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An Insider’s Guide to New York: Birchbox City Guides

Our subscribers received adorable postcards in their June boxes illustrating the four cities that Birchbox calls home: New York, Paris, London, and Barcelona. But since we could only fit so much information on each card, we decided to provide even more insider intel on our blog—straight from Birchbox staffers around the world. Get your passport ready and check back each week for a new installment of Birchbox City Guides.

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Eating

Every weekend, Brooklyn’s Williamsburg and DUMBO waterfronts play host to Smorgasburg (90 Kent Ave at North 7th Street and 30 Water Street), an edible market featuring foods from across the five boroughs and New York State, from lobster rolls and local oysters to classic smoked meats and Mexican huaraches. Sweet tooth? Run, don’t walk, to the legendary Levain Bakery on the Upper West Side (167 West 74th Street) for the best cookies you’ll ever eat. And for delicious cocktails and superlative snacks (the kabocha squash toast and roasted carrot and avocado salad are among our faves), snag a bar stool at ABC Kitchen (35 East 18th Street), close to Union Square.

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Introducing: The Birchbox Love List
The editors here at Birchbox come across a lot of beautiful things day to day—everything from a gorgeous eyeshadow that’s dropped at our desks to a cute pair of heels that a coworker discovers online. We wanted to share our latest finds with the Birchbox community, which is why we created a new monthly email called Love List, coming to an inbox near you. For our first edition, we were all about color with a capital C—from bobby pins to notebooks to polish. Check out our picks and then shop them below!
Agate Trivet: Natural wonders that won’t break the bank. ($20, leif.com)
TenOverTen Polish in Worth: Our kind of Midas touch. ($18, birchbox.com)
Susana Monanco Dress: A throw-on-and-go piece that’s perfect for off-duty days. ($218, shoptiques.com)
Tibi Amber Heel: Bold, blue, and beautiful. ($365, tibi.com)
Teeny Eddie Purse: Because every outfit should have a pop of pink. ($128, jcrew.com)
Gold Foil Notebooks: For the sophisticated scribbler. ($20, designdarling.com)
Jane Tran Bobby Pin Set: Pins with personality. ($15, birchbox.com) 
iPhone Case: Offline and online collide in this darling case. ($35, society6.com)
Elizabeth McKay Elephant Keychain: A good-luck talisman to keep keys safe. ($24, birchbox.com)
Triple C Designs Power Mate Plus: Powering up in a pinch has never been so chic. ($29, birchbox.com) 
Check out these fun picks and more on our Love List Pinterest board! 

Introducing: The Birchbox Love List

The editors here at Birchbox come across a lot of beautiful things day to day—everything from a gorgeous eyeshadow that’s dropped at our desks to a cute pair of heels that a coworker discovers online. We wanted to share our latest finds with the Birchbox community, which is why we created a new monthly email called Love List, coming to an inbox near you. For our first edition, we were all about color with a capital C—from bobby pins to notebooks to polish. Check out our picks and then shop them below!

Agate Trivet: Natural wonders that won’t break the bank. ($20, leif.com)

TenOverTen Polish in Worth: Our kind of Midas touch. ($18, birchbox.com)

Susana Monanco Dress: A throw-on-and-go piece that’s perfect for off-duty days. ($218, shoptiques.com)

Tibi Amber Heel: Bold, blue, and beautiful. ($365, tibi.com)

Teeny Eddie Purse: Because every outfit should have a pop of pink. ($128, jcrew.com)

Gold Foil Notebooks: For the sophisticated scribbler. ($20, designdarling.com)

Jane Tran Bobby Pin Set: Pins with personality. ($15, birchbox.com

iPhone Case: Offline and online collide in this darling case. ($35, society6.com)

Elizabeth McKay Elephant Keychain: A good-luck talisman to keep keys safe. ($24, birchbox.com)

Triple C Designs Power Mate Plus: Powering up in a pinch has never been so chic. ($29, birchbox.com

Check out these fun picks and more on our Love List Pinterest board! 

5 Polish Shades You Need This Spring: Mani Monday

As much as we love nail art, we’re better at admiring designs than coming up with them ourselves. That’s why we’ve enlisted Anna Norman, the smarty pants behind Glitter, She Wrote, to be a regular contributor. Every Monday, she’ll be sharing her latest lacquer inspiration—you won’t be satisfied with plain ol’ polish again.

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It’s officially March, and even though it’s still quite chilly out, I’m itching to switch up my nail polish wardrobe. Goodbye dark, vampy shades, and hello to the colors of spring. While I do enjoy a pastel here and there, spring lacquer doesn’t always mean Easter egg-inspired hues. Here are my five picks to carry you through the season.

Poppy Red (thumb): This bright orange-hued red is one of the most universally flattering colors—it was even selected as one of the Pantone Fashion Color Report shades for the season. It’s livelier than the blue-hued reds of winter, but still looks sophisticated and classic. I’m wearing the brand new My Paprika Is Hotter Than Yours by OPI. 

