Monday, December 17, 2007

Give Skin

Here we are, just a week before Christmas, and Ms. New Beauty still has presents to get. Between long work hours and ridiculous crowds at every store, boutique, and mall that she passes, it's been easy for MNB to completely put off shopping until the last minute. Especially since she's had the hardest time thinking of what to get for her family and friends. But, last week, she went to the most delightful launch part at one of the most amazing beauty boutiques around. gathered some of the best beauty bloggers and online editors at Space NK to tour the site and go shopping at the store. Space NK is much more a beauty boutique than it is a regular old apothecary. The store has such a well-edited and selected collection of the top brands in beauty. Needless to say, the back of MNB's hands were covered in product from all the testing and trying she did. And, whenever you have that many product junkies and outright beauty fiends in one room at one time, you get the best product recommendations. Ms. New Beauty left that event with some great goodies for myself and all the info she needed for a great beauty post just in time for the holidays. And here we have the best products out there to give the gift of beautiful skin.

Eve Lom Deluxe Collection

Skincare is a tricky thing to gift. Give someone a jar of wrinkle cream a few years too soon and you risk telling them they look like hell without actually telling them they look like hell. So, when you give skincare, it is only appropriate to give something uber-luxe and completely universal that anyone could use. Enter Eve Lom.

This was a brand I'd never tried before but apparently, I was the only one who'd missed the Eve Lom boat. This line has such a huge cult following. The sales girl at the store told me that this is one of the products that women try and then can't live without. This Deluxe Collection gives you the best of the brand all in one box and at one price. Included are the cleanser, the eye serum, mask, moisturizer, SPF 15 sunscreen, hand cream and lip balm. The cleanser is the product that you'll probably fall hardest for. It's a very emollient scrub that's used totally differently from most cleansers on the market. On dry skin, you simply smooth on a good dollop of this cleanser and let it sit for a few minutes. This will remove makeup and surface dirt and oil. Then, you use the included muslin cloth and dampen it with hot water. Use the cloth to gently massage and rinse the cleanser away and you have your own at home cleansing and exfoliating facial. The Rescue Mask is just as luxurious and intensely hydrating for dryed out winter skin. This is the perfect gift for your spa-junkie mother or your best girlfriend with the glowing skin.

$400, available at Space NK

Space.NK Luxury Collection Enrapture

Giving bath and body sets as holiday gifts has gotten terribly cliched. People pick up any three body products and put them together thinking they've hit the nail on the head when it comes to gift giving and completely forget that gifts are supposed to make the recipient feel special and loved. I know it's the thought that counts, but if I open up a box of sickeningly sweet smelling shower gel, I wonder how much you really think of me. Honestly, who really wants to walk around smelling like food? Ranting over. Gift suggestion begins.

If you want to give the gift of body care, do it with a brand that is high quality, a scent that's widely pleasing, and packaging that's adorable. This gift set from Space.NK's own house brand is much more like something you'd get after a luxurious spa service and not in a Secret Santa trade. The Enrapture scent is subtely sexy and absolutely pampering. Plus, it comes in this adorable box and not shrink wrapped to a cheap basket filled with tinsel. This is the kind of gift set that any woman, like a boss or co-worker would be happy to display in her boudoir.

$195, only at Space.NK

Laura Mercier Almond Coconut Milk Trio

Now I know I just went on a whole rant about how much I hate those foodie scent bath products. (I know the proper term is gourmand, but that sounds too nice to describe things that often smell so bad). But, at the same time, I know that many women all over the world love, love, love those products that smell like delicious, delectable desserts. My 90 plus year old grandmother loves stuff like that. And, I try to keep my product snobbery to myself. I don't judge others for their taste in beauty (unless it's just downright tacky, but tacky people deserve to be judged don't they?).

So, if you love those scents or know someone who absolutely does, gift them with something that they truly will love. But do with a gift that's far more fabulous than your average drugstore offerings. Laura Mercier's bath and body line feels divine. It would share space in my bath with all my other goodies if I enjoyed the scent. Her creme brulee scent is the most popular, but even in my most non-judgmental state I can't recommend something that smells like frosting. The Almond Coconut Milk Trio has a sweet scent but it's not so overpowering that people on the street will stop you and ask you what you were baking. So you can give this gift in good conscious. And, your sweet smelling grandmother, or maybe even your kids' teacher, will love the honey bath (with wooden dipper!), body cream, and body scrub.

$65, wherever Laura Mercier is sold

Give beautiful skincare gifts, or maybe pick up something great for yourself, but don't forget that Ms. New Beauty told you!

P.S. MNB knows this post was ridiculously late, but she promises the rest of the gift guide will be posted soon. And you know you haven't finished your shopping anyway!


Anonymous said...

I'm with you 100% about bath products that smell like food. Moderation is the key. A very subtle aroma is fine. (Imagine I typed "subtle" in the tiniest possible readable font - my html skills are very sub-par.) Smelling like one worked overtime in the frosting division of a large bakery is just too, TOO much of an assault on the nose. I'm not a product snob, although I couldn't afford to spend more than $100 (if that) per season on bath products. Good product recommendations are much appreciated, whatever their provenance.

Keep up the good work and a wonderful holiday season to you!

SageRave said...

I, too, prefer scents that aren't related to food. Something a bit closer to sandalwood or any other natural scent is better.

Since I can't afford to buy most of the high-end skincare products with great scents, I have to blend my own.

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