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The Dos and Don’ts of Beauty Gifting

We’ve all been on the receiving end of gifts that we’d rather had been left sitting on a shelf than taking up room in our homes (does it spark joy? Probably not - Marie Kondo must find Christmas a nightmare). Beauty products are particularly prone to being panic-buys. Does everyone still have a gift set of body sprays sitting under the stairs? Or a set of lip glosses which might actually cement your lips together if you tried them out now? Or, even worse, a clearly expensive set of body creams and lotions from your favourite aunt - that just do not suit your skin?

Beauty products can be really super handy gifts. We get that. Beauty products don’t come in any particular size which is handy, and the right ones can be really thoughtful, and tailored to a particular loved one. But oh boy, oh boy, can they go wrong when they want to. 

And so, without further ado - a few dos and don’t, as we face a season of spending, splurging, and hopefully enjoying your seasonal skincare and beauty gift purchases.

The Nerdie Dos and Dont’s of Beauty Gifting

Don’t buy them a gift which you secretly want for yourself. 

That’s very cheeky altogether - and we know it’s tempting, but we advise that if you have your eye on a specific product, you write your own letter to Santa and leave it in the grate (or the microwave, if you’ve no fireplace) and see if Santa takes the hint. Don’t buy it for your long-suffering partner or pal and then generously offer to take it off their hands. You’ll be on the naughty list for sure.  

Keep in mind: you’re into skincare and know your skin concerns. Maybe your friend, family member or even fair-weather foe won’t be as interested in it as you, or worse, it won’t even suit their skin. 

Do think about how they’re feeling at the moment, or where they are in their life.

If you’re buying a gift for your pal who’s just had a baby, she might not feel like she has the time at the moment to invest precious minutes in a face mask, which might take a while to set. For example, if you’re thinking about getting her the REN Evercalm Ultra Comforting Rescue Mask, maybe get her the REN Evercalm Global Protection Day Cream instead, which still has soothing blackcurrant seed oil in it and might be a better idea, if she’s worried about time. 

If your friend has in fact just had a baby, it could be really thoughtful to consider this in choosing the ingredients in the products which you’re considering. Products containing vitamin E can aid healing, and vitamin C in particular would be a super helpful addition, as it can help to tackle vascularity and redness which might flare during the hormonal changes which take place during pregnancy. Something like ASAP Skincare Super C Serum could be a thoughtful choice.

Conversely, if you’re buying a gift for a pal who’s trying to take more time for herself and do a bit of self care, then buying a face mask is ideal, and shows that you’re encouraging them to take time for themselves as well as getting them a really smashing product! Very impressive.

If you know that someone isn’t going to repurchase something that will only have the best results if they keep using it long-term, such as Environ AVST, it actually doesn’t make a great gift and a “quick fix” like an exfoliating product may be a better idea. We know we usually advise on the inverse of that but for Christmas, sometimes the rules go out the window. 

Don’t buy them a product which could be potentially harmful if they are rule-breakers

As a Nerd Networker, you know to alternate your nights of exfoliating cleansers with your retinol, to wear SPF everyday and not to leave potent masks on too long. Well, we hope you do. If you know your giftee is prone to eschewing the rules with a firm hand (*ahem* we’re looking at those Aries hoomans), maybe opt for getting them a beauty gift that is milder and won’t destroy their barrier if they misuse it. 

Good options for this include Skingredients Skin Good Fats, Gallinee La Culture Foaming Facial Cleanser and Murad Hydro-Dynamic Ultimate Moisture. The latter always garners an “OMG” text two weeks later, guaranteed. 

Do think about what items go together

If you’ve been struggling to think up gift ideas for someone, and stumble onto the solution of buying them a lip treatment, maybe don’t stop there. Think about getting them a mineral lipstick to go with it, or highlighter and brow product, and perhaps a hyaluronic face mask - and suddenly you’ve got a gorgeous bundle for your pal who loves partying and their pout. Along this same vein, picking up a gift set might seem like a cheat but often the combination of products is super handy and often equals to a generous saving. 

If you’re looking for ideas for that picky hooman, hang tight - it’s on our list to make some pages of products for the type of people you have in your life and they’re coming next week. 

Don’t expect miracles, even if it is the season for it

Scenario: you’re now a skincare expert and you want to spread the joy of it this Christmas. Unfortunately, buying someone 10 products including two cleansers, three supplements and multiple serums is just overwhelming for the most part. 

Start small: if they’re a wipe user, get them the Cleanse Off Mitt. A good serum will make a world of difference - we find that the IMAGE Ageless Pure Hyaluronic Filler is suitable and adored by all. 

Do think about what they say about their own skin. 

Maybe your loved one is sensitive about certain skin concerns, and talk about them a lot, but it’s up to you to decide whether buying them a specialist product to help target their concern is a good idea. If your teenage son or daughter is griping about their congestion or acne-prone skin, it might be tempting to get them a really nice Environ Focus Care Clarity+ Sebu-Wash Gel Cleanser, but no matter how useful this might be, it’s possible that this could be taken as a real step too far - particularly at Christmas. ‘Tis the season to feel merry and bright - not mortified that someone is so involved in your skin issues. 

When it comes to teenage skin suffering from congestion, however (and if you're definitely sure that they won't take offence, or have perhaps requested the help specifically), then products with salicylic acid would be ideal. This exfoliating acid should be used with caution, as directed, and always paired with a good SPF (might be an idea to bundle them together as a gift), but it works wonders on tackling congestion, by penetrating deep into the pores and dissolving the sebum plugs which can often block pores and lead to breakouts and blackheads.

Don’t obsess over having very specific gifts

Obviously, our whole brand is about using skincare that is specific to your skin. 

However, when it comes to gifting, lower price-point items like sheet-masks and lip products are perennial favourites. And they’re so handy for when some distant relatives turn up unexpectedly for dinner.

Understanding the ingredients which work wonders for the majority of people is a great place to start if you’re trying to cover a lot of bases. Hyaluronic acid is an ingredient which hydrates and plumps your skin, and so getting someone a serum with hyaluronic acid as the main ingredient could be really thoughtful gift. It’s also universal - a great pre night-out serum for making you skin look great! 

Vitamin a is an ingredient which we are usually not getting enough of, and so making this the basis of your purchase could be a good idea. It’s not suitable for pregnant hoomans, however, which is something to bear in mind. 

Better yet - why not get your pal a subscription to the Nerd Network? You can use the refer a friend scheme for yourself, and for them, they’ll have access to specialist care and be able to redeem your gift on products from the Nerdie Store! And that way, you’ll have a pal to bring to all of our brilliant events. A gift for BOTH of you!

The season of giving is all well and good, but sometimes you might feel entirely stumped, and we can’t blame you. If you are suffering from a serious case of seasonal fatigue, then we suggest that you stock up on vouchers to the Nerdie Store, and hand them out like the benevolent Christmas fairy that you are. They’re never out of style, and for every skin type - now let’s just hope that Santa fills every item on your list, too.