From the latest in cosy candles to the at-home microneedling tool by a top facilaist, here's what we've tried (and loved) this month
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December may be best known for mulled wine and mince pies, but that doesn't mean the beauty and wellness new arrivals are slowing down. Amidst all the festive shopping, these are the makeup, body care and skincare we recommend for you– we're sure you've been very good this year after all!
The eye-brightening patches: Patchology Serve Chilled Bubbly Eye Gels, £3 per pair
"Thanks to contracting Omicron a week ago, my festive run up to Christmas has been cancelled. Instead of charging around London I’ve been languishing at home with oodles of time for self-care and box-set bingeing. One brand which has kept both my husband and I entertained is Patchology, the sheet-mask and eye patch skincare specialists.
"They kindly sent me a bumper box of goodies to try out so during isolation we've enjoyed foot-spas (they do the cutest insulated foot peel booties) and hand and cuticle treatments. Our all-time favourite is the Bubbly Eye Gels which are so soothing if you keep them in the fridge, but work equally well at room temperature.
"These tear drop shaped patches fit neatly under the eye and contain a cocktail of anti-aging, hydrating and skin protecting goodness. There’s orange extract, niacinamide and resveratrol in the mix, making them one of the most high-performing eye patches I've tried.
"We’ve been popping them on for ten minutes in the bath and they magically reduce puffiness and dark rings. We are now nine days into the quarantine and are almost ready to emerge as never before: bright-eyed, bushy-tailed and so ready for the festive fun." Marie-Louise Pumfrey, GTG contributor
The ingrown-hair banisher: Flamingo Ingrown Spot Treatment, £9
"According to hair removal brand Flamingo (who also sell some of my favourite razors, complete with gel handles that are a delight to hold) 62 per cent of us suffer with ingrown hairs after removing our hair. They set about addressing the issue with this little potion. It's a lightweight serum texture that you dab on ingrown hairs when they crop up. It's alcohol-free, so non-drying, and gently exfoliates with salicylic and lactic acids to free the trapped hair. It doesn't sting at all and I've noticed post-waxing bumps shrinking down within a day of using this. I'll always be keeping it to hand once it launches in January." Melanie Macleod, GTG digital writer
Out in January 2022
The whipped cream: Glow Recipe Plum Plump Hylauronic Cream, £35, 50ml
"Ooooo a new gorgeous Glow Recipe launch, just in time for Santa to pop in my stocking. Better yet it's their first foray into refillable pods which are a non-negotiable for me when buying beauty. The texture is the same weightless whip we know and love and is gentle and light enough for all skin types. The plum fragrance feels a little festive, but it isn't overpowering if you don't like scented skincare. I like to layer it with the Glow Recipe Guava Vitamin C + Ferulic Dark Spot Serum, £41 to give me perfectly plump and dewy skin." Catherine Fulwood, GTG commercial projects manager
The cocooning candle: Fable & Mane Incredible India Candle, £42
“I spotted this pretty candle burning in a colleague’s office and immediately had to know what it was. It smelled familiar and when she told me that it was by east-meets-west hair brand Fable & Mane, I knew I’d smelled it before in the brilliant Holiroots scalp oil. Sure enough, they’ve captured that same warm and earthy floral scent in this limited edition coconut wax candle with a decent 50 hour burn time. It’s the first thing I turn to before I get on my yoga mat at 6.30am every morning. Having this as part of my ritual makes those early starts that bit more bearable. By the time I’m in savasana relaxation an hour later, the room is filled with the cocooning scent of jasmine and sambac.” Victoria Woodhall, editorial director
The ultra-shiny lip: Kevyn Aucoin Glass Glow Lip Gloss, £20
"Ever since Chanel discontinued its Glossimer range of lip colours, I have been hunting for the next best thing. The criteria: something shimmery but not tacky, long-lasting but not sticky and fabulous looking but definitely not drying. The answer - Kevyn Aucoin Glass Glow lip gloss. This beauty glides on like a champ and is packed full of antioxidant-rich vitamin E which keeps my lips hydrated and healthy. Not to mention that the three-dimensional shimmer is perfect for wearing alone or atop my current lipstick. Like the star that sits on the Christmas tree, this sparkly tube of joy is the perfect topper to any look." Hattie Sloggett, GTG contributor
The out-of-this-world palette: Morphe x Pony Constellation Sky Artistry Palette, £36
"This is the palette of my dreams. It’s truly magical and perfect for party season (even if many of us have to spend it at home we still have to look amazing, right?). It has 39 shades to choose from with a mixture of matte, metallic, and holographic finishes. The shades are mainly for the eyes but there are a few that you can use as highlighters that have a bigger pan size.
