Holiday Gift Guide 2018

It’s that time again! Cheesy movies abound on TV, radio stations play the same 12 songs on repeat, and anyone hosting a gathering is frantically cleaning and decorating their house. To help you find the perfect item for everyone on your list, I’ve put together a gift guide filled with my favourite products from this year.

Holiday Gift Guide 2018 | Toronto Beauty Reviews

{TBR Holiday Gift Guide 2018}

Disclaimer: Many of these items were provided to me at no cost for editorial consideration. All opinions are my own. 

 

I’ve organized this year’s gift guide into 4 different categories, and have given you my top few picks in each area:

  • Host Gifts & Stocking Stuffers
  • Beauty Picks
  • Fashion & Fragrance
  • Gifts for the Home

 

Holiday Gift Guide 2018 - Host Gifts | Toronto Beauty Reviews

Host Gifts & Stocking Stuffers

These are the gifts you need for a Secret Santa party, gatherings with friends, or a small item to thank a host for inviting you over. They are often less expensive than other items on your list, but that doesn’t mean they can’t still be thoughtful and special!

L’Occitane Festive Crackers: Crackers are a tradition at our family gatherings, but the fun of popping them is often countered by a slightly underwhelming “prize.” With L’Occitane’s gorgeous cracker set, however, the beautiful design is topped only by the fabulous item inside! Open one to find a travel size of one of the brand’s top sellers, like Lavender Bath & Shower Gel or Cherry Blossom Hand Cream.  (4 crackers for $34.00)

Quo Beauty Ornaments: These adorable miniature beauty products are the perfect little gift for friends. With a wide range of items to choose from, you can find the ornament that works best for each person. ($5-$13 each, depending on the item. Available at Shoppers Drug Mart.)

David’s Tea Sets: We recommended these advent calendars ($25-$49) and Hanukkah sets ($20) in last year’s gift guide, and they remain one of my favourites for 2018. With so many different varieties available (caffeine-free, travel sets, sets with mugs, different flavour combinations), you’re certain to find a David’s Tea gift set for every tea lover.

 

 

Holiday Gift Guide 2018 - Beauty Gifts | Toronto Beauty Reviews

Beauty Picks

Many of the items that we review throughout the year would make great gifts for the beauty lover in your life! During the holiday season, however, many companies release special limited-edition gift sets containing bestselling items. Some of our top gift set picks are below.

Stila Eyeshadow & Lipstick Sets: If you’re a regular reader, you already know how much I love Stila’s Shimmer & Glow. For the holidays, Stila has put together 3 top shades in the Shimmering Heights Shimmer & Glow Liquid Eyeshadow Set ($33). These beautiful, long-wearing eyeshadows will be an instant hit with any makeup lover.

If lipstick is the product of choice for your giftee, look no further than Stila’s Kiss Me Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick Set ($26). This trio of lipsticks is perfect for holiday beauty looks. It includes a luscious, festive shade in each of the shimmer, satin, and matte finishes.

Quo All About Eyes Kit: If you’re searching for a gift for an aspiring makeup artist, Quo’s All About Eyes Kit ($65) is an excellent choice. Stacked with 54 (!) eyeshadow shades, 12 eyeliner pencils, and a brush, what you’re really giving is the gift of creative freedom.

L’Occitane Aromatic L’Occitan Collection: Now, while beauty and self-care certainly are not restricted to any gender, sometimes you want a gift specially created for the man in your life. This gorgeous L’Occitan gift box contains an Eau de Toilette, shower gel, after-shave balm and soap, all in the incredibly sexy L’Occitan scent. Black pepper, lavender, and nutmeg combine in this spicy, intriguing fragrance. ($89; contains 4 full-size items).

Farmhouse Fresh Blackberry Lip Gift Basket: Presented in genuinely adorable packaging, this blackberry gift set ($30 USD) includes Farmhouse Fresh’s much-lauded lip polish, plus a coordinating lip balm. Blackberry not your giftee’s flavour of choice?  Beach (dates & pineapple) and Whoopie (sugarcane & Whoopie Pie) flavours are also available.

