Mollie Chen: The Innovation 50

Editorial director, Birchbox

Former beauty editor Mollie Chen left Condé Nast to become the voice behind Birchbox, which was founded by Hayley Barna and Katia Beauchamp. Chen found herself managing everything from marketing to editorial work for the New York-based online monthly subscription service. Birchbox sends its subscribers a box of four to five carefully selected samples of makeup or other beauty-related products monthly.

Chen oversees the brand’s online magazine, YouTube channel, social media voice, and marketing copy, and is responsible for management and guiding overall strategy. The idea came to her when she was assistant editor at Condé Nast Traveler, fielding samples that came in to the beauty and spa editor. However, fun, innovative ideas are in her blood: just before Birchbox, Chen cofounded Bikes and Biscuits, in which she set out on a two-week road trip by bike and embraced the slow food movement. She documented the results via daily blogs, tweets and videos.

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