John Lewis usually builds Christmas buzz with its TV ad. This year it’s doing the same with an advent calendar that’s brimming with goods from Clinique’s Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm to Becca’s bestselling highlighter and a chunky pot of Acqua di Parma soaps.
Available at Johnlewis.com
Among Birchbox’s 25 products, you’ll find a mix of hair, skincare and make-up buys you’ve been meaning to try. Cult hair texturiser Oribe is rumoured to make an appearance, as are brands including Aveda and Caudalie – not to mention a full-sized mascara from Estée Lauder for all-important number 25.
Available at Birchbox.co.uk
Cult Beauty’s first ever advent calendar caught our attention for its impressive selection of products and it’s seriously good value. Coveted brands like Augustinus Bader, Jo Loves, Drunk Elephant and Nars are all inside. Even better, the sizes vary and aren’t all tiny, so you get good testing value. One calendar also contains an extra-special gift of £1,000 to spend on site. Be quick!
Worth: Over £680
Available at Cultbeauty.co.uk
Not only does this make a chic house decoration, it’s packed with both full and medium-size samples, including a large jar of the brand’s cult-hero Pro-Collagen Marine Cream. Last year’s Elemis calendar sold out in just five days. We expect this will be the same because it’s a must-have for anyone who swears by Elemis skincare.
Available at Elemis.com
Harrods hasn’t scrimped on product for its beauty calendar, which is available in store in Knightsbridge and online. There are some seriously high-end options inside, including a Foreo Luna Play, an Anastasia Beverly Hills brow product and Hourglass’s cult Lighting Powder. The whole thing looks and feels really special.
Available at Harrods.com
If you shop at Net-A-Porter, you’ll know about its curated beauty options and won’t be surprised at the enduring popularity of its calendar. The 2019 edition promises everything from Votary’s and Sunday Riley’s silky skincare oils to Hourglass palettes. A great way to test high-end beauty before taking the plunge on full size.
Available at Net-a-porter.com
Inspired by the Northern Lights, this holographic calendar feels festive with a twist. Inside, you’ll find everything from a Huda eyeshadow palette to a mini Tangle Teezer and REN’s beloved Glow Tonic. At £79, it’s still an investment, but one worth making if you’re keen to try some niche and under-the-radar brands.
Available at Feelunique.com
M&S has one of the best supermarket beauty halls, so you can count on its advent to be a real treat. Brands like L’Occitane, Eyeko, Nuxe and REN are all represented. There’s also a mini Shay & Blue fragrance, which is ideal for on-the-go.
Worth: Over £300
Costs: £40 (when you spend £25 online or in store)
Available at Marksandspencer.com
LookFantastic is known for spanning both known and under-the-radar brands. Beauty junkies will love the variety inside this one. Among the standouts, there’s the Emma Hardie cream that is regularly recommended by facialists and skincare experts. You’ll also find Elemis, Philip Kingsley and a mini Morphe make-up palette inside.
Available at Lookfantastic.com
Liberty’s advents are hotly anticipated and one of the store’s bestselling products. This year, there’s an abundance of premium products inside, alongside a handful you may not have heard of before. Our favourite? Le Labo’s Tonka 25 mini EDP.
Worth: Over £600
Available at Libertylondon.com
Housed in a four-volume book chest, this is a beauty treasure trove. ‘Volume one’ contains party-prep treats, with ensuing days delivering everything you need to unwind and relax – think soothing bath oils and nourishing sheet masks. You won’t be disappointed.
Worth: Over £480
Available at Spacenk.com
We were most excited by the exterior of Charlotte Tilbury’s 2019 calendar. Full of festive, glittery drawers, this is one you’ll keep and refill for 2020. Inside, it contains everything you need for party season and beyond. From juicy skincare to must-have make-up, you’ll be able to fill a make-up bag – and that’s before you get to the four full-sized products.
Available at Harveynichols.com
This is a great gateway for trying Diptyque’s top scents. Containing candles, perfumes and scented body care, it trials the brand’s full range. Already a convert? You’ll find all your favourite scents inside, as well as some cute gold tree decorations we love.
Available at Diptyqueparis.com
This classic offering from Jo Malone looks slick and houses everything from mini candles and colognes to moisturisers and body butters. It’s a great way of playing with Jo Malone’s scents and combining them (the brand’s recommended technique) to see what works best on your skin.
Available at Jomalone.co.uk
This clever calendar is eco-friendly, thanks to the re-usable canvas and organic cotton pouches. Packed with all the brand’s bestsellers (including Crème de Corps and Ultra Facial Cream), it comes in a seeded paper bag you can replant into soil to grow glowers. Thanks to Terracycle, you can also recycle each product in any Kiehl’s store. A great, green gift for yourself or a friend.
Available at Selfridges.com
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