There are exactly ten days until Christmas and the window to find the perfect gift for those in your life is quickly closing. Although I’m enchanted by holiday releases as much as the next person, I tend to ultimately enjoy choosing (and receiving) presents that have a timeless utility and appeal…that is, I adore products that feel modern, fresh and useful all year long!
That being said, here are some gift ideas from Nordstrom–both for you and those for whom you shop–in the skincare, beauty and style realms that work now but will be loved and enjoyed well past the 25th.
Kindly scroll on for more details, swatches and style as well as the Bottom Line…
// SKINCARE, FRAGRANCE + TOOLS // Luxurious formulas that seamlessly blend into any existing routine.
*SK-II LE Facial Treatment Essence(reviewed HERE): The key to smooth and bright skin, the Facial Treatment Essence–currently available in a lovely limited-edition bottle–is a cult favorite for a reason.
*Chanel La Solution 10 de Chanel (reviewed HERE): Apropos for the most sensitive of skin, this formula–which boasts only 10 ingredients–effectively hydrates and perfects while still being exceptionally gentle.
*Clé de Peau Beauté LE La Creme(reviewed HERE): One of the most luxurious creams on the market, this formula–which fights signs of aging while bathing skin a rich wash of moisture–currently comes in a limited-edition jar that refracts light like a pulchritudinous prism.
*Sisley-Paris Double Tenseur (reviewed HERE): Lifting, tightening and freshening the skin with every application, this primer works well before foundation but can also be applied as a mid-day revitalizer.
*Lancer Dani Glowing Skin Perfector: I am wildly impressed with this luminous skin serum; brimming with skincare benefits, it also creates a soft and forgiving glow below or atop makeup.
*Aerin Tangier Vanille (reviewed HERE): Warm and alluring, this intoxicating take on a skin scent is a perfect candidate for a signature scent.
Mason Pearson Pocket Brush (reviewed HERE): Mason Pearson brushes are well worth the investment; the bristles detangle while encouraging shinier, healthier hair and the pocket size version is a brilliant handbag’s companion.
// FOUNDATION // Three base options for every type of “skin day” (good, bad or otherwise) imaginable.
*HOURGLASS Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Stick(all 25 shades swatched + extensively reviewed HERE): This foundation stick has immense versatility; packed with pigment, it can be applied sheerly for a barely-there skin perfecting outcome or built to full coverage while still looking insanely natural on the skin. Long wearing and waterproof, it belongs in your makeup bag! Lately, I’ve been experimenting with using three shades to create a balanced face; Beige is an excellent foundation match for my winter skin and then I blend the warm deep down Almond in my cheek bones and perimeters of my face as a contouring tone. I finish with a touch of the pale, slightly warm Bisque shade on the high points of my face for a shimmer-free yet illuminating effect. The trio are effortlessly blendable and the final result is a must for minimalist beauty lovers who treasure a flaw-free canvas.
What it is: A revolutionary foundation stick with the coverage of a concealer, the fluidity of a liquid and the weightlessness of a powder in a long-wearing waterproof formula.
Who it’s for: Anyone who wants undetectable full coverage and a seamless, satin finish.
What it does: Its unprecedented concentration of pigment provides maximum coverage with minimum product, concealing all discoloration and imperfections for virtually perfect skin. Formulated to stay put for 12 hours, this innovative foundation adjusts to your body temperature so that it seamlessly blends into your skin. It comes in a unique triangular bullet for precision application along the contours of the face.
How to use: This versatile foundation stick can be used in a multitude of ways, from sheer to full coverage, to contour and highlight and to conceal imperfections.
– For full-coverage: Prep your skin with a primer. Dot three triangular dots in the center of both sides of your face—three dots on the chin, three dots on the tops of the cheekbones and three dots on the forehead. Buff with the Vanish Seamless Finish Foundation Brush (sold separately) in tiny circular motions for the best coverage. To use as a concealer, dot three triangular dots under each eye and blend using a stippling and buffing motion.
– For sheer-to-medium coverage: Prep your skin with a primer. Lightly dot the foundation where needed, such as on your chin, forehead and the center of your face. Buff in with your brush using tiny circular motions. To use as a concealer, lightly dot under your eyes as needed and blend with your ring finger using a gentle tapping motion.
