Good grooming must run in the family because my 16-month old son, Westley, was having a ball yesterday as I was giving him a pedicure. He wanted to take charge, so I handed him the nail file and clippers (closed, of course) and he was a pro. Look how much fun he’s having!
No matter how much you plan or how good your intentions, sometimes you get busy and you find yourself scrambling at the last minute to finish your holiday shopping. So for those of you who are still looking for that perfect present, I have some fabulous finds for the beauty lovers on your list.
Clarisonic Mia Skin Cleansing System – Jaguar , $129
If you’ve got money to splurge on your special someone, I can’t think of many beauty gifts that would wow more than the Clarisonic. This limited-edition, Sephora exclusive set includes the Clarisonic Mia One Speed Brush, international charger for worldwide use, Sensitive Brush Head, and Gentle Hydro Cleanser. I don’t normally advocate getting catty with the ones you love, but I think that in this instance, the gift recipient would welcome it.
Juicy Couture Nail Polish & Hand Warmer Set, $44.90
Juicy Couture and Deborah Lippmann teamed up on this impossibly chic set of hand warmers and nail polish (available in two colors – black and light khaki). You lucked out by waiting ’til the last minute because it’s now 33% off!
Yankee Candles, $2-26
You know what I love most about Yankee Candle? What you expect is what you get. The scent is always spot-on. And they last forever…or up to 150 hours, to be exact. Plus, they always seem to be having a sale (right now, it’s buy 1 get 1 50% off of the holiday candles). I shopped the sale last week and picked up Christmas Cookie and Balsam & Cedar. I’ve been burning them non-stop – but like I said, they last so long, they’re still full and look basically brand new. Get on this.
Sephora by OPI Glimmer Wonderland Eighteen Piece Mini Nail Colour Set, $48
This set of 18 on-trend, mini nail polishes makes a great gift for any manicure maniac. If you need to stuff a few stockings, you can always split up the bottles between a few of your friends.
L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream Trio, $28
Whenever someone asks me for a beauty stocking stuffer suggestion, the L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream Trio is one of the first things that comes to mind. Shea Butter Hand Cream is the #1 international best-seller from L’Occitane, and one of my personal favorites. Enriched with 20% shea butter, this super-creamy hand balm quickly penetrates to protect, nourish and regenerate dry skin. The scent is light, yet intoxicating. Smooth even the most hard-working hands with a blend of nourishing ingredients including almond oil, honey, coconut oil and antioxidant vitamin E. Keep one tube on your vanity at home, leave the second tube in your desk drawer at work, and stash the third tube in your purse so you’re never without this little luxury.
Tweezerman ProCurl Eyelash Curler, $20
Oh my, gift recipient – what big eyes you’ll have! Tweezerman’s ProCurl Eyelash Curler has a sleek body shape, with a larger opening, that is tailored for comfort ease of use. A narrowed top bar adapts to all eye shapes, and a thick, rounded silicone pad ensures intense, crease-free curl. And you’ve gotta love the color (I can’t be the only sucker for anything rose gold). If you’ve got a couple extra bucks to spend, throw in a tube of my favorite mascara, Maybelline’s The Falsies in Blackest Black.
Urban Decay Naked Palette, $48
Whenever I put on makeup and decide to do up my eyes, I always find myself reaching for the Naked Palette. It’s my favorite eye kit of all time. With 12 gorgeous neutrals that look gorgeous on anyone, you can mix and match to create office-appropriate eyes or sexy, party-perfect peepers. What makes this even more irresistable is that it also comes with a an eyeshadow brush and travel-size Eyeshadow Primer Potion (which every girl should own).When I asked Urban Decay Co-Founder and Creative Director Wende Zomnir what inspired this ingenious kit, she told me, “I travel a lot and I created Naked because I wanted a great collection of easy-to-wearshades at my fingertips. It was so fun putting the shadow shades together and gettingthem in just the right order (you should see all the different iterations on my iPhonecamera roll!). My ultimate smoky eye includes Virgin, Naked, Smog, Darkhorse andCreep!” The equally amazing Naked2 Palette just launched but is currently sold out, otherwise it would earn a spot on this list.
ecoTOOLS Alicia Silverstone Brush Set with Bag, $16
There is a common misconception that a set of quality makeup brushes will set you back a pretty penny. I’ve tried (and own) more brushes than I know what to do with – and my favorites, hands down, can be found at Target! The ecoTOOLS Alicia Silverstone Brush Set with Bag includes five bamboo brushes with incredibly soft and luxurious (synthetic) bristles – nestled in a hemp and cotton bag.