"The whole palette gives off cosmic ethereal vibes - similar to the out of this world nail trends we'll be seeing in 2022 – and have iridescence laced throughout. Bang on trend for next year!" Amy Rostas, GTG beauty and social media assistant.
The at-home microneedler: Sarah Chapman Skinesis Meso-Melt Infusion System Starter Kit, £138
"Even though I've only discovered microneedling tools in the last year, I like to consider myself a bit of a fanatic. There's something about the motion of rolling the needles over your face that feels therapeutic.
"The cult Sarah Chapman Skinesis Meso-Melt Infusion System comes with this all-new Meso-Melt Infusion Roller, which better preps the skin for the ampoules of Meso-Melt Pep Stem Cell serum to sink in.
"It comes with three heads, which you use for a week each. First off, spend ten minutes rolling the tool over your bare skin, concentrating on areas with fine lines and wrinkles, then apply the serum, wait ten seconds, and roll again for five minutes. My face was a little pink at first, but the redness faded after an hour or so and it now feels super smooth and rejuvenated. I can't wait to finish my course just in time for Christmas." CF
For happy curls: Kérastase Curly Hair Heroes Bundle, £63.80
"My curls have a mind of their own; sometimes they're super curly, tight ringed locks, other times it looks like I've had a blowdry without setting foot near a salon. This can make it difficult to choose haircare to suit. Luckily, Kerastase’s new range Curl Manifesto, somehow knows exactly what my mane needs. Never has a range been so well received in my bathroom than this – I’m in love! Packed full on manuka honey and ceramides it hydrates, defines and leaves me with an anti-frizz finish that gets loads of compliments. My hair has never felt or looked so healthy." HS
For plumping from the inside: Vida Glow Collagen (various flavours), £43
"Collagen supplements have always left a bitter taste on my tongue. I’ve tried (and sadly splashed out) on a few over the years and each one tasted somewhat disgusting. I love the concept: restoring my skin’s elasticity, improving my tone and texture and leaving me looking incredibly plumped, but I couldn't get on board with the taste, until I finally found the one for me from Vida Glow, an Australian-born supplement brand that’s been on the block since 2014.
"It’s available in a few flavours including blueberry, mango and peach however I’ve been reaching for the original unflavoured version. It tastes of nothing - and I say that with joy! You can add it in to anything from smoothies to squash without a trace.
"I’ve noticed a big difference since using it: consistent hair growth and more notably, my nails, damaged by a bad set of acrylics, have been restored to their former glory. It also helps that it has some backing from medical and cosmetic Dr Ewoma Ukeleghe, who also has *the* most glowing skin – hopefully mine will soon be glowing in the same way!" Jemma Thompson, GTG social media and design manager
The zen restorer: Athletia Green Ray Room Spray, £39
"Sister brand to RMK and Suqqu, Athletia recently landed in the UK with a range of joyful and energising products spanning from skincare to self-care, to bath and body. My personal favourite and one I’ve been reaching for lately now more restrictions have come into place, is this room mist.
"Not only does it tackle my excessive need to light a candle when working from home, but the aroma gives me the mood-boost I’m after. It includes notes cedarwood and eucalyptus which happen to be two of my favourite scents and gives you a moment to reflect and relax. It’s like a walk in the park housed in a lovely luxe bottle." JT
MORE GLOSS: What are wellness scents and do I need one?
