There's no simpler way to say it: 2021 has been a year. And so this Christmas seems the most appropriate one in recent memory to go Full Love Actually and tell the special people in your life how much you love them. Should you wish to do so with a wee present or two, the Beauticate team has got you covered. Each of us has spent time trawling through the very best of what we've tested (yep, we know, it's a tough job) and our favourite items we have bought with our own pennies, and share them with you now in the hopes that you too will find something that strikes you as just right.

Sigourney Cantelo, Founder and Editor

In true Aussie Christmas style I plan to be spending a good portion of it at the beach, so the Hunza G one piece in lilac is topping my Christmas wish list this year. That crinkly fabric looks so comfy and I love that vibrant shade to pair with high waisted white shorts and tan sandals.

I also need a new sunhat for those beach expeditions (skin safety first!) and I spied this lovely one by French Connection – perfect wide brim and bucket style.

I’m planning on doing plenty of entertaining, now that we can see people and I’m obsessed with the In The Roundhouse plates – particularly the Italian and Greek inspired styles. The Grazia Mille plate will be perfect for serving up a juicy buffalo mozzarella and tomato salad over a long, lazy lunch.

Since I’m in the business of keeping other people’s skin beautiful, one of my favourite gifts to give is a great sunscreen. One of my current favourites is Ultra Violette Lean Screen. It’s a great 50+ mineral sunscreen that’s not too greasy and doesn’t leave a white cast to the skin so it’s very wearable. And I love the fun packaging.

Another suits-everyone gift is the Laneige Sleeping Mask for Lips in the new Gummy Bear flavour. These balms are super hydrating and totally transform your lips overnight – or during the day.

Quality bubbles on Christmas Day are a must. I don’t think anyone will question me if I pop a bottle of Ruinart at breakfast.

Tess de Vivie de Régie, Features Editor

I’m not usually one for gift sets – I tend to purchase one well-considered full-sized item rather than a bunch of miscellaneous minis – but would happily make an exception for this elegant duo from By Terry, composed of their cult favourite lip balm and a generously sized, ultra nourishing hand cream. A lovely option for a sister, mum, grandma, or lucky friend (if you’re comfortable with them developing a heavy dependence on the heavenly baume de rose range).

Minis do come into their own when you’re travelling, which – let’s hope! – we’ll all be doing a lot more of in 2022. If your recipient is  finally embarking on that around-the-world voyage they’ve had to park for the past two years, this set from Innisfree will serve them well: you’ve got a full-size of their best-selling Green Tea Seed Serum (which I’ve loved for years, it hydrates like a dream), alongside some plane cabin-friendly miniatures for pampering mid-flight.

I have a soft spot from anything from Anya Hindmarch, and particularly her somewhat tongue-in-cheek but completely practical accessories for keeping organised while travelling. I would love to receive her navy blue Lotions and Potions pouch this Christmas to chicly corral my toiletries, even more so as it is crafted from recycled nylon.

This beautiful fragrance diffuser from Circa looks appropriately festive enough to be unwrapped on Christmas morning, but the raspberry and rhubarb scent can be enjoyed year round – as will its prettily bevelled, flecked-gold receptacle. A lovely choice for beautifying both sensorially and visually.

If I were lucky enough to go full carte blanche this Christmas, I would happily give – and happily receive – these whimsical bow-adorned heels from Jimmy Choo. The black are probably the more sensible option so I’d opt for them in this fantasy scenario, but I love the idea of an impossibly chic bride wearing the white versions on her wedding day.

Zoe Briggs, Features Writer

Banish the yoyos and the weird miniature plastic photo frames from the allegedly ‘fancy’ bon bons on your table this year, and think Australian-made, socially responsible beauty products, instead. The Summer Essentials Beauty Bon Bon by the makers of The Beauty Advent Calendar includes four products from major brands they will know and love (hi, Lanolips) as well as products from more niche brands they’ll be excited to discover (a scrub from Three Warriors is included that uses real Tassie sand).

Nothing says Christmas cosmetic decadence quite like opening a new palette from Charlotte Tilbury. The cheekily-titled Nudegasm Face Palette features two bling-it-on highlighting powders and two to sexily sculpt, housed in a gorgeous, properly heavy, rose gold compact. Santa, baby, indeed.

