Impress That Hard-to-Buy-for Person With the Best Holiday 2021 Beauty & Lifestyle Presents This Gifting Season

No matter what you gift, your loved one will appreciate it, but it's nice to be memorable too.

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Illustration: Eli Orth

If you’re not a gift-giver, the holidays can be really stressful, especially if you have people on your list that seem to have everything. Thinking outside the box for a dynamic friend, family member, or significant other can be frustrating. But it doesn’t have to be. Here are a few ideas to shake up your normal present exchanges and help you stand out from the rest of the boxes in the tree.

Stealth Core Trainer | $119

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Graphic: Sheilah Villari

Got a gamer looking to get fit? Stealth’s Core Trainer makes working out fun and challenging. I’ve only had mine a few weeks, and while I’ll say there is a learning curve, it’s definitely entertaining, especially when you think of it as tackling levels for all the games offered instead of a grueling session at the gym. Download the app on your phone and get connected to a wide range of formidable yet fun games. They not only strengthen your core but your mind too. It’s totally portable and can easily be stored in a closet. No subscription for the basic games is required, but there is a premium option with new games every month.

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SkinStore Holiday Edit 2021 | $150

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This set is fantastic. It just turned up on my doorstep, and I was blown away by just how much was included. SkinStore’s Holiday Edit Box is for your favorite skincare lover. They selected some of my favorite brands and the best products to include this year. Wander Beauty’s Baggage Claim Gold Eye Masks are a necessity for long hauls of winter travel. Elemis’ Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm is one of the greatest makeup removers I have on my shelf. There are altogether 12 items from full sizes to travel sizes to take on the road with you. This package will save you before, and after any holiday event you have to attend. I was blown away by how much it was able to get in here. Light up Nest Fragrances’ Bamboo Mini Votive candle and try to wrap your head around only paying $150 for a box that should be well over $500.

Zodiac Affirmation Cards | $45

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Tarot and zodiac babes are having a real resurgence, especially if that’s your side of TikTok. I was gifted the Leo set, and it’s such a sweet and thoughtful present, especially if it’s for someone having a tough time. Each deck comes with 100 affirmation cards geared to that sign. Each affirmation is created specifically for the needs, traits, and unique energy of those born under whatever zodiac is selected. Help your pal get their sparkle back one encouraging card at a time. This small business has an entire line of items like this to explore. There is also a digital option ($14) for each deck.

Besame’s Nail Care Kit | $52

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Graphic: Sheilah Villari
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Your special someone doesn’t have to be a vintage doll to enjoy this Nail Care Kit from the retro queens at Bésame Cosmetics. Not only does Bésame make top-notch beauty products, but the packing is also well thought out and gorgeous. It also offers tutorials on YouTube to walk you through a throwback nail. This all-in-one kit has everything you need to get an elegant at-home manicure. You’ll get a Hydrating Cuticle Remover, Cuticle Serum with Wild Rose/Vitamin E, Base Coat with Vitamin E/Violet Extract, Quick Dry Top Coat, Polish Rescue, Cuticle Pusher, and a Nail File. I’ve fallen in love with every Bésame product I’ve had, and your loved one will too. You’re also supporting a Latina-owned business where all products are designed and made right in their headquarters in California.

Rumpl Original Puffy Blanket | $74

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Graphic: Sheilah Villari
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If you’ve got an adventurer in your life, anything from Rumpl is golden. I’ve got one of their sleeping bags, and I love it when I go camping. It stays surprisingly warm, given how light the material feels. They are known for these puffy blankets that come in an array of colors and designs. Something for every taste aesthetic out there. They are easy to pack and take anywhere you roam. Rumpl also makes sure the ripstop shell and insulation are made from 100% recycled materials too. Warm, technical fabrics are sewn in each blanket, making it cozy for indoors and outdoors. It even rivels your coziest jacket. There is a DWR coating making it water, odor, and stain-resistant. Don’t hesitate to take this to the mountains, to the beach, or even the living room; dirt, and sand will slide right off.

Glossybox Limited Edition Grooming Kit 2021 | $35

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Boys deserve pampering too. I’m a big fan of the variety Glossybox offers and this Limited Edition Grooming Kit does just that. Keeping a handsome mug in tip-top shape during the winter is very important, whether bearded or not. Face masks, hair elixir, post-shave tonics, Viktor & Rolf Spicebomb cologne (a personal fave), and even a CBD regiment to keep beards and brows full and healthy are here. This was specifically curated for the awesome dude in your life, and it’s a steal at $115 off the original price.

Uber Appliance Mini Fridge | $45

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Graphic: Sheilah Villari
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A mini fridge can make a huge difference in an office, dorm room, or even in the kitchen. I have this Uber Appliance Mini Fridge on my counter to keep my serums and eyepatches out of the big fridge. This is to avoid confusion for my roommate. We really don’t need another “Are these cucumber eye pads edible?” scenario again. It’s compact but quite roomy. It can fit up to six cans or four water bottles. There are four color options to pick from depending on where you’d like it to blend in. This is a great gift for a beauty guru trying to keep their products chilly and organized.

Tea Drops x Hello Kitty: Trio Set | $47

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It’s just two adorable things! Cross off that kawaii pal with this Tea Drops x Hello Kitty collaboration. It’s that time of year for warm tea and cozy hoodies. This team-up brings all of that little cat’s wonder to each piping hot mug. The flavors include Apple Pie a La Mode, English Breakfast, and Strawberry Matcha. These are nods to Kitty’s roots in both London and Japan. Tea Drops are a great company and totally worth the experience. Everything is packaged in pretty pastels, ready to reinvigorate the child-like wonder of its recipient. There are a total of 30 Tea Drops, 10 of each kind. The tins can even be upcycled once each flavorful drop is enjoyed.

Muse S: Sleep Tracker & Meditation Headset  | $280

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Graphic: Sheilah Villari
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2021 has still been just as stressful as 2020 for some, and now that we are in the dreary winter months, it seems to be multiplied. Taking time for yourself is important, and that starts with a good night’s sleep. Muse has produced a few products to help with that. The new S model will monitor your mind, heart, body, and breath to help improve slumber and meditation. This is a real
“treat yo’ self” gift to give. The Sleep Journeys calm the mind after a hard day with soothing voice guidance of meditation to ease off to sleepy land. Just put the comfy soft headband on, then pair through the free app, and pop in a pair of earbuds. Force the brain to step out of whatever is wracking the nerves for a little bit each day. Muse S calms and helps the user to be more present each day. Track your sleep each night and see a difference over the coming weeks as the sense of being grounded grows.

Silver Heart Breakable Necklace Set | $26

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Image: Shire Post Mint
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Sometimes a broken heart is a good thing. I actually have this as a necklace with my bestie. Split the heart and share it to wear or put on a keychain with whoever your person is. It’s small, inexpensive, and very thoughtful. On one side, you’ll have a full anatomically correct heart and on the other is where you fit your pieces together. Plus, you’re supporting a small family-run business based out of Arkansas. Their packing is totally unique with beautiful calligraphy to whomever you intend to gift it to. You won’t be disappointed with anything you grab from Shire Post Mint. It’s also available in solid copper if you like a rose gold look.