When it comes to winter must-haves, hand cream is always one of my main priorities. There’s nothing worse than the tight dryness which can be brought on by cold weather, and at the merest hint of dryness my hands can look like an absolute state, so I’ve always got a tube hidden away so I can grab some at a moment’s notice.
My current handbag favourite is L’Occitane en Provence’s limited edition Honey Harvest Hand Cream. Part of the brand’s Christmas offerings, it’s a beautifully sweet-scented formula which skins effortlessly into skin, and leaves skin feeling soft and hydrated as well as delicately scented with the warmth of honey. The cream is made up of 20% pure shea butter, so it’s incredibly hydrating and perfect for combatting winter paws!
Even better? It’s incredibly affordable too! The Honey Harvest Hand Cream is priced at £8 a tube, and is available here (UK) and here (US)
A few years back, if you’d have told me that at least 75% of the time I’d leave my handbag at home, I’d say you were mad. I used to love choosing which one to use everyday, meticulously matching it with my outfit and packing it to within an inch of my life. It was as much a ritual as it was needed, and recently, I’ve found it freeing to leave the house with as little as possible. First, I used to grab my wallet, phone, headphones and lip balm, then I downsized to a pouch kitted out with a cardholder, balm, phone and headphones and since I added my card details to my phone, I’ve found that I now only use that when I head out.
Tovi Sorga have obviously been feeling the same, and they’ve released a stylish new line of contactless wearables, which means you can head out the house with only the essentials, and still leave your purse at home.
You can choose from a range of slick bracelets or beautiful keyrings, which are all handcrafted to order, and made of 100% Natural Leather. You can choose from a range of metallics, brights and neutrals, and when I caught sight of the metallic leopard, I couldn’t resist. Using the fob couldn’t be easier – link the SIM card inside with a free PingIt account which you can control from your phone, and you’re good to go. You can make purchases wherever the contactless symbol is showing. No more forgetting your wallet, or not being able to grab a coffee if you’re out and about – as long as you’ve got your keys, you’re golden! I’ve got it on my car keys, so that whenever I’m out I know I’ve got it on me.
Tovi Sorga’s Contactless Payment Key Fob is priced at £45 and is available here
Ah Christmas – the season of socialising. It’s no lie that this time of year can be exhausting. Between work and social engagements, it can feel a little like a wheel which you can’t jump off, and although it’s always fun to catch up with friends and celebrate the season it’s always a bit stressful making sure that you look polished, all day and well into the evening.
And that’s exactly where Bobbi Brown’s In a Flash Eyeshadow Palette comes in. A beautiful blast of holographic packaging, the palette is an absolute masterclass in neutral shadows. Inspired by New York City, this is one of those rare palettes which suits everyone and feels pretty special to boot!
With twelve shadows ranging from snowy ivories to glitzy metallics, I’m pretty sure I could wear this palette exclusively in 2020 and not feel like I’m missing a shadow. Most of the shadows are cool toned (my favourite) and there’s a great mix of casual satin and matte shadows as well as those more glamorous shades.
Since the palette arrived a few weeks back, it’s been my go-to option. For day I blend Candied Lilac (bottom row second from fight) across the lid, and smudge a little of Speakeasy Sparkle (bottom row far left) into my lash line. The result is an easy look which looks like I’ve plough far more effort into it than I actually have. I’m dying to try a midnight blue look featuring Electric Blue (top right) and I’m not sure I can resist smothering myself in the gold glitter of Gilded Honey come New Year’s Eve.
As you would expect from a palette from Bobbi Brown, the texture of these shadows is the definition of dreamy. They’re perfectly creamy, and apply evening with a fluffy eyeshadow brush. I’ve been really impressed with how easily the shades blend together, without becoming muddy – and depending on how you blend, you can pat the shadows on to achieve a bold, opaque look, or buff them out for a sheer wash of colour. The wear-time of the shadows has also really impressed me – even when applied early on in the morning, they last without creasing throughout the day, even without messing about with eyeshadow primers!
Bobbi Brown In a Flash Eyeshadow Palette is priced at £49.50 and is available here (UK) and here (US)
When it comes to Christmas special editions, I always feel like Kiehl’s are the original brand which really embraced the idea. For the past five years or so, I’ve collected a few pieces each year, and I love how fun the packaging is! This year, the packages come specially designed by artist Janine Rewell. Helsinki-based artist who has plastered the bottles in brightly coloured baubles.
The brand’s Creme de Corps is one of my all-time favourite body moisturisers. It’s rich enough to combat winter dryness, without leaving skin feeling greasy or tacky. It’s not scented, so it means you can wear it during the day with whichever perfume you choose. The formula is enriched with Cocoa Butter, Squalane and Beta-Carotene and the cream leaves skin feeling so, so soft, even after a single use.
Kiehl’s Christmas Creme de Corps is priced at £28 and is available here (UK) and here (US)
When it comes to winter, I feel like my candle consumption shoots through the absolute roof. I’m not sure if it’s the dark nights, cold temperatures and wanting to feel a bit cosy (or a combination of all three), but I’ve always got one burning away somewhere! It’s one of the perks of working from home that I can light a candle and enjoy it all day long!
My most recent obsession as been the Softly, Softly Scented Candle in Silk – one of the newest releases from Softly, Softly who produce the most beautiful Alpaca accessories (think dreamy scarves and stoles). Recently released alongside a beautiful Hand Wash and Hand Lotion. It’s such a perfect scent for burning throughout the day – with notes of Neroli and White Lily, it’s clean and comforting, but with a beautifully luxurious twist!
The candle burns cleanly and evenly thanks to being made from soy wax, and I love the double wick – it looks and feels like such a treat to burn, and I find I only need to light the candle for an hour or two to scent the whole house! It would make a beautiful gift for anyone who loves lovely little bits for the house. The candle is also completely cruelty-free and vegan, so perfect if you’ve got people who are a little tricky to buy for!
Softly, Softly Scented Silk Candle is priced at £18 and is available here.