November 2011

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo Style: Nailing It

Operations associate, Loren, has a thing for nails- and we can’t blame her. We love reading about new finishes and fun techniques, so we thought we’d give her a weekly slot on our blog to wax poetic about all things manicure (and pedicure!) related. Check back every Thursday for Nailing It, Birchbox’s dedicated polish series.

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On Tuesday we got a sneak peak at China Glaze’s The Hunger Games Collection that will be coming out in February, but I’m even more excited to announce another polish collection inspired by one of my favorite books of all time, Steig Larson’s The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Duri has concocted a set of dazzling lacquers that truly emulate the fierce protagonist, Lisbeth Salander.

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#china glaze #the girl with a dragon tattoo #nails #nail art #nailing it #nail polish
Survival Kit: Thanksgiving Edition

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Thanksgiving is just a week away! Before you start brining that turkey (or tofurkey), read our guide to surviving any situation on our favorite holiday. Whether you’re spending it with your family, a significant other, or you’re hosting yourself, plan ahead and you’ll avoid unnecessary stress. Read more.

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#Birchbox magazine #Survival Kit #Thanksgiving
The Loveliest Rollerballs We've Ever Seen by Tokyo Milk

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How often do you come across packaging that’s so beautiful you want to hold onto it forever? Not too often, even in the image obsessed cosmetic industry. That’s exactly how I felt when I saw Tokyo Milk’s Roller Parfum de Cigarro last night. It was love at first sight but now my over-crowded dresser top seems unworthy of displaying such a treasure. Surely I need a beautiful new vanity for these to sit on.

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#Fragrance #Tokyo Milk
Must-Have Tool for Bombshell Waves: Guest Blogger

Who doesn’t love toast? We sure do, and as much enthusiasm as we have for the delicious complex carbohydrate, we love the blog A Piece of Toast even more. The masterminds behind the beauty amalgamation of covet-worthy products, style inspiration, and yes, yummy food, are sisters Sally Ann and Molly Bernadette. This week, the Molly is graciously bringing her flair to our blog, dishing on everything from the best hair masks to perfect holiday gifts.

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I’ve got hair (lots of long, fine-stranded hair) that has never been able to hold a curl or a wave until I met The Bombshell. Made by Sultra, The Bombshell is a clipless curling iron with a one-inch ceramic barrel that you wrap sections of hair around (while wearing a glove). Despite awkward first attempts, you pick up how to use it very quickly and the results are too-good-to-be-true. Depending on the size of hair sections you wrap and how long you hold the hair to the barrel, you can achieve tight curls or looser waves. Even my long hair can get perfect waves that hold all day!  And, because the iron is ceramic it gets hot, hot, hot — making the process super fast. I can do all my hair in seven to ten minutes. 

If you’re life me and have always dreamed of having pretty waves that hold and are easy to achieve, I would definitely recommend this tool. I use it so often that it’s hard for me to remember what styling my hair was like before it!

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#guest blogger #hair #curling #curling iron #curls #sultra #the bombshell
Holiday Makeover Tips From a By Terry Makeup Artist

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One of the best parts of my job is getting to attend press events. Last night, I ventured down to Soho’s SpaceNK Apothecary to preview the new collection from By Terry, a chic French brand that’s been gaining legions of fans in this country, including the entire Birchbox office. By Terry is best known for their Baume de Rose, a healing lip treatment that enjoys cult classic status. Now they’re launching the Terrybly line (gotta love the wordplay), which features products made with luxe ingredients like skin-plumping hyaluronic acid and crushed pearls. No cutting corners there. 

Between sips of champagne, I had the chance to sit down with By Terry makeup artist Brian Bracero, who also happens to be the brand’s U.S. national trainer (translation: he’s in charge of teaching fledgling makeup artists everything they need to know). Bracero shared some awesome pro tips and tricks with me. Click through to learn what he said!

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#by terry #holiday makeup
Harvey Prince's Eau Flirt: Notes from a Fragrance Snob

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Welcome to our new feature, Notes from a Fragrance Snob. Every week, Molly, our resident expert, will give her us take on a different scent. Today, she’s talking about a girly chic blend with a sciencey background.

Eau Flirt isn’t just a cute name. The brothers behind Harvey Prince blend art and science whenever they create a new fragrance. For this one, they looked for notes that would enhance your natural flirting capabilities — ie ingredients that would attract men. They found that pumpkin and lavender, which are the two top notes in Eau Flirt, elicit strong positive reactions in men. We think they must work on women too, because this perfume is a favorite in the office. It’s sweet and feminine but also has the base of a classic musk, which makes it sophisticated. It’s beautiful!

—Molly

Learn more about the science of scents from a professional fragrance designer.

