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Bye Bye Birchbox: My Favorite Beauty Products Revealed

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Before I started working at Birchbox as a copywriter, I didn’t know what a serum was—let alone how to use one. Two years later, I’ve tested dozens of them, sniffed countless perfumes, and developed an addiction to bright lipstick in every hue. While my love of beauty will never waver, I’m moving on from my full-time job here to pursue an MFA in creative writing.

Though my budget in grad school will put me squarely in the Ramen bracket, I still plan to splurge on my favorite beauty products that I discovered through work. Here are the things I’m willing to go into credit card debt to buy:

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What Birchbox Moms Are Coveting: Mother’s Day Edition Part 2

Birchbox moms are our biggest fans—they do everything from sending cookies to the office to snapping pics of their proud un-boxing moments. They also happen to be a very beauty-obsessed bunch (maybe it’s guilt by association). In honor of Mother’s Day, we polled our moms and asked them to name the Birchbox products on their wish list. 

Bridgette and her mom Barbara Howard

"The Ojon Volume Advanced Volumizing Shampoo and Conditioner are great products that Bridgette has given me as gifts.”

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Why Algae Can Save Your Skin: Ingredient Decoder

In the world of skincare, it can be hard to distinguish between fancy advertising and real results. But when all’s said and done, it all boils down to one thing: the ingredients. Every week, our resident skincare buff Mai will be separating the good from the bad, explaining how products work, and sharing her latest discoveries.

Photo: Algenist

Lately, beauty insiders have been raving about a wonder ingredient derived from an unexpected source: microalgae. It may sound bizarre at first, but Algenist, a newly launched brand, has figured out a way to harness these single-celled organisms for the good of your skin. Click through to learn how microalgae works!

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Guest Blogger: Fresh Face

A little while ago while doing research for a story about easy ways to make your lifestyle more environmentally friendly, we came across a site we love: Practically Green (@practicallygrn). Dedicated to helping people take smart healthy actions in their daily lives, the site is a plethora of information—including lots about skincare and cosmetics (follow them on Facebook, too). We asked the ladies of Practically Green, Rebecca, Sarah, and Kristen, to divulge their fave products. Over the next few days, we’ll hear from each of them about their individual recommendations for lips, face, eyes, and body. 

Algenist Anti-Aging Moisturizer, Éminence Organic Skin Care Coconut Milk Cleanser, HollyBeth’s Natural Luxury Grits & Honey Scrub, Mad Hippie Vitamin C Serum, Weleda’s Wild Rose Smoothing Facial Lotion

Rebecca: I recently discovered HollyBeth’s Natural Luxury Grits & Honey Scrub and now I can’t live without it. It smells good enough to eat and exfoliates while leaving skin super soft. Plus, you have to love a product that only has four ingredients: corn meal, honey, organic sweet almond, and organic vitamin E. I’m also obsessed with Weleda’s Wild Rose Smoothing Facial Lotion because it goes on so smoothly and the scent is amazing.

Kristen: I just began using Mad Hippie’s Vitamin C Serum about a week ago and I can already notice a huge difference in my complexion. My skin is softer, smoother, and feels incredible. As I’m a sucker for anything with coconut in it, from Almond Joys to Piña Coladas, I felt it necessary to buy Éminence Organic Skin Care’s Coconut Milk Cleanser. The smell is amazing and reminded me of macaroons! Plus, it got off all my makeup (even stubborn mascara and eyeliner), was very gentle, and did not sting my eyes.

Sarah: Algenist’s Anti-Aging Moisturizer is pricey, but once I finish the sample I’ve been using, I’ll be ready to throw down for the full-size. What’s really interesting about the product, aside from its effectiveness, is how it came into existence. A team of biotech scientists in San Francisco were looking to develop a renewable energy source from microalgae and unexpectedly discovered the product’s key ingredient: alguronic acid. A powerful compound that regenerates and protects microalgae cells, alguronic acid also has fantastic anti-aging properties and clinical studies have shown that it increases cellular regeneration by up to 55 percent. 

Find other amazing facial products in our Birchbox Shop.