The fresh fragrance: Huda Beauty Kayali Eden Juicy Apple, £67
"Is there any other word that brings about thoughts of fresh apples, garden blossoms and sultry seduction more than eden? All this and more is exactly what the new fragrance from Kayali conjures from the first spritz. Deep notes of amber, sensual musk, intoxicating jasmine, exotic lychee and all topped off with crisp red apples bring to life the garden of Eden perfectly. I promise you, although it will look beautiful under the tree, this fragrance is not just for Christmas, it’s for every day." HS
For ultra-dry hair: Rahua Hydration Hair Mask, £42
"This hydration hero scooped bronze in our 2021 Get The Gloss Beauty and Wellness Awards for Best Targeted Hair Treatment and for good reason. It’s just what you need to tackle winter hair woes, thanks to the rich blend of Amazonian rahua oil packed with omega-9 and shea butter, which help your hair hold on to moisture. You can leave it on for ten to 15 minutess, but I tend to go up to a few hours for my super thick afro textured hair. You can also lightly rinse off, leaving a little product in the hair, for an easy peasy leave-in treatment. What I love is that my once thirsty hair feels much softer, shinier and less frizzy after using. It’s become my weekly ritual to quench my hair." JT
MORE GLOSS: Nourishing masks that actually make a difference to your hair
For salon-worthy blow dries: Drybar The Double Shot Blowdryer Brush, £125
"Cult US hair styling brand Drybar launched in the UK last month and as expected, sold out of most products immediately. This blow dryer brush was one of the first to fly off the shelves, but is back in stock this week! It’s just what you need to create very of the moment hair (ie big, bouncy and shiny) at home.
"There are three settings: cool, medium and high, which you can use on both damp and dry hair (we love a multi-functional tool here). I like to blow-dry my hair after washing and using this is super easy and cuts my styling time in half. Or if I’m in a rush, I use it to quickly style and neaten up my hair instead of reaching for my straighteners. It uses ionic tech which helps to seal the cuticle, meaning less frizz and more shine, and when you pair it with Drybar's Hot Toddy heat protectant mist, which I’m obsessed with, it gives you that hairdresser look, feel and smell." JT
MORE GLOSS: The best hot brushes for bouncy, salon hair from home
For all the cosy feels: Beauty Pie Hot Chocolate & Peppermint Candle, Typical Price £65, Members Price £23.64
"I'm usually one for a smoky, moody, heady candle, but at this time of year, I can fully get on board with something a little sweeter and more festive. This gorgeously packaged Beauty Pie candle, with chocolate and peppermint notes, burns in a way that makes you crave a blanket, a fire and a hot chocolate of course, but in a very cool, utterly sophisticated, super grown-up way!" CF
Not a member of Beauty Pie? Sign up with the code GTGSENTME for £10 off a £59 annual membership.
The self-care must-have: Mela Luxe Cotton Knit Weighted Blanket, £275
"My sleep can be all over the place; one night I conk out and the next I'm wide awake until the wee hours, until I discovered the simple trick of weighted blankets . I'm lucky enough to already have the chunky knit version, firmly attached to my bed, so this super-luxe new release from Mela is my sofa's new best friend - because we all know sofa naps are the best. The pressure is known to calm the nervous system, trigger natural chemicals such as serotonin and reduce stress - and right now it's exactly what I need!" CF
The eco-friendly palette: Bareminerals Mineralist Palette (worth £60), £28
“I’ve only recently discovered the Mineralist eco palettes from Bareminerals; they normally come in six shades but this bumper party palette, on offer right now at Feelunique, has double the fun for the same price. As well as the pigments being vegan, the sustainable cardboard packaging is quite brilliant – sturdy and pretty but constructed so that you can slide out the shades when you’ve hit pan and put the outer casing in the recycling. I already have the six shade Mineralist Stonewashed Palette , £28, featuring cool blues and this one adds a whole host of warmer party tones. If you’ve yet to buy a Christmas present for the beauty buff in your life, this will go down a treat.” VW
The punchy serum: Bliss Glow & Hydrate Day Hyaluronic Serum, £19.99
“My usual hyaluronic acid serum ( The Inkey List FYI) just ran out and though I'd normally repurchase, I decided to explore what was on offer a bit more this time. I have extremely sensitive skin so I always do a patch test on the side of my jawline (if it reacts horribly I can hide behind my hair), but I'm happy to report I've been using it for a few weeks and it has done wonders for my skin, with zero reactions.
