When it comes to gift-giving, it’s absolutely the thought that counts. But let’s be real: Nothing says “happy holidays” like buying a loved one – or the woman who has everything – enough makeup and skincare to last them through the next three Decembers. Our top pick of the best beauty gifts are so perfect, there’s no need to include a receipt. They’re destined to win a special place in even the most impossible-to-shop-for friend’s heart – get those credit cards ready!
Stocking stuffer: Skin Creamery Slow Beauty Collection
This set of mini-sized products is everything needed to get healthy, hydrated skin. It has three products inside – the beloved Deep Cleansing Powder, Facial Hydrating Oil and Wildflower Water-Cream – that tackle dryness, yes, but also improve the look of uneven texture and discolouration. We’re particularly big fans of the Facial Hydrating Oil, an omega elixir for dewy, radiant skin that nourishes tired skin and turns a dry complexion into a moisturised one. There’s also little not to like about the Wildflower Water-Cream. The featherlight hydrator smells just like wildflowers, which makes sense because that’s exactly what it is: A beauty elixir loaded with indigenous botanicals that coddles dry skin back to health.
R350 from www.skincreamery.co.za
Gift: ghd Platinum+ Hair Straightener in Iridescent White
Encouraging us to gift like a queen, ghd’s Wish Upon a Star collection is gorgeous and perfect for gifting this Christmas. While we can’t imagine any queen doing her own hair, it’s safe to say that this limited-edition hair straightener is worthy of tending to a royal coif. In a coat of iridescent white – the colour of stardust – with soft gold accents, this is a miracle of a flatiron. Featuring ultra-zone with predictive technology that senses your personal hair needs, the tool moves effortlessly across your hair and actually makes it feel silky smooth once you’re done ironing. It can also be used to create bouncy curls or dreamy waves. It’s packaged in a luxurious midnight blue vanity case, fabulous for holiday getaways.
R3,400 from www.ghdhair.com
Stocking stuffer: Lush Little Snow Fairy
Some of Lush’s favourite bath bombs and shower gels are back for the holidays! Christmas bath or shower, this hot pink Snow Fairy gift set consisting of a bath bomb and shower gel will bestow you with bubblegum sweetness and candy floss concoctions. It will take your standard soak to the next level and give you totally new reason to get excited for shower time, while leaving you with a lingering, sweet candy scent. This ethical gift is made of a 100% recycled board inner box, 100% recycled and recyclable foil finish paper that can go in paper recycling and printed ribbon made from recycled plastic bottles. Tip: Store it in a cool, dry place away from prying eyes before placing it under the tree.
R235 from Lush
Gift: Jo Malone London Midnight Musk & Amber Cologne
With its stylish fluted glass bottle and crystal-cut cap, this cologne is the star of Jo Malone London’s festive collection this season. Inspired by the glamour of the 1920s, it’s a warm and sensual scent that begins with gin-like juniper berry along with a twist of orange. We’d describe it as almost like a gin and tonic with an orange wedge in place of the lime, with notes of midnight musk, amber and mandarin. If you like your fragrances pretty and sweet, this is just for you! It reminds us a little of White Moss & Snowdrop from last Christmas with a hint of Vanilla & Anaise, and perhaps Velvet Rose & Oud or Rose & Magnolia too. A lovely scent to wear to holiday parties as it’s neither too heady nor too cloying.
R2,100 for 100ml from Jo Malone London
Stocking stuffer: Wet Brush Limited-Edition Detangler
You can use all the hydrating shampoos and deep-conditioning treatments in the world, but this detangling hairbrush is what separates good hair from great hair. Available in beautiful tonal marble patterns and flower colourways, the fancy limited-edition brush will give you even fancier hair with its gently detangling, ultra-soft IntelliFlex bristles that glide effortlessly through wet hair and knots with minimal force. This flexibility prevents any snagging and allows for a gentler detangling experience, while protecting against split ends and breakage. Plus, it’s extremely lightweight with a curved, ergonomically-designed handle, so it’s a great travel companion to maintain smooth, tangle-free hair.