– To contour: Choose 1-2 shades deeper than your natural skin tone. Dot three triangular dots under your cheekbones, along the sides of the nose, at the temples of your forehead and along the jawline. Blend with your brush in a stippling and circ
Not tested on animals
Hourglass Vanish Foundation in Bisque, Almond and Beige…foundation, contour and highlighter under control
Swatches in direct sunlight.
Sulwhasoo Perfecting Cushion Brightening.
*Sulwhasoo Perfecting Cushion Brightening: This innovating formula offers light-medium coverage and significant SPF 50 protection in the convenience of a cushion compact. With a dewier and more radiant finish that the original formula (discussed HERE), this foundation is great for someone seeking skincare benefits and lighter coverage for a hyper-real skin finish. #25 is a befitting match for my NC 25 skin and I plan to bump up to #33 in the summertime months.
Sulwhasoo Perfecting Cushion Brightening Foundation is a multifunctional, portable, lightweight cushion foundation that goes beyond long-lasting coverage while giving you a flawlessly satin, soft, matte finish. Inspired by the radiance of blossoming magnolia flowers, it’s formulated with magnolia extract, a skin-brightening ingredient that reduces the appearance of discoloration and promotes more even-looking skin.
A Pearlescent Complex, created from extra-fine pearl powders, gives skin an immediately luminous look, while the brand’s unique purified water with licorice extract further purifies your skin so that it appears clearer and cleaner. A unique, flexible film-fixing polymer offers a thin protective barrier for a flawless finish that lasts for up to 12 hours, while SPF 50+ protects your skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays that cause photo-aging. Your complexion is left flawlessly clear and even with an appearance that looks brilliant immediately and over time.
How to use: Use a puff to press into the cushion firmly to pick up foundation. Then, using a stamping technique, pat the puff with foundation onto your skin evenly, starting from the middle of your face and moving outward. For more coverage, apply another layer onto the areas that need it. Use daily in the morning after your skin care regimen. Reapply throughout the day for sun protection.
Includes full-size refill.
#25 and #33.
*Tom Ford Waterproof Foundation/Concealer(all 12 shades swatched + reviewed HERE): With intense pigmentation that is customizable as a medium-full coverage foundation or a flaw-banishing concealer, this foundation–which performs at waterproof levels in heat, rain and humidity–is a must in every base-lover’s arsenal. The finish is completely natural and its efficacy is indisputable; consequently, it is always in my purse.
What it is: A flawless complexion is essential to the Tom Ford Face, and this full-coverage, waterproof formula ensures perfection.
Who it’s for: Anyone who wants a full-coverage foundation/concealer with a naturally radiant finish.
What it does: It conceals while remaining comfortable and breathable on your skin. It hides noticeable imperfections, ranging from darkness under the eyes to blemishes on the skin, while withstanding harsh weather conditions such as heat, humidity and water while maintaining an even complexion. It also helps minimize the appearance of tattoos.
How to use: Apply on clean, moisturized skin with your fingertips, a brush or a sponge applicator.
Made in the USA
Cheek products for a natural flush.
// CHEEKS // A subtle, luminous glow and perfecting finish to flatter a spectrum of skin tones.
Kevyn Aucoin The Gossamer Loose Powder (reviewed HERE): Finely milled and invisible on the skin, this loose powder in a compact minimizes fine lines, blurs pores and mattifies while still imparting a tender luminosity.
Giorgio Armani Lip Magnets in Mania and Nuda(reviewed HERE): Weightless with superb color payoff, this stain-lip color-gloss hybrid is one of the most unique releases of the year. I particular love the bright baby pink Mania and lush rosy peach Nuda.
I've recently discovered your blog and really love it! I also love By Terry foundations. If you were to choose your top 2-3 foundations, which ones would you go for? Thanks, Margaret
I absolutely love this look on you!! The Hourglass Vanish Foundation Sticks as a highlighter and contour gives such a flawless finish! I actually scrolled back up to see what concealer and highlighter you used thinking I must have missed it the first time. I have to be careful with some highlighters so that I don't look too shiny, but this is the perfect mix of satin and radiant finishes right where we want it. I'm going to try to recreate it soon — any tips are very appreciated! 🙂 Did you apply the Lancer Dani Glowing Skin Perfector all over as an initial base (like you would the LMDB peau vierge — which I love because of you!) or just in certain areas? Thanks so much! Wishing you a wonderful holiday and happy new year! -Kristen