28 best beauty gifts under £50
From the Fenty Fairy Bomb to Glam Glow's Superstar set, here are the presents she’ll want this Christmas
From bath salts and brushes to hand cream, highlighters, powder puffs and palettes – whatever her beauty preference, there’s a gift to suit. We tried and tested over 100 gift sets and only the most beautiful, best value or useful made the cut.
Bobbi Brown Highlight & Glow Highlighting Powder Duo: £49.50, www.bobbibrown.co.uk
We know it’s not all about the packaging, but when this landed on our desk, it tapped into every little girls’ dream. Remember glitter pens you could tip upside down and glitter settles from one end to the other, or traditional snow globes? This gorgeous gold compact hits the same spot, for grown-ups. The lid contains glitter sequins and fine glitter, that settle from one side to another – this picture doesn’t do it justice.
But more importantly what’s inside? It’s their cult favourite highlighting powder, a pearly pigment-infused luminiser in two suits-all shades; a warm oyster gold Bare Glow and a soft sheer pink, Opal Glow. Swirl with a big powder brush and apply where the sun naturally catches the face.
Victoria Green Kate Beauty Clutch in Starflower Gold: £26, Victoria Green
Victoria Green bags are completely leak-proof, wipeable, they hang up, can be taken apart and they fit actual full-size bottles in. Anything about beauty bags that Victoria hasn’t already thought about, frankly isn’t worth knowing.
This season sees the launch of the Kate Beauty Clutch and it’s a classic Victoria Green with an internal hanger for the back of hotel doors, a removable clear washbag inside for easy airport security, and two extra zippable compartments. All wrapped up in a beautiful, festive gold, geometric print clutch. We think that Victoria Green is hands down the best beauty bag designer in the industry.
Delilah Cosmetics Colour Intense Eyeshadow Palette in Jezebel: £34, Mankind
A handbag-friendly size compact, but with unusually small eyeshadow pans, means British brand Delilah have packed nine shades into the space most brands only put four. Cool toned shades of dusky pinks, gun-metal greys and light golds, in matte, shimmer and metallic textures with micro pigments, ensure the shadows are long lasting with great colour pay off.
Neom Perfect Peace Scented Candle Three Wick: £45, www.neomorganics.com
A great gift for this time of year, Perfect Peace blends pine, myrrh, lime and 25 other essential oils to help ease tension and lift the mood. This is a great candle to burn if you have a house full of guests and the Christmas stress is at peak levels. Or give to your Christmas hosts as a house gift. It’s also available in a one wick version for £32.
Evolve Organic Beauty Calm and Bright Christmas Cracker: £25, www.evolvebeauty.co.uk
Evolve source their organic ingredients from independent producers worldwide and then bottle small batches by hand in Hertfordshire, keeping them as fresh as possible and preserving the natural actives. Evolve formulas are particularly good for sensitive, fragile and reactive skin and are packed with superfoods, natural oils and butters.
With an interest in ethical and environmentally-friendly business practices, Evolve is completely cruelty free and only uses plant-based ingredients for their range. The eco-conscious beauty buyer will love this beautiful cracker containing a soothing, nourishing mini skincare trio of Daily Defence Mist, Hyaluronic Serum and Daily Renewal Facial Cream.
Fenty Beauty by Rihanna Mini Fairy Bomb: £18, www.harveynicols.com
A fun-size, glittering, pre-filled pom pom for instant all over body glimmer with a delicate sweet vanilla coconut scent. This luminiser-packed puff is a limited-edition shade - Candy Sparks – an iridescent pink shimmer. It’s super easy to use, just dab wherever you want shimmer – it gives a really pretty sheen to all skin tones. Perfect for the party season.
Laura Mercier Nights Out Eyeshadow Palette: £45, John Lewis & Partners
There are eyeshadow palettes and then there are Laura Mercier palettes. Each and every shade in this impressive palette is wearable and easy to blend. It includes two nude matte base shades for all over coverage, a dark charcoal for lining the eyes and nine shimmery evening tones for dazzling, smokey, party eyes.
StylPro Limited Edition Glitter Makeup Brush Cleaner & Dryer: £42.40, justmylook.com
This is a game-changer in the world of brush cleaning. No more squeezing out bristles and trying to dry brushes on the radiator before you next want to apply your makeup. This incredible gadget cleans and dries brushes in under a minute using centrifugal spin technology to remove old makeup and then spins them dry. The limited edition set includes the glitter finish spin handle, brush cleanser, bowl and a medium tapered powder brush and stippling brush.
Aromaworks Serenity Reed Diffuser: £35, www.aroma-works.com
It’s not often that we find a reed diffuser that a) doesn’t smell of air freshener, or b) doesn’t give you a headache from the sheer overwhelming olfactory hit. However, Aromaworks have absolutely transformed our opinion of the much-maligned reed diffuser fashion.
