Can you believe that Christmas is in just two weeks...yes TWO WEEKS! Where has 2016 gone? Before we even know it, the crazy Christmas rush will be over and we will be preparing ourselves to welcome in the new year - 2017 is just around the corner. However, before I can even worry about 2017 (a big year for me!), I need to overcome Christmas!
I absolutely love Christmas. It is such a happy, buzzing and exciting time of year I find - no matter where you are in the world. All the stores are decked out in glorious Christmas decorations, Christmas carols are to be heard left, right and centre and there is just so much excitement in the air. I absolutely love watching children's faces light up over the amazement and magic of a beautifully decorated tree, Christmas lights or a toy that they have seen recently. It reminds me of my own childhood. The other thing I absolutely love about Christmas is giving - I love present buying (and the wrapping to follow after - seriously my house is currently a paper bomb of wrapping paper and ribbon) and nothing makes me happier to see my friends and family receive and unwrap a present.
In saying that, Christmas gift buying can be incredibly hard for loved ones so I thought I would make a little gift guide to give some Christmas inspiration for you all. Most of these suggestions are beauty or skincare related - so it is perfect for those skincare addicts like myself who want to pass on that passion to their loved ones. My gift guide contains ideas for the following people: Secret Santa/Co-Workers, The Man in Your Life, Best Friend/Sister, Mothers, The Person Who Has Everything and also those who want something a little more indulgent. Have fun and I hope it helps you!
Kris Kringle/Secret Santa/Co-Workers
One of my favourite things to give to a secret santa or my co workers are a nice set of sheet masks. These can always be wrapped up quite nicely and including some chocolate is always a fantastic (and delicious) addition. Korean sheet masks are generally always quite well priced and I find that you can always get a great variety or at least customise the sheet masks according to the person you are gifting for. I always like to buy a few big packs and divide up the packs to give to other people.
Those who live in the US have access to memebox USA which carry fantastic sheet masks from brands like Bonvivant, Berrisome and Leaders Insolution and often in large packs which are quite easy to divide up. I also find that Wishtrend have a wonderful selection of sheet masks in large packs which are again a more cost effective and fantastic way to make little sheet mask gift packs. The great thing about Wishtrend is that they ship worldwide and generally packages take about one week to arrive. For those like myself who live in Australia, look no further than Aniqa which have a great and large range of sheet masks from brands such as Cremorlab, Double & Zero and May Coop.
5YINA Divine All Seasons Beauty Balm
Beauty Balms are such a fantastic all rounder for skincare and general self care as they are generally quite concentrated and so wonderfully potent. The 5YINA Divine All Seasons Beauty Balm is no exception as it is considered to be a cure all in which the balm helps to soothe and protect the skin. It contains potent skin healing ingredients such as goji berries, solomons seal and schisandra berries as well as being infused with roses to give the balm a magical scent.
It can be used all over and some favourite ways to use this is either as a lipbalm, for the cuticles and anywhere on the skin that needs a little TLC. Like all 5YINA products, the Divine Beauty Balm comes beautifully boxed and would make such a beautiful and luxurious gift for any secret santa or co-worker.
The 5YINA Divine All Seasons Beauty Balm can be purchased from the 5YINA website for USD$28
Byredo Cotton Poplin Candle 70g
I have never been a huge fan of candles but there is something so beautiful about the ones created by Byredo. Everything from the unique scents to the minimal yet luxurious packaging, the Byredo candles make a such an impressive gift. For me, these candles are just that little touch of luxury that many people do not treat themselves to and are such a pleasant surprise when they are.
The smaller Byredo candles are beautifully boxed and look absolutely beautiful on their own. The Cotton Poplin scent is one of my favourites in the most recent Byredo releases as I find that the scent is not at all offensive and I think is a scent that most people will enjoy as it captures the scent of clean, fresh cotton. The scent is described as "a smooth top note of blue chamomile descends into a cooling heart of linen and white cedarwood, while a base of sweet musk" and the candles themselves come in a frosted black glass casing.