 

Bonus Beauty Gift Idea

DIY Spa Day Basket: This might be my favourite idea in the whole gift guide! You can customize the contents based on your recipient’s preferences and skincare needs. Another bonus is that you can keep the basket as inexpensive or as lavish as your budget allows.

I’ve listed below some products that would be fabulous for this DIY spa basket. Items marked with an asterisk are ‘clean beauty’ products/brands, meaning they are more natural, sustainable, and/or ethically produced than mainstream offerings:

  • A sheet mask (my pick would be one of Caryl Baker Visage’s new offerings, $12.50)
  • A candle (Dirty Girl Farm* has some beautiful ones, $7.25-$15.50 USD)
  • A loofah (Earth Luxe’s new all-natural scrub mitt* is ideal for this, $8.95)
  • Nail polish (Cheeky Monkey* has a great shade range with some hilarious names, $15)
  • Body wash or a bath bomb (Fruits & Passion’s ALO line has the most fabulous scent combinations, $8.50)
  • A gentle face cloth (Province Apothecary’s organic cotton cloths* are incredibly soft, $15 for pack of 2)
  • Hand or body lotion (basd bodycare* is my ride-or-die lotion, $24.99)
  • Foot scrub (Lotus Aroma’s Foot Care Repair Balm* solves winter-boot woes, $19.99)

 

Holiday Gift Guide 2018 - Fashion and Fragrance Gifts | Toronto Beauty Reviews

Fashion & Fragrance

Clothing can be tough to gift, since it can be so personal. Instead, I find that accessories and fragrances are a more successful gift for the sartorially minded.

Footwear: If you know your giftee is on the hunt for some high-quality footwear, I’d check out brands like Bogs or Naot. Both companies make beautiful and durable shoes that can be worn in a variety of situations. Most importantly, they can stand up to Canadian weather! And Bogs baby boots are machine-washable. Soooo key. (Prices vary)

Tiffany & Co Eau de Parfum Intense: This new release from Tiffany is a fabulous scent. Notes of pink peppercorn, iris, and amber blend together to create an intoxicating and layered fragrance. And, of course, you can’t go wrong with anything inside that trademark blue box! ($90 for 1 oz., available at Shoppers Drug Mart)

Joe Fresh Jewelry: I have consistently gotten more compliments on my Joe Fresh jewelry than on the vintage and designer pieces in my collection! Joe Fresh jewelry is fun, on-trend, and comes in a wide variety of styles. (Most items are in the $8-$30 range. Available online, in standalone stores, and at Shoppers Drug Mart)

 

Holiday Gift Guide 2018 - Gifts for the Home | Toronto Beauty Reviews

Gifts for the Home

Home décor items can be great gift ideas, as they are something your recipient will be able to use even once the holiday season is over. In this list, I’ve also included a gourmet food favourite that will up the game of any home cook.

Stray & Wander Towels: These hand-loomed Turkish cotton towels are beautiful and incredibly soft. They are extremely absorbent (they’re the towels used in Hammam baths), so they work perfectly as hand towels. Even better? These towels are ethically sourced, so you can feel good about your gifting. ($22 for hand towel, $65 for full-size.)

Fabriq Speaker: The Fabriq speaker has been one of the most-used items in my household over the past few months. In spite of its small size, this wifi- and Bluetooth-enabled speaker provides amazing sound quality. It’s also portable, comes in a range of colour options, and is the only third-party speaker with Amazon Alexa technology. Grab one for yourself while you’re at it. ($70 for smaller size, $130 for large size).

Bushwick Kitchen Syrup: Oprah may have put a different type on her famous list this year, but Bushwick Kitchen maple syrup is one of my favourite things. This variety of Bushwick’s organic syrup is infused with rich gingerbread spices, giving it a deep and comforting flavour. This stuff isn’t just for pancakes, either: it’s fantastic in cocktails, over ice cream, and more. ($13.99 USD for 13.5 oz.)

 

We hope you found some gifting inspiration in this year’s gift guide! Do you see any of your favourite products on our list? 

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