The 100 per cent pure essential oils in Aromaworks products sets them apart from their synthetic counterparts. Serenity blends uplifting lemongrass, exotic floral neroli and sweet geranium to bring a warm, energising citrus calm to your home. A great house gift if you’re visiting family or friends over Christmas too.
Molton Brown The Icons Cracker: £20, www.moltonbrown.co.uk
Perfect shape for stockings, or as a table gift, this stunning over-sized cracker contains four of Molton Brown’s best-selling, iconic Bath & Shower Gels. The set includes Rosa Absolute, Tobacco Absolute, Fiery Pink Pepper and Re-Charge Black Pepper. Warming and firey, these are just right for cosy winter bathing.
Cover FX Glam & Glow Shimmer Veil Trio: £20, www.coverfx.com
For high impact eyes, these weightless cream Shimmer Veil shadows are beautiful. Easy to use – a simple swipe across the eyelid – they’re crease proof, transfer proof and long lasting. And multi-use too – you can use to highlight cheek bones or add shimmer to your lipgloss or lipstick. A gorgeous gift, this set contains three of their suits-all shades; rose gold Moonstone, warm peach pink shimmer Soleil and Celesial, an iridescent pearl shimmer.
Charles Farris Pinetum Scented Candle: £34, John Lewis & Partners
Founded in London in 1845, quintessentially British brand Charles Farris have launched a limited-edition scent, Pinetum. Sweet green pine needles mix with cooling eucalyptus and birch leaves on a base of warming amber and sandalwood for a comforting and cosy winter fragrance. Slow burning and long-lasting, if you could bottle the scent of Christmas, this would be it.
Percy & Reed Voluptuous Volume VIPs: £30, www.percyandreed.com
One of the biggest hair searches online is how to get more volume, so this set is probably going to go down a storm with most women. It contains full sizes of their incredible Beautifully Bouncy Volumising Shampoo and Conditioner and Smoothed Sealed and Sensational Volumising No Oil Oil for Fine Hair. Many years of putting lotions and potions to the test on her fine flyaway hair means our knows a good volumiser when she try one. And these products are some of the very best.
Elemental Herbology Earth Balance Bathing Ritual: £49, www.elemtalherbology.com
This is stunning gift set for anyone who needs a little helping hand in relaxing and unwinding, which is especially useful at Christmas! Frankincense, mandarin and cedarwood in the Balance Bath & Body Oil is the perfect blend for clearing the mind, soothing and uplifting the soul, whilst hydrating dry winter skin. Rich in minerals, the Himalayan Bath Salts do a great job of detoxing, easing aches and pains and softening the skin. Light the candle, run the bath and relax.
Bobbi Brown Smokey Crystal Eye Shadow Palette: £35, www.harrods.com
This show-stopping palette contains three velvety matte base shades, two sheer shimmers and three eye-catching, high-impact, glittery metallics. It's a must-have gift for anyone who likes a smokey eye during the party season and beyond.
Kiss The Moon Glow Bedtime Bath Salts: £25, www.kissthemoon.com
Restorative and nourishing orange, geranium and myrrh essential oils, mineral-rich epsom salt and dead sea salt in their Glow blend, ensures these bath salts are a wonderfully relaxing gift for anyone who loves a soak to unwind. A bow-tied glass jar with mini wooden spoon looks great on the bathroom shelf.
Real Techniques By Sam and Nic Everyday Essentials: £19.99, Boots
Makeup artist sisters and YouTube pioneers Sam and Nic have collated their favourite, best-selling tools in one super set. Blush Brush 400 has a soft tapered head for easy blending into your cheekbones. The Expert Foundation Brush 200 is fairly firm bristled, so you can buff liquid foundation into the skin for a really natural flawless finish. The Deluxe Crease Brush 300 has short dense bristles to pick up eyeshadow and get it right into the crease of the eyelids.
The Setting Brush 402 is softer and more fluffy – it's great for adding highlighter to cheekbones and the bridge of the nose. Finally, the Miracle Complexion Sponge can be used damp with your cream or liquid foundation for a dewy glossy look, or use it dry if you want a more matte full coverage base.
Neal’s Yard Remedies Warm Your Soul Hand Care Collection: £28, www.nealsyardremedies.com
Warming orange, mandarin, clove and cinnamon organic essential oils in this hand wash and hand lotion give a wonderfully festive fragrance to the rather mundane job of washing hands. The beautiful blue glass bottles stand in the natural stone coloured ceramic dish, and could make the perfect gift for your Christmas hosts.
Laura Mercier Pret-A-Powder Limited Edition Powder & Puff in Translucent: £36, www.spacenk.com
Makeup isn’t the easiest beauty gift to buy, but you can’t go wrong with a translucent powder for a sheer coverage, matte look. Everyone needs one in their makeup kit to sweep away shine and set makeup in place. This limited edition, rose gold-lidded pot of Laura Mercier's best-selling loose setting powder with a delicate velour puff, does the job beautifully. No weight, no texture, it just sets your face, ensures makeup lasts longer and gives a soft-focus blurring effect.
