The Ultimate Gift Guide
Christmas is coming!!! In case you didn't already know, I LIVE for the Holiday Season! (Hence the 'LouWho' in my name) My favorite part of the holidays is shopping for presents- I specialize in getting people things they need, but had no idea they needed-know what I mean?
For instance last year I got my dad (AKA- The King of Kitchen Gadgets) a Pizzazz. He wasn't all that impressed when he opened it, but uses it a couple times a week now! He says it's like magic heating up crispy leftovers. So this year, I want to help you all find the "Pizzazz" for the people in your lives! I've grouped my gift recommendations into a few categories below, based on the kind of gift and the kind of person it is for. I've got to put the disclaimer in here that none of the companies below are paying me to say that I love these products, I have either gotten them as gifts or bought them for myself or others and fell in love with them. So without further ado, let's get the gift-giving started!
What to get....
For the person who already has it all:
iFindYourGreats has adorable family tree templates if you already have your family's info and just want to put it in a good format for framing. They also have a genealogist who will do the custom research for you. I had my family tree done a few years ago and they found all kinds of amazing information about my grandparents and great grandparents who had passed away before I was born. I found out I was named after a great Aunt that I had no clue even existed!
I stumbled on RKArtwork's custom artwork on Riawna Capri's instagram account one day. She had plates with her dogs painted on and I thought it was just awesome. I looked them up on Etsy and was excited to see how reasonably priced they are! Of course, I have a mug with my cat Watson's face on it :)
3. Wood Watch
If you follow me on instagram you've probably seen the Jord Watches I wear and maybe even participated in a few giveaways! I was skeptical before I got my first watch, I thought it might look cheap since it was wood and not metal, but the wood is SO luxurious. Everywhere I go I get stopped and complimented on it. This is great for a men's gift too, puts a fun spin on a classic gift. My favorite that I own is the Zebrawood Frankie series which is an extra $30 in their Black Friday sale! The face is nice and small for my little wrists and it is light enough that I almost forget I'm wearing it.
For Teachers and Secret Santa gifts:
Another thing you may have caught if you follow me is that I REALLY (like, REALLY, really) love earrings. And one pair of earrings that you can't go wrong with are studs. These Stella & Dot studs come in a few different hues to meet your giftee's personality :)
I've gotten these for coworkers before in Florida and they came shipped in really cute little lunchboxes to keep them cool! I've got to say their Inspiration Box is my favorite one they sell- it comes with a variety of flavors and saying printed on them like "Good Vibes Only". And if you've never tried a macaron, go ahead and order yourself a box because they are RIDICULOUSLY good... and addicting... and gluten free (what more could you ask for?) plus you only live once.
6. Bath Bombs
Last year I decided I was going to make all of my friends homemade peppermint bath bombs (because Christmas) that were white (because they looked like snowballs). I used this recipe (I'm not sure if you call things that aren't edible 'recipes', but whatev) that I found on Pinterest of course and I lovvvvvved it. Make sure the ornament mold you get is big enough, last year the first ornament mold I got was more of a foot-soak bath bomb than a full bath bomb. You're whole house will also smell like peppermint so be prepared!
For Stocking Stuffers, aka: Everything Mini!
I admit it, I have seen these in beauty supply stores pretty much my entire life and never bought them because I just KNEW they didn't work. Fast forward to last week when I was binge shopping at Ulta (I'm not proud of it- but I'm not ashamed of it either :P) and I found myself in... dun, dun, dun.... the checkout aisle! Now if you shop at Ulta or Sephora you know just how dangerous those minis in the checkout aisle can be! I walk in for one item and suddenly I grab 5 more off of those stands while I'm waiting for the next cashier (smart play on their part). Well last week, I don't know what got into me but I grabbed this set of Nail Appliques! Maybe it was the clean graphics on the packaging, maybe it was the gold glitter in the nail design- I'm not 100% sure but I got them! And that same night I sat down in my living room with my sister and a glass of wine and I told her I was going to put them on (and then we laughed for 5 minutes because we were just THAT doubtful). Would you believe me if I told you I got both hands done in under 10 minutes, no bubbles underneath, on straight and they've lasted over a week now! Yes, I'm just as shocked as you are, but you better believe I'll be back there soon to stock up on some more!
8. Lip Kits
When it comes to lip colors, I'm not a huge fan of the peachy or pink shades which seem to be some of the most popular. I'm a berry, brown, greige lip kind of girl and most of my favorite shades are from Kylie Cosmetics. I've ordered both lip kits and sets from their site and I really like how the lip kits come with matching pencils and liquid lipstick so you don't have to guess which ones match the best. My favorite shade is a dark nude called Dolce K.
I am a massive fan of R+Co hair products, I have yet to meet one that I didn't like. I do have my favorites though, and luckily for you they come in travel sizes to fit perfectly in those stockings! If you click here and create an R+Co account (it's free) you can get $10 off an order of $50 or more, plus free shipping!). Some of my favorites to look out for are: Mannequin Styling Paste- this is the Holy Grail of pastes in my opinion. It has just the right hold without being sticky. I also love their Analog conditioning shampoo which is great for anyone with pastel or vibrant hair colors that want them to last as long as possible! The High Dive moisture creme is amazing for creating shine in dry, dull hair and the Rockaway Salt Spray will give you volume that you never thought you could have!
