As a kid, the excitement of Christmas always started on the morning of December 1st; we had a passed-down felt advent calendar in the shape of Santa Claus, and my mum would have put things like Chewits and Drumstick lollies in each little pouch. The first year that the advent calendar didn’t make it down from the loft was borderline devastating — we were “too old”, and my brother and I had to accept that some of the Christmas magic was gone.
But fast-forward to present day and advent calendars aren’t just for children anymore! With a trend for alternative advents — from the highly-sought gin selection to that £50 calendar — on the rise, there’s a countdown to suit every budget and taste this festive season. Here are a few of my favourites!
A blogger’s beauty box that’s totally budget friendly. I’ve never gone for Tanya Burr’s products before as they tend to be a bit twee for my liking, but I’m a magpie for glitter and berry tones, and this calendar has that in spades. I especially like the glitter liners — and some of the shades are limited edition!#
For a bit more variation, this super-cute pop-art style calendar will do the trick. The cartoonish design seems totally on brand with the bold colours of the gifts included. I think it would be perfect for someone a bit younger who’s starting to experiment with makeup.
I, for one, do not need anymore scented candles, but the fact that my room is already overflowing with votives should tell you how much I love this idea! A new fragrance every evening in front of the telly with the weather all frosty outside sounds perfectly cosy.
Bomb Cosmetics is one of my favourite smellies brands — I absolutely love their products, they smell beautiful and are jam-packed with essential oils, which leave skin feeling so soft and nourished, and not at all irritated like some other bath brands. I think this calendar is a lovely way to sample some of their festive offerings and maybe find a new favourite fragrance!
While I’m mostly against gendered gifts, I have to admit that the beauty/skincare calendars I’ve chosen so far have all been a quite girly (gasp!), so this one by Technic makes a nice change. If you ignore the bold MAN STUFF at the top of each product, the gifts behind each door are quite helpful little oddments for everyone to have handy.
2017 has seen me start caring more about how my nails look, and when I had to forfeit getting my gels done every month due to spending costs I was just a teeny bit devastated. Ciaté is a lovely brand for nail varnishes, and this gorgeous box would add a whole 24 colours to your collection! With a 5ml bottle retailing at £6.00, it’s a complete steal.
This perfectly charming (hahaha) advent calendar doesn’t end in December; it leaves you with a super pretty keepsake to hang onto, year in, year out! Accessorize is my first choice for jewellery, and this limited edition charm bracelet is a lovely themed addition to any festive outfit.
A few weeks ago I was very happy to be invited to Bluebird Tea Co.’s Nottingham store’s launch night, where I got to sample a selection of their most lovely-looking teas. Their Christmas range was already available so I got to have a good sniff around, and I even went home with a bag of their Christmas Cake loose tea. This advent calendar is a great chance to sample a new tea everyday — and I can vouch that the ones I’ve tasted are completely scrumptious! Perfect for cosying up on a frosty evening.
Forget chestnuts — get those marshmallows roasting on the open fire instead! If you fancy a sweet treat each day but aren’t much of a chocolate person, this could be the way to go. Each door features one of six ‘handmade festive flavour’, with an extra piece on Christmas morning!
Going down the traditional chocolate route with a homemade touch, this selection of traybakes from ClaresSquares on Etsy looks absolutely delicious! A different flavour of brownie every morning — what more could you ask for?
Lastly, Christmas is all about making other people happy at the end of the day, so make a special someone feel extra loved this year with this advent box. It’s fully customizable for you to choose your own colour and fill in your own “reasons”. It would be so lovely to wake up each morning and watch their face light up when they open their envelope.