I like to think that I’m typically a good gift giver and I do put a bit of effort into it. Buying gifts can be so hard, especially for that person that has everything and especially at Christmas when we’re often buying quiet a few gifts and are on a budget so here are my tips…

Start now
You don’t have to actually start buying the gifts now but you should at least start planning. Write a list of everything that you want to buy a gift for, from your boyfriend to the postman and everyone in-between. It’s also worth working out a budget for everyone so you don’t over spend.

Make notes
This is my top tip as simply going out and buying a gift for someone on a whim is very tricky, especially if you want to make it special. Write down any ideas which pop into your head for each individual person and look out for hints or mentions of items or stores from that person. For example, if your friend mentions she’s been looking for the perfect purse add it to your list of potential gifts for her. I recently saw a few little girls wearing the cutest faux fur coats which I think my younger cousin would look adorable in so I’ve added that to my list of what to buy for her.

Buy at the right time
It’s Black Friday in just a few days, look out for great offers- I’ll be writing a blog post all about it!
Personalised Gifts
There’s something super special about a personalised gift, I think it’s because it (typically) proves it wasn’t bought last minute. Also, personalisation no longer has to cost a lot of money, in fact a lot of stores offer it free of charge during the Christmas period. Alternatively I always find that notonthehighstreet.com offer some beautiful affordable pieces, from jewellery to wall art.

Go luxury
I’m not saying spend lots of money and this idea doesn’t apply to everyone but it’s perfect for the person that has everything. Buy a smaller but more luxurious gift and this works even on a smaller budget. If you’re spending looking to spend £25 often a Chanel lipstick can be a little more of a special gift than a £25 pair of shoes.

Put some effort in
This one is tricky and it’s so easy to just buy something the person will kind-of-like but that defeats the purpose. If you want to buy them a gift for someone it’s probably because they’re someone special so put in the effort and get them something they’ll really like.

My favourite stores to look in for gift ideas are:
Oliver Bonas, NotOnTheHighstreet.com and good old Amazon.

I’d love to hear your tips in the comments! Have you started, or even finished, your Christmas shopping?

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It’s Christmas Eve tomorrow! Can you tell I’m excited?

I’ve finally completed my Christmas shopping but if you haven’t I thought I would share a very last minute gift guide. You’ll have to buy them in-store as they may not (probably won’t) arrive on time if ordered online.
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I mentioned in my recent blog post that I think hand creams are a great present for almost everyone. This Yardley Hand Cream Collection comes with four different scents and is only £10, which is such a bargain!

Olay is such a popular brand in my family and I love this little Regenerist Gift set, which comes with an Olay Regenerist 3 Point Age-Defying Night Cream and two free trial sized samples of Olay Regenerist 3 Point Day Cream SPF30, but is the same price as the night cream alone!

Candles always do great at Christmas and I have quite a few to give away this year. The Origins Feel Good Candle is a really beautiful pine-scented festive candle but I also love the Rodial Mary Katrantzou  as it’s more of a fresh citrus scent.

For skincare lovers there’s the Liz Earle The Botanical Collection Nourishing Borage, which includes an Intensive Nourishing Treatment Mask, Sheer Skin Tint SPF 15 and 2 Muslin Cloths. The set is designed to brighten and hydrate the skin, which sounds like exactly what I need post Christmas.

If you’re after a set of nail polishes, which will get you through every occasion, then this Deborah Lippmann Her Majesty Set is perfect. It has 10 nail polishes enriched with biotin; there are 8 colours as well as a base and top coat.
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I love makeup gift sets but sometimes they can be a little hard to get right. However, I think Makeup Forever have done a great job with this Artistic Essentials Makeup Favourites set. Inside there is a primer, powder, mascara, eye pencil and gloss – all essentials for any makeup wearer’s makeup bag.

I love the sleep products from This Works and will be keeping this Sleep Together set for myself, but again, it’s great for anyone that loves their sleep or needs a little extra sleep.

I love Juicy Couture fragrances and the House of Juicy Couture Deluxe Minis Gift set is great for people that are always on the go as they’re a great travel size, or for someone that wants to try JC fragrances before committing to a bigger bottle. The packaging is beautiful and you don’t often see fragrance sets with a variety of scents.

I honestly love the Zoella range this year and think this Let’s Go Places set is extra special, especially for a teen girl. Inside is a shower gel, body cream and hand cream, which all smell great and come beautifully packaged in this mini suitcase.

All the Molton Brown gift sets are fab, I love this Body Gift set which smells of Ylang-ylang and has a body wash, fragrance, body polisher and body lotion. It’s a nice, luxurious gift for a couple or any Molton Brown fan – I would love to have this lining my bath tub.
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Hope this helped with any last minute gifts you still need.

Merry Christmas!

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As much as I love Christmas few things make me happier than summer so when these Nude By Nature sets arrived as a Christmas gift idea I couldn’t wait to share them as they are inspired by my favourite season!

Nude By Nature is an award-winning Australian brand, which launched recently in the UK. It is the number one mineral makeup brand in Australia and they have some great gift kits with lots of ‘good for you’ makeup and tools.

Being an Australian brand they are very much inspired by the Australian landscape. The products are great to add a little Australian warmth to dark, wintery British days, which I find always helps my winter blues. They’re great products and tools to have going into 2017, are all cruelty-free and PETA Certified.

