Ask a beauty writer and she might tell you that out of the many, many samples that cross her path, the one thing she’ll consistently keep is dry shampoo (so this one’s great for the beauty fanatic who already has everything). It’s a French cult-favorite that’s especially beloved by beauty editors and people who refuse to wash their hair every day.
Writer Molly Young says of this coconut-scented lotion: “I buy it in bulk and store it in my refrigerator, where its presence assures me of continued corporal smoothness.” It’s ideal for the person who won’t balk at the idea of smelling a bit sugary sweet, and has been looking for a little something extra for their ashy skin.
While some of Cosrx’s best-selling acne- and blackhead-reducing liquids might feel too pointed to give someone as a gift, their snail-mucin essence, which Rio Viera-Newton described as a dupe for the pricier SK-II essence feels like a positive affirmation, as if to say, “Go forth and be blessed with glowy skin.”
One of Rio Viera-Newton’s favorite brands for sheet masks, which already comes in pretty, giftable packaging. This mask set’s packed with hyaluronic acid for extra hydration, but they also sell a nice rose-scented set and another enriched with squalane.
TonyMoly’s squee-worthy packaging makes all of its products a good gift, but its hand creams are especially kawaii, whether you’re more a banana fan or a tomato person (they also happen to make a great pill box).
The Japanese razors that Cut beauty director Kathleen Hou uses to get rid of her facial hair that also work on eyebrows — they’re much more precise than your average Schick razor and colorful enough to make a playful stocking stuffer. (These may arrive after Christmas if you don’t select expedited shipping.)
It will go to work on brightening persistent raccoon eyes (it’s a Strat favorite that both Alexis Swerdloff and Rio Viera-Newton have taken to), but it will also look like an exceptionally indulgent gift when they crack open the lid.
Instead of choosing just one of La Roche-Posay’s cult-favorite French pharmacy products, here’s a whole set that includes a micellar water, a 60 SPF+ sunscreen for very pale people, and an all-purpose skin balm.
This writer has noticed beauty editor friends receiving lots of caboodles in mailers this year, so here’s a nice compact beauty case that’s not too expensive (and also not as kitschy as the ones from the ’90s).