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Red Carpet-Inspired Polish: Mani Monday

As much as we love nail art, we’re better at admiring designs than coming up with them ourselves. That’s why we’ve enlisted Anna Norman, the smarty pants behind Glitter, She Wrote, to be a regular contributor. Every Monday, she’ll be sharing her latest lacquer inspiration—you won’t be satisfied with plain ol’ polish again.

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Most of us won’t be sporting a Dior gown any time soon, but that doesn’t mean we can’t draw beauty inspiration from Oscar night glamour. Award show gowns are one of the best trend-predictors, especially when it comes to color. This year, pale neutrals, saturated blues, and shiny metallics ruled the red carpet. What do these three shades have in common? They translate beautifully to nail polish.

Dress Inspiration: Naomi Watts in metallic Armani Privé.

Try This: Shiny foil-like finishes are huge right now, and lucky for us, metallic polish is easy to pull off. Silvers, golds, and other metallic shades look great on just about everyone. For a gorgeous gold, pick up tenoverten in Worth, or try Deborah Lippmann’s Moon Rendezvous for an unexpected blue metallic.

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3 New Year’s Resolutions for My Nails: Mani Monday

As much as we love nail art, we’re better at admiring designs than coming up with them ourselves. That’s why we’ve enlisted Anna Norman, the smarty pants behind Glitter, She Wrote, to be a regular contributor. Every Monday, she’ll be sharing her latest lacquer inspiration—you won’t be satisfied with plain ol’ polish again.

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I’m all about New Year’s Resolutions this year. In addition to the rest of my list (eat more greens, run a half marathon, tidy up my apartment each night), I’m adding a few beauty-related goals for 2013. I put my nails through a lot during the year, so it’s time to give them a little TLC. Here are three things I’m doing this year to make it up to my fingers:

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$50 Off Your Next Rental from Rent The Runway!

When it comes to holiday parties, we love getting dressed up, but we usually want to wear something different and exciting to each special occasion. That can be a bit straining on our wallets so if you’re like us, Rent the Runway is your jam. We’re obsessed with the site, which lets you rent designer dresses for either four or eight days at a fraction of the retail price. What’s more, they give you a free backup size, you can also rent accessories, and returning is a breeze (just pop your items in the mail using the pre-paid padded envelope that’s provided). And here’s another reason to browse the site right now: You can take $50 off your next rental of $125 or more by using the code BRCHBX50 at checkout.* (Definitely don’t wait to use this deal, it expires on February 28th, 2013.)

To get you inspired for your next festive fete, here are two ultraglam looks with corresponding beauty recommendations:

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Kate Bryan of The Small Things Reveals Her Holiday Gift Picks

Ah, the holidays—the greatest gift-giving time of the year. We know how tough it can be to come up with the perfect present for every friend, acquaintance, co-worker, and loved one in your life, which is why we’ve turned to our favorite tastemakers to tell us what they’ve got their eye on this season. Today, we’ve tapped Kate Bryan of The Small Things to tell us what she’s buying for her female friends and family members. 

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Shopping for the women in your life is either simple or impossible. If you are struggling with ideas, consider some of the gifts shown above. From eye-catching earrings to pretty polish, any on of these indulgent items make a great gift. 

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Grace Atwood of Stripes and Sequins Shares Her Holiday Gift Guide

Ah, the holidays—the greatest gift-giving time of the year. We know how tough it can be to come up with the perfect present for every friend, acquaintance, co-worker, and loved one in your life, which is why we’ve turned to our favorite tastemakers to tell us what they’ve got their eye on this season. To help us kick things off, this week Grace Atwood of fashion and DIY blog Stripes & Sequins shares a few of her favorite picks. 

Hi Birchbox readers, it’s Grace here. I was honored when Birchbox asked me to participate in this fun series because I’ve always been a huge fan of the brand. (In fact, I was a beta member back when Birchbox only had twenty subscribers!) Click through to check out my holiday gift picks.

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Birchbox Ops Hearts tenoverten Polish: 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 regularly for Nailing It, Birchbox’s dedicated polish series.

Crystal is wearing Tenoverten Elizabeth.

This week, the Operations Team has been obsessed with Tennoverten Nail Polish. The lacquer line, created by the chic New York salon of the same name, includes some of our favorite colors to play with for fall, like eye-catching berry and dark-hued taupe. Take a peek after the jump to see how the Ops ladies are rocking these pretty polishes: 

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Is 5-Free the New Standard For Nail Polish?

What’s missing in the latest nail polish formulas? Nothing that you’re going to miss. (Photo: about.com)

When nail polish was first created in France in the 1920’s, the formula was an adapted version of the glossy enamel used on cars. Eep! Thankfully, the formulas have come a long way since then. Over the past few years, we’ve seen many “3-free” formulas that omit harmful dibutyl phthalate (DBP), toluene, and formaldehyde. The next step: 5-free polishes, which are made without formaldehyde resin and camphor. Click through for more on these two toxic ingredients and for a list of our favorite 5-free brands!

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