MOR ‘Essentials’ Honey Nectar Gift Set, $22
Since discovering MOR Cosmetics this summer during the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, I have been obsessed with their products…so much that two weeks ago during a HauteLook sale, I bought 10 more MOR products – at 50% off (lucky me!). So my holiday bath and body gift picks are the products that introduced me to the brand. The MOR ‘Essentials’ Honey Nectar Gift Set includes a full-sized Honey Nectar Soap Bar (6 oz.) and Hand and Body Lotion (11.8 oz.). The Honey Nectar scent is one of the best fragrances I’ve ever smelled. I’m not a big honey fan, but the scent isn’t so literal; it also features notes of brown sugar, candied almonds and warm vanilla milk. If you opt to give this gift, here’s a cute suggestion: on the attached gift tag, write “MOR, MOR, MOR…how do you like it, how do you like it?“
Forever 21 Cosmetics Cases, $5-10
This is just a sampling of the super cute makeup cases from Forever 21. For these prices, you can afford to stuff some stockings with these cases – stuffed with more beauty goodies!
“Someday we’ll find it, the rainbow connection.
The lovers, the dreamers and me!”
OPI’s Rainbow Connection (from The Muppets collection) is billed as the rainbow glitter of your dreams, and oh, it is. This polish contains both small and large chunks of multi-colored glitter – blue, silver, red, orange, pink, green!
I had to to turn off my flash in iPhoto just to get a decent picture of my manicure, as all the photos I took with the flash on just looked like a blur of glitter.
This polish is definitely statement-making, and I think it is a great accessory for the holidays. I am considering a base coat of black polish, topped with Rainbow Connection as my festive manicure for New Year’s Eve. What do you think of this polish?
Last week, I found the cutest gift for less than $10. The Homegrown Monogram Mug from Anthropologie makes the perfect present for someone you want to spoil pretty – without breaking the bank. So if you’re still stumped about what to buy your co-worker, kid’s teachers, or bring to a holiday party as a hostess gift – this is it. And if you’ve got a couple more dollars to spend, stuff the mug with a Starbucks gift card or a baggie of chocolate-covered espresso beans!
- HD Microfinish Powder
- Aqua Cream in 13 Warm Beige (champagne shimmer)
- Travel Aqua Eyes in Mat Black 0L (black)
- Lab Shine in Star Collection – S4 (pearly pink beige)
- HD Microperfecting Primer
- Smoky Lash Extra Black Mascara
I first applied the HD Microperfecting Primer, which made my skin feel smooth and wasn’t too heavy. I then applied my regular foundation. Next up was the Aqua Eyes eyeliner (inside upper lid, and on upper lid), which was precise but had smude-ability. I added Aqua Cream in 13 from the liner to my brow bone, and it gave the perfect amount of color and highlight. Then two coats of Smoky Lash Mascara, which I was probably the most curious about. My lashes are long, and hit my brow bone, so at the end of every day I have to make sure I haven’t turned into a raccoon. Finally, I dusted the HD Microfinish Powder over my entire face.
I may be the cosmetics connoisseur of the family, but my mom is definitely the nail phile. I know a lot about polishes and own an extensive library of lacquer, but every now and again I get schooled by my manicure mixtress mother. Her latest combo is a coat of OPI Servin’ Up Sparkle (from the Serena Glam Slam collection) layered over her all-time fave, Essie Chinchilly.
That’s when I saw it…the Audrey Brooke Paris Flat. I was immediately enamored with the Reva doppleganger and rendered positively giddy by the price tag – just $59.95! But would the shoe fit? As I hurriedly removed my Ugg boot and slipped my foot into the shoe, I said a little prayer and…it fit like a glove. Not to sound dramatic – okay, maybe just a little – it was a Cinderella moment.
Alas, I didn’t buy the shoe in the store because I figured I could save more if I purchased online. So as soon as I returned home, I got on the Internet and picked up a black pair for less than $30. As I explained in a recent review of the Audrey Brooke Leopard Satchel, the awesome thing about DSW.com is that you can combine coupon codes. By combining some promo codes I researched online and cashing in some coupons I received as a DSW Rewards member (sign up…it’s free!), I saved $30 and got free shipping.
In addition to black leather, the Paris Flat is available in a metalic leather and a leopard print haircalf. They leopard ones aren’t available online, but I spotted them in the store – just, sadly, not in my size. So I called some other local DSW stores and tracked down a pair in my size – and they’re on hold until I can go adopt them on Friday. I can’t wait!!!
|Update: I scooped up the shoes a few days ago and I am so proud of my purchase. Too cute, right?|
Maybe it’s a godsend that my feet are so fat…because, for less than the price of Reva, I can pick up all three pairs of Paris.