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#harvey prince #eau flirt #fragrance #scents #perfume
Pencils Ready: Quick Lip Stain Idea

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At yesterday’s video shoot, makeup artist Tennessee Dye let us in on an easy way to get the stained lip look without a special stain or pencil. Just take a regular lip pencil (which you should have anyway, for making your lipstick last on special occasions) and shade in your entire lip. Blot, then shade it in a little more. You’ll have a nice wash of color that will last through at least two cups of coffee.

—Mollie

Want more punch? Layer a gloss over your lip liner — I love Kissable Couture’s super shiny gloss in Chris.

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#kissable couture #lipstain #lipstick #lip liner #makeup artist tip
Read Up, Men: You've Got Male

Once a week, Birchbox’s resident yoga and men’s product expert, Eric, will gives us girls some insight into his world in You’ve Got Male. Whether he’s giving his expertise on skincare (boys need advice, too!) or highlighting his new favorite grooming trend, this guy has got taste—so we’re lucky he’s on staff and willing to share.

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On Monday, we launched our much anticipated Birchbox Man box. We were thrilled at the response — there are so many guys who are ready to upgrade that we sold out in a day. Don’t worry, though! You can still get on the waiting list here, and we’ll have more available soon. 

In conjunction, we have launched a grooming guide in magazine section of Birchbox.com.  Whether you’re a guy wanting to find out more about the latest and greatest in grooming products and cool accessories or a gal searching for subtle tips to slip to her man, check out the guide

You’ll find everything from a tutorial on folding a pocket square to tips for curing hangovers. Some of my favorite tricks from past You’ve Got Male posts are there as well. Hurry and get reading!

— Eric

Even though Birchbox Man is temporarily unavailable, there are still tons of gifts appropriate for any man available in our Holiday Gift Guide.

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#You've Got male #Birchbox Men #Grooming Guide
How To Make Your Products Really Work

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Unless you were born with flawless skin, you’ve probably asked yourself the question on every skincare-savvy girl’s mind: which products should I use, and in what order? Lucky for you, it doesn’t take an advanced chemistry degree to understand the science behind the formulas. These days, all it takes is a little surfing around the web.  

We recently came across this article by Nicki Zevola, the force behind one of our favorite beauty blogs, Futurederm.com. Zevola outlines some surprising skincare facts that are making us rethink our regimen in a big way. Click through for our recap (plus our own two cents, of course!).

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#futurederm #skincare
Twirl Takes on the Holidays

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I’ve always had a case of Goldilocks syndrome when it comes to finding my signature holiday scent: one is too overpowering, while another makes me smell like my 80-year-old grandma. But kate spade new york’s Twirl suits me just right. A blend of fruity and flowery notes, it’s youthful, fun, and downright perfect for holiday gatherings. I plan on wearing it to the next post-work mixer I attend (maybe it will even help me score a date!). 

As a new inductee into the fragrance world, I’ve been learning the ins and outs of how different notes are layered to create a scent. Twirl gets its playful aura from yummy top notes of watermelon, red currant, and blackberry before opening to middle notes of sexy jasmine, magnolia, and orange blossom. But the real surprise waits down below: bottom notes of French macaroons. Not every fragrance can claim that it pays tribute to the patisserie

—Mai

Browse all our favorite fragrances in the Birchbox Shop.

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#kate spade twirl #kate spade #fragrance
My Sister's Makeup: Guest Blogger

Who doesn’t love toast? We sure do, and as much enthusiasm as we have for the delicious complex carbohydrate, we love the blog A Piece of Toast even more. The masterminds behind the beauty amalgamation of covet-worthy products, style inspiration, and yes, yummy food, are sisters Sally Ann and Molly Bernadette. This week, the Molly is graciously bringing her flair to our blog, dishing on everything from the best hair masks to perfect holiday gifts.

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Living with my older sister, Sally, has given me an expanded closet — and some serious makeup envy. We each have distinct makeup products that we use in our daily routine, but there are several things in her arsenal that I now want for myself. Here’s a peek at her makeup bag:

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#guest blogger #makeup #NARS #Stila #Bobbi Brown #Benefit
Two Easy Ways to Keep Your Smile Bright...No Whitestrips or Trips to the Dentist Required!

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We’re suckers for a bright smile so we’re always looking for ways to keep our teeth white. We spoke with Manhattan dentist Dr. Alexandra Hara and got her tips for maintaining those pearly whites all year round. 

Naturally Whitening Foods

According to Dr. Hara, “Crunchy vegetables such as celery, carrots, and cucumbers contain fibrous cellulose that can ‘clean’ teeth and remove stains.” In addition she says, “Cheese contains elements such as calcium and phosphorus which can help fight against tooth decay and can help to remineralize teeth, decreasing the potential for staining.”

We tried: Cucumbers, Carrots, Apples, Celery, Cheese

Our teeth do feel a bit cleaner after chomping on some crunchy snacks and we’re happy to have an excuse to eat more cheese. This is one tip we’ll take to heart, especially since it’s a good excuse to add more fruit and veggies to our diet.