Which leads me to people who go to bed hot. No, the other kind of hot. If you are thoughtful-present-shopping for someone who schvitzes while they slumber, like my good self does, I can happily recommend the Dry Chill singlet and shorts by the makers of the ingenious Chilly Towel. In terms of sleeping temperature, these are the next best thing to going to bed starkers, while still allowing you to feel both snug and ready-for-any-emergencies-at-any-time smug, the way you nudie sleepers simply can not.

I do understand that a Country Road t-shirt dress might say ‘casual day at home’ more than ‘festive Christmas gifting’ but hear me out – thick, good quality cotton that isn’t hot. A flattering, not-too-short length. Shoulder pads (yes, please, always and forever) for subtle shaping. Yes, I have worn it both running errands in Birkenstocks, and out to dinner with sleek pumps and a red lip. Truly the gift that keeps on giving.

The makeup gift that suits the novice, the expert and anyone in between – of any skin tone, no less – is rare indeed. Be thankful, then, for Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty and their Resting Peach Face duo, which features a miniature (though not too miniature – these are still decent sizes and will last well) Cream Bush and Gloss Bomb Cream duo in enlivening, glow-giving peach tones. The blush stays all day and the gloss isn’t drying in the least. Oh, and the cutest little touch? The gloss is ever so lightly peach scented. Stock up.

And finally, all of that online shopping is exhausting, if only mentally and emotionally, so now you deserve a treat, too. Cire Trudon’s Fir candle may just be the most luxurious ‘why hello, white Christmas, my old friend’ olfactory option you could imagine, and it doesn’t hurt that this year’s vessel is particularly visually decadent; it uses real gold leaf, if you don’t mind. All that’s left to do is inhale the grounding yet fresh scent of a Siberian pine forest and congratulate yourself on gifting well done.

LEAH ROCKLIFF, GRAPHIC DESIGNER

Firstly, a dress for Christmas Day. Nothing says an Australian Christmas like a summery linen dress – I’ve got a close eye on this Posse number. Make it black as I’m all dressing it up with colourful accessories or nail polish.

Palm Beach Hardcover Book by Assouline as it adds that fun and necessary (and on trend) pop of colour in my otherwise neutral colour schemed adobe.

Kristen Ash Intertwine Hoops to of course match the Christmas Day dress!

Charlotte Tilbury Light Wand and Hollywood Contour Kit is the perfect one stop shop gift for your favourite beauty lover. These beauties are essential for that ‘glow’ we all seek.

Lastly, a Marloe Marloe Lucie Vase as the centrepiece of the Christmas table setting, add some Australian natives and pair with a linen tablecloth – voila!

KRISTINA ZHOU, WRITER

For me, Christmas has always been about spoiling others – watching people’s faces light up when they receive a great gift, is a feeling second to none. Whilst I generally tighten the purse strings on my own gifts, this year, I’m going all out and treating myself (you can call it post-lockdown excitement).

Now that the Sydney lockdown has lifted and we’re expected to come into the office, I have been on an endless mission to find a chic blazer that embodies the powerful prosecutor vibe: “Don’t mess with me, I am savage.” And I finally discovered one that fits the bill perfectly: this white blazer from Balmain.

On days where I want to add a softer and more feminine touch to a structured business suit, I opt for this gorgeous Ted Baker Amoria Sweetheart set. The rosy glow emanating from these pieces is reminiscent of a dreamy fairytale, but the minimalist design enables the jewellery to retain a smart-casual aesthetic.

There’s nothing easier to boost your glamour game than slipping on a pair of Salvatore Ferragamo Vara pumps. The royal-esque shoes are timeless and work beautifully to jazz up casual outfits or add an elegant dazzle to already fancy outfits!

Let’s face it: luscious locks can instantly enhance your appearance and uplift your mood. So finding hair tools that guarantee a good hair day is pivotal to me! High on my radar is the foolproof Silver Bullet Hybrid Straightening Brush that straightens your hair, enhances glossiness and tames any unruly areas.  I love that it glides through my hair effortlessly and doesn’t require much effort to transform my locks from dishevelled, to Pantene commercial worthy (read: smooth and polished).

