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Stocking Stuffers Galore!

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The mulled wine is bubbling, the wood fire is crackling, and Love Actually is on repeat. In honor of the impending gifting bonanza, our coworkers at Birchbox UK have rounded up fun-sized treasures and beauty trinkets that make perfect stocking fillers. Take a look at their picks here.

—Ally

PS: Looking for even more awesome gift options? Our Holiday Shop has got you covered!  

Back to Basics Hair Care: A Fine (Hair) Frenzy

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From out-of-control curls to lackluster color, we all wrestle with our personal hair frustrations. This week, our friends across the pond at Birchbox UK tackled an issue that hits close to home for me: fine strands with zilch volume. Lucky for me (and for you), there are plenty of ways to fake a fuller mane—without resorting to a Donald Trump combover. Click here to see our coworkers’ tested, approved, and totally spot-on tricks.

—Ally

PS: Our British co-parts will be addressing a new hair headache each week. Hop on over to the Birchbox.co.uk to find solutions for your particular hair gripe.

8 Products that Do Major Double Duty

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With the holidays on the horizon (think: a jam-packed social calendar and traveling with a cramped carry-on) there’s no better time to call on space- and time-saving beauty products. Click here to take a peek at our most practical picks!

—Ally

Good news: packed with travel-friendly samples from can’t-miss brands, a monthly Birchbox has everything you need stay gorgeous all month long. Not a member yet? Purchase your subscription today

Celebrity Beauty Secrets Revealed

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From Julia Roberts’ defense against dishpan hands to Cate Blanchett’s bedtime companion—our British compatriots made like Sherlock Holmes and sussed out the products A-listers use to get gorgeous. Click here to uncover Hollywood’s juiciest beauty secrets

—Ally

To get our own glow on, we rely on Lierac Paris Masque Éclat Radiance Mask. Made with yellow and blood-orange extracts, it hydrates and reduces signs of skin fatigue. 

Our Top Beauty Predictions for 2014

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We don’t have a physic on call, but we do have access to an impressive group of bloggers, makeup artists, and skincare gurus. We reached out to our favorite experts and tapped their trend-spotting powers to find out what will be hot—and what won’t—come 2014. Click here to check out their predictions.

—Ally

Searching for a beauty trend you can pull off right now? Here are 3 supercool ways to update your mani for fall

Love Notes: How a Traditional Soap Solved One Customer’s Acne Woes

Nerd alert: one of our favorite things to do is read the customer reviews in the Birchbox Shop. You all are an opinionated bunch—and we like it! We especially love the love letters you write to your favorite products. (Though we’re still waiting on the haikus and iambic pentameter.) From time to time, we’ll be highlighting extrasweet customer serenades. First up: a life-changing soap.

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Tall, dark, and effective—it’s no wonder that blemish-prone ladies have been falling for Shea Terra Organics’ Authentic African Black SoapMade with healing oils, this vitamin-rich soap is known for its ability to clear up breakouts and lessen signs of aging. We could wax on poetically about its restorative powers, but we’ll let Avianka take over:

“I had been researching black soap and its medicinal benefits, as I have maturing acne prone combination skin—not a pretty thing to deal with at age 33! After reading some of the reviews on the Birchbox website, I decided to give this black soap a go. Let me tell you, it is simply amazing….more then I ever wished it to be! In just two weeks, It has done wonders for my skin. I am seeing an even and brightened tone with no blemishes brewing! I am looking forward to a long healthy relationship with this soap. I have clean, fresh, vibrant skin that is FINALLY acne free! Thank you so much BB! <3”

She’s convinced us—have you tried this miracle-worker? 

—Ally

Have your own product paramour? Pen a love letter to your favorite Birchbox products by leaving a customer review! 

The Weirdest Origin Stories We’ve Heard in the Beauty World

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In the summer of 1853, a hot tempered chef was manning the kitchen at a chic resort. A dinner guest found the chef’s French fries too thick for his liking and sent the plate back to the kitchen. In an effort to one up the persnickety customer, the chef sliced the potatoes paper-thin. And eureka! America’s favorite salty, snack—duh! the potato chip—was born. 

Unexpected discovery of a seriously great thing, right? Like our favorite crunchy fix, these four beauty products have surprising (and totally awesome!) beginnings. 

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