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6 Unexpected Summer Beauty Essentials You Need Right Now

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Will Smith said in it best in his smooth ’90s hit Summertime, "Summer, summer, summertime. Time to sit back and unwind." Take a cue from the former-Fresh Prince of Bel Air and adopt an equally breezy beauty routine. From an instantly calming body lotion to an exfoliating lip scrub, here are our top hot-weather essentials. 

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How I Learned to Love (and Protect!) My Sunburn-Prone Complexion

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Like most women, I’ve spent maybe a few too many hours obsessing over my skin—from a microscopic broken capillary to a misplaced freckle, even the tiniest flaw seems worthy of my criticism. But the one characteristic that irked me the most? My alabaster skin tone

During my awkward teen years, I lived in sunny and tropical Venezuela. Thanks to an endless supply of pink sand beaches and 365 days of perfect weather, tanning is practically a Venezuelan national pastime. While that might sound lovely, bikini season all-day, everyday is pretty much a 13-year-old girl’s worst nightmare. 

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4 Summer Beauty Savers to Test Drive This Weekend

We fell hard for Natalie Alcala last fall, when the LA-based writer and blogger spent a week guest blogging for us. In fact, we loved her posts so much that we asked her to be a contributing editor. In addition to blogging for us once a week, she’ll also be writing for the Birchbox Magazine and keeping us up to speed on all things fashion, beauty, and fun.

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Photo: Gina Tricot

Now that summer is fast approaching (the season unofficially started after Memorial Day, but officially starts on June 21), my makeup bag is more minimalist than usual. When I’m in a setting where the sun is beaming and the water is splashing, the last thing I want is a full face of (melting) makeup, which is why “keep it simple” is definitely my beach beauty mantra.

Inspired by Aussie model Shanina Shaik’s look above, here’s a roundup of four products that will help my channel a similar so-fresh-and-so-clean vibe this weekend.

1. Clinique Bottom Lash Mascara ($10): I can’t stop talking about this adorable little lifesaver. Although it’s meant to groom your tiniest lashes, it’s also a great overall mascara to tote in your back pocket or little pool party clutch. To look as fierce as Shanina, apply a light coat after jumping in the water.

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Everything You Need to Know About SPF: Guest Blogger

Dermatologist-in-training and all around cool girl blogger Aegean Chan is the savvy mind behind super-skincare blog Aegmora. Chan educates her readers with particularly informative posts that tie together her science background and her extensive experience with beauty products. We love that she demystifies everything from familiar active ingredients like Benzoyl Peroxide to the newest trends like coconut oil. This week, Chan teaches us how to fight acne better, keep our skin hydrated, and protect it from the sun.

I’ll admit, I’ve been in this position before (see above). Growing up in California, they tell you the sun is your friend. But that was a bald-faced lie. The sun is NOT a friend to your beautiful skin and I am here to tell you why and what you can do about it.

You may crave the golden brown baked look for the summer, but the harmful UVB and UVA rays emanating from the ball of fire that heats our planet destroy the collagen scaffolding that makes your skin look luscious and plump. Other evil, evil things these rays can do are encourage cell death, mutate DNA to make you more at risk for skin cancer, thin your skin, and cause unsightly damage at too early of an age.

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LA’s Fashion Elite Reveal Their Summer Beauty Picks

We fell hard for Natalie Alcala last fall, when the LA-based writer and blogger spent a week guest blogging for us. In fact, we loved her posts so much that we asked her to be a contributing editor. In addition to blogging for us once a week, she’ll also be writing for the Birchbox Magazine and keeping us up to speed on all things fashion, beauty, and fun.

Greetings from Las Vegas! I’m one of 30 official bloggers at MAGIC—the world’s top marketplace for apparel and accessories. It’s been a true blast out here bonding with some of LA’s top fashion influencers. (Check out the #RoadtoMAGIC blog here to follow our adventures.) I checked in with four of my lovely trip mates to see what beauty products they can’t get enough of this summer.

Bethany Struble of Snakes Nest

1. Homemade Rosewater: “I literally make it over the stove. I love it because it’s so light and all natural. I use it as a toner, too.”