Flattering Lipstick

Our favorite method for showing off a bright smile: wearing the right lip color. Glosses and lipsticks with blue undertones — berries, plums, and cherry reds — all make teeth look whiter. Avoid beige and brown shades, or pearly and matte finishes, which all bring out the not-so-flattering yellow in your teeth.

We tried: Kissable Couture Lipgloss in Forest and Beauty is Life Lipstick in Kingdom

This works every time! Just knowing our lipstick is flattering our teeth is enough to make us smile.

Read More whitening tips from Dr. Hara here.

— Lorelei

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#Supersmile #dentist #whitening #teeth whitening #Alexandra Hara
What Men Really Think Of Your Hair and Makeup

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Photo: Cosmo

Your boyfriend always swears you look great, even when you’re battling a serious case of under eye circles and haven’t washed your hair in three days. If you’ve ever wondered what he really thinks, check out this Cosmo slideshow. They performed an unscientific poll of 100 men to gather their opinions of the biggest turn-ons and turn-off when it comes to women’s hair and makeup looks. While you should take their tips with a giant grain of salt, it’s worth a read. Major takeaways: men prefer smoky eyes to bright colors, loathe heavy foundation, and frown on nail decals. But when all’s said and done, we’re not willing to stop playing around with funky jewel-toned liners or change our creative manicure plans any time soon. 

—Mai

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#cosmopolitan, #cosmo #nail decals
Get A Butt Like Pippa Middleton's With A Bum Booster: TheGloss

TheGloss is one daily must-reads (right up there with the NY Times). We love the site’s witty approach to style and its smart and irreverent voice. We like the writing so much, in fact, that we’ll be featuring one of their posts each week here on the Birchbox blog. Today, they’re musing on the newest product to hit the market: butt padding to help you look like Pippa. And before you ask, yes, of course they think it’s silly. (We do too, obviously.)

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The phrase “Pippa Middleton ass” turns up some 1,320,000 results in Google. There is even a website called PippasAss.com (you don’t need to visit) that catalogues Pippa’s backside-related goings on. It comes as no surprise then, that someone is trying to turn Pippa Middleton’s butt into a marketing hook.

Enter the Invisible Shaping Bum Booster. They’re about $30 a pair and feature ”cheek-enhancing structures” built into the back to add flattering curvature…

Read the rest of the article here.

Some other links from TheGloss you might like:

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#The Gloss #the gloss #thegloss #pippa middleton
Moroccan Oil Hair Masks Will Save Your Strands: Guest Blogger

Who doesn’t love toast? We sure do, and as much enthusiasm as we have for the delicious complex carbohydrate, we love the blog A Piece of Toast even more. The masterminds behind the beauty amalgamation of covet-worthy products, style inspiration, and yes, yummy food, are sisters Sally Ann and Molly Bernadette. This week, the Molly is graciously bringing her flair to our blog, dishing on everything from the best hair masks to perfect holiday gifts. 

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I’m always trying to make my hair (especially my ends) healthier and I think I finally found a conditioner that helps me do that! Who knew that Moroccan Oil makes luxurious hair masks?  I had no clue and in my opinion, this stuff is way better than the company’s famed Oil Treatment.

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#Moroccan oil #guest blogger #hair masks #guest blog #Moroccan Oil
Notable Quotables: Essie Weingarten

Notable Quotables is a weekly series featuring a great quote. Whether it’s the founder of a beloved beauty brand, an eccentric makeup artist making headlines, or even a super-stylish celebrity, our favorite tastemakers always have something worth sharing. This week, we’re featuring the fabulous Essie Weingarten, the woman responsible for many of our favorite nail polish shades (and names!). 

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I also brought the shade-naming phenomenon to nails when I went into business for myself. Back then, nail polish shades were numbered and quite boring. So I gave every Essie color its own personality, because I knew that women would remember it and come to treat it as a new best friend. The names were meant to be happy, positive, whimsical and unforgettable. A lot of it was inspirational, a lot aspirational. We always wanted to keep our customers engaged.

— Essie Weingarten to WWD regarding those fabulous Essie polish names. 

It’s not just the names, we’re crazy for new holiday polish shades! Find our favorites in the Birchbox Shop.

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#Essie #Nail Polish #Notable Quotables #Essie Weingarten
Get Glowy With Face Oils: Guest Blogger

Who doesn’t love toast? We sure do, and as much enthusiasm as we have for the delicious complex carbohydrate, we love the blog A Piece of Toast even more. The masterminds behind the beauty amalgamation of covet-worthy products, style inspiration, and yes, yummy food, are sisters Sally Ann and Molly Bernadette. This week, the Molly is graciously bringing her flair to our blog, dishing on everything from the best hair masks to perfect holiday gifts. 

