Somehow, once again, we’ve whipped through weeks and flown through the months, and that fateful day of festive excitement, adoration-showing and gift-sharing is once more upon us. As before communicated, the stocking is a sacred declaration of love and care within my family, and it’s something I will forever use this platform to convey far and wide.
Once more, with great festive joy, I return to share with you my perfect conceptual curation, so you too can take stock of the year and gift with joy.
Ever present as an entity always ignored by me as a child, now, orange remains an important scent note for a gift, this year embodied by Elixir De Bombe by 27 87 perfumes. Opening with the freshness of ginger, piquant red pepper and the all-important tangerine, this captivating scent pairs sweeter notes of raspberry, caramel and rock rose for balance. It’s a clean yet sensual scent that will quickly become a favourite for the season.
The Priceless Art
I once knew a person who was gifted an original Banksy, before he was famous, now worth thousands and adorning their entrance hallway. The Floral Street x Van Gogh Museum collaboration welcomes priceless art into the home in a tongue-in-cheek fashion. Their Sunflower Pop room spray encapsulates a summer day, with a refreshing sparkle of bergamot, a gentle breeze through cedar, with a herbaceous spritz of mint and radiant bellini accord.
The Chocolate one
Ånd Fragrance offers a new view of the art of perfumery, with a pin-sharp focus on the well-being of the communities producing the rare and exceptional ingredients they source, and we crave. With their new offering of Cåke, we see an exquisite gourmand fragrance with FairTrade cocoa absolute, produced by trees that don’t drive deforestation, farmed by agroforestry and growing under the existing rainforest canopy. It’s the most adult way to gift the sweetest of candies.
The Wish of Good Health
Meant as a platitude or parting wish, we take this to the extreme of possibility. Why would one not back up a ‘we wish you well’, with a gift that exceeded a passing pleasantry? Perfect for the winter season, Advanced Nutrition Programme’s Skin Moisture IQ combines four supplements perfectly arranged for skin hydration and health. Containing their Skin Moisture Lock with hyaluronic acid with ceramides, Skin Omegas+ with sustainably sourced omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil, Skin Vit A+ and Skin Vitality, containing 28 ingredients including vitamins C, E, B2, B3, zinc and magnesium, they are all handily packed in daily pods.
Equally, one might like to try Humantra, the clean electrolyte drink with all six essential mineral electrolytes, with no artificial sweeteners or preservatives and a vegan and gluten-free formula. Naturally sweetened with monk fruit extract and with added B12 vitamin, there is no bitter aftertaste, gut disruption or sugar crash. Just enhanced hydration and great taste, available in Himalayan lime, elderberry or berry pomegranate.
The Silent Night
Parenting, travelling, gig-going – all experiences better enjoyed a few decibels lower. The Loop Experience Plus earplugs offer up to 18dB of noise reduction whilst maintaining the quality of sound, with a further 5dB of noise buffering with the Loop Mute accessory. Perfectly comfortable and secure, and stylish too, give the gift of a silent night, or a night better enjoyed.
The timelessly kitsch
Festive gifting needs a touch of good humour and this D.S. & Durga Portable Xmas Tree candle offers it in lashings. With top notes of dwarf pine and Douglas fir, heart notes of spice and spruce, and base notes of Austrian pine and amber, it’s as much of the seasonal scents as you might possibly be able to pack into votive form.
For those wishing away the years to a more carefree moment, the ‘85 Diesel auto fragrance is their time machine. With notes of suede, vinyl, white violet and castoreum, diesel smoke and earth, it’s a playful nod to the dream car of our fading youth.
The skincare saviour
A little chill can be a good thing with skincare, if applied correctly. The Skin Geek Cryo Roller offers a plethora of skin-boosing benefits, from soothing inflammation and redness to sculpting contours and reducing puffiness by increasing lymphatic drainage, firming the skin, tightening pores after cleansing and brightening the complexion. This year, add a little frost to your beloved’s stocking and they will be sure to thank you for it.
Not to ignore the body, one must look at Hibernicis Sólás Body Lotion. Its antioxidant blend of six seaweed extracts and sodium hyaluronate hydrate and detoxify, and aid in reducing cellulite by stimulating lymphatic drainage, while its soothing essential oil blend creates a destressing aroma. Enjoy the ritual with ylang-ylang, bergamot and sandalwood.
The one you need
Every makeup lover needs more makeup brushes, it’s a fact of life, and my collection is the most prized facet of my makeup assemblage. The limited edition collection from Et Al has you covered with four of their most-needed brushes, from foundation to concealer to powder. Sublimely soft and vegan, they present their short-handled brushes in a sleek pouch, tailored to fit their full-size brush range too.
The ones you want
Want and need, for some, are one and the same, but it’s fun to pretend otherwise from time to time. The Rescuing Balm from Scientiana does help to cement this notion, however, with its sublimely rich formula creating some of the most luxurious body care I’ve seen in a long time. Within this rich balm are Vitamins A and E for refined and revitalised skin, and scent notes of lemongrass, bergamot, sandalwood and jasmine for an uplifting and relaxing experience.
The Eye Wand Library from Vieve is equally lust-worthy, with the most exacting, and sorry to say it so listlessly, but useful collection of colours across their gloriously creamy matte formula. Buildable and blendable but smudge-proof all the way, it’s a multiuse majesty to offer a fabulously diverse range of looks from low-key daytime to all-out out-out evening glam, and we love it.
The bathing bits
Another truth universally acknowledged is that no stocking is complete without the bathing gift set. But once again we prove here that this is never a moment to phone it in. We want luxury, always. The Ready Set Gift collection by Mirror Water sees a divine duo of their BUFF Body Exfoliator and SMOOTH Body Oil with its signature smoky base notes of vetiver, Canadian Black Spruce, and cedar, with invigorating citrus top notes across formulations of naturally derived ingredients for gorgeous body care.
For the evening bather, the Olverum Sleep Ritual offers dulcet tones for inducing a deep slumber, with lavender, rosemary and juniper. From skin-nourishing bath oil and healing bath salts to their signature pillow mist, it’s a great night’s rest wrapped up.
The helping hand
Maybe we should modify this to ‘the helper of the hand’. Either way, the stocking is the spot for anything of the palm. The Bioeffect EGF Hand Serum is a must, and not just for winter. This repairing gel-like serum reverses the signs of ageing for an often-ignored zone, intensely nourishing, protecting, and softening with a potent blend ingredients list, including their barley epidermal growth factor, niacinamide, ceramide, and hyaluronic acid.
The stocking really is the place for luxurious hand care and here the Giving Hands set from Grown Alchemist fits right in too. With their delightfully herbaceous sweet orange, cedarwood and sage hand wash, and vanilla and orange peel hand cream, it’s a duo of botanically-led caring formulations to nourish and repair.
The New Year’s Resolution
We might avoid it, or we might not complete it, but we all have one, however privately we might acknowledge it. Maybe this year it might be to rest more deeply, taking a moment to immerse ourselves in a good book daily. Maybe it’s to move our body more regularly, with daily gentle stretches and a yoga class each week. Possibly, it’s to appreciate the little things and enjoy small luxuries, like soft fabric on our skin and comforting warmth. For all of the above, the Anastasia flared jumpsuit by AMADA is the answer.