I have two of the gift sets the Wanderer 15-piece Brush Set and Follow The Sun Deluxe Illuminate Collection which I love equally!
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The Wanderer 15-piece Brush Set is a really beautiful, luxurious collection and a very reasonable £65. It has all the tools needed to create the perfect makeup look and is the most perfect present for any woman that wears makeup or eve as a cheeky gift for yourself. The Follow The Sun Deluxe Illuminate Collection is another really beautiful set, inside is a Sheer Light Illuminator, Sheer Light Pressed Illuminator, Touch of Glow Highlight Stick and a Deluxe Kabuki, all great to create a Christmas Glow- and free from any harmful ingredients!

If faking a glow isn’t enough then Nude By Nature also have a Wanderlust competition running! Inside all the Christmas kits is a chance to win a holiday to Australia for two, all you have to do is submit a photo or video to Instagram with the caption celebrating a moment that captures ‘where life has taken you’ this holiday season along with #wanderlustbynature #mebynature. The most creative photo/video and caption wins.

Nude By Nature is available in Debenhams, ASOS and Feel Unique.

*This is a sponsored post.

stocking-fillers
I think I have finally finished my Christmas shopping and I am just after a couple of extra bits and stocking fillers but thought I would share some ideas I’ve had so far.

I’ve been very impressed by Superdrug’s Christmas Stocking offerings this year for both men and women, and actually looking at the photo above now, a lot of it did come from Superdrug. They have great makeup bags, pom poms, affordable MUA palettes, affordable bath bits from Sweet Snuggles and Zoella, as well as the Sweet Shop Jars which I have made my way through rather quickly.

Onto hand creams, I honestly think hand creams are Christmas essentials, most women use hand creams, they’re perfect for any age and affordable. They work as great stocking fillers or smaller gifts for people you don’t know too well. Patisserie de Bain have great affordable hand & body lotions but if you’re looking for something a little fancier, then the tinned hand creams are great. The Body Shop tin comes with a nail file or alternatively the Vintage & Co hand cream is affordable but a really good size.

Another great option that every girl needs are hair accessories, hair clips and hair ties. Kitsch do some really cute options but my whole family are loving Invisibobbles and they’re much cooler than normal boring old hair bands so I’ll definitely be throwing some in for them.

Other great affordable options are lip balms like the Dr. Lipp one, The Body Shop Body Butters and face masks such as the Starskin sheet masks- great for some post-Christmas pampering.

Then you have the obvious socks and chocolates, I personally like my stocking to always have a few useful/must have bits like socks as well as fun beauty bits.

What do you most look forward to finding in your stocking on Christmas day?

mens-giftsAdmittedly, this post is a little later than expected but I’m sure I can’t be the only one that hasn’t finished their Christmas shopping so I thought I’d still share! I always struggle when buying men gifts, most of my girl friends I know would love a new MAC lipstick or an Urban Decay Palette but what do you buy the boys?

I’m going to start by pointing out the blog post is pretty beauty heavy, head to the end of this post if the men in your life aren’t too into beauty as I have some more ideas.

One of my favourite brand for men is Neal’s Yard as I find most of their packaging to be very luxe and unisex, I love the navy glass bottles! The Men’s Everyday Essentials Gift Set has a moisturiser, body wash and face wash, all essential items men will actually use.

If you’re on a bit of a budget Next and The Body Shop have some great gifts. My boyfriend loves The Body Shop shaving items and uses them almost daily so they’re always something I pick up for him but there are also other great sets from them. If you’re looking for a skincare and fragrance set then Next have it covered. Although Next fragrances aren’t the most expensive I personally really like them and are often very reminiscent of other fragrances. This signature set comes with a shaving gel, fragrance, post-shaving moisturiser and a really lovely toiletry bag!

If the man you are buying for is quite into skincare, then Clinique have a few different options to choose from. The Clinique Great Skin for Him would probably be my top pick as I love the toiletry bag and it’s very reasonably priced too! If you’re looking to get him a facial brush then I can’t recommend the Clinique one enough, in my opinion, it’s the best value for money and the one I recommend every time someone asks.

I’m going to be doing a whole post on Christmas fragrance but I have picked out Aramis Voyager and Joop! Homme Sport. Aramis Voyager is a great spicy fragrance, it’s not too strong and a quite a safe bet, especially if you don’t know the man’s fragrance taste too well. Joop! Homme Sport is a great scent for a younger man going into spring especially if he’s a fan of the original Joop!

If you’re looking for secret santa or stocking filler ideas then I’d head to Superdrug, not only do they have affordable pamper sets like the Man’s Stuff one which is photographed above but they also have great novelty gifts. I’m going to pick some up myself for my boyfriend as they’re so inexpensive that you can’t go wrong!

If your dad/partner likes beer then I can’t recommend the Brew Barrel enough. My dad rarely gets excited about gifts but I gave him one for fathers day and he really liked it. I ended up helping him make it and he was surprised about just how good the beer was. They’re reasonably priced, you can pick the sort of beer they like and it’s really quick and east to make. I really regret not picking up a few more of these as I know so many men that would have really appreciated it!

If you’re still in need of idea’s I always find Urban Outfitters have a good gift section, I’m buying my Boyfriend a good coat this year (which I am yet to find) but have previously bought watches, scarves, Playstation Games and shoes which have all gone down quite well.

If you have any other ideas leave them down below and be sure to come back tomorrow for another gift guide.