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Face serums and oils seem to be one of the biggest trends in skin care these days and after reading so many positive reviews about the benefits and ‘glow’ they deliver, I jumped on the bandwagon — and haven’t looked back since!  If you haven’t tried incorporating oil into your daily skin routine, I hope I can convince you…

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#guest blogger #acure organics #rodin #face oils #serums #sunday riley
Hunger Games Nail Polishes Announced, World Stops

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For the second time today, the Hunger Games has caused us to stop everything we’re doing. First, there was the debut of the first full-length trailer, which proved what we’ve all known: this movie is going to be bonkers good. And now, some late-breaking news: China Glaze will release a special Hunger Games nail polish collection “sometime in February.” Fashionista has the swatches and they’re all kinds gorgeous — we can’t wait to try the moody Coal Hearted, inspired by District 12, and of course the opalescent Catnip in honor of heroine Katniss.

—Mollie

While you’re waiting for your Hunger Games polish, try out Zoya’s new Gems & Jewels collection.

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#hunger games #china glaze #nail polish
Empire State Building Will Honor Evelyn Lauder Tonight

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Our entire office was saddened by the news this weekend that Evelyn Lauder had passed away. Not only was her work at Estee Lauder inspiring, but her passion for breast cancer research helped change many lives. In 1993, Lauder founded The Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF), which has raised $350 million dollars for research. 

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#breast cancer awareness #evelyn lauder #empire state building
Feed Your Hair: Repair Damaged Locks

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Thanks to one too many sessions with the blow dryer and flat iron, our hair needs something beyond our regular conditioner. We spoke with two experts, the lead trichologist from Philip Kingsley's New York hair clinic and the co-owner of Warren-Tricomi Salons, to find out how to repair damaged hair and keep it healthy all year round. Read more.

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#November Birchbox #Kerastase #Amika #Carol's Daughter #Oscar Blandi #Philip Kingsley #Warren-Tricomi
Grooming Guide: How To Use Hair Paste

Hair paste is an easy way to make your hair look more polished and styled without turning you into a cast member of the Jersey Shore. Learn how to apply it the right way from our resident grooming expert, Eric. 

We’ve just released our very first limited edition box for men. Visit our website to learn more and find out what’s included. Hint: It’s a perfect gift and includes $240 worth of products for $45!

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#Birchbox Man #How To Use Hair Paste #Grooming tips #Kerastase #Eric Neher
I was really hoping that birchbox man would be $10 like the ladies birchbox. My husband would love to have something like mine.

Hi! This limited edition box is our first offering for men but we’re definitely considering a subscription similar to Birchbox for the future. You can sign him up for the mailing list here and we’ll keep you posted!

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Now Available: Birchbox Man!

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Birchbox Man is finally here and available for purchase! This limited edition box is packed with products for skin, hair, and everything else for just $45 (the total value is roughly $240, so it’s a pretty amazing deal). 

Click through to place your order, and definitely don’t wait. Supplies are limited and it’s free shipping!

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#birchbox man #birchbox #men's box #men #man #birchbox for men
Kitchen Sink Makeover

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A funny thing happened when I moved into my own apartment: I started caring about things like dish washing liquid and hand soap. Martha Stewart, I am not but my kitchen became a source of pride and I began stocking it with products that made me happy to use. Goodbye generic suds, hello natural, aromatic formulas. I’m a big fan of Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day, which makes products that are biodegradable and paraben-free, and Caldrea, which swaps out harsh chemicals for essential oils and other natural ingredients. Both lines are slightly more expensive than your usual products but (in my experience) actually last much longer. The scents alone are worth the minor splurge: right now, I’m using Caldrea’s delicious Pineapple Cardamom and Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day Orange Clove Liquid Hand Soap. It’s a small switch but makes a world of difference.

—Mollie

From stylish laundry detergent to a better toothpaste, check out our other favorite not-so-basic upgrades.

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#laundry #toothpaste #mrs. meyers
What kind of primer is recommended for combination, acne-prone, sensitive skin? I tend to break out so I try to keep facial products to a minimum. Thank you!

Hi!

You should try Colorescience Pro’s Line Tamer (even if you aren’t worried about wrinkles). It’s mineral-based and designed to sit lightly on top of your complexion, which means it won’t clog pores and also keeps skin protected from dirt and bacteria. There are no artificial fillers so you shouldn’t have any problems with sensitivity — plus it feels great on. Laura Geller’s Spackle is also great for oily and combination skin because it dries completely matte and keeps you from getting shiny. One more favorite: Benefit’s POREfessional, which masks visible pores and feels great on!

Hope that helps! 

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I am a recently married grad student and I am looking for a makeup remover that isn't going to be overly oily or greasy, but won't break my budget. Any suggestions?

Hi!

Congratulations on your recent wedding! We actually just ran a roundup of our top five makeup removers for different skin types. For non-greasy and affordable, it’s tough to beat Klorane’s version, which is super gentle but also effective — and only $9! Hope that helps!

