When it comes to beauty shopping, there’s really only one deliciously guilt-free area – and that’s when you’re buying beauty gifts. And what better time of year to properly go wild on the beauty gifting than the festive season?
But during this amped-up shopping time, brands have a tendency to roll out way too many products, in a truly overwhelming fashion. Choosing something that’s actually worth buying amidst the abundance of pre-packaged “gifts” can seem hard. But never fear. As a genuine beauty lover, I’ve created a roundup of products that anyone would be excited to receive.
A classic gift is a scented candle – but that doesn’t mean it has to feel boring. Going for a more offbeat brand and an undeniably seasonal scent can ensure your scented candle gift is a success. Two I’ve been loving at the moment are the MOR Northern Lights Candle and the Earl of East Musk Smoke & Candle. Both fill a room with delightfully wintery fragrance and turn any evening into an undeniably cosy experience.
I’m also in favour of a skincare gift. While it can be tricky to know someone’s specific preferences, there are some products that I believe would be well received across the board. The first is the new Glossier Futuredew, which is a serum-oil hybrid that essentially works as an illuminating primer. During dull winter months, this is an absolute lifesaver for those who enjoy a dewy complexion.
In a similar vein is the Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream. Everyone needs a moisturizer – and this one may well be the best. It’s thick and luxurious feeling, but sinks in fairly quickly, and leaves skin feeling plump, soft, and prepped for makeup. As an added bonus, there’s an SPF of 15.
Another thing everyone needs? Lip balm! And the Laneige Lip Mask makes for a perfect gift – it comes in a ton of flavours, has incredibly cute packaging, and has a hint of K-beauty cool about it. Excellent choice for gifts to loved ones.
While I tend to think beauty sets are a bit of a gip, there are a couple of brands that consistently pull them off. Mario Badescu’s holiday sets offer great value for money and some undeniably cute minis, while the Peter Thomas Roth mask sets are something a skincare lover would dream of.
If you’re buying makeup for someone else, it’s well-advised to stick to the fun (i.e. glitter and lip gloss) over the functional (i.e. a new bottle of foundation). And there’s nothing more fun than Primark’s Liquid Glitter Eyeshadows. They give an appealingly easy-to-apply wash of sheen all for the meagre price of £3.50. The only problem is you’ll have to brave a store to track them down.
If that sounds too terrifying for you, I point you towards Stila’s Heaven’s Dew in Silverlake. This bouncy cream highlighter can be dabbed on anywhere for an instant veil of sheeny gloss. If you need to add festive cheer to your look in seconds, this is the product.
In terms of lip glosses, you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who doesn’t like the Fenty Beauty Gloss Bomb. The softly shimmery, non-sticky shades suit everyone. But for a potentially slightly more sophisticated take, the Hourglass Tinted Lip Oils are equally beautiful – and a hint more grown-up.
Buying fragrance for someone else can be a minefield, but if you do, I’d go for something like Margiela’s Lazy Sunday Morning. It’s a light, cologne-y scent that’s gender-neutral and is fresh and clean enough that I can’t imagine anyone not liking it.
My final recommendation for gifts is just a bit of fun – because if you can’t have fun at Christmas, when can you? The Body Shop Reindeer Headband is festively silly, but also useful for keeping hair back during a cleanse. Fun and functional – and you can’t say fairer than that.