Meet this week’s OVERT City Girl….. Rachel Besser, Fashion Market Editor @ Refinery29.

This week’s City Girl, Rachel, has taught us two things: How to bust your ass to achieve your goals and how to rock old school Nike Air’s. With her delicate gold chains and styled boxed-white tee, Rachel chatted about all things traveling (she just got back from Iceland.. jealous), future #girlboss goals and of course what it’s really like working at Refinery29.

Just how do you end up in an Editor position at R29? Rachel says that it didn’t just happen overnight ladies, it involves a lot of hard work, commitment and long hours.  Starting as an intern while studying at NYU, Rachel learned the ropes and quickly worked her way up. After taking over the styling department she then moved up and onward into her current position of Fashion Market Editor. Now 3 and a half years later she gets to do things like interviewing Kendrick Lamar and many more.

In this week’s installment of the City Diaries, we followed Rachel around the TriBeCa area as she showed us her go-to spots to grab a bite to eat, sip rosè and chill out with her R29 family outside the office. Before we ventured to her favorite places, Rachel gave us a little look into where all the magic happens, the Refinery29 office…

What does a day in the life of Rachel look like at the Refinery29 office?

I get into the office at about 8:45 or 9am unless I have a breakfast or morning event. I’ll plop down into my chair, and go through any pending emails. I’ll update my to-do list, then prioritize the list in order of most to least timely. Next, I’ll start working on my stories for the day. I’ll take a lunch break usually around 1 or 2pm. Afterward, I’ll put the finishing touches on any story set to go live that day, and then head out to a few afternoon market appointments or an event. I work best in the am, so I try to take advantage of that momentum.


Desktop essentials: Besides my computer, I’d say scissors, headphones, a phone charger, notepad, a bottle of grapefruit perrier, and a “Best Dad Ever” plaque given to me at work… apparently I give off dad vibes to my coworkers.


Morning routine: I wake up, meditate if there’s enough time, make that dang bed, take a shower, brush my teeth, wash my face, moisturize (getting very detailed aren’t I), get dressed, throw things into my bag, and run out the door. I’ll grab a coffee or tea on my way to work. It’s quick… usually, I can be out of my apt in under 30 mins which is helpful when you have places to be and people to see.


Lunch break: I usually order to my desk or walk to Whole Foods if it’s lovely out.

Procrastination guilty pleasures: Hm. Perhaps scouring Soundcloud for new jamz. Super easy to lose track of time.

Refinery29 seems like a workplace every inspiring editor would love to end up at! How did you land being Fashion Editor at Refinery29 and how would you describe the social culture? Do the team get together outside of the office, if so what do you guys get up to for fun?

I landed my job through my internship @R29. Once in the door, I busted my ass to get hired full time, then continued to bust my ass to climb up the ladder at the company. Honestly, if you can get your foot in the door and then do good, hard work, you’ll land close to where you intended.

Re: the fashion team at R29… I mean, after years of refusing karaoke so long as I lived, I did karaoke with my team for the first time, and rapped very aggressively to Eminem’s “Lose Yourself.” Needless to say, we’re tight-knit.

Complete these sentences….

Latest project you enjoyed most: It wasn’t all that recent, but I had an amazing time working with Reebok on a story about their collaboration with Kendrick Lamar. I also love writing about “controversial” clothing like Bermuda shorts, or about my favorite items, like Air Max ’97s.

Words of wisdom for other young editors: I think most editors these days are humble, especially as we’re all moving towards digital and have to work like we’re sprinting a marathon, but I’d still say don’t let all the access and gifts get to your head.

“Hustle hard like you haven’t made it, even if you reach your goal.”


The Wooly: 11 Barclay St, New York – “Go to drink… Try the Almond Iced Matcha.”

If you weren’t a Fashion Editor at Refinery29 what else would you love to be doing?

Oh man, if I had taken an entirely different approach to school I’d be an astrophysicist and cosmologist.


How do you transform your look from the office into the night? Do you have any must-have accessories or beauty essentials?

If I’m being honest, I don’t change for the night. I’m very casual and wear the same things out that I do during the day. You can get away with that in NYC.

Always prepared, Rachel keeps a change of clothes in her Noho… She showed us a pair of badass vintage Fendi jeans that her boss gave her #jealous.

Tiny’s :135 West Broadway , New York, NY – “I’m drawn to the iconic staples when in TriBeCa, Like Tiny’s. It’s the perfect place for a glass of Rosè after work. My favorite is the Whispering Angel,”

Talk about inspiration. Whilst hanging out at Tiny’s with Rachel and going through her Noho, she pulled out some study flash cards and humbly admitted she is studying to sit the GMAT to get her MBA at Columbia. She hopes to one day start her own business and wants to make sure she has the right tools to do so when the time is right. Watch this space.

Describe your ideal weekend in the city… 

Where would you go: An ideal weekend includes doing something outdoorsy — whether that’s going upstate, exploring a new ‘hood, playing golf or bball, or in the least chilling in a park.

Who would you be with: Shout out to Valen, Catherine, Brianna, Brennan, KC, Meghan, Lexie, Liz, Elena, Lolo and Andrew.

Wearing: Cargo pants, a boxy white tee, a gold chain, and some sneakers. Maybe a baseball cap if it’s blindingly sunny.

Get to know more about Rachel later this week when we put her through our Speed Dating questions…..