Bare Minerals Stellar Glow Highlighter Palette: £39, www.bareminerals.co.uk
Baked cosmetics start life as a cream, are then baked and dried out until they look like a pressed powder, but in fact they have an incredible velvety-soft, creamy feel. This stunning six shade highlighting palette contains cool and warm shades including a shimmering champagne, a rosy holographic pink, and soft glistening gold. These clean mineral highlighters are also free from oils, parabens, sulfates, talc and fragrance.
Clarins Makeup Heroes: £24.75, John Lewis & Partners
The perfect party season gift set, Makeup Heroes contains four award-winning products. A full-size Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch (worth £26.50), which combines skincare and makeup with its glide-on texture that fills in and smooths away the look of fine lines and pores. Radiance boosting SOS Primer in Universal Light, corrects, revives and illuminates dull skin and creates a blurring effect.
The texture is light and feels weightless so you can use it by itself or before foundation. Add to the flawless finish with the shiny, smoothing lipbalm Instant Light Natural Lip Perfector in Rose Shimmer and the Supra Volume Mascara in black.
GlamGlow The Superstar Set: £42, www.lookfantasic.com
Glam Glow was born out of Hollywood by husband and wife team Shannon and Glenn Dellimore, who developed a "magic mud mask" to give their actor friends dazzling camera-ready skin in an instant. "The art of glowing skin" is the GlamGlow mantra, and this set contains three of their most effective mud masks.
Two travel-size GravityMud Firming Treatments – one original purple and one pink glitter, which you simply apply all over the face, leave for 30 minutes and peel away to reveal toned lifted skin. And a full-size, best-selling SuperMud Clearing Treatment, which is packed with charcoal to draw out dirt, oil and congestion, refine the pores and mattify.
Ark Skincare Age Defend Discovery Collection: £45, www.arkskincare.com
Ark Skincare have a beauty gift this Christmas for every skincare stage. Age Protect for teens and 20s, Age Defend for 30s and 40s and Age Defy for 50s onwards. Each set contains a Pre-Cleanse & Makeup Remover, Cleanser, Beauty Mist and Moisturiser in a spacious taupe cotton wash bag. For the eco-conscious, Ark Skincare are vegan friendly and completely cruelty free, and their products are particularly suitable for sensitive skin types.
No7 Brush and Wallet Ready for Flawless Brush Collection: £25, Boots
For any girls starting out in makeup, getting a brush set together can be expensive, but this great value gift set includes every brush a novice needs – powder, contour or blusher, foundation, eyeshadow and angled fine liner brushes. All wrapped up in a shimmering, rose gold brushroll case. We love it.
Pixi by Petra Ultimate Beauty Kit 5th Edition: £28, www.pixibeauty.co.uk
When it comes to excellent bang for your buck in the beauty palette department, Pixi by Petra are trailblazers. This palette contains a whopping nine blusher/bronzer/contour shades, 20 shimmery eye shadows and 20 matte shadows, all for just £28.
Rathbornes Luxury Four Wick Scented Candle in Dublin Dusk: £48, www.rathbornes1488.com
Founded in Dublin in 1488, Rathbornes candles are still hand poured there. Using beeswax and premium essential oils, Dublin Dusk blends aromatic smoked oud and cedar with dark spicy tones of ginger, pepper and anise and sweeter notes of patchouli. A real winter warmer.
The Sanctuary Tempting Travel Treats: £16, www.sanctuary.com
This good size wash bag (it fits full size products in with ease), in a beautiful rose gold textured finish is packed with all your weekend away bodycare essentials, including Body Wash, Wet Skin Moisture Miracle, Body Scrub, Luxury Bath Float, Hand Cream and 5 Minute Thermal Charcoal Detox Mask.
Eco Tools Warm Winter Glow Beauty Kit: £19.99, Amazon
Six brush heads, a makeup wedge sponge, a little mirror and a gold reusable storage tin makes this an extremely good value gift set, with minimal packaging waste. The brushes include a classic foundation brush, airbrush for concealer, detail brush for highlighter or concealer, smudge brush for blending eyeshadow, angled line brush for brows and defining the lash line, and a large round powder brush for bronzer, blusher or setting powders.
The Verdict: Best beauty gifts under £50
The most beautiful eyeshadow palettes come from Delilah, Bobbi Brown and Laura Mercier this season, while Neom and Charles Farris have incredible candles for Christmas. For natural organic skincare the Evolve Christmas cracker is perfect and Victoria Green has launched another fabulous beauty bag. But our Best Buy has to be the sensational glittery lidded Bobbi Brown Highlight & Glow, a suits-all, luxurious highlighter to give Christmas complexions a beautiful sheen.
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