Mollie Chen of Birchbox Dishin’ with DoB


Mollie Chen Who’s that doB girl?
dishin’ with a gal who inspires the foodie-beauty revolution

Who: Mollie Chen, Director of Content at Birchbox, that every month delivers members a curated box of luxe beauty samples.

Why: She’s bringing a stylish magazine editorial eye to the beauty innovator, in between always tweeting about her latest meal or favorite recipe find.

How did you land at Birchbox?
I worked at Condé Nast Traveler for five years, where I learned how to edit, package stories, and talk to crazy writers. Now I’m at a startup where I get to use traditional magazine skills and apply them to a completely new editorial/retail/subscription model. It’s exciting and nuts.

Mollie with Jemma founderSo what’s your plan?
My goal is to make Birchbox your go-to source for beauty and lifestyle advice and inspiration. Millions of pink boxes, all over the world.

To get through a tough day, you drink coffee or cocktails?
Cocktails, obvi. Manhattan or Negroni, depending on my mood.

Three always-in-the bag beauty products?
YSL Touché Eclat to conceal under eye circles and general lethargy; NARS Schiap Lipstick to make me feel more fun than I am; and RMS Beauty Lip2Cheek in Smile because it’s the perfect coral cream blush.

Wish it were in my bag beauty product?
I’m obsessed with MCMC Fragrance’s Maine scent. It’s unbelievably fresh. I keep waiting for someone to buy it for me but I might have to just treat myself.

Sephora or Saks?
Birchbox.com, of course!

What’s in your closet that you should get rid of but just can’t?
A pair of flat, knee-high boots in the perfect shade of cognac. I’ve had them resoled three times. I can’t get rid of them until I find a replacement!

Whose style do you most admire?
Like everyone else, I’m in love with what Jenna Lyons is doing with J.Crew. Who knew I could get so excited about cardigans?

Cook at home or order out?
At home, always. When it’s just me I’ll make a frittata with whatever veggie I have on hand — chard, kale, broccoli — or a kitchen sink salad. Then again, there are a lot of nights when I’ll just eat popcorn and ice cream.

Most memorable meal?
A few years ago I went to an Outstanding in the Field dinner that chef Michael Anthony cooked in New York’s La Plaza Cultural. Chef Anthony is one of my favorite chefs (if you haven’t eaten at Gramercy Tavern, go immediately) and he’s obsessed with fresh, local ingredients — what better way to eat them than at a long communal table in one of New York’s community gardens? There were piles of Sullivan Street Bakery bread on the table, the best pork chop I’ve ever had, and an unbelievably fresh late summer succotash.

Go-to, never-fail, recipe that you make for every dinner party or potluck?
Smitten Kitchen’s Blondies. It’s incredibly simple and never fails me. The best part about it is that you can adapt it to whatever you have on hand — I make mine with brown butter, toasted walnuts, chocolate chips (of course), and a generous glug of whiskey or bourbon. Oh and I always, always use salted butter.

Which celebrity chef would you choose for a cooking class?
Julia Child because she’s Juuulia and I grew up watching her and loving her. Every time I screw up in the kitchen I think of her dropping that omelet and picking it back up again.

What cookbook do you have on your counter?
Suzanne Goin’s Sunday Suppers at Lucques. I rarely follow her recipes from start to finish but it’s still my favorite go-to for recipe inspiration. She is that perfect balance of sophisticated and homey — gorgeous seasonal dishes you’d actually want to cook and serve at a dinner party.

Your best friends say you’re…

Pajama party at your house. Who’s on the invite list?
My best friends. They won’t laugh at my moose print jammies.


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