Tech-Savvy Shopping & More at Birchbox
Tech-Savvy Shopping & More at Birchbox
Nowadays, technology seems to influence nearly every aspect of our lives, so why shouldn’t it extend to our in-store shopping experience? On a recent trip to SoHo, I got a chance to see how tech is changing the way we shop for beauty and grooming at Birchbox—an innovative NYC-based company with additional operations in the UK, France, Spain, Canada and Belgium.
Shopping Made Easy
Unlike some beauty retailers that categorize product by brand, the folks at Birchbox make the experience pretty simple—with beauty finds and skincare products displayed by order of use. At the larger-than-life makeup wall, with a whimsical neon sign hovering above encouraging visitors to “Go On, Give It A Whirl,” I found plenty of products arranged by my daily routine—first comes the foundation, and from there I perused colorfully packaged products for eyes, lips and cheeks. Each section also comes complete with an iPad, so I could research the goods and read individual product reviews.
Speaking of reviews, the folks at Birchbox seem to really rely on customer feedback. The front of the store proudly displays the top sellers of the month on Birchbox.com—so you can take home everyone’s faves. Other rotating displays are of the seasonal and themed variety. For example, right now city-dwellers and NYC visitors can shop the summer suncare collection to make sure their skincare game stays on point during these warm-weather months.
The main floor of the store also includes the aptly named Try Bar, where, you guessed it, visitors are encouraged to try on products. And, the very knowledgeable staff—all trained in the art of making folks look fabulous—is ready to assist with application, answer questions and share trends. For even more how-to fun, TV screens peppered throughout the space feature product tutorials starring other Birchbox staffers.
The one-stop-shopping experience extends to the store’s lower level, where visitors will find nail, hair, and makeup services, along with the corresponding products for purchase, as well as items for the Birchbox Man.
It’s All About the Box
If the above wasn’t a good enough indication, Birchbox has a lot to offer. And, sometimes it’s hard to commit to a product without giving it a much-needed spin around the block. Or, better yet, sometimes it’s hard to whittle down an almost-never-ending list of must-have merchandise to a wallet-friendly haul. This is where BYOB comes in. Tucked away in the back of the store’s main floor is the “Build Your Own Birchbox” station, where men and women can pick and choose from bowls teeming with sample-sized versions of loveliness—from skincare products and tools to lip stains, nail polish and lifestyle products. For the reasonable price of $15, visitors can fill a box with five beauty samples. A men’s box—filled with four grooming samples and a fun accessory—comes in at $25. The in-store experience is an extension of Birchbox’s popular online, subscription-based concept, where members receive a box of personalized samples in the mail each month.
During my visit, I opted for a flamingo pink box and filled it with some worthwhile inventory, including TONI&GUY Prep Heat Protection Mist (to make sure locks stay healthy when applying heat), Roloxin™ Lift Revitalizing Facial Treatment, REN Glycol Lactic Radiance Renewal Mask, Peri's Tint Water (a red lip stain from quirky Korean brand Peripera) and RUFFIAN Nail Lacquer in Lady of the Night (a sophisticated mauve shade). After trying most of the products, I know I will be back to the store to purchase their full-size versions.
Birchbox also includes a ton of cool in-store events. Next up? On Wed., June 24, from 6 to 8 p.m., Birchbox will host its first-ever bridal beauty event, including the opportunity to check out exclusive bridal looks curated by wedding blog Style Me Pretty, receive makeup touchups and browse offerings from other featured Style Me Pretty partners. Attendees will also get the chance to meet with Abby from Style Me Pretty and ask her about what it takes to plan a successful wedding and how to achieve the perfect bridal look! To register, click here.