Mollie

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Reading List: Holiday Nails, DIY Hair Care, Dannijo's New Zine, and The Hunger Games

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Happy 11/11/11 and Veterans Day! Yesterday also marked two weeks until Thanksgiving so you could say we’re really starting to get in the holiday mood! Luckily we’ve got festive polishes and a new ‘zine to get us through the season. Read on.

  • We’ve always wanted to try the old “beer in the hair” trick but never got around to it. Luckily, TheGloss tested it out for us and our curiosity is sufficiently satisfied! Read about their writer’s experience before you try this yourself. [The Gloss]
  • Holiday nail polishes are here and they’re all kinds of sparkly and pretty! Here’s a roundup of the best of the season, including our favorites from Zoya. [Fashionista]
  • Uh oh! Marc Jacobs might be in trouble. British Advertising Standards Authority has banned the ad for his Oh Lola! Fragrance, featuring Dakota Fanning in the UK. The organization felt it sexualized the teenager. [FashionEtc]
  • Allure, just like us, is obsessed with The Hunger Games. They pulled together a list of all the futuristic beauty inventions from the book that they want to make a reality. We don’t blame them, can’t wait to get our hands on these! [Allure]
  • We love a great print magazine as much as the next girl so we were pleasantly surprised to read that a Birchbox Crush, the sisters behind jewelry brand Dannijo, will release a biannual zine. The newspaper-style mag will coincidentally also feature our current Birchbox Crush, Timo Weiland. [Style.com]

— Lorelei

New products are available in the Birchbox Shop

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#Reading List #Dannijo #The Hunger Games #DIY Beauty #Marc Jacobs #Zoya
Hyaluronic Acid: Ingredient Decoder

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Photo: Wei

I turned 24 a week ago and experienced a minor freakout moment. Before you roll your eyes, let me explain. While 24 is still young, I’m now officially in my mid-twenties, which means it’s time to start being a real adult. One requirement of adulthood: a skincare routine that goes beyond splashing my face with cold water. As I realized from looking at old Facebook photos, my skin just doesn’t look as fresh as it once did. My solution? Products infused with hyaluronic acid.

In case you haven’t heard the buzz, this ingredient is famed for its holding up to a thousand times its weight in water. But what does that mean? Brief chemistry lesson: hyaluronic acid may sound like a lab scientist’s invention, but it actually occurs naturally inside your skin. Located beneath the dermis (translation: outer layer), it helps your tissues stay hydrated. When you apply the ingredient to your skin’s surface, it plumps up your face by forming an elastic film of moisture and instantly smoothes rough surfaces. 

In addition to giving skin a dewy glow, hyaluronic acid is a lifesaver for those with super dry skin because it boosts the hydrating properties of your moisturizer. Try layering it under your favorite face cream in the winter months. Product picks after the jump!   

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#ingredient decoder #hyaluronic acid #wei #dr. dennis gross
Street Style Inspiration: The Parisian Fashion Student

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We love this picture of Parisian fashion student Anne-Catherine that we found on All the Pretty Birds, one of our favorite street style blogs.  She’s so lovely with her cropped hair, oversized sweater and radiant skin, we had to try to recreate her look.  

To Get The Look:

Bold brows: Anastasia Tinted Brow Gel; $21

Perfectly in place hair: Kerastase Elixir Ultime; $54

Radiant cheeks and lips: RMS Beauty Lip2Cheek; $36

— Lorelei

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#Street Style Inspiration #all the pretty bids #Anastasia #kerastase #RMS beauty
Kissable Couture: Guest Blogger

Dedicated to “what’s in your closet and on your vanity,” Samantha Fodrowski’s blog, Closet Vanity, couldn’t be more perfectly suited to our interests. This week, the busy blogger is lending us her talents and musing on some of our favorite topics like the fashion-forward red lip and au naturel makeup.

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1. Kate Spade supercalifragilipstick
2. Dolce and Gabbana lipstick
3. Charlotte Ronson lip gloss
4. Exude lipstick
5. Tom Ford lip color

Forget red-soled heels — these days it’s all about the red lip! Have you noticed that more couture brands have been springing up at the beauty counter lately? Two of the big names to debut makeup lines recently are Tom Ford and Dolce & Gabbana.

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#charlotte ronson #designers #dolce & gabbana #exude #guest blogger #j.crew #kate spade #lipstick queen #poppy king #tom ford #rachel zoe #closet vanity #samantha fodrowski
Braids, Braids, and More Braids: Mood Board

Our creative team is pretty, well, creative and they come across beautiful imagery all the time. Why not share the inspiration? Keep an eye out each Friday for their Mood Board, a collection of images they’re loving.

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We are totally obsessed with braids here at Birchbox, and not just in hair. From belts to bags to even food, we love this layered and seemingly never ending pattern. In fact, one of our favorite pastimes is knitting, which is just a complicated form of a braid, meaning that our lives are truly inundated by these pretty woven patterns. If you’re interested in experimenting with a braid, we highly recommend checking out our tutorial on one of the coolest types: the fishtail.

