Happy, Thanksgiving! While you’re stuffing your faces with yummy eats, we’re strategizing our plan of attack for holiday shopping. Although we admit that we’ve been too chicken to actually brave the stores on Black Friday, we applaud those who have. We’re perfectly content with sitting home in our pajamas, cashing in on those Cyber Monday online deals. Don’t judge. If you’re hitting the stores or surfing the web, get a head start with this peek at what to expect (on the beauty front).
Impulse buying just got a whole lot easier and a lot more fun (as if that was even possible). This week, Google released a new free iPad app called Google Catalogs. Basically, this brilliant new offering lets you browse and shop from your fave catalogs right in the palm of your hand. Right now, the app includes catalogs from Sephora, Urban Outfitters, Bare Essentials, and West Elm and they plan to add many more. With the app, you can save your favorite products and pages as well as get notifications when new issues of catalogs become available. Everything you can buy in the catalog has a white price tag next to it that either lets you click to buy or directs you to where you can get it in person.
I downloaded the app to my roommate’s iPad (thanks, Melissa!) and I was extremely impressed by its usability. Everything loaded super fast and with crystal-clear pictures. You can even create collages with products you like. I definitely give it two thumbs up, and can’t wait to see what catalogs they continue to add. Happy Shopping!
Geek out over our list of the best beauty apps available!
A style force to be reckoned with, Sara Zucker is well known for providing daily outfit inspiration and scoping out incredible finds via her Tumblr, Farpitzs (which is the Yiddish word for ‘all dressed up,’ just in case you were curious). As if being one of the most popular fashion voices in the blogosphere wasn’t time consuming enough, the well-heeled trendsetter also happens to be Glamour Magazine’s community manager. Lucky for us, she was able to make some time in her busy schedule to guest blog for us this week. Check back daily as Zucker shares everything from her favorite fall trends to what’s in her cosmetics bag.
1.Tom Ford Lip Color in Black Orchid, $45, amazon.com; 2. philosophy purity made simple one-step facial cleanser, $32, birchbox.com; 3. Miss Jessie’s Quick Curls, $32, amazon.com; 4.Nars Orgasm Illuminator, $29, birchbox.com; 5.Sephora Collection Brow Tint, $3, amazon.com
Being a fashion and beauty blogger, I am constantly being asked what cosmetics I always have on hand. It’s a hard question to answer because I love to experiment and I’m pretty non-committal, so there isn’t one particular product that I’ve used for more than a couple years. Nevertheless, my makeup bag is home to multiple curl-enhancing hair cremes — I loathe the crunchiness that gel creates — and dark lip colors. I also like to accentuate my eyebrows with a tint or brow powder.
To add some more great items to your makeup bag, check out our Birchbox Shop.
This summer, Birchbox’s content team is extremely lucky to have awesome intern Shana in the office. She’s a student at Syracuse University (the smarty pants is a dual major in magazine journalism and psychology) and she’ll be helping with researching, writing, product testing and, of course, blogging. In addition to daily beauty news posts, she’ll be writing a weekly column called College Girl. First up: keeping it together.
Last week I decided to give spring cleaning a new meaning. First, I did it when spring was essentially over (oops), and second, instead of just cleaning out old clothes and shoes I hadn’t worn all year, I added my makeup to the mix. While endeavoring in this arduous task, I discovered I had let my makeup collection get completely out of hand, leaving me with products I hadn’t touched in years and half-used products that were now ruined. To prevent this from happening, here are a few ways to preserve your beauty essentials.
1) I used to store my makeup in several different places, leaving me with multiples of the same product. I advise that you invest in a great makeup case; I am crazy about Caboodles En Vogue box. With a case like this, you can organize your products onto different shelves to ensure that your favorites never vanish. Store your makeup in a dry environment away from sunlight, and keep it clean to prevent bacteria from spreading.
2) Makeup can get expensive, and when treat yourself a product you love, you want to make sure that it lasts. Invest in a tube wringer to use every last drop of what you’ve got. I also like to take advantage of miniature sizes that are sold. Especially with mascara, you should renew your bottle every few months, so smaller sizes save a whole lot of money (like these Sephora minis). Also, on hot summer days like today, keep your eye liner pencil in the fridge so it doesn’t turn to mush the second you apply.
3) As a nail polish addict, a frequent problem I encounter is a clumped up polish and top coat. Prevent this by making sure the top is screwed on tightly and cleaning off the rim of the bottle after each use. If this falls through, add a few drops of polish remover to the bottle to thin it out!
With the money you’ll be saving, check out one of my new favorites—Jouer’s Tinted Lip Enhancers—and more at the Birchbox Shop.
Clinique Bottom Lash Mascara, $10, Sephora
Very cool concept alert: Clinique has just released a mascara specifically designed for your lower lashes. Sold at Sephora for $10, the product page says that the “brush was engineered to grasp even the tiniest of bottom lashes; its expert formula resists pesky smears.” I am kind of surprised no one has thought of this before, especially because the longer, fatter brushes found on many volumizing mascaras are often overkill for the smaller bottom lashes. The stumpy (by stumpy, I mean cute) wand of this version seems perfect for precision.
For convenience’s sake, it doesn’t make a ton of sense to tote around two different types of mascara with you when one might do the trick just fine, but the lower-lash-only look seems to be a new trend. For example, designers like Cynthia Rowley and Giambattista Valli went the bottom-only route for their spring 2011 shows. While I am not sure I would embrace this technique, I am totally willing to try it. If you think about it, most of the time we only apply to our top lashes, so why not try just coating the bottom ones?
If you’re interested in a new regular mascara, one of our all-time favorites is Benefit’s BadGal.
I heart Glee. I heart the choreographed fist pumps, and the way they get seemingly incongruous celebs to show their gleeky side (hello Gwenyth). And the Glee phenomenon shows no sign of abating, with its songs consistently topping iTunes and plenty of tours and concerts in the works. Now they’re even targeting the beauty market, with a line of Glee-themed nail polishes that will be exclusive to Sephora. The shades take inspiration from the show, from Slushied (a reference to a high school hazing practice) to Mash-Up. That’s all well and good but couldn’t they have taken a bit more inspiration from some of our favorite characters? You know Kurt is a master with a Nail Art pen - that kid could draw the Sistine Chapel on his digits without breaking a sweat - and I’m sure Tina has some sort of goth-inspired French manicure that would be all the rage in NYC high schools.
Are you a polish fanatic? If so, you’ll love the colors we have available in the Birchbox Shop.