"It contains niacinamide to reduce the look of pores and blemishes, hyaluronic acid to keep my skin hydrated and vitamin E which helps to protect the skin from environmental damage. I'm keen to try more of Bliss’ products, especially as they are so affordable and have really fun, bright packaging." AR
The 'treat yourself' skincare kit: Dr Dennis Gross Skincare Merry, Smooth and Bright Set, £479
"This might be the most expensive thing I've ever included in Glossy Picks, but it's actually worth £593, so a huge saving of over £100. I've loved Dr Dennis Gross ever since I tried Hyaluronic Marine Meltaway Cleanser , £16, (like a big, fresh drink for the skin) and I'd always wanted to try this mask, especially knowing it's loved by Victoria Beckham. If she likes something, you know it's good.
"This kit not only includes the VB-approved DRx SpectraLite FaceWare Pro mask, which uses red and blue LED light to support collagen and minimise the appearance of wrinkles and dark spots (and helps me quite a lot when I'm suffering the effects of SAD), but also the Dr Dennis Gross two-step daily peel, for radiant skin, along with mini versions of his Retinol and Ferulic Triple Correction Eye Serum and Serum. My skin has been awful of late with breakout after breakout but after using this for two weeks, I can certainly see an improvement in my spots, plus new ones have stopped cropping up. If you can make the investment, I highly recommend this." MM
The sensitive soap: Green People Organic Children Berry Smoothie Hand Wash, £12.50
"I’m grateful my mud/puddle/bin-loving toddler actually enjoys washing his hands but I’ve always been cautious of using my usual fragranced soaps on him. Enter this genius wash for little ones that smells of raspberries, looks cute and most importantly, won't irritate delicate mitts. I also love that it's totally recyclable, unlike many pump products, and made from PCR plastic. There's even a mini-me hand cream, £8.50, to match." Amber Voller, GTG contributor
The super-sized glow giver: Ren Clean Skincare Deluxe Ready Steady Glow Daily AHA Tonic, £23.45, normally £39
"What could be better than a fresh bottle of Ren's iconic AHA toner? A giant 500ml bottle of it, of course! This is my favourite liquid exfoliator because I find it lasts and lasts and being double the size of the normal bottles, this should see me glowing all the way through til spring. It's gentle enough that I can use it every day with lactic acid and willow bark working its magic to smooth and tone the skin while azelaic acid brightens. If you have a friend who loves this toner, this makes for the perfect Christmas gift." MM
The winter scent: Tom Daxon Iridium 71% Extrait De Parfum, 50ml, £245
"Tom Daxon’s fragrances are always beautifully packaged and deliciously rich. With 71 per cent fragrance concentration, this scent lasts all day and all night. Tom describes it as evoking the sense of charcoal coloured cashmere, which transports me to cosy fires and Cotswolds cottages reminiscent of Cameron Diaz in The Holiday, which in my mind makes it perfect for these chilly winter months." CF
The comforting bath buy: Aveeno Soothing Bath Soak Oat Sachets, £11.99 for 8 sachets
"These little sachets were created with eczema sufferers in mind after Aveeno conducted research that found that 37.5 per cent of people with eczema sometimes avoided bathing because it made their skin sore. Now a self-care style bath is back on the agenda for those with the skin condition and I'll be recommending these to every eczema sufferer I know. You empty the colloidal oat sachets to the bath to relieve and soothe itchy skin and add moisture. Colloidal oat is proven to help itchy skin. Although I don't suffer from eczema, just dry winter skin, these unscented sachets are so lovely and soothing for anyone. I especially like that they're in individual paper sachets, so you know exactly how much to use." MM
The alcohol-free tipple: Clean Co, Clean R Rum Alternative, £19
"We are most definitely in the full swing of the festive season and with the parties still happening (for now!) and the headaches ever-present I’m planning on doing a few drink swaps to make sure I make it through December.
