mollie chen

Packing List: Italy

Next week, I’m making my first-ever (and long-overdue) trip to Italy. (Squee!) My boyfriend and I are starting in Lake Como and then working our way through Cinque Terre, Tuscany, and Rome. I’ll be honest: I’m most excited about the food. That’s not to say I don’t want to wander the piazzas, explore the Tuscan hill towns, and wonder at the Sistine Chapel—I’m just planning to bracket all those delightful things with many quartinos of Montepulciano and cones of gelato. Here are some of the essentials I’m bringing with me:

Madewell Transport Tote: This roomy leather bag is tailor-made for travel. It easily fits my laptop, copious amounts of beauty products, magazines, and (of course) many, many plane snacks.

Rodial Dragon’s Blood Hyaluronic Mask: In Tuscany, we’re staying at La Bandita, an absolutely dreamy inn that is owned by my former Condé Nast Traveler colleague Ondine Cohane and her husband John. Ondine only had one request from New York: Rodial’s famed skin-plumping mask.

Number 4 Haircare Styling Foam: I’m a full-on mousse evangelist. I find that it’s the best/easiest/quickest way to give hair a bit of texture and wave. Number 4’s version smells incredible and dries without any tackiness. I scrunch it in and go—no need to blow-dry. 

Atelier Cologne Vetiver: Spoiler alert: We’ve got an awesome gift-with-purchase deal coming up with Atelier Cologne’s travel-size spritzes. Keep an eye out! Me, I’m taking this unisex one on the road.

Inika Mineral Foundation: I recently got a sample of this and liked it so much that I begged our brand team for a second (backup) sample to take with me. The formula is extremely light, dries to a velvet-matte finish, and blends gorgeously. 

Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector: While I don’t plan on wearing much makeup, that doesn’t mean I can’t use a wee bit of highlighter over my blush—you know, to prettily reflect all those golden Tuscan rays. Right? 

Karuna Hydrating Treatment Mask: Blame it on Birchbox, but over the years the list of things I consider travel “musts” has changed dramatically. After realizing how tough planes and travel are on my skin, I now consider a great exfoliator and a hydrating mask to be core trip essentials. I love sheet masks because they’re single-use—how great to return with less than when you started!

Davines Love Smoothing Conditioner: Can’t leave home without it. That’s all. 

And Sons, David Gilbert: I bought the hardcover of this novel after my friend (and consummate reader) Eimear raved about it. I’m looking forward to unplugging and doing some nondigital reading while I’m away.

Whew! Can’t wait to see you guys in a week!

—Mollie

See what all the buzz is about! #BBBuzz, that is—in our October Teaser video

Cast List 9/14

Woman in Bar: Virginia Logan (Elizabeth)

Man in Bar: Ben McHugh (Frederick)


Macbeth: Tim Heck 

Lady Macbeth: Marla Phelan

Macduff: Tyler Phillips

Lady Macduff: Kelly Todd
Malcolm: Adam Griffith

Duncan: John William Watkins

Banquo: Nate Carter
Hecate: Francesca Harper

Bald Witch: Jenna Saccurato

Sexy Witch: Emily Oldak
Boy Witch: 
Austin Dale Tyson

Porter: Casey Jordan
Danvers: 
Stephanie Crousillat
Matron: Evelyn Chen
Nurse:Molly Griffin
Speakeasy: Jeffrey Docimo

Fulton: Gage Self
Taxidermist/James: Assaf Salhov
Agnes: Andrea Farley Shimota
6th Floor Nurse:

*Karen Marie Richardson (Stella) was singing in the bar

Birchbox Beauty Diaries: Cofounder Edition

Every month you see Katia, Hayley, and Mollie talk about the upcoming Birchbox and all the new products they’re excited to share with you in our monthly sneak peek. But do you know what products they keep on their vanities?

In honor of this month’s theme, we asked each of these execs to share their daily beauty diaries with us. But before we spill the beans, take a guess at which morning beauty routine belongs to each Birchbox leader:

8:00 a.m. I’m a beauty minimalist, so my morning skincare consists of moisturizer, eye cream, and body lotion. Then, I’ll use a little concealer, minimal eye makeup, and either a lip balm or a fun bold lip. I like to play around and improvise, especially with new samples I receive in my Birchbox.

7:30 a.m. After the shower, I slather Kiehl’s Creme de Corps on my body and apply a face oil (currently in l-o-v-e with Caudalie Divine Oil). For makeup, I mix together Marcelle’s BB Cream in Golden Glow with Jouer Luminizing Moisture Tint for a sheer base, then dab on plenty of cream blush. Two coats of mascara, and that’s it. 

7:00 a.m. I use Kiehl’s Clay Cleanser in the shower, then follow with Caudalie serum and Tatcha moisturizer and eye cream. I also use TALIKA Lipocils Expert, a lash growth serum, every day.

Stumped? Check out Birchbox Beauty Diaries: Cofounder Edition to learn the answer and find out how these three busy ladies stay fresh and polished all day long. 

—Bre

Want to snag some of Katia, Hayley and Mollie’s picks? Here are their must-have beauty essentials.