1. Tracey’s Culinary Adventures 2. Tumblr 3. Anthropologie 4. Tumblr 5. Mokkasin

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#mood board #creative #team birchbox #braids
Of a Kind Designer Sara Dudzinsky Shares Her Must-Have Fragrance

Chalk this up to something we never knew we wanted: earrings made from sea urchin spines. This week’s Of a Kind designer, Sara Dudzinsky isn’t just a genius at turning unusual materials into jewelry works of art — she’s also a fragrance savant. Pick up her Ocean Quill Studs here and read on for her favorite, totally non-girly scent.

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Sara Dudzinsky of Better Late Than Never Has Uncovered the Ideal, Just-Feminine-Enough Perfume

Though Sara Dudzinsky’s jewelry for her line Better Late Than Never is undeniably delicate, there is nothing sweet about it. She uses raw crystals — and, most recently in her edition for Of a Kind, sea urchin spines — to create the sort of earrings you could wear constantly…and get compliments on day-in and day- out. When it comes to a signature scent, she’s managed to achieve a similar effect, finding a perfume that’s both graceful and undone. “I couldn’t live without my OLO Violets/Leathers fragrance. It’s perfect for everyday wear—soft and light but not overly feminine,” the designer explains. Bonus: The perfume is concocted in Portland, Oregon, just like her accessories are.

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#Sara Dudzinsky #guest blogger #jewelry #perfume #of a kind
Polish That Changes Color in the Sun!: Nailing It

Operations associate, Loren, has a thing for nails- and we can’t blame her. We love reading about new finishes and fun techniques, so we thought we’d give her a weekly slot on our blog to wax poetic about all things manicure (and pedicure!) related. Check back every Thursday for Nailing It, Birchbox’s dedicated polish series.

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There have been so many nail trends recently that I’ve had a hard time keeping track. From crackle finishes to half-moons to magnetic polish, it’s been seemingly one thing to try after the next. The latest thing that I’ve tested, and I’m not sure if it’s a fad or if the concept has staying power, is Solar Active’s line of Blaze lacquers that change color in the sun.  

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#nailing it #nails #polish #blaze
Shaking Off the Side Part

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Pre-haircut with a side part and post-cut with a middle part.

For the past seven years, I’ve had some variation on the same hair cut: long layers, side bang. And I have been committed to my side bangs. I’ll often leave the house with sopping wet strands but never — never — without parting my hair to the side. The reason? I was convinced that diagonal bangs made my round, chipmunk cheeks look more defined. As far as I was concerned, it was the only look for me. That was until this morning anyway.

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#center bangs #hair #makeover #side bangs #birchbox team
Everyday Essentials: Guest Blogger

Dedicated to “what’s in your closet and on your vanity,” Samantha Fodrowski’s blog, Closet Vanity, couldn’t be more perfectly suited to our interests. This week, the busy blogger is lending us her talents and musing on some of our favorite topics like the fashion-forward red lip and au naturel makeup.

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When it comes to skincare and makeup, women are constantly inundated with promises and marketing jargon (Smaller pores! Longer lashes! Lasts all day!). But nothing sells me on a product quite like a positive word-of-mouth. I’m always so curious about what products other people use and I usually scan friends’ vanities to check out their goods. I’d venture to guess I’m not the only one who loves IntoTheGloss' Top Shelf feature because it gives a refreshing look at what the most influential people in the industry actually use and like.

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#guest blogger #NARS #laura mercier #essie #skincare #haircare #makeup #anastasia #stila #fresh #kerastase #alba #avene #jurlique #everyday essentials #closet vanity #samantha fodrowski
Of a Kind: Birchbox's Emerging Beauty Brand of the Moment: TAYofakind.tumblr.com

ofakind:

Mollie Chen of Birchbox is like a beauty-world Obi-Wan Kenobi, and we’re lucky enough that she lets us play her Luke Skywalker. This week she’s back with another amazing line ripe for discovery.

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Sarah Tay is my kind of beauty go-getter. After years spent hunting for natural…

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#of a kind #birchbox #tay skincare #emerging beauty brands
Our Top 5 Favorite Makeup Removers

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You know sleeping in your makeup is a big no-no but what happens when you wash your face and the makeup is still there? You need a good makeup remover on hand. We’ve rounded up our five favorites — there’s something for every skin type. Read More.

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#Makeup Remover #eye makeup removers #Klorane #Philosophy #Balms Away #Jurlique #Lancome
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#birchbox team #haircuts #haircuts at the office
J. Lo's Nutritionist Shares 5 Tips for Staying Healthy Through the Holidays (Without Starving Yourself)

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With Halloween behind us and Thanksgiving just two weeks away, it’s only a matter of time before the crush of holiday parties start. Since we’ve been known to go back for triple servings of mashed potatoes, we thought it’d be prudent to head into this holiday season with a wellness game plan. Nutritionist Haylie Pomroy, who works with celebs like J. Lo, gave us her tips for having our pumpkin pie and eating it too.