"Having seen Clean Co all over the place but never being 100 per cent sure on whether I could make my festive favourites work with lower ABV, my tastebuds were very happy to learn it’s entirely possible. Of their most popular cocktails, the marmalade Old Fashioned is definitely top of my list. You can save 45 per cent at checkout until the 17th December, so I’d advise you stock up now so you can hit dry January at full speed!" CF
MORE GLOSS: The best low-alcohol drinks to try
The filler in a bottle serum: Dr Nina Bal Face Sculpt Serum, £120
“I am writing this on behalf of my fab mum Ali, who just like myself and team GTG is a real skincare fanatic. She's in her mid-fifties and has been using this glow-getting combination of glycolic and salicylic acid, age-proofing peptides and low molecular weight hyaluronic acid, to rejuvenate for just over a month now. She's thrilled with the results. She tells me that the serum, which is fragrance-free, has a silky texture and feels expensive - it glides onto the skin and absorbs with no tackiness. Her fine lines are less visible and her skin looks glowy since using this, she says. Someone even asked her if she’s been having work done!
"After discussing with mum I think I might start using this too. Its creator Dr Nina Bal mentions that it's good at any age and that prevention is key.” AR
The 'what are you wearing?' scent: Byredo Mumbai Noise, £178
"My barometer for a good fragrance is someone stopping me and asking what I'm wearing. The latest fragrance from Byredo has delivered that on the tube, in the office and at a party so it’s safe to say it’s a crowd-pleaser.
"The main note is coffee but don’t let you put that off, I wouldn’t guess that it's the key scent and the blend of sandalwood makes it heavy and dirty and sexy in all the best possible ways. If you like oud you’ll love it and if you don’t like oud you’ll probably also love it because it’s not an oud but has that same lingering richness. I’m obsessed." Verity Clark, GTG contributor
The soothing hand-san: Ineos Hygienics Dual Action Sanitiser + Moisturiser with Aloe Vera, 500ml, £5
"Having overused hand sanitiser last winter my poor hands felt so dry and tight. This medical-grade sanitiser with added aloe vera provides all the sanitisation but helps to hydrate and soften at the same time. While we are all wishing away restrictions and hoping for a slightly different Christmas this year, a £5 mega bottle of this (it's 500ml) is a no brainer for a little more peace of mind." CF
MORE GLOSS: Luxury hand sanitisers you'll never leave home without
The radiance-boosting oil: Gallinée Prebiotic Face Oil, £35
"I could make a terrible joke about putting something from a Siberian geyser on your face, but instead of fathoming how to do that, I’ll tell you that the skin microbiome experts at Gallinée have brought out this super silky face oil, with a skincare first, that I absolutely love. It contains pre- and postbiotics (by-products) made from the bacteria that live in Siberian hot springs. These bugs (anoxybacillus kamchatkensis - Kamchatka is one of the most northern parts of Russia) need to protect themselves from the heat and to do this they make a lipid shell which, in a facial oil, just happens to be great for reducing redness and inflammation and also crowding out the bacteria that cause acne.
"Their trials had great results not just for skin calming but also for radiance. The base is squalane oil which is skin-identical so seeps right in as well as jojoba and claiming oat oil. If you love your skin and your bugs, they will pay you back in glow. This is a face oil that really anyone can use." VW
The party-perfect makeup: Jones Road Miracle Balm in Disco, £34
"Jones Road, the new beauty brand from Bobbi Brown, is one of my favourite launches of 2021. Makeup that you don't need to be a makeup artist to make look good is my kind of thing.
