When yet another a holiday rolls around, we all occasionally get stuck thinking of shopping ideas for super-picky family, overly-boujee friends, or uber-minimalist coworkers. Show of hands: who else has given what they thought was a perfectly-selected present only to find out later it got put to the back of the bathroom cupboard, never to be seen again, or regifted in the next holiday season?
Giving skin care as presents is awesome. Chosen right, well-thought-out skin care products for gifts are aesthetic, functional, and exciting to receive! What more could the receiver ask for?
What makes it tricky is that the perfect skin care product looks different to everyone, due to personal preferences, skin types and concerns, and budgets . For example, what my Dad and I consider to be good products probably couldn’t be more opposite. This unfortunately makes it seem pretty impossible at first to choose a killer skin care present.
But what if you’re still determined to spread skin care cheer and get skin care themed gifts for a certain someone on Valentine’s Day, their birthday, or Christmas? (I know I want to incorporate my love for skin products wherever I can!)
Don’t worry, I’ve done the planning for you. Below are a few simple logical steps to figure out what kind of gift the person you’re buying for will not only love, but use! I’ve created the cheat sheet for how to pick great products for every different kind of person in your life, based on what they each need. It’s all about tailoring your gift to their tastes, and avoiding what they won’t like!
So without further ado, let’s bring some loved ones over to the dark side and make this Christmas the glowiest yet! Imagine the family photos…
For the minimalist
For: when your giftee is into minimalism, saving time and cutting down on the products they use.
Picture somebody who’s never had the time or desire to invest a lot into their skin care. When you’re choosing a gift for this person in your life, consider that it could be that they desperately need an excuse to pamper themselves while sticking true to their values. Think of the busy self-sacrificing mothers who wouldn’t dream of a long, lavish routine. They deserve a little nudge in the right direction! Gifts are the perfect excuse to get this kind of person some great skin care products and help them feel awesome without any guilt about spending the money or effort. Spoil them a little! The trick to getting them to actually use it (and maybe even repurchase it for themselves) is to find products that will still give them results while using less time and fuss. Think: things that save time by being quick and easy, or multitasking ones that double up as two or more products in one!
Here’s what I recommend you buy the bare-basics lover in your life:
Idea #1: Multipurpose balm/salve/ointment
Whether it’s chapped lips, hangnails, dry elbows, dull skin, or anything else you could think of, a great all-purpose salve will be a staple for the busy person in your life. From taming wild brows to giving skin a subtle sheen, balms are surprisingly versatile in terms of beauty uses. Its multi-tasking properties mean it definitely won’t get forgotten and will probably be one of the few things they actually totally use up! In my mind, nothing beats Lucas’ Paw Paw Ointment or the Original Lanolips 101 Ointment.
Idea #2: Facial oil
It’s a cleanser, a makeup remover, and a moisturiser rolled into one. Plus, it’s luxurious and not something most people think to buy for themselves – win!
Idea #3: Makeup tool cleansing supplies
It’s not quite skincare, but important all the same. And one of these affordable little silicone mats will make keeping the brushes that touch their face everyday a breeze. pair that with some gorgeous brush soap and you’ve got yourself thing time and effort saving, that also improves hygiene habits = an AWESOME present.
For the man’s-man
For: when they’re too *manly* for skin care.
We don’t like to admit it, but what’s on the outside of a product does sometimes count. It’s what you (and everybody else who makes a visit to your bathroom) will see, and, like it or not, make a judgement!
Some people just don’t want to advertise the fact that they’re looking after themselves – I don’t relate, but to each their own. This is especially important for budding teen boys who try not to care about their skin routine (lest they be teased by their friends) but deep down they do actually want clear skin.
You’ll need to choose something with unoffensive, subtle packaging, cool product names – whatever gets the good stuff on their face! Highly effective, targeted products without fluff.
Idea #1: Routine kit
I think that it’s best to buy this kind of person a set routine they can use without thinking too much about what it is or where it goes. But make it special – buying your bare-bones drugstore products might come across more like a hint at their hygiene than a thoughtful gift.
The Ordinary is obviously my go-to recommendation for this demographic. Since first hitting the market, their only focus has been effective ingredients and saving on everything else. That includes using super neutral black and white packaging that won’t stand out on a bathroom shelf. But really any brand that has similar principles of effective ingredients without the fluff – like CeraVe, Kiehls or Paula’s Choice – would be perfect as a gift for the man in your life.