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#Haylie Pomroy #Wellness #Nutritionist #Holiday health tips
Team Intros: Meet Mai!

If you’re an avid reader of the Birchbox Blog (which you should be), you’re already well acquainted with Mai. Our intrepid Copy Writer is writing a weekly Ingredient Decoder column, as well as plenty of daily posts. In addition to her way with words, we love Mai’s ability to find the best Asian food within a 10-block radius of our office, adorable outfits (see evidence below), and quirky sense of humor. 

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Mai Wang, Copy Writer/Blogger Extraordinaire

Hometown: Miami, Florida.

Unofficial title: Speed Demon.

Fun fact: On vacation a few years ago, I ate a three-hour lunch at a Las Vegas buffet, waited for them to put out the dinner items, and ate again!

Beauty confession: Working at Birchbox makes me a commitment-phobe. Since I’m always testing new products, I switch cleansers and moisturizers every other week.

Currently loving: Jurlique Rosewater Balancing Mist. I spritz it onto my face and neck at random points of the day. The clean rose scent is addictive.

Worth the splurge: Juno Body Transformative Body Lipid Serum. So pure and so good for your skin.

Best beauty trick: For foolproof cat eyes, I put on pencil liner first, then trace over it with liquid liner.

Catch up on Mai’s Ingredient Decoder column — you’ll never look at coconuts the same way again!

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#team birchbox #birchbox team #introductions #team
Getting Excited for Birchbox Man: You’ve Got Male

Once a week, Birchbox’s resident yoga and men’s product expert, Eric, will gives us girls some insight into his world in You’ve Got Male. Whether he’s giving his expertise on skincare (boys need advice, too!) or highlighting his new favorite grooming trend, this guy has got taste—so we’re lucky he’s on staff and willing to share.

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I can’t count the number of times friends and acquaintances have asked me when I’ve described my job, “That’s such a great idea…when will there be one for guys?” Well, the wait is over, friends. We’re launching our first limited edition collection for men this November and trust me, Birchbox Man is worth the wait. After over a year of introducing women all over the country to the latest and greatest in prestige beauty and lifestyle items, we figured it was time to let the guys in on the fun. Just as I’ve tried to do here, Birchbox Man aims to gently and easily incorporate awesome upgrades into guys’ grooming routines. (Not to mention totally upping the cool factor when it comes to lifestyle stuff.) I can’t say too much more here, but I will say this – get on the list! Visit birchboxman.com to sign up.

Eric

In the meantime, pick up the Eric-approved Anthony Logistics Shave Cream.

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#you've got male #eric neher #birchbox man
What Do Girl Scouts and Hipsters Have In Common?

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Photo: Yahoo & WWD

As a Brooklynite, I’ve seen many a hipster girl wearing an ironic Girl Scout vest. Call me crazy, but I’ve always seen parallels between the two groups: the same love of camping, hawking baked goods, and donning outlandish costumes when it’s not Halloween. Now the thrift store crew and our favorite door-to-door cookie sellers have even more in common: what they’re wearing on their lips.

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#girl scouts #american apparel #lip smackers
Our Favorite October 2011 Birchbox Un-Boxing Videos!

As you’ve probably noticed, November Birchboxes have been shipping all week! They’re zooming towards mailboxes as we speak so we thought we’d take a chance to share some of our favorite October un-boxing videos! Check out what a few of our members received last month. It goes without saying they’re all worth subscribing to on YouTube.

PinkBeautyBliss, aka Katie, is super peppy and she’s very close to reaching 6,000 subscribers. Go subscribe and help her out!

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#YouTube #Un-boxing videos #October 2011 Birchbox
Baby On the Way! Product Picks if You're Pregnant

We’re not being biased when we say that our Birchbox moms have some preeeetty adorable kids. Like really super duper adorable. And now we have another one on the way: our Production Manager, Alicia, is pregnant! Whoo! Since she found out, she’s been researching the best products for pregnant moms — here are some of her favorites.

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I love products that do double duty and since I found out that I am pregnant, I am even more excited about multi-use items. I’ve found some great products that are great for both you and your baby.

Johnson & Johnson’s Baby Powder: As far as I’m concerned, this is the original dry shampoo. Divide your hair in sections and sprinkle some on the roots — but be careful not to use to much as you may start to look like grandma! 

Lavanila The Healthy Baby Lotion: This chemical-free lotion contains 30 essential vitamins and minerals, making it perfect for baby or adults with sensitive skin. Plus the sunflower and vanilla oils nourish skin and add a light fresh scent. 

