As a 20-something woman, I could attempt to thoughtfully curate a list of beauty and wellness products that women over 40 might want for the holidays based off of the current market and past chats I've had with the women in my family, but there's no better way to glean this information than by casting a wider net and going straight to the sources. As we age, our wants and needs shift, especially in the realm of beauty (though some things remain steadfast, like a set of high-quality, efficacious skincare), so the products you'd get for your millennial co-worker may not be as desirable for your mother-in-law.
Of course, you also don't want to be insulting and assume they want (or need) something age-specific, so below, we've rounded up the top wishlist items of 10 women over 40.
"There's nothing more luxurious to me than getting a facial at a fancy spa. I try to get them myself a few times a year, but they can be quite pricey, so I'd definitely love a freebie as a gift. Especially one with laser treatments. I've got some sunspots I'd love to zap." — Marcy, 52
"I've been eyeing La Mer from afar for a very long time, walking past it longingly in the department store. I'm not sure how well it actually works, but it seems like it's one of those products you have to try at least once in your life, and I would if it weren't for the price tag. If someone gave me La Mer for Christmas, I'd probably weep a little." — Val, 63
This gift set includes hero product Crème de la Mer, as well as a thinner hydrating lotion, a contouring serum, and a firming mask, all swathed in a chic dusty-pink, red, and black bag.
"My current Fitbit is broken, so I'd love a shiny new one for the holidays. It's really changed my life in so many ways, from making me more active to being more productive without having to rely on my phone for everything. Some days I even just leave my phone at home and only use my Fitbit to field messages, calls, and stay in touch with what's happening in the outside world." — Stacey, 54
"I actually read in a Byrdie article that it's really important to incorporate olive oil into your diet to reduce inflammation, so I've been trying to have a bit every day. The good stuff is pricey though, so I'd love some really authentic, top-shelf EVOO. I can also use it as a moisturizer or conditioner too. It's the do-it-all food we all need more of!" — Linda, 43
"I already told my husband I want him to get me a gym membership for Hanukkah. I walk a lot during my lunch break and after work, but I want to take advantage of our local gym's classes, sauna, machines, and personal training services. I'm not getting any younger. It's time to be a 'gym person!'" — Maria, 47
"I try to be quite diligent with my skincare routine and always wash, tone, and moisturize every morning and night, but I haven't been using retinol regularly and would love a nice serum or moisturizer to help fade my elevens and crow's-feet." — Kerry, 41
This serum comes highly recommended by dermatologists and also aids in healing acne lesions.
"Call it laziness, but now that the kids are off to college and my husband and I are empty-nesting, I'd love to spend less time cooking every evening. I've been researching a lot of meal-plan services and am intrigued by Daily Harvest. You can choose your own combinations of bowls, smoothies, soups, and overnight oats, and they all sound so yummy. I'd love it if someone sent these to my house as a gift!" — Tracy, 53
"My cookware is worse for the wear, and while I'd absolutely kill for some Le Creuset pieces, I don't have the budget for them. In a dream world, someone would gift me a full set. (Isn't it funny the things we get excited about as we get older?)" — Patricia, 40
"All of my friends are obsessed with their air fryers. I love fries and chips and fried chicken (all the bad stuff, of course), but I love that the air fryer makes these foods somewhat healthier because I'm not soaking them in a fatty oil but rather using the magic of forced hot air to make them crispy and delicious." — Susie, 50
"I'm always frozen, and there's nothing worse than shivering on my couch in the wintertime while burrowing myself in blankets just trying to get cozy. This mat would be such a saving grace for me, especially since my feet are always ice-cold. Bonus: You can wear it on your back and stomach too—just about anywhere you need some localized heat. I might just buy it for myself before the holidays even come around!" — Kelly, 44
Up next, check out the most helpful makeup tips for women over 40.