The Man In Your Life
Allies of Skin 1A All Day Mask
Allies of Skin is a skincare brand that I absolutely love - the formulas, performance, great packaging, attention to detail and the incredible customer service has positioned it as one of my favourite skincare discoveries this year. What I love most about the brand is that it really is skincare made simple and we all know that sometimes the men in our life just want simple (read, they are just plain lazy) and I find that the Allies of Skin 1A All Day Mask that perfect moisturiser that pretty much does everything.
This product is so unique as it is positioned as an all day treatment mask that is well hidden as a moisturiser (I personally like to use this as a moistursier) that not only hydrates the skin but also protects the skin from harmful free radicals that damage the skin overtime. I find that this mask lifts the skin, making the skin look much more awake - especially after a big night out or just from general lack of sleep. The reason why this is so good for the man in your life is that it really does a little bit of everything without several steps. He can literally wash his face and pop this on to help maintain good skin - it also doesn't hurt that you can also use it as well ;)
Aesop The Intent Observer Gift Set
Aesop is a fantastic skincare brand that originally comes from Australia that does unisex skincare extremely well. Some of my favourite Aesop products that I have used in the past include their Parsley Seed Oil and I am currently really enjoying their new Lucent Concentrate Serum. The recently released Intent Observer Gift Set is the perfect skincare gift for that special gentleman in your life as it contains the infamous Parsley Seed Cleanser, Toner, Antioxidant Hydrator and also the Parsley Seed Antioxidant Facial Treatment. It really is the perfect gift of great skin for any man (or woman...or yourself) as the products selected make a fairly decent skincare routine.
The Aesop Intent Observer Gift Set is available from the Aesop website and retails for AUD$185, USD $182 and GBP£120
Your Sister or Best Friend
Rohr Remedy Heavenly Body Gift Pack
This gorgeous gift set is perfect for a sister, a friend or anyone who loves their body care as it contains a 500ml Body Wash and 250ml Body Moisturiser by Rohr Remedy. Rohr Remedy is an Australian brand which focuses on natural Australian native botanicals in its formulations. Many of the botanicals used in Rohr Remedy products have been used by Indigenous Australians for thousands of years and are so incredibly unique. The Body Wash in this amazing value kit for example, contains honey myrtle which is an antibacterial and the body moisturiser contains the desert lime which is full of antioxidants to both protect and nourish the skin.
This is a wonderful gift to give those who wouldn't normally buy these sorts of things for themselves. The scent of each of the products are absolutely beautiful and would make such a treat. The moisturiser is so hydrating, lightweight and nourishing for the skin and the body wash also works so well as a hand wash too. The gorgeous sleek black packaging of this set also would look so sleek and luxurious in any bathroom vanity.
The total value of this pack is AUD$60 but this gift set is priced at great price of AUD$50 and can be purchased from Peachy Clean who also ship internationally.
Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow
There is no doubt that Charlotte Tilbury products are just so lust worthy. Her makeup collections are absolutely gorgeous to look at and also an absolute pleasure use. Seriously, any make-up or beauty addict would swoon if they received a beautiful package from Charlotte Tilbury, which is why her infamous Filmstar Bronze and Glow makes it on to my gift guide. It is the perfect present for the girl who loves beauty or loves a little bit of luxury in her life.
This palette is a bronzer and highlighter in one and it does suit most skin tones (there is also a deeper shade available). I love this palette as the product is pigmented enough to give the face a bit of a lift in terms of colour and the highlighter really does give the skin a beautiful subtle glow and you are at no risk of looking like a glitter ball. Then there is the packaging - it is absolutely stunning in a rose gold compact that does not at all feel flimsy and it has some weight to it.
The Filmstar Bronze and Glow Palette retails for AUD$97 from the Charlotte Tilbury website, who also ships internationally as well.