"Miracle balm is basically a pot of fun - it’s a solid pot of glow that you can pat anywhere - I like to smudge on my fingers and then dot onto my cheekbones, nose and cupid's bow. It makes you look dewy without looking highlighted. And now it’s got even more fun as it’s available in Disco form which is a slightly more sparkly version, not glitterball sparkly but definitely dancefloor worthy. Big fan!" VC
The bargain brown set: BBBLondon's Brow Perfect Set, £39 (Worth £60)
"Not only is this the ideal secret Santa gift or stocking filler for any beauty lover, it’s also the ideal ‘treat yo self’ gift – especially if your brow arsenal is in desperate need of an upgrade. This three-step kit from ultimate brow experts Blink Brow Bar comes in two colours: cool blonde and rich dark brown. It has everything you need to shape, fill and hold your brows, from a tinted brow gel with serious hold, to a precise pencil with a super handy spoolie at the other end. Plus, it contains the one thing I’m always on the lookout for _ a good pair of tweezers that can nab the tiniest of hairs." JT
The cult mascara: Benefit Lashes All The Way Extreme Lengthening Mascara Duo Gift Set, £26 (worth £38)
"I’m obsessed with this cute duo from Benefit. I've never tried the cult mascara before and I've been seriously impressed – Benefit weren’t lying when they said this is smudge-proof. I wore it for over 12 hours there was not a single smudge or flake in sight which is ideal in party season.
"The mascara really covers all your lash needs: curling, volumising, lifting and lengthening - it’s the full package and the small size is ideal for popping in your handbag." AR
The lip hybrid: Ruby Hammer Lip Serum Balm in Red, £18
"It’s red lip season and what better than one that won’t leave your lips chapped and dry? MUA Ruby Hammer’s new lipstick and serum hybrid delivers seriously intense hydration. It’s just what I needed to smooth and soothe my winter lip. It uses cannabis sativa seed oil, which is known for its skin barrier support, meadowfoam seed oil which is a plant extract used to seal in moisture and cocoa butter, a classic all-round nourishing ingredient. It comes in three different colours: clear, red, and nude and it adds just the right amount of dewy shine or colour - I’ll be reaching for this for months on end!" JT
The skin barrier saviour: Tata Harper Fortifying Moisturizer, £104
"Tata Harper is known as the queen of clean skincare, but her gorgeous botanical formulas have always eluded me because their natural scent has just been too potent for my skin (they gave me the sniffles). This year she’s brought out a Superkind unscented range, featuring this light but mighty moisturiser, a serum and a mask, for sensitive and sensitised skin. It does three things that most of us need tight now: calms inflammation, protects against the environment and builds the skin barrier. It still has myriad of natural goodies that Tata Harper is known for, all housed in stylish green glass. I love the lotion texture - a clever combination of calendula leaf water and a blend of fine oils and butters. Applying it is always a real aaaah! moment.” VW
The gentle peel: Murad AHA/ BHA/ Retinoid Daily Clarifying Peel, £28.08
"Murad is one of my most recommended skincare brands, they put so much research and development into creating products that when they launch a new one you’re almost guaranteed it will be good.
With salicylic, glycolic and a retinoid, I thought this would be an overload on my skin but as far as acid exfoliators go it’s fairly gentle and feels more hydrating than stripping. The term daily is a bit confusing – you actually put it on and night and I don’t feel the need to use it every night but when my skin needs a bit of an extra pick me up I wipe this on and it does wake it up and make it look fresher." VC
The much-hyped makeup: Refy Face Collection, £45
“Model Jess Hunt’ s makeup range launched late last year with brow products and has been such a stellar success, that she’s launched a full makeup range and I am here for it. The set includes a cream blush and cream bronzer which give me a natural, smoothing finish while the Gloss Highlighter creates a subtle glow. The whole collection leaves me looking flawless and who doesn’t want that?” Amy Rostas, GTG beauty assistant
The haircare hero: Michael Van Clarke Three More Inches Lifesaver Luxe Gift Collection, £95
"Whenever I talk about my hair thinning issues on Get The Gloss or on Instagram I receive a slew of messages from women saying that they are really suffering with ongoing hair fall and thinning – that nothing seems or work, that they don't feel like themselves anymore. I always refer them to Michael Van Clarke's Lifesaver prewash treatment, which as of this year comes in three different incarnations, original, intense and 'sleep' for overnight. All are all key players in my hair health arsenal; they are protein pre-washes free from silicone with a high percentage of cashmere proteins. These add strength to the hair, stopping it from snapping and keeping the ends in almost as good conditions at the new growth at the roots. If you have shoulder-length hair, for example, your ends are probably a good two to three years old, so it makes sense to look after them as they age.