R99.99 from Clicks
Gift: Chick Cosmetics Skin Bar Mini Beauty Fridge – Pink
Sure, a fridge might be intended for beverages, but a skincare fridge makes a lovely addition to any vanity display and is the perfect place for stashing face masks and eye creams to keep them extra-cold and refreshing. Besides boasting a stylish bubblegum pink design, chilling your skincare products in this mini skincare fridge can actually benefit your skin. Not only can skincare products – think serums, gels and face mists – benefit from being stored in the fridge, cold products also have the most benefit when you’re looking to reduce dark under-eye bags or puffiness. Oh, and did we mention that it comes with a removable shelf as well as a door shelf that’s perfect for cooling down sheet masks and jade rollers?
R1,950 from www.chickcosmetics.com
Stocking stuffer: The Body Shop Warm Vanilla Little Gift Bag
The Body Shop’s special edition Warm Vanilla range has the most decadent, dessert-like scent made with vanilla extract from Madagascar. Featuring a range of skin-nourishing goodies – a shower gel, exfoliating scrub, body yoghurt and hand cream – packed into a fabric gift bag, this gift set is a grownup beauty buy for sugar addicts. The shower gel provides a rich, foaming lather to cleanse from head to toe, while the body scrub is one of the best-smelling in the biz, with an absolutely delicious scent that’s notable as soon as you open the lid. Trying to tame your sweet tooth? Get your fix with the ultra-indulgent body yoghurt and hand cream instead. For days when you want to smell good enough to eat!
R395 from The Body Shop
Gift: NUXE Huile Prodigieuse Florale Gift Set
A true treat for the skin from head to toe, this gift set includes a 100ml Huile Prodigieuse Florale multipurpose dry oil, Florale scented shower gel with sweet almond oil, Crème Prodigieuse Multi-Correction Gel Cream and Florale scented candle. If you’re looking to dial up the decadence of your daily rituals, the body oil, which can be used on the body, face and hair, is the perfect place to start. Luxurious yet lightweight, the silky skin illuminator offers the ability to spritz hydration straight onto skin, while also imparting a fragrance with fresh, floral notes. The candle smells just like the body oil and burns beautifully – but they’re only available once a year in the Christmas Gift sets, so don’t miss out!
R1,075 from select Woolworths, Truworths and Foschini stores
Stocking stuffer: Curaprox BE YOU Toothpastes
This range of toothpastes is worthy of the Instagram age and turns the mundane task of personal hygiene into a luxury experience. There are six different zesty flavours and vibrant colours: Rising Star (grapefruit and bergamot), Pure Happiness (peach and apricot), Candy Lover (watermelon), Challenger (gin and tonic and persimmon), Daydreamer (blackberry and liquorice) and Explorer (apple and aloe vera). The idea behind is that you can choose a flavour or colour according to your mood and have fun while brushing your teeth. Our favourites are the sweet, icy and fresh watermelon as well as the blackberry and liquorice, which can only be described as sumptuous luxury in a toothpaste.
R220 each from www.curaprox.co.za
Gift: SKOON. The Dream Team
Yes, skincare is a basic necessity, but it can also make a fabulous gift. After all, who wouldn’t want to get that fancy face cream that they normally wouldn’t buy for themselves? A glowing complexion can be just one present away: Including the Wow-Wow Wonder hydrating serum and Retinal 0.1% resurfacing cream, this festive gift from SKOON. will please the skincare junkie on your list. A healthy dose of good-for-your-skin vitamin C in the morning and a dollop of vitamin A in the evening … what could be more perfect? Dull skin will literally transform in front of your eyes (all while delivering the perfect amount of moisture, of course) when these two products are used together, making them worth every last penny.
R899.90 from www.skoonskin.co.za