Maslow & Co Korean Beauty Box
The Maslow & Co Korean Beauty Box is the perfect gift for the friend who either loves skincare or has a new found obsession with Korean beauty products. This box features a fantastic edit of Korean sheet masks, rubber masks, the infamous May Coop Raw Sauce deluxe sample as well as a full sized product from Cremorlab (a favourite of Olivia Palermo). It really is a skincare lover's paradise and this box allows the lucky recipient to try a great range of different Korean products from sheet masks to essences. It is of wonderful value, selling for $75 and will provide endless hours of pampering and fun.
This box has a retail value of over $150 but is available from Maslow & Co for only AUD$75 and they also now offer international shipping.
La Sante 'Vogue' Wellness Candle No. 3 Elevation
If I could sum up how this candle smells, I would liken it to a comforting, yet refreshing cup of lemongrass and ginger tea (one of my favourites). The scent of this candle is one that would add a beautiful ambience to a kitchen or a living room and is so uplifting. The candle itself would look stunning on a shelf or in the middle of a table due to its clean white glass casing. The scent of this is strong (but in no way offensive) and can really fill a relatively large area. Le Sante Wellness Candle in No.3 Elevation smells absolutely divine and is described as a "100% soy way candle that is infused with a blend of mandarin, eucalyptus radiata and lemongrass cochin with touches of cardamom and peppermint essential oils to promote rejuvenation and inspiration in your body and soul". The large Vogue size (approximately 80 hours of burning time) would make a unique, yet lovely gift for a mother or mother in law. This large Vogue candle retails for AUD$68 and smaller sizes are available.
Le Sante Wellness candles are available from the wonderful Justine, founder and creator directly. Check her out on Instagram or to purchase one of her candles, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org - she is so lovely!
May Lindstrom Skin The Honey Mud
I wrote a review on May Lindstrom Skin The Honey Mud sometime ago, and I said it was incredibly indulgent. In saying that - what better way to indulge one of the most important women in your life? The Honey Mud is a luxurious green beauty product that can be used as either an indulgent cleanser or as a nourishing and therapeutic face mask. It features raw honey, cacao, white clay and essential oils to give the skin a fresh, clean and uplifting feel and also can make the bathroom smell a little bit like a caramel pudding.
Omorovicza Gold Collection
If you are really wanting to splurge on your mother this year, then look no further than Omorovicza - one of my favourite skincare brands. I personally haven't tried anything from Omorovicza that I haven't liked and whilst I haven't used the Gold range before (it really is suited for mature skin) I have no doubt that this line will work wonders. The Gold line is enriched with gold ferment which works to promote skin healing and helps to firm the skin. The formulas are supposed to help with conditions such as pigmentation, loss of elasticity and also aids to reduce fine lines. It uses the patented Omorovicza Hydro Transference technology for deeper penetration to the skin, thus making Omorovicza products quite special. This set is the ultimate skincare gift set to promote pampering and self care for our beloved mothers and mother figures.
The Gold Collection pack features 3 products which are essential to any skincare routine, a moisturiser, a serum and an eye cream - Gold Rescue Cream (50ml), Gold Night Drops (30ml), Gold Eye Lift (15ml) and represents a huge 30% saving. This beautiful gift box is the ultimate luxury gift and can be found at Omorovicza for USD$565.
The Person Who Has Everything
Sodashi Skincare Oud Arabian Oil
This oil is an incredibly luxurious oil for the body that contains the ever so rare and opulent blend of pure Oud (which costs $9000 per kilo!), Rose, Sandalwood and Frankincense in its formulation. The scent of these complex, middle eastern inspired ingredients make it such a beautiful treat for the person who has everything. Oud itself an extremely rare type of resin that can take up to a century to form inside of the ancient Aquilaria Tree and is considered to be one of the most rare (and expensive) oils in the world. The aroma of this oil is supposed to calm and soothe the nervous system, making it perfect for someone who is constantly on the go. This decadent oil is perfect for the person who has possibly everything as it works as a gorgeous treat for the body after a shower, a indulgent bath oil or it can also be used in the hair.
The Sodashi Oud Arabian Oil retails for AUD$159 for 100ml and can be purchased from the Sodashi Skincare website who also ship internationally.