Idea #2: Beard oil
Something with a great scent is another way to draw someone to use a product that they otherwise are wary of. I think a beard oil is the best way to incorporate nice enticing smells, skin hydration, and ‘manly’ facial hair care all into one great present.
For the big spender
For: when your target’s tastes are… expensive.
This person knows what they like and probably already has it. Their skin care cupboard is stocked, and they’re most likely used to higher-end brands. And most likely, you might not be able to match what they’ve got. So what do you give to the person who has everything?
For this kind of person, you’ll have to think outside the box, about what they likely won’t already have but will complement and supplement their existing routine.
My suggestion is finding some luxurious-seeming skin care tools to support their pamper nights. A jade roller or other face massager, fluffy headband, LED light all tick the luxury box and are unusual enough where most people won’t have bought them for themselves. There’s endless things to choose from, but here are some suggestions to get you started – get ready to surprise them with something awesome and glam!
Idea #1: Face massager
Be it gua sha, a jade roller, or a gold bar, massage tools are one of the hottest skin trends. Whether they do much is debatable, but they sure feel nice and get that blood flow going. it’s a super relaxing experience and something that will feel super luxury without draining your wallet dry!
Idea #2: Clinical tools
My personal favourite idea of the lot is purchasing someone an at-home treatment tool, like one they’d find in an aesthetician’s office. I’ve already posted my review of at-home LED light therapy, but there’s al manners of other facial treatment tools you can buy for at home use. If your giftee loves skin care and trying new and exciting treatments, these will be the perfect gifts for them!
Idea #3: Spa headbands
Fluffy headbands are a go-to spa staple. Practical in keeping hair off the face, and otherwise just for luxury and looks, this gift’s sure to please the person who appreciates the finer things in life.
Idea #4: Travel sets/minis kit
If there’s no keeping them from those luxury brands (and price tags) or if they’re someone who’s routine is already set, the perfect compromise is gifting a set of trial-size products. A high-end sample pack such as mini-masks or travel items that looks more expensive than it is will satiate their luxury desires without breaking the bank. That way, it’s the quality they except without you purchasing any full-size products they might not like and wasting all that money.
For the rest
For: when you’re short on time and need a one-size-fits-all present STAT without fretting over the details.
I’ve got the perfect thing.
Some people who might benefit from this particular gift include:
- a preteen who might have questions about skin care but doesn’t want to ask their parents (save them before seabreeze alcohol-based toner and lemon juice ruin their barrier!)
- If they’re the kind of structured person who loves to devour all the knowledge, read, research and follow a guide
- If they’ve picked up some shitty skin habits (baking soda scrubs, anyone?)
- or if they’ve not yet picked up ANY skin care habits (gasp)
- any of the above mentioned people and more
Idea #1: The Strategic Skin Guide
The Strategic Skin guide is the perfect present. Think of it as the boiled-down essentials of skin care in a 10,000 word 80 page wonder. Digestible, logical explanations and over 10 interactive pages to draw out your own personalised skin care plan. It’s like a personal valet to the skin care world.
You’ll get instant access to this fun and educational workbook that empowers the reader to take charge of their own skin care journey. Let your giftee gain the knowledge to pick their own products and develop a good routine that will last a lifetime.
PLUS it’s the most affordable thing on this list. And there’s no shipping time or lining up in store, making it the perfect last-minute gift idea.
(Not got anyone in mind? I’d also even recommend just buying it for yourself as a treat!)
Need I say more? See the sneak peek and read more about what’s inside over here.
Final sensitivity note:
Most importantly, with any of these gifts and others in the self-care toiletries arena, I think it’s important to also including in a card or note why you think they’ll enjoy the products. Make sure NOT to bring up anyone’s flaws or hygiene. What not to write: “Hey, I think your acne is looking pretty bad. Maybe this will fix it.”
Explain that you love skin care and think they’ll really enjoy using this product, it smells good/feels good/is cute, and they deserve to feel pampered and it will do [insert whatever is does] for them! And let them know you’re there to ask any skin care questions – half of the gift is sharing your enthusiasm for your hobby and knowledge.
Happy present purchasing!