10. Face Goodies
Contrary to popular belief, a good skincare regimen doesn't have to break the bank. I've been using AirRepair Skincare and Bonum Vitae face oils in combination for over a year now and I still am head over heels for them. You can buy the entire skincare kit from AirRepair for under $50! And as an added bonus, they have an extra 25% off the entire site for Black Friday if you use code 'BF2017'. As for my face oils from Bonum Vitae, you can get 20% off your purchase on Small Business Saturday from the 25th-27th with promo code 'LouWho20'. Even though they are called "face oils" I use them for so much more- priming my lips before lipstick, on my cuticles, spot treating dry spots, and as a makeup primer. It really does it ALL!
For the best Bang for your Buck:
Can I be honest with you guys? 2/3 of my holiday shopping is for the people I love.... but that other 1/3? That baby is for me. The BEST value sets come out at the end of the year and I'm just a sucker for a deal. Like this one from Drunk Elephant. It's a kit of their best rated skincare items (which I'll admit aren't too cheap) that people swear by. I've been using their C-Serum and B-Hydra Gel for a few months and I am hooked. If you didn't already guess, this one is already in my online shopping cart. ;)
12. Design Me Squad
If I wasn't already stocked up on these babies, this kit would be in my cart too! The entire DesignMe hair line in one kit, and at a discounted price! Every single one of the products from these guys has been developed amazingly. They all do what they say they do on the bottle, but I'm always amazed at how much more they do as well. For instance, the PowerDryMe's claim to fame is that is can cut your blow dry time in half, but my favorite part about it is how it makes my hair feel. It is so soft and light, but not limp once I finish drying. I'm so addicted to it that I almost cried on the last trip I went on after I realized I forgot it on my bathroom counter.
Where do I even begin! They've got the erase case which has every kind of concealer a girl could want, they've got the cheek parade palette which finally puts the anxiety of which blush to choose behind you because it's got something for every look. They've got a kit for soft and natural brows, and they've got a kit for bigger and bolder brows. Seriously, I wonder if they have a kit to get out of student loan debt, 'cuz it seems like they've got the answer for just about everything. Oh yeah- added bonus- use code 'BENEBINGE' on orders over $50 for an extra 25% off
I recently got the All Glowed Up trio of BB Plus Illumination cremes and They. Are. Fabulous. And even more importantly, they make me feel fabulous. I've tried to hop on the liquid luminizer band wagon a few times and just was never really satisfied with the looks. They were always not shimmery enough to wear under my foundation, but too much to wear over top. UNTIL NOW! My favorite shade of this week is Grace, I add a pump to my moisturizer and it makes me feel like my glow could put 9 month old pregnant women to shame. You can shop the kit here at an extra 30% for their Black Friday sale!
PS- Although they don't come in a kit, I feel like I have to recommend the Glitter Lipsticks to you guys too because of how stunning they are plus they're only $12 with the sale that's going on now!
15. Oval Brush Set
This set comes with 10 different oval brushes in different sizes, perfect for anyone who has been wanting to try oval brushes but wasn't sure which size to get! You all see in my tutorials that I use my oval brushes for everything! Spot correcting, foundation and concealer application, you can use it for your cream blush too! The best part? The entire set is under $15! Talk about a gift that isn't going to break the bank!
For the people you want to splurge on:
Sure, you can wash your face the old fashioned way, but why would you want to when you can Clarisonic? I bought my first Clarisonic 2 years ago (I have since bought my sister, my mum and my bff one) and I was pretty skeptical at first. I thought that it was an impulse buy that I might end up regretting... until I tried it. Anyone who has washed their face with a Clarisonic knows that there's just no going back. Sure, it cleans your face, but it also exfoliates and helps battle fine lines and wrinkles and enlarged pores. Luckily for you all, Ulta has a pretty sweet deal on the Mia 2 right now that comes with a mini squad of IT cosmetics skincare! By the way- they've also got an awesome deal on a cleansing brush head and foundation brush head combo here!
Yet another item on my list of addictions! This hair dryer is about half the weight of my last one with double the power. I'm pretty sure I've never even used the high settings because Medium is strong enough for me! If you've got someone on your Christmas list with a thick head of hair- look no further! They'll thank you for saving them time drying and giving their shoulders a break from the weight of normal dryers. They may even be able to hand it down to their kid someday since the motor has a TEN YEAR warranty!
18. NAKED 4SOME
No, no, no I'm not being perverted, unless of course you're talking about Urban Decay's Perversion Mascara. What I am talking about is Urban Decay's NAKED eye shadow palettes. These palettes have been fan favorites for years, and now you can splurge on a kit that comes with 4 of the NAKED palettes in one box! Buying them all together also gets you about a 15% discount compared to if you bought them separately. So if you've got someone in your life who is a shadow junkie, this is the way to go!
Not the point shoes and leotard kind of barre, I'm talking blinged-out satin, patent leather and velvet Badgley Mischka Barres. These sneakers quickly stole my heart the second I laid eyes on them. But that was just the first impression which we all know with shoes, can be misleading. Now that I've worn them (nearly every day) for the past few months I can give you my honest review: I WANT THEM IN EVERY COLOR! Seriously, these shoes hit the sweet spot between sporty and chic and I'm here for it. This is another one of those items that wherever I go people stop me to compliment them. I have them in baby blue satin as well as my personal fave- Misty Rose Velvet. I may not be able to play dress up every day, but these shoes fill that void and just make me happy. And isn't that sort of the point?
Well my loves that is all have for you for this Holiday Season. Wishing you a Merry Everything and a Happy Always!