happens to someone you care about, you want to show up for them. When it's a great occasion, like a promotion at work or a new baby, you want them to know you're sharing their joy. And when it's something tough, like a break-up or the death of a loved one, you want to be sure they know they can count on you. If you can, you show up in person. But if you can't, one great way to show your support is to send a care package.
Creating the perfect care package takes some significant thought and effort, but the knowledge that you've made someone's day makes it more than worth it. We've learned a lot by curating care packages that you can send for birthdays, engagements, and more, so we wanted to share our experience by putting together this handy checklist.
1. Try to touch all 5 senses. Creating a care package is all about enveloping someone with love. One easy way to do that is to include items that they can experience from multiple angles: something to smell, something to look at, something to feel, etc. The one people often miss here is "something to touch," but it's easy to include! When we're curating comfort boxes, we lean toward soft items, like the microwaveable eye mask in our Get Well care package. For a cheerful occasion, we lean towards skincare and beauty: tactile, but fun!
2. Always include something to eat. Who feels sheer delight when someone hands them a snack? (Everyone at SP headquarters just raised their hands.) Make sure you know the allergies/aversions of the person you're sending the box to, but then go wild. If you want to make your own treats, amazing! Just make sure to wrap them securely (wax paper inside a Tupperware container usually works best), and choose 3-day shipping (anything longer than that and you're flirting with a food safety issue). We're big fans of sweet and savory in one snack, like the Legally Addictive cookie-crackers in our Self-Care box.
3. Don't ship alcohol. Yeah, we know you want to send them a party in a box. We do, too! But it's legally prohibited and not just not worth the hassle. You can always send it separately through a designated shipper, or send a fancy mixer so they can create mixology-level cocktails just by adding the booze of their choice. Our all-time favorite is Avec Drinks, which we include in our Thank You box: it's low in sugar and jam-packed with flavor (and it's also a Black woman-owned small business).
4. Presentation is important. There's a reason you're not sending them a bunch of items from Amazon. You want this to look like a beautiful present! We went for rigid white boxes with a gold foil stamp and embossed stickers (we live for this stuff). If you're packing a box yourself, an easy way to make things look more luxe and intentional is to stick with one tone: try to keep the tissue paper, stickers, and wrapping paper all in the same color family.
5. Shipping can sneak up on you. USPS Flat-Rate Boxes are often the best way to go, if you're sending anything even remotely heavy. Plus, they ship everywhere!
6. A handwritten note is the very best part. Long after your loved one has consumed everything else in the box, they'll hold onto the card you included. Making someone feel seen, whether it's in a painful moment or a joyful one, is the most important part of the whole process. (Here's an open secret: writing your notes is our very favorite part of our job.) If you're stumped for what to say, start with one thing you love about them, and one wish you have for their future.
We may be biased (we do this for a living, after all) but we think a thoughtful care package is the best way to let someone know that you truly care about them. Let us know if you have any questions; we're always here to help!