Lastly, I’ve found that using the very gentle WetBrush Exfoliating Scalp Massager (once or twice a week) thoroughly removes any product build up, dirt or oil. The nifty tool dispenses shampoo (you choose which shampoo to put into the brush), whilst giving your scalp a deep-clean.  The effect? My roots are bouncier, more airy and bodacious – far superior than simply using my fingers to massage the product.

KARINA WHARTON, WRITER

Every December I promise myself that next Christmas will be the one that sees me organized, presents painstakingly selected and ordered well in advance, without the annual mad rush to hunt down last-minute gifts. Well, 2021 may finally be the year (knock on wood). I’ve managed to whittle down my list of gifts, all conveniently available online – I may even be ordering an extra here and there to put my own name on!

The first item on my list is an adorable musk-pink velvet jewellery tray. Perfect for displaying trinkets, rings and other accessories, this is a great stocking-stuffer or as a smaller gift for an acquaintance. I love buying practical gifts, and I can’t imagine anyone who wouldn’t appreciate this cute little storage solution.

Next up is a super sweet knitted tennis mini dress from fashionista-favourite brand, Aje. The stretchy fabric and flattering flared silhouette ensures this style will suit anyone. It looks equally stylish worn with heels or dressed down with a pair of crisp white sneakers, and is bound to put a smile on the face of anyone who unwraps it.

Of course, I always have to include a beauty-themed gift. The Dyson Limited Edition Airwrap Styler comes with a matching case and travel bag in perhaps the most beautiful colour-combo I’ve seen: Prussian blue and rich copper. I love to spoil loved ones with a luxe gift, and this beloved styling tool lives up to the hype, creating glossy curls and soft waves without the heat damage.

On the subject of beauty, we know that sun protection is the best step you can to take to keep your skin looking gorgeous (and safe!), which led me to include this stunning off-the-shoulder rashguard  from sustainable Australian label Bondi Born. With UPF50+ protection and a flattering ruched design, this the perfect gift for a stylish beach-lover. It can also be worn as a top, styled with a linen skirt or pants for a chic outfit with built-in sun protection.

My final pick is the perfect pair of summer shorts. In rich russet brown with a flattering belted waist, I love the statement gold buckle and flattering pleated design. The luxe fabric and tailoring ensures these short can be paired with both a simple slide for daytime, or elevated with a heeled sandal for festive get-togethers.

MIKAELA LEZCANO DE ORLÉANS, INTERN

Meaningful and useful – those are the two most important details I’ll be keeping close attention to when choosing a Christmas gift! With hopes that travel pics back up this holiday season, my gifts will be travel-inspired.

That’s why I love the pink travel set from Slip, useful for long flights or simply to use at home but always looking out your skin and hair with its beautiful pink mulberry silk, with the ultimate combination of shine, thickness, softness and durability.

Following is the Coco Mademoiselle Eau de Parfum Twist And Spray from CHANEL, offering the perfect on-the-go use portability and refill options. I see this as the perfect gift for those who are planning to visit multiple destinations and have to prioritise their basics and luggage size, this Eau de Parfum offers both and an irresistible scent that will make heads turn.

A coffee table book is a classic gift that never fails, I have chosen the Thames & Hudson Yves Saint Laurent Catwalk book that includes the history of the house,  a brief biographical profile of Yves Saint Lauren and chronologically organized details of each collection with carefully curated catwalk images of the top models who wore them on the runway. All around a gift that will not disappoint and will look amazing displayed.

The new Multi-use, Dior Addict Lip Glow Lip Balm can be worn on its own as a lip balm or as a primer under lipstick, reviving the natural colour of the lips and providing 24-hour hydration – this is a quality gift that will impress with its new couture case and delicious formula.

Finally, I have chosen the Valentino oVA4063 Sunglasses because we all need a new pair of sunnies for our next trip. The brown, sunglasses with gold details embody effortless elegance, craftsmanship and modern couture, making it the perfect accessory for everyone.

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