Last-minute gift ideas for some of the people in your life

The Body Shop Holiday 2014

The Body Shop Holiday 2014

I realise I really don't need to tell you how to shop or even what to buy, but just think of this as the 'Cover Your Bum' list for the time poor in need of a few ideas for Christmas shopping.

The Summer Beach Bag - ($39.95 AUS / $9.00 USD similar) - chock full of Summery/Coconut/Mango goodness. Did I mention the bag is plastered with the iconic Brighton Beach boxes? Heck, I might grab this when I get back from Hawaii to let the holiday times roll on.

Modern Gent's Shaving Kit ($49.95 AUS / $24.00 USD) - I have a thing for buying Scott shaving product, especially stuff that'll leave his face feeling softer than usual. Bonus points if the scent plays well with his cologne.

Keepin' it clean - Vanessa Megan's Lemon & Eucalyptus Foaming Hand Wash

Keepin' it clean - Vanessa Megan's Lemon & Eucalyptus Foaming Hand Wash

Vanessa Megan's Lemon & Eucalyptus Foaming Hand Wash* ($54.95 AUS) - Tis expensive, however if or when this bottle starts riding side saddle to your dish detergent, I can guarantee a line forming at the kitchen sink for the ultimate hand washing experience.

Aesop's Resurrection Aromatique Hand Wash ($40.00 AUS / $39.00 USD) - Another good one for recreating the spa experience.

Other Body Stuffs

Other Body Stuffs

The Body Shop's Body Sorbet* in Strawberry or Mango or Moringa or Satsuma or Pink Grapefruit ($19.95 AUS / $14.00 USD) -  The scents are amazing, but don't count on this formula to bring the moisture at the height of Winter. Stow this bottle away for hot Summer days or warm getaways.

Anara Spa's Coco Mango Body Lotion ($20.00 USD for 8 fl oz. / $54.00 USD for 34 fl oz.)  - If you can't make it to Hawaii, bring Hawaii to her.

Holiday Candles

Holiday Candles

Byredo Parfum's Cotton Poplin Candle ($90.00 AUS / $80.00 USD) - Give me a warm summer breeze over Caramel Nutcracker Hot Toddy any day of the year. I recently splurged on the smaller sized candle (retails for $44.00 AUS), because the shocking price tag of the larger version made my eyes bulge in the most unflattering way. I think I had to scoop my eyes off of the floor before leaving the shop.

Bath & Body Works Wallflowers ($4.95 for the cheap and cheerful plug-in unit and 6 for $24.00 for the oil filled pods) - Fire not required. I picked these up last month in a fit of excitement, but soon remembered the electrickery would not work here in Australia without a converter. Back they went.

Finally, here are a couple of tips from a former retail girl who busted her butt during the height of the holiday shopping season:

  • Asking for my favourite colour won't help your situation when you're told her favourite colour is sold out.
  • The stack of sweaters those old ladies are riffling through might not be the thing to keep her warm.
  • Britney Spears and my Nana like velour. Enough said.
  • If I see your face on the 24th, run like the Dickens to your nearest Tiffany or liquor store to grab a bottle of Veuve, Moet or Ballatore (if you're budget-conscious).
  • In January forgo saving up for presents and agree to put that money toward an amazing holiday instead. I'd gladly exchange all of the things for memories with my loved ones.

*PR sample provided  –  Thoughts and ramblings written here are completely my own.

Beauty in a tick: Becca's Beach Tint Shimmer Souffle in Raspberry/Opal

Becca's Beach Tint Shimmer Souffle

Becca's Beach Tint Shimmer Souffle

A blush hybrid combining the pigmentation from Becca's Beach Tint, a glint of sparkle imparted by the Shimmering Skin Perfector and loads of pearls to give this blush its squishy-like consistency.

