If you have some beauty-loving friends, you are in luck: They're probably going to be pretty easy to please this holiday season. NARS, Urban Decay, Benefit — beautiful packaging housing even more beautiful products as far as the eye can see! You almost can't go wrong.
Charlotte Tilbury Mini Lipstick Charms
These are kind of a must: The packaging is pure adorableness (mini-sized beauty products are my everything), and the lipsticks themselves are super high-quality, not to mention gorgeously-pigmented. The three shades are pretty universally flattering — after all, I think most of us can pull off a rich (and bright!) raspberry pink, and true red’s kind of a given. The lightest shade worked as a MLBB shade on me, but I could also see it working as a great English Rose pink, or a lovely nude depending on your skin/lip tone.
Too Faced's La Belle Carousel
I’ve heard nothing but good things about Too Faced’s eyeshadows, so if you’re like me and want to give them a try, this is kind of the best deal in town. You get three eyeshadow quads, two blush/bronzer duos and a full-sized “Better Than Sex” Mascara. The other fun thing is, you can either give the whole carousel to one lucky friend, or split them up as mini-gifts! Check out this review at the Makeup Box if you’re on the fence, and Candace Chen will fully convince you to buy it.
Paul & Joe Pressed Powder T
If palettes are a little too overwhelming, this makes a wonderfully simple gift. The packaging is absolutely gorgeous (though with Paul & Joe that’s kind of a given), and the overspray of a bronze owl is so adorable, you won’t even want to use it! You should, though: It’s a subtle, luminizing powder that’ll give pretty much any skintone/type a lovely glow (it can be used as a highlight, or as an all-over face powder, and it does each job wonderfully).
Urban Decay: Vice3
So. Gorgeous. Whether it’s this or one of the myriad Naked palettes, I think any beauty lover in her (or his) right mind would jump for joy at the prospect of a UD eyeshadow palette under the Christmas tree — my aunt bought me Naked 3 last year, and it was definitely most highly-utilized present of the year; possibly ever.
Urban Decay: Naked On The Run
Speaking of which… if Vice3 is a little too daring, color-wise, the new Naked on the Run might be a good alternative. Seeing as it houses pretty much everything you could possibly need (blush, bronzer, mascara, liner, lip gloss — and, of course, gorgeous neutral shadows in various finishes), it’s perfect for travel.
Bobbi Brown In the Black Longwear-Gel Eyeliner Set
LE Eyeshadow palettes are all very cute and endearing and all, but if you’re looking for something a little more utilitarian, Bobbi Brown’s your girl. This set features two full-sized pots of her cult-classic gel liner, as well as a mini eyeliner brush and mini mascara for good measure. I might have to buy one of these for myself, Christmas or no Christmas!
Laura Mercier Portable Colour Palette For Eyes, Cheeks & Lips
If your giftee is more of a low-maintenance gal, this might be a good fit. Laura Mercier is known for her flattering neutrals! In fact, this might just be the perfect gift for Mom (if your mom happens to be laidback and slightly makeup-phobic like mine is, anyway).
Benefit's Three Scoops O' Sexy
I could definitely see this making a great gift exchange/Secret Santa gift: the three colors housed are super versatile, and pretty universally well-liked. BeneTint’s a veritable cult classic, PosieTint’s a touch sweeter and almost as cult-ish, and LolliTint is the newest (and trendiest) addition to the popular line. Plus, the three matching tinted balms are amazing: the color payoff is sheer and subtle, but the moisturizing factor is off the charts! They also have the added bonus of tasting ever so slightly of mango (thanks to the delicious mango butter in the formula).
Until Your Dreams Come True: Deborah Lippmann's 15th Anniversary Music Box Set
Here’s one for all the millionaires out there: This $195 luxe music box houses 15 of Deborah Lippmann’s most coveted shades, running the gamut from tame, professional taupe to ultra-girly, iridescent glitter-infused pink, to hard rockin’ black cremes with grungy silver glitter embedded in. There’s definitely something for everyone in here, and it’s kind of the ultra-nail lover’s gift — had I the funds, I’d definitely pick one up for my manicure-obsessed cousin.
Butter London's Steampunk Ball
Is steampunk still in? I’m not sure, but either way, this steampunk-inspired nail set is gorgeous: It includes six shades of varying textures and finishes — my particular favorite is “Barkers” — it’s described on the site as an opaque ”grey with magenta-green shimmer,” and the duochromatic shimmer just makes it magical. With the exception of “Bric-a-Brac” (a mouth-wateringly luxurious red gel glitter), all shades are limited edition! Another keeper for all the nail lovers out there, huh?
Clarisonic Limited Edition Mia 2 St. Tropez
Here’s another one for all of the utilitarian beauty lovers out there: I have (and love) my Mia 2, and these limited edition colors are just too fun (especially with the coordinating travel bags!). They’re also a deal, if the Clarisonic’s rather high price tag was scaring you off — this set comes with the Mia itself, a travel bag, Clarisonic’s gel cleanser, two sensitive brush heads — and a charger, of course.
Marc Jacobs La Coquette Four Piece Favorites Collection
Marc Jacobs is relatively new to the makeup scene (his line debuted at Sephora earlier this year), but he’s already a force to be reckoned with — and this palette is a great introduction to the brand. It has a chic little mirror, an ultra-trendy nude (or as Sephora refers to it, “white cocoa”) nail polish, a black eyeliner, and the prettiest pink lipgloss I’ve ever seen. I’d almost get it for the eyeliner alone, because that stuff has some major staying power, and it’s one of the truest black shades on the market.
Stila x BaubleBar: Sparkling Rose
I mean, does it get any better than this? This gift set certainly lives up to its sparkling name, with its “shimmery rose” eyeshadow, its “sparkling rosy bronze” lip glaze, and its “rosy peach pink” convertible cheek color, all housed a lovely glittery pouch. Add in a $10 gift card to BaubleBar, and you’ve got yourself quite the holiday present!
Smashbox Bestsellers with Photo Finish Foundation Primer
Here’s another great basic (but not basic) set: It’s got all of the essentials, and features some of Smashbox’s best cult classics, such as their famous foundation primer. It also includes an eyeshadow trio that’s just perfect for an everyday, professional look — so if you know someone who likes to keep things neutral, this might be the gift for them.
Buxom's Lip Gloss Roulette
Do you have a major lip lover in your life? Or maybe you have a large group of friends that you want to distribute mini gifts to? Either way, this 15-piece collection (sold through Sephora, and featuring finishes) will make a good impression all around. Besides, concept-wise, it doesn’t get much better than “lip gloss roulette,” does it?
OCC Stained Gloss After Dark Set
Ooh — I’m kind of in love with OCC’s science-y vibe here. The concept of lip gloss in “test tubes” is just plain fun, and I think it’ll play especially well with all of your bio major (past, present, and future bio majors, that is) friends. It includes a lip brush, as well as four shades — three make great staples, but the black shade (“Little Black Dress”) is an innovative overlay color that can transform just about any other shade you choose to pair it with. Should make for some fun experiments, no?