If you have Instagram, Facebook or another form of social media you may have come across an advert trying to sell you a "mystery box".

A mystery box essentially does what it says on the tin, it is an assortment of random clothes in a box that you pay for.

One of the most popular 'mystery' adverts is vintage football kits. They make out you'll get a great shirt by showing you the classics, essentially anything Italian such as Roma, Inter, AC or Juventus.

It is the same principle with vintage boxes, they use pictures of top brands such as North Face and Tommy Hilfiger to entice you in. But what do you actually get?

The Leader: The Vintage Store is a popular online shop (Newsquest)The Vintage Store is a popular online shop (Newsquest) (Image: PA)

Well, the algorithm eventually ushered several adverts onto my phone screen before I relented and took a peek at what the fuss was about.

Out of the vast amount of online vintage stores, it was Vintage Standards that had won the battle and stole my interest. Their website was running a Black Friday sale at the time and looked pretty good I must admit.

Not long after payday I thought, sod it, and ordered an XL five-piece vintage box for £70, they now cost £95 at the time of writing.

What did I expect? Well, this what they say on their website:

WHAT'S IN THE BOX (read this in Brad Pitt's voice)

"Elevate your wardrobe with a curated assortment of Vintage pieces from 80'S, 90'S and 00'S. May Contain Branded, Sportswear, Workwear, Designer and loads more.

"Expect coveted brands such as: Carhartt, North Face, Nike, Dickies, Adidas, Polo Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, Levi’s, Burberry, Stussy and many more.

"All boxes are prepared with Grade A* clothes.

"Pick your size and we will do the rest! We recommend going one size up."


"To decrease dispatch times, legwear will only be sent if available. If unavailable a replacement top will be sent.

"All clothing is pre-worn and had a previous life. Do not expect a new product to arrive. Each piece of clothing is one of a kind. The slight imperfections that are found in these garments are there to remind you that this piece of clothing is yours and yours alone."

After two weeks (I wouldn't hold my breath for Christmas) my parcel arrived and I tucked into it like a hungry hipster.

This is what I had received:

The Leader:

Henri Lloyd polo

Sadly this polo did not come smelling of cigarettes or White Lightning so I questioned its authenticity. It was, however, the best shirt in the box.

Henri Lloyd was reserved for a certain clientele back in the '00s when I was growing up and definitely didn't belong on my shoulders.  Now however in my late 20's, I have a chance to relive the dream.

I threw it on and sought a fight at the skate park immediately. Solid number.

Champion hoody

I can tell where this article is going now as it's essentially me revisiting my youth through clothes, but here we are. Champion in the '00s was not what you wanted to be seen in.

If I remember correctly, it was on a lonely pedestal with Diadora and Lonsdale. Now though it's held in a completely different esteem. Cool? I want to say.

A big black hoody without a god-awful zip going down the middle, I'll take that any day. Again happy with this.

Champion jumper

Second Champion piece now, but still happy as I don't mind the brand and they fit. After all, a standard grey jumper is a good go-to for any occasion.

Not thrilled but I'm not yet complaining.

Dickies polo

Never really heard of Dickies. Does that make me a noob?

It was a big plain red polo, no logo, just a big plain red polo. Could have got this in any charity shop for a quid.

Worst so far.

The Leader: The North Face hoody which was likely supposed to be the crown jewelThe North Face hoody which was likely supposed to be the crown jewel (Image: Newsquest)

North Face fleece

When I saw the North Face logo staring up at me I thought, "thank god, the best till last, they weren't lying!"

It looked like one I already owned but this one was a bright shade of red so I was pretty pleased. I then tried it on and, dear me, what a sad little life Vintage Standards.

I'd asked for an XL box but this was clearly a small with an "XL" sticker placed over the label. Not happy.

My sister can have it as a Christmas present I suppose as they don't do refunds for mystery boxes.

Overall thoughts

Well, 3/5 were ok and the other two were big letdowns. I got this as a Black Friday deal so can't complain too much, but, I really wouldn't bother again.

I've heard from other people that they've not been best pleased with their boxes either (not from Vintage Standards).

The other stuff they sell online is a great variety though, it's a good site to use if you want that type of clothing.