"Lifesaver has allowed me to get more than the promised three more inches of hair growth. It's hard to find gifts aimed at fixing thinning hair without making a big deal of an uncomfortable issue, but I think anyone would be delighted with this luxury package which will serve as hair insurance for the whole of 2022. I certainly would!" VW
The travel diffuser: Alexandra Kay Time to Inhale Handheld Diffuser , £20
"I was lucky enough to experience the full deliciously scented and thoughtful Alexandra Kay range by organic skincare experts Green People this week. This handheld oil diffuser really stood out; it's the absolute perfect stocking filler, super discreet and handy if you’re lucky enough to be travelling this winter. It delivers eight to ten cycles of 60-second scent diffusion. The diffuser is compatible with all the Alexandra Kay essential oil blends, my favourite being ‘Time to Smile’. My top tip if not using the oils in the diffuser is to pop a few drops in the bath as I know Alexandra loved to do, with a margarita no less - a girl after my own heart." CF
MORE GLOSS: Why electric diffusers are the new scented candles
The eco-friendly shampoo: Fiils Pomelo Shampoo Refil l, £12
"I'm a big fan of this clever sustainable range that lets you refill the aluminium bottles with different hair and body care blends. It even offers special recycling bags – with free postage – so you can return your used pouches. The Pomelo Shampoo and Conditioner are the latest to land. Like all the brand's hair formulas, they're free from synthetic fragrance, SLS and silicones but this shampoo, in particular, offers extra TLC thanks to soothing jojoba oil and pomelo essential oil. It's a great choice if, like me, winter's leaving your scalp a little fussy – without compromising on gloss, bounce and softness." Amber Voller, GTG contributor
The magical mushrooms: Wellgard Gold Standard Vital Mushrooms, £19.99
"Medicinal mushrooms are having a moment right now as we're learning more about their health-giving properties particularly when it comes to the immune system. They have multiple other benefits too; for example, lion's mane helps with cognition and brain fog (and has become especially popular in the time of Covid), while chaga is rich in antioxidants and good for fighting inflammation. You've probably seen mushroom coffee on the menu in health food takeouts. My local Planet Organic does a roaring trade in lion's mane lattes.
"Until I discovered this powder, I didn't know that there were such things as mushroom extracts and that they were five times stronger than straight dried mushroom powders in many supplement blends. This powder has extracts of six different mushrooms, it's organic, the extracts are made using hot water rather than alcohol, it's free from heavy metals and is a rich source of vital plant fibres called polysaccharides. Added bonus - a single half-teaspoon dose doesn't taste like ditchwater. In fact, it has a natural caramel/umami taste which is easy to disguise in coffee, hot chocolate or mixed into a soup . I'm taking this every day as winter immune support." VW
The bedtime essential: Pacifica Sleep Spray, £12
"My night is not the same without a sleep mist. it’s my all-time favourite sleep ritual before hitting the hay, so it’s safe to say I’d consider myself a connoisseur now. This new sleep mist, fresh from the US brand Pacifica is just what you need for a certified good slumber. I spray it on my body, pillow and sheets and let the calming plant-powered aromatherapy blend of lavender and vanilla calm my mind, body and soul." JT
The day-brightening scent: Sol de Janeiro x Anitta Fragrance, £18
"Sol de Janeiro is a firm favourite with everyone I know; I’ve asked for the Biggie Biggie Bum Bum Cream for Christmas . This scent was made in collaboration with Brazilian pop star Anitta and brings a hit of summer wherever I go, brightening these dreary days. It has a sweet and tropical scent of passionfruit nectar and pink patchouli and there are also some musky vanilla undertones that really tick my boxes. This is a limited edition fragrance so pick it up soon – five per cent of all sales are being donated to a children’s charity chosen by Anitta." AR
The wrinkle-smoothing serum: RoC Retinol Correxion Wrinkle Correct Serum, £33.30
"I love a serum, but I love a serum that irons out my fine lines even more - and that is exactly what this deliciously light and silky formula does. With a low-dose retinol and a mineral complex for added radiance, this morning and night serum promotes skin renewal for a fresher, more glowy complexion. I use the entire RoC retinol collection and have noticed a big difference in smoothness, firmness and hydration. Perfect for these colder days that are so much harsher on our skin." Hattie Sloggett. GTG contributor
