Friday, November 22, 2013

Holiday Gift Guide 2013: Beauty Gifts Under $50

Each year we face a conundrum. What do we get the beauty loving friends and family members on our list? You want to give them something cool and thoughtful (preferably something they don't already have) but you also might not want to break the bank.

Well, fear not. It's quite possible to give your beauty fanatics some awesome gifts at reasonable pricing. Let's take a moment to thank the beauty industry for putting together some awesome gift sets that will help you do just that.

If you're looking for gifts that will cost you less than $50 (sorry Urban Decay lovers that new Naked 3 palette missed the list by $3), you're in luck. There are a lot of options.

I've assembled a list of some of my top picks that range from makeup and skin care, to nails and fragrance. There's something for everyone's beauty-related preferences.

Holiday Beauty Gifts under $50, holiday gifts, beauty, @girlythingsby_e

Makeup sets

Listen, there are a lot of makeup sets out there ringing in at less than $50. I can't possibly list them all. This list is clearly not exhaustive. I chose the three makeup sets listed because they offer quality and value. It was difficult to narrow it down to these three. But I didn't want a gift guide that only had eyeshadow palettes in it. We gotta think of everyone else. It's the holidays after all. That being said, if you want a gift guide that's my favorite palettes, say the word. A post of this nature could easily be arranged. 

For now, I want to draw your attention to the three palettes I've picked out that are actually quite affordable and offer you amazing value:

LORAC Rockin' Red Hot Pro Set - I have a lot to say about this set. I'll try to keep it short and sweet. First, you get the LORAC Pro Palette - a huge fan favorite - for less than buying the palette on its own. Yes, that is right. You save $3 and  you get extra stuff. I had to do a double take when I got it. Second,  you also get a travel-sized eyeshadow primer and a full-sized pro liquid liner (which has out shined all my other liquid liners) for only $39. Third, many people have said they like this neutral palette more than the infamous Naked palettes (not referring to Naked 3) because you get equal parts shimmer and matte shades. Four, the quality is ah-ma-zing. The shades are pigmented, buttery smooth, and blend easily. The eyeshadow primer works just as well as its competitors. And that liquid liner is perfection. It's an easy to apply pen liner that glides on so smoothly it doesn't tug on your lids at all. It's cut the time it takes me to apply liquid liner in half and it always comes out looking perfect. I'm in love. Available exclusively at ULTA. Good for the beauty lover on your list who loves his/her Naked palettes and neutral shades. Expand their horizons. 

LORAC Close Up PRO Face Tutorial - This gift set is on my personal holiday wish list. You get an eyeshadow trio with three neutral, look-good-on-everyone shades that will take you from day to night easy peasy (a vanilla-esque shade, a light latte brown, and a dark chocolate brown), a travel-sized mattifying primer, PRO mascara, rosy cheek stain, and peach lip lustre. This set could easily become your every day go-to products. It also includes makeup tips to help you apply your face like a pro. Available exclusively at ULTA. Good for any makeup person on your list because the colors will flatter all skin tones and can be worn for any occasion. From novice to expert, this one is fool proof. 

Stila Masterpiece Series Eye & Cheek palettes - This set combines three eyeshadow and cheek palettes into one collection. You get a cool toned palette, a warm toned palette, and a rosy palette each with five eye shadows and one coordinating blush. If you don't want to do the math, that's 15 shadows and three blushes. The limited edition set retails for $39. At the time of this posting it was available at ULTA for $29. This gift set is adorable and sure to go over like a hit. Available at Sephora and ULTA. Great for the indecisive beauty person on your list. Three palettes. One set. No need to settle.

Skincare Sets

If you have a skin care fanatic on your list, there are plenty of great gifting options available to you as well. Skin care can be a little trickier than makeup because you need to know a little more about the person you're buying for. Do they have oily/dry/combo/sensitive skin? What are the skin concerns they want to battle? Will giving them a product be a touchy matter? You’ll have to be the judge of that when buying. However, here are three items that I think are innocuous enough to please anyone. Plus, if you're gifting a skincare fanatic, they are likely to recognize and appreciate these.  

Fresh Sugar & Seaberry Sanctuary  - This set will let you give the gift of skincare without worrying about getting all the details right (skin type, concerns, sensitivities). It’s basically like giving a little at-home spa treatment. It includes Fresh's Brown Sugar Body Polish, Seaberry Restorative Body Cream, and Sugar Lip Treatment with SPF 15. It’s a great bath and body experience that’s a bit more grown up and sophisticated than that other store we know and love. Available at SephoraGood for anyone on your list that enjoys at little at-home pampering and spends a lot of time grooming (and no, we’re not implying they’re vain). 

Boscia Mask Medley -  There are a few beauty gals I know who would flip to receive this Boscia mask medley.  The set contains three of the brands most popular masks, sure to help treat an array of skin situations that ail us all. Plus, you can give it without fearing you’ll cause offense. This set says you know a thing or two about cult favorites and you know they enjoy a little at-home facial time. Way different than giving someone, say, an anti wrinkle cream they didn’t ask for… Yikes! Available at SephoraGood for the beauty lover who has it all. If there’s a beauty blogger or editor on your list, they’ll likely appreciate this set.

Korres Radiance Revealed Wild Rose Brightening - Korres’ Wild Rose line is immensely popular for a reason. And this set is on this list because it’s one of my personal favorites. This brightening duo offers two full-sized products for the price of one (it's ridiculously popular Wild Rose + Vitamin C Advanced Brightening Sleeping Facial). These days, people of all ages are chasing that illustrious glow. Brightening products have out shined the battle against wrinkles in the quest of youthful, envious skin. The Wild Rose sleeping facial delivers. It's luxurious, smells amazing (um, roses people), contains no yucky parabens or sulfates, and is great for all skin types. And that cleanser? Well it's an added bonus! Admittedly, you'll need to know the person you're gifting this to a little better to offer up this set. But, if they happen to love scouring the beauty isles for all things facial care, they're likely to recognize and appreciate this set. Available at Sephora. Good for anyone chasing after radiant skin


All of us have that one friend who always has amazing nails. They're groomed to perfection and rock some of the hottest nail trends. Heck, that person may also have a nail polish collection to rival the local nail salon. But trust me, they'll always appreciate more. I know. I'm one of them. I may have a million different shades of pink, purple, mint, or grey, but by golly they are all different!

The Sephora Collection Makeup Academy Nails set is perfect for the nail addict on your list. Not only do they get 10 full-sized nail polish colors, they also get a multi-glitter top coat, a jar of star jewels and a booklet that offers 12 different nail art tutorials. How does that not sound like fun? Available at Sephora. Good for the person on your list who seems to rock a new manicure every week (and maybe sometimes multiple manis per week). 


Alright, fragrance is an incredibly personal experience. I've chosen this set of Nest Luxury Hand Creams because it's a great little gift for the person on your list who has an impressive fragrance collection. You know that friend. The one who smells great, and when you ask what they're wearing, the spout out a name of a fragrance (or brand) you've never even heard of. That's right. They're likely wearing something you can't get at any ol' department store. This set (also available in a mini fragrance set) is perfect because they are well known, but not so common that everyone has them. I like the idea of giving the lotion because it's something you can easily keep in your purse or car without fear of a broken bottle. 

Well, there you have it. Those are my picks this year for holiday beauty gifts. Stay tuned for the next holiday gift guides, which will include my picks for gifts $30 and under and my guide to fun beauty stocking stuffers ($20 or less). 

Comment below and share your thoughts! Happy holidays!

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