2. Benefit Hoola Bronzer: “This is a non-shimmery bronzer in a natural brown hue.”

3. CoverGirl Lash Blast Mascara: “I love it because it’s so cheap and fantastic.”

4. Urban Decay Naked Palette: “It has every color you need! It’s so versatile.”

5. Benefit Posietint: “It’s the perfect shade of pink for your lips and cheeks.”

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It’s Back! Our Gorgeous On the Go Box

After a brief hiatus due to rapid sell-out, our Gorgeous On the Go Limited Edition Box is finally back in the Birchbox Shop, and we couldn’t wait to share the news.

The special edition box is here to ease your summer beauty woes—shininess, frizz, a need for serious SPF—and fit into your fast-paced lifestyle. Everything inside is sized for jet-setting, and each product has been hand-picked to help give you a 360-degree beauty upgrade. From nail polish to blotting sheets, we’ve got you covered. 

Here’s a peek at what you’ll find inside:

Grab it now in the Birchbox Shop

—Caroline

If your nuptials are coming soon, don’t miss our Here Comes the Bride Box.

How to Make Friends and Steal Summer Beauty Ideas: Guest Blogger

We love surfing Heather Walczuk’s blog, Beauty Unbiased, for her smart and on-point makeup reviews, pretty photos and her upbeat insight. The resident New Yorker always has great tips for making the most out of your products, which is why we’re excited that this week she’s sharing tips about her fave summer finds, makeup-artists must-haves, and how to get a gorgeous top knot.

It’s become inevitable lately that when I mention my blog, I’m asked about my favorite beauty products. Of course, then I’ll suddenly blank on the name of my new favorite mascara that I’ve just tweeted about. When social anxiety kicks in, I drop-kick it back to my new acquaintance by asking for their personal favorite beauty picks. See how I did that? Reverse beauty psychology. I steal their favorite beauty ideas and they leave feeling good about having shared their knowledge with me. It’s the main reason I love Birchbox—new beauty finds every month with minimal work on my part! That’s what I call a win-win.

Here are four of my favorite summer beauty discoveries that I’ve borrowed from other people:

1. Benefit’s Benetint: While Benetint has been around forever, I had an aversion to trying stains for a long time. But since I kept hearing friends rave on and on about it, I decided to give it a shot. It leaves a rosy glow that lasts all day but feels so lightweight.

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Fragrance Fit for a Power Outage

Based in Washington D.C., Ayren Jackson-Cannady is so savvy that we wished she lived closer to NYC so that we could swap products with her. This beauty writer knows what’s up (she’s written for Fitness, Glamour, and Gloss Daily) and we’re excited to have her sharing her know-how and multi-culti beauty expertise as a contributing editor.

(Photo: hellobeautiful.com)

Over the weekend, severe storms pounded parts of the country from Missouri to New York to my little corner of Virginia, leaving millions (yes millions) sans electricity. Currently, I’m using a blissfully air-conditioned coffee shop as my office because my house is a sweat box with no working outlets. But, the boost in mercury and power shortage has given me the opportunity to experiment with my fragrance stash and find the perfect hot weather scents. You know how it goes: If you wear something too heavy during the summer months, you’re liable to make someone pass out from the fumes; if you wear something too light, you sweat it off after 10 minutes.

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Wonderland’s Summer Hair Guide: Guest Blogger

Our latest guest blogger, Ally of Allyson in Wonderland, is an oil and gas professional with a serious eye for great finds. We can’t get enough of her gorgeously crafted blog, where she shares her love for style, travel, and photography. This week she’s giving us a peek into her personal beauty treasure chest—and we’re taking notes.

Summer is not the best time for hair. It’s hot, humid, and for a fine-haired lady like me it’s almost impossible to have a good hair day! I spend an inordinate amount of time trying to do my hair, then I step outside and poof: it falls flat, frizzes, or curls up. I’m always looking for a wonder product to give me the world’s most perfect hair. Until I find that miracle potion though, I have three excellent products on standby.

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