As you guys know, I’ve been mildly obsessed with the beauty world since I was little. Whenever there is a new innovation, I’m one of the first to want to learn more.
When Birchbox burst on the scene, I was giving subscriptions to friends and family as gifts and anxiously awaiting the opening of the first brick and mortar store in Soho when the time came. During my time in New York, I met Brittany Tomkiewicz who has been with Birchbox since 2011 (she started as an intern!) and now holds the title of Senior Manager, PR & Partnerships. Brittany is one of those people you meet and you are instantly energized by her passion for her work.
If you’re unfamiliar, Birchbox is a beauty brand that offers both subscription boxes for women and men as well as a full e-commerce site that allows you to shop and curate your favorite products and ones you should be trying. The co-founders Katia and Hayley envisioned a way for people to easily and efficiently try, learn and purchase beauty products online and it has become one of my favorite ways to discover new brands and products.
So in the latest installment of Witty Conversation With, get to know Brittany as she spills what inspires her, her best career advice and all her favorite beauty products.
Tell me about yourself in 3 sentences.
I’m extremely passionate. When I believe in something, I believe in it to my core and am relentless. I love to make other people laugh (I consider myself an amateur comedian). I dream really really big. I come up with a new business idea probably once per day and am convinced I will one day rule the world!
What does a typical day look like for you?
I don’t know that I’ve ever had a “typical” day at work! Every day at Birchbox presents a new challenge and new opportunities. But, generally, lots of emails, meetings and executing externally and internally on the many partnerships and campaigns we have going on.
Do you have a morning routine? If so, what is it?
I never thought of myself as a creature of habit but after typing this out I realize I have a pretty consistent morning routine! I wake up around 6:30/7 and make a cup of coffee. While my cup is brewing, I check emails and all my social media. I’ll read headlines in bed or put on the TV and then hop in the shower (I only wash my hair 2-3x per week, however!) My shower is followed by my skin routine: Liz Earle toner, Avene serum, Dr. Brandt eye cream, Dr. Jart moisturizer. Then I always check the weather (while I give my skincare a minute to settle in) followed by doing my makeup: Sweet Science tinted SPF, Jouer bronzer, Trestique concealer, Make blush, LOC eyeshadow (or sometimes Benefit’s Big Beautiful Eyes) and finally, Benefit Cosmetics’ mascara. Then I get dressed and am off to work!
What’s the best part about working for Birchbox?
Where do I even begin! First and foremost, the opportunity to work alongside my friends – who happen to be the smartest and most creative people in the biz. At Birchbox, the sky is truly the limit. No idea or thought is too insane. The growth opportunities at the company are truly unparalleled. Katia always makes sure to remind us that we all (the employees) are truly part of this crazy ride and that everything we do impacts the growth of Birchbox. There’s an amazing feeling of togetherness – we’re all in it as a team.
What are your top 3 favorite places to eat/drink in New York City? Why?
I recently discovered Lure Fishbar which features delicious seafood and drinks! It’s underground, and when you’re inside you feel like you’re inside of a ship. So cool. In the summer, I really like to go to Stone Street in the Financial District. I enjoy being outside and love the cobblestone streets. And then pretty much anywhere in the West Village, but especially Barbuto. I highly recommend the chicken – it’s the best I’ve ever had.
What’s a piece of advice you’d give your younger self?
Worry less! Work hard and believe in yourself. Things will fall into place.
What are 3 of your favorite apps and why?
Instagram because I work on influencer campaigns, so I’m always browsing for inspiration and new people to work with. Venmo as I don’t know what I’d do without this money transferring app. My friends and I all use it to pay each other back. It’s the best. And Seamless because I’m lazy and not a fan of cooking.
Who (or what) inspires you?
I’m always inspired by the CEO of Birchbox, Katia. She is a mentor and such an inspiration. I’m also inspired by my fellow colleagues. Everyone is so smart, creative, and unique. I’m constantly learning and am endlessly inspired by all of them. I also find inspiration from my friends and family. They are the best. Since high school, my closest friends and I have always said we’re “destined for greatness”. That notion and each one of them continue inspire me in different ways. And finally, I find inspiration in everyday problems. As previously mentioned, I’m always coming up with new ideas. Generally they stem from frustrating experiences I have in my daily life that I want to create a solution for.
What is a piece of advice you’d give to someone trying to break into the world of PR & Marketing?
1. Never falter in your belief in yourself – you are the key to your success and have all of the answers. If you genuinely believe you will achieve something, you will.
2. Work hard, and learn from every experience. Whether it’s the most mundane task in the world or a really high level project, every single little thing you are doing is preparing you for what’s to come.
You work at a beauty company so time to spill…what are your all time favorite products?
I’ve been using Benefit’s Roller Lash and They’re Real mascaras for years! If I had to choose only one makeup product to use for the rest of my life (so dramatic!), I would pick mascara. Truly an essential. I also love sheet masks. I’m addicted to masks and always do one at least 2-3 times per week. Dr. Jart makes my favorite ones. And finally, eyeshadow sticks! I like efficient and fast beauty so the LOC (Love of Color) eyeshadow sticks have very quickly become my go-to. I never used to wear eyeshadow and now wear it every day because these guys are so easy to use!
Finish this sentence “I have a dream…”
…to one day be the CEO of / run my own company.
Shop Brittany’s Favorites:
Thanks so much to Brittany for being a part of this series! If there are people or brands you’d love to see profiled in future Witty Conversations, email me with ideas at meghan[@]witwhimsy.com!
p.s. Witty Conversation With the Co-founders of the Laundress and Witty Conversation With Jessica Kirby of Prosecco & Plaid.
[Bekka Palmer Photography on location at the Birchbox Headquarters]