Precious Skin Elixirs 24 K Gold Luxe Restorative Balm
This beautiful balm by Precious Skin Elixirs is so unique as it contains colloidal gold which is said to help heal, restore and nourish the skin as well as nourishing organic oils such as Shea Butter, Marula Oil and Argan Oil. It makes the perfect treat for the person who has everything as the balm itself is such a luxe treatment for issues such as dry, irritated or skin that just needs a little bit of TLC. The added colloidal gold makes it a wonderful luxury gift and all Precious Skin Elixir products come in a beautiful purple box that would look incredible wrapped up and placed under the Christmas tree. It is a product that I think many would not ever consider getting themselves and the balm is the perfect addition to the colder weather that many are currently feeling in the Northern Hemisphere.
The Precious Skin Elixirs 24 Karat Gold Luxe Restorative Balm retails for USD$160 from the Precious Skin Elixirs website, who currently has free international shipping.
The Beauty Chef Holiday Glow Gift Set
I am a huge fan of The Beauty Chef products as over the past month of constant usage, I have noticed that my skin has recently been much better behaved (and I haven't really laid off the sugar and hot chips/fries...I try though!) and that my body just seems to be in better sync. This Holiday Gift set by the Beauty Chef is another gift that would be wonderful for the person who has everything as many of us don't really consider supplements - especially ones that are more to do with skin health. The Holiday Gift set contains my favourite - the Glow Advanced Inner Beauty Powder. This skincare supplement contains probiotics, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids as well as the Collagen Inner Beauty Boost, which aims to increase the skin's collagen production.
It is valued at about AUD$100, but this set allows for a 20% saving, being only AUD$80 and can be purchased from The Beauty Chef website.
A Little Indulgence
African Botanics Fleurs d'Afriques
One word to describe this oil: Magical. The Fleurs d'Afriques is perhaps one of the most luxurious, unique and complex face oils that I own. The scent itself is just heavenly as it just so complex with a slight nuttiness, fruitiness and a hint of florals. Then there is how it feels on the skin - it glides on like silk and sinks in effortlessly, just how an oil should. It is so nourishing for the skin and in the morning (if used overnight), it leaves the skin luminous and radiant and any dry patches are almost gone. If used during the day, it works to protect and hydrate the skin and sits so well underneath makeup. I find that it 'smooths' down any rough patches of dry skin and allows foundation to glide over it without flaking. I thoroughly enjoy using this oil and my skin absolutely loves it as well. It really is such an amazing facial oil that does a little bit of everything as it helps to calm, nourish, protect, prevent and to repair the skin. It is an indulgent gift but it really is worth every single penny, especially for the lover of luxury skincare.
The African Botanics Fleurs d'Afrique Intense Recovery Oil can be purchased from African Botanics for USD$250, Mecca Cosmetica for AUD$366 or from Cultbeauty for GBP£175.
The Retrouvé Quartet
If I had to pick one brand to define luxury skincare, it would be from Retrouvé Skincare. Everything about this brand exudes luxury - from the linen embossed thick cardboard boxes, the black frosted glass packaging to the actual active ingredients used in each and every product. Retrouvé is the brainchild of beauty heiress Jamie Morse Heidegger who helped run Keihls before it was sold to L'Oreal in 2000. The Retrouvé line is a deeply personal project for Jamie in which she wanted the very best of the best in her skincare range. There is a focus on the fusion of high performing active natural ingredients meets science to create a potent yet luxurious skincare line.
The Retrouvé Quartet contains 4 (of the 5) products in the line at a 15ml size and is the perfect way to trial and also to indulge in the wonders of the Retrouvé skincare line. My favourites in this quartet are the Nutrient Face Serum and the Revitalising Eye Concentrate, as both have worked wonders on my skin and around the eye area. The price alone, makes this a truly indulgent purchase, but the products themselves are just so incredibly special.
The Quartet is USD$750 and is available to purchase from the Retrouvé website.
Have your finished your Christmas shopping? What have you got on your Christmas wish list? I would love to hear all about it in the comments section below!