The budget shower buy: Happy Naturals Moisturise Body Wash, £2.75
"Nothing beats finding a 10/10 beauty product that doesn’t break the bank and this is just that! This vegan-friendly body wash is incredibly nourishing, with 97 per cent natural ingredients such as sustainably sourced coconut oil and skin-loving shea butter that restores moisture to your skin. It's a rich and creamy feel-good wash with uplifting notes of coconut, peach, musk, and vanilla that always puts a spring in my step every morning. Made with 100 per cent recyclable packaging, it not only feels good for you but is also good for the environment, all for less than three quid!" JT
The wellness scent: The Nue Co Mind Energy, £85
"This is the third 'functional fragrance' from the Nue Co, formulated with neuroscientific research to affect your mood in the same way as taking a supplement would (in fact as a brand, they started with supplements). I love all three: the first, simply called Functional Fragrance is sweet and earthy, the second, Forest Lungs , is woody and smokey, and now this fresh, citrussy one which you spritz once or twice a day to improve focus and productivity is a real whoosh of clarity. It's also an eau de parfum that's sophisticated in its own right. If you want a low commitment option to see if it's for you, try the 10ml Mind Energy handbag size for £20" VW
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The party season eyeshadow: Beauty Pie Push Your Luxe Eyeshadow Palette, members pay £16.31, typical price £40
"I’m amazed at the value of this palette, no less than nine gorgeous shimmery yet wearable tones perfect for party season and beyond. For Beauty Pie members this palette costs just £16.31 versus £40 if you bought it in the shops (which you can't), in my opinion, it’s a no brainer, especially if you sign up with the code ‘GTGSENTME’ that gets you an extra £10 spend on your first month." CF
The must-have makeup brushes: Lottie London Vegan Brushes , £5-£10 each
“These brushes are super soft, vegan, aesthetically pleasing and affordable too. I’m super fussy when it comes to brushes and I hate when they get all scraggly and itchy after use or being washed and luckily these don’t. These would be a fab Christmas present too, especially when struggling for ideas or on a budget (secret Santa anyone?).” AR
The scalp exfoliator: Centred The Squishy Scalp Massager, £12.50
"I rely on a good scalp massager because the type of shampoo I use is non-foaming (currently Hairstory New Wash Rich ) and needs that added manual labour in place of harsh foaming agents. I've tried a few and this one, from hairdresser-founded healthy hair brand Centred, is by far the best. The slight bounce in the prongs gives you an addictive 'oooh' feeling that brings real joy to wash days. It has a second life in our living room too – my daughter and I give each other head massages with it when we're watching TV. It's gentle enough to be used on dry hair with the added bonus of nourishing your follicles with extra blood supply. A great stocking filler or pocket money present too." VW
The pore-clearer: Pore Patrol Skin Renewing Pore Extraction System, £32
"A vacuum cleaner for your pores? Ummm, yes, please! Magnitone's new tool really does what it says on the tin. With multiple heads, you are able to tailor the wand to exactly what you need and for where. A more sensitive T-zone? No problem, just use the silicone low suction head for that. Heavily blocked oily pores? Just pop on the deep suction head designed exactly for that. USB chargeable and perfectly sized to fit in any bag for any occasion, this is a game-changer for those that love an indulgent at-home facial." HS
MORE GLOSS: This at-home tool literally sucked all the dirt from my skin
The spa-at home moisturiser: Dizziak Body Conditioner, £20
“Dizziak is known for hydrating hair care, so when they launched their body conditioner I knew I was in for a right treat! It smells like you’ve just walked out of a spa for a fraction of the price. This conditioner has some fabulous ingredients inside, including inca inchi oil which is fabulous if you’re sensitive like me as well as vitamin E which is meant to help protect the skin from environmental damage. You’re meant to apply this onto damp skin which allows for it to absorb quickly into the skin's surface and even though I applied it straight onto dry skin, it didn’t leave that oily sticky feeling as many body creams do.” AR
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