California Baby Holiday Cheer Aromatherapy Bubble Bath: Blended with calming orange, lavender and vanilla scents, this bubble bath is key for relaxing after a long day of holiday shopping. 

Aquaphor Healing Ointment: Free of fragrances, dyes, and preservatives, this healing wonder cream is perfect for fixing winter skin or protecting baby from diaper rash.

—Alicia

Pick up more healthy skincare products in the Birchbox Shop.

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#California Baby #Johnson & Johnson #Lavanila #baby products #aquaphor #team birchbox
What's In My Purse: Guest Blogger

Dedicated to “what’s in your closet and on your vanity,” Samantha Fodrowski’s blog, Closet Vanity, couldn’t be more perfectly suited to our interests. This week, the busy blogger is lending us her talents and musing on some of our favorite topics like the fashion-forward red lip and au naturel makeup.

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There’s nothing worse than digging around your purse unable to find what you’re looking for, whether it’s a pen, gum, a hair tie, a tissue, or tampon. Try as I might to be prepared, inevitably I forget to replace any of the above items once I’ve taken them out of my handbag. Luckily, I keep all of my on-the-go cosmetics in two small pouches, which are easy to find. I find that having purse-designated products helps ensure that I’ve always got what I need with me. To keep things compact, travel and sample size items are perfect for purse purposes. (As you know, Birchbox is a great source for these!)

What’s in my purse:

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#bliss #fresh #guest blogger #laura mercier #lipstick queen #pacifica island #poppy king #samples #closet vanity #samantha fodrowski
Would You Buy This Super-hip Hair Clip?

We’re facing a dilemma and need your help. We’ve found these totally awesome jumbo-size hair clips and we can’t decide if we should sell them on the site. You can use them to style your hair in a ton of different ways (below is just the beginning!), but we want to know if you are equally as crazy about these hot hair accessories as we are. Vote in our poll below and if we get enough interest, we will start retailing them in packs of two for under $20! (At the very least, they make for excellent conversation pieces, no?)

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-Meredith

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#hair clips #birchbox #hairstyles #poll
Color Theory: Teal & Yellow

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Today I’m inspired by this bright, sunny room and bookshelf. I have a strange obsession with bookcases so this image really caught my eye. It’s worth clicking through to this blog post about updating bookshelves with color too! To get a similar beauty look, I’d mix Stila shadows for a sheer wash of color and put several coats of sheer yellow polish on my nails. Both are bright without being over-the-top.

Stila Eye Shadow in Poppy; $18

Stila Eye Shadow in ChaCha; $18

Deborah Lippmann Yellow Brick Road; $16

— Lorelei

Find all our color theory blog posts here!

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#Color Theory #Stila #Deborah Lippmann
These Aren't Your Mother's Coasters

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Photo: Louella Court

If we weren’t lucky enough to work at Birchbox, we would seriously consider switching career paths to become interior decorators. When it comes to sprucing up our closet-sized NYC pads, we’re all about the finishing touches. Our home decor fixation of the year? Coasters to protect our precious tabletops from wandering wine glasses and dripping mugs.

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#coasters #two paper dolls #november birchbox
You Will NEVER Believe Adriana Lima's Victoria's Secret Angel Diet: TheGloss

TheGloss is one daily must-reads (right up there with the NY Times). We love the site’s witty approach to style and its smart and irreverent voice. We like the writing so much, in fact, that we’ll be featuring one of their posts each week here on the Birchbox blog.

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Here at TheGloss, we like to send earth-shattering eyerolls in the direction of famous (and famously svelte) women who’d expect you to believe that they eat whatever they want and never work out and roll out of bed with loose, beachy waves. Most (not all) of them are lying and we find it more than a little insulting to our intelligence.

…However, we also find it kind of astounding–if not a little distressing–when a model steps forward and tells us what it actually takes: Victoria’s Secret Angel Adriana Lima recently shared the details of her grueling pre-show routine. Her fitness makes sense–intense cardio like jumping rope and boxing, with some weight lifting–but it’s her diet that gets a bit jaw-dropping…

Read the rest of the article here.

Some other links from TheGloss you might like:

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#adriana lima #victroia's secret #model diets #thegloss #the glo #The Gloss #glamour #michael kors
Pretty and Pure: Guest Blogger

Dedicated to “what’s in your closet and on your vanity,” Samantha Fodrowski’s blog, Closet Vanity, couldn’t be more perfectly suited to our interests. This week, the busy blogger is lending us her talents and musing on some of our favorite topics like the fashion-forward red lip and au naturel makeup.

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1. Josie Maran argan oil
2. Tarte blush
3. Korres lip butter
4. Kiehl’s mascara
5. Bare Escentuals eye shadow
6. Kiehl’s makeup remover
7. Tarte tinted moisturizer
8. Josie Maran blush stick

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#bare escentuals #guest blogger #josie maran #kiehls #korres #makeup #natural #tarte #closet vanity #samantha fodrowski