Foolproof Beauty Gifting (Last Minute!)

I’m moving Wednesday’s post to Tuesday due to its urgent nature. Did you wait until zero hour to accomplish your holiday shopping? Or did you maybe think you were done only to realize, “Damn! I forgot someone,” where that someone happens to be a beauty enthusiast? You’re down to the wire.

Buying foundation or concealer for your recipient is generally a bad idea unless you know their EXACT shade or unless you leverage an e-Gift feature like Urban Decay’s that let’s the recipient pick their shade. Lipstick can be equally challenging because subtle nuances can take a product from wearable to NOPE pretty easily (but this 4pc Clinique Honey, Honey set [$25] is a safe bet!).

I got you. In addition to the guide I did a couple weeks ago, I’ve put together a foolproof beauty gifting guide. Most of these products can be purchased from retails offering shipping in time for Christmas to save your ass, and the ones that aren’t are available at retailers. Buy online and pickup in store where possible to save your sanity, and to also reap the benefits of eBates.


A prestige or luxury mascara is a good place to start. Mascara is interestingly polarizing. Some swear that Dior is the best in all the land and eagerly shell out $ per tube in spite of the fact that you must replace it every 3-6 months. Others, like me, say, “Nope, the $8 drugstore tube does plenty good,” especially considering its lifespan. Where to start?


Burberry’s beauty line has been killing it. I haven’t tried Bold Lash ($29) but man, that packaging. For most of us, this is one of the few forms in which Burberry would be accessible.

On the topic of packaging, wtf Guerlain. The signature Burberry plaid wins, to me, but Cils D’Enfer – So Volume ($32) has an awfully luxurious and chic tube. They also appear to be marketed by a shiba inu. So volume, very lashes, wow.

I trust Lisa Eldridge. Unlike so many other popular beauty, “personalities,” these days, Lisa is an actual makeup artist who works not only on real people but has an impressive resume in general. Lisa regularly talks about Armani Eyes to Kill ($32).

Diorshow ($28.50) and Lancome Hypnose ($27.50) are cult favorites, too. As for me, if I’m splurging on mascara for myself, I’m reaching for bareMinerals Flawless Definition ($19) I love the stuff.

Worst case, you show that you pay attention and know they like luxe mascara. Best case, you get them something they likely wouldn’t buy themselves!


Was anyone surprised to find a beautyblender on this list? You shouldn’t be. They’re a good tool – and their usual price makes them something that someone may shy away from getting for themselves. If they wouldn’t? There’s no such thing as too many; like mascara, they must be replaced at a certain interval. This set ($40) that includes two, one micro-mini, and a blendercleanser is a solid value.

The Color Switch ($18) is another convenient tool that any beauty enthusiast could use.

Lash Curlers come in all price ranges, but if you’re gifting, the one curler to rule them all ($20).


Can also be tricky unless you’re very aware of that person’s skin type. This is where sets can really help you out.

Moisture Surge is a savage at combating dryness – even those with usually balanced skin can find their faces a bit parched in Winter, so this little Clinique set ($18) can go a long way in helping.

This little guy is NOT heavily advertised, but this LUNA Go (reg $99, on sale for $75) is what I would purchase when my LUNA Mini is ready for the metaphorical glue factory.

Everyone can use some vitamin C in their life. Ole Henriksen’s Truth Serum ($48) will help brighten and boost collagen production.


I’m no hair wizard. I wish hair competency was giftable. Until it is…

2016 Holiday Gift Guide - The Wet Brush Bombshell Blue

A Wet Brush, obviously. Or a dozen. They’re the best.

Kenra 25 ($17) is the volume hairspray. Humidity proof, even windproof, this is what the volume worshipper needs.

Ficcare Maxima

I hesitated in sharing this, but some of the best gifts are the ones we might usually balk at buying for ourselves. Ficcare makes legendary hair clips. The Ficcare Maximas ($54-58) are large enough and strong enough and durable enough to hold up a french twist made up of waist-length hair. The springs are sturdy, and there are reports and reviews of these clips lasting 10+ years. I’ve been test driving the concept with a cheap one from Karina, and have decided, personally, that I would love one. Now, only to pick a color…


Duh. It really is a good gift. You can enter to win one here – hurry though, there’s only a couple days left. If you prefer not leaving things up to chance, Sensationail starter kits range between $22 and $25; the Polish-to-Gel starter kit is $23. (See my Polish to Gel review here.)

Essie Apricot Cuticle Oil

Cuticle Oil – Essie‘s is nice ($9), and SolarOil ($11) is a popular choice. Or you could be adorable and make your own.

Dr Scholls Paraffin Dip

You know how a paraffin dip costs an extra $10 more at a nail salon? This warmer ($39) costs what four dips do – and your recipient will get more than four dips out of the included wax. My parents got this for me several years and it is still going strong. I love the damn thing. My favorite replacement wax is this peach paraffin ($7) from GiGi. Their lavender ($7) is nice too.

The Bottom Line

I hope this foolproof beauty gifting guide helps you out with your shopping. If you don’t have anyone else to shop for, consider treating yourself in a week or two for surviving Holiday 2016…or as a way to blow some gift cards. Good luck!