I always look forward to this gift guide the most as discovering the new beauty products and luxury cosmetics is a task my friends and I undertake with glee. This year I’m bowled over by the advancement in skincare as along with new vegan products, there are also many skincare products from leading aesthetic practitioners and new brands that truly deliver. On a recent girl’s weekend away my friends and I tested over twenty products. We absolutely loved the JuneCell masks from Science to Skin, adored the aromatherapy shampoo and conditioner from Nereus and slipped about in our foot masks from Footner (skin has peeled off beautifully although my daughter thinks it’s disgusting, my feet look like a baby’s).
The only difficulty is picking a Top Product out of all of these and a Best New Brand as they all deserve the title. However, I’ve decided to go with the ones that I will buy again and use regularly as part of my skincare and haircare routine, as these stood out, they stuck in my mind, and I feel my daily showers and baths are a little bit richer because of them.
Every product I recommend here has been put through its paces and even been tried by focus groups. If you don’t see a product listed, that usually means we didn’t really rate it – feedback has been sent to the companies.
Without further ado, let’s begin!
GlossyBox Advent Calendar
I’ve had my eye on GlossyBox for a few years now, ever since I became a beauty director at a popular online beauty store (I’m not there anymore, so there is no competitive slant involved here!) I applauded their subscription model but not only that, the quality of the products involved. This is the first time I’ve actually tried them though and I am not disappointed. This generously packed advent calendar is packed full to the brim with luxury beauty products and cosmetics making it a real treat for any woman (or man that likes make up). It wins our product of the year award as it really is spectacular. I won’t spoil the surprises by telling you what’s included but I will say it’s excellent value for money and even looks great on a shelf as you count down the 24 days until Christmas.
They’ve also teamed up with Grazia to provide another brilliant calendar full to the brim with lots of goodies!
Catrice Advent Calendar
Another great calendar that’s jam packed with gorgeous products is this one, the Catrice DIY calendar. We loved it.
Farmologie have launched skincare for grow ups, following the same ethos as they do with their Child’s Farm products. Natural, kind products that gently cleanse and protect. We love the new range, it’s fresh and soothing and does exactly what it promises. This gift set would be a perfect gift to introduce someone you love to this exciting new range.
Dr Lipp knows her stuff and has a whole host of new products out this year that really indulge the lips and other parts of the body too. I especially love the tints, which add a natural pigment to lips while making them feel smooth, soft and kissable (let’s not go there) and am excited to try their new CBD cream. Beautifully presented, and small enough to take little space in a handbag, the Dr Lipp products are essential for everyday lip care, or anywhere else that may need a little TLC – I’m thinking Chubb Rub and sore nipples here. They also make it into our CBD gift guide
Raw Beauty Lab
The Raw Beauty Lab make vegan collagen that you digest to give skin a collagen boost from within and we did notice a difference. Skin was firmer, brighter and plumper so these get the thumbs up from me.
Shane Cooper Skincare
Shane Cooper is a well known aesthetics expert who provides treatments from his aesthetic clinic. We haven’t tested out his treatments or style but do love this oxygenating cream that leaves skin feeling fresh and new, smooth and flawless too.
Studio 10 wins our best on a budget award as we were bowled over by the quality of the products for such a low price. Your recipient just has to use the cosmetics once to see how brilliant they truly are. The mascara is one of the best we’ve ever tried, long luscious lashes, no smudging, no clapping and an innovative brush that separates the lashes perfectly. Surprise is an understatement. This is one brand that is really setting the bar high for budget beauty brands.
The skin purifier from Clinisoothe is light and airy and cleanses perfectly leaving you feeling thoroughly refreshed and grime free.
There’s a lot of skin peeling socks out there at the minute that promise baby soft feet, however, after trying them all we have found Footner to be the best. We tested over 10 different brands over the course of 12 weeks. Footner gave the biggest peel (about 7 days after application) and really did remove even the hardest of dead skin. Other brands made feet flake a little (it wasn’t just one person testing, we had multiple so all were tried on fresh feet with built up dead skin) but nothing was as dramatic or satisfying as Footner. The best foot peeling product by far and a great gift!
We’d not heard of Illamasqua before which is quite a surprise seeing as though we review a LOT of beauty products however, once we started telling people about them we found we’d been left in the dark as so many already knew about these fabulous products. We only reviewed the eyeshadow palette so can only comment on that but we loved it. Highly pigmented, smooth application and it looks great too. It stayed all night and didn’t smudge while it was easy to recreate YouTube looks from tutorials. They win our best new brand.
We loved the artistry mascara as it created great long lashes with a swish of the wand and didn’t smudge all day. A beautiful mascara for day wear, or, if you do want to make an impact, use a few extra coats for a false lash effect. The design is also beautiful and it looks great on a dressing table.
We’ve had our eye on Delilah cosmetics for a while and are so pleased they’re constantly expanding their rand as they have beautiful products in sophisticated packaging, one to rival Charlotte Tilbury we think. Charlotte Tilbury’s products are nice, but not worth the price as they’re not highly pigmented, they don’t stay on all day and the pencils are only half full and impossible to sharpen (from the eyeliners to lip liners) while the highlighters become compacted and unusable after just a couple of uses.
Delilah is different, much different, soft colours, decadent palettes, powders that last and demure results. They really are one to try out if you love the natural look and appreciate high quality cosmetics that are great value for money.
This would probably fit well in our top gifts for teens guide, however we feel it would really benefit those with adult acne and hormonal breakouts, while also being incredible coverage for anyone, regardless of skin type. That’s why it’s here. Funderm is a new brand of skincare that helps with breakouts while giving great coverage ensuring you look your very best no matter what’s going on underneath. We even found that while wearing the skincare and looking great spots cleared up dramatically. They really are one to watch and a great gift for anyone who suffers from spots.