Raspberry/Opal

Raspberry/Opal

Swatch of Becca's Beach Tint Shimmer Souffle in Raspberry/Opal

Swatch of Becca's Beach Tint Shimmer Souffle in Raspberry/Opal

This blush is scent-sational (smells like raspberries), and aims to be goof-proof in the application department for blush noobs and expert makeup mavens alike. Personally, I prefer to apply Becca's Beach Tint Shimmer Souffle with a proper blush brush as my fingers have a tendency to deposit too much product in random spots. Nobody likes a patchy/splotchy blush situation.

The soft wash of colour across my cheeks is natural and effortless. An easy like Sunday morning kind of thing.

There are five other shades available for your smelling pleasure if Raspberry/Opal doesn't really float your boat.

Wearing Raspberry/Opal on my cheeks

Wearing Raspberry/Opal on my cheeks

The Bagful breakdown:

Total amount for Becca's Beach Tint Souffle:

Value for money spent (performance and quality):

  • 8 out of 10 bags — Solid, but I think I was too safe with my colour choice. Until next time, Papaya/Topaz.

Would another purchase be on the horizon?:

Gift idea for the traveller, the gym junkie or the hair product obsessed

Dry Bar's Up, Up and Away! set

Dry Bar's Up, Up and Away! set

When I was inducted as one of Sephora's VIB Rouge elite members (in other words I dropped a butt load of money at Sephora this year) early last month I received a fistful of samples, including Dry Bar's Sake Bomb Moisturising Shampoo and Conditioner. The shampoo I found to be pretty meh to average at best, however if you like Pina Coladas and getting caught in the rain, well Dry Bar's conditioner will certainly have you singing in the shower.

You're singing Escape (The Pina Colada Song) now, aren't you?

For kicks I picked up this nifty little travel pack prior to leaving Las Vegas. It was one of those last minute, gotta have it now splurges I didn't mind forking over twenty-five bucks for.

The brush is handy with its rubberised exterior and happens to be conveniently coloured in Drybar's telltale buttercup yellow hue. Short in stature, big on saving room.

As I said before the Sake Bomb moisturising shampoo is counter-productive with its ability to leave your strands feeling raw and stripped after washing. The conditioner though, is luxurious, moisturising and makes for a silky situation.

Finally, the Detox Dry Shampoo is the bottled dessert looking to coax the grit, grease and grime out of your hair. Its scent is heavenly, think tawny port or pralines drenched in caramel. If you or your friend has medium brown to black hair, get ready to massage/brush out the white residue left behind after application. The extra elbow grease might be a major detractor for some. 

TSA Approved, under thirty dollars and covers the Gift Giving Guidelines*.

*Gift Giving Guidelines (GGG): 

  • Is it appropriate for the recipient? Got a balding Grandpa? Then he might not appreciate the Dry Shampoo as much as your Aunt Pearl.
  • Is it a sensible price point in that it won't break the bank for you and also won't make your friend feel guilty for not dropping as much coin on you.
  • Does it pass the "I would totally buy this for myself" test?

Red-y for the holidays?

Red, red, red.

Red, red, red.

Lots of things scare the crap out of me, like curling wands without clamps, crying babies and flying over the Pacific Ocean on my own. Red lipstick was once on the 'scary list' and occasionally lumped in the 'too hard basket'. Red lipstick is tricky, but when it's executed beautifully all bets are off.

It's December, so let's throw caution to the wind just this once. Dust off that tube of red lipstick and scrub those lips smooth for your best pout yet.

Without further ado, here are a few of my favourite red lipsticks working from wicked cheap to super luxe.

Rimmel's Kiss of Life ($12.95 AUS / $4.97 USD) - a rich, matte formula that'll last 'til the end of time.

MAC's Ruby Woo ($16.00 USD / $36.00 USD) - the lip pencil version of this classic red is my personal fave. Be sure to pick up the Keepsake Red Lip Bag before it sells out!

Illamasqua's Maneater ($25.00 AUS / $24.00 USD) - A red you have to work hard for, but it's totally worth it.

Burberry's Fuschia Pink ($30.00 USD / $50.00 AUS) - the motley crew of reds. Pink sentimentality with a cherry red twist.

Red Lipstick.jpg

Which shade of red lipstick do you like to reach for?