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I look forward to holiday beauty launches all year. And of course, with holiday beauty launches come the festive cream of the crop: holiday beauty Advent calendars.
So whether you follow the rules and count down with one product per day or can't help but tear through all the drawers the day your calendar arrives (it's me, a Gemini), 2021 has no shortage of truly gorgeous beauty Advent calendars—and some at steep discounts compared to what 25 products would cost when purchased individually.
When looking for the right beauty and wellness Advent calendar, there are a few areas to focus on. First, you'll want a selection that contains products you know you'll use so that you don't end up with a lot of extra things on hand. Next, they're an opportunity to try more products from brands you love, so choosing a brand you're loyal to would be a safe bet. And lastly, due to the small sizes of products in the calendars, this is a chance to experiment; if there's something you've wanted to try but have been hesitant to commit to, an Advent calendar is the perfect chance to branch out!. Ahead, sort your way through our festive list of the best beauty Advent calendars, from Lush to L'Occitane.
Elemis No. 25 Advent Calendar
A $562 value for $250, this year's Elemis Advent calendar is packed with 25 drawers of full- and travel-sized skincare products—one for each day between the 1st and the 25th. Whether you're an Elemis convert or just foraying into the brand, you're sure to discover some new favorites in this set.
The Best Products Inside: Pro-Collagen Marine Cream, Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm, Peptide4 Plumping Pillow Facial, Superfood Face Wash
Lush 12 Days of Christmas
I can confirm that this box smells like a holiday explosion as soon as you open it up. Featuring an array of 25 Lush holiday offerings—from bath bombs to shower gels—this one is sure to put you in the holiday spirit.
The Best Products Inside: Thundersnow Bath omb, Sleepy Bath Bomb, Candy Cane Bauble Bar
L'Occitane Signature Advent Calendar
While L'Occitane's Premium Advent Calendar is sold out for the season, you can still get your hands on the Signature iteration and count down from the 1st to the 24th. The calendar—which was inspired by the Christmas Market in Provence, France—contains everything you need to keep winter skin hydrated from head-to-toe.
The Best Products Inside: SOS Hydration Masque, Shea Butter Ultra-Rich Lip Balm, Rose Hand Cream, Almond Shower Oil
Diptyque Advent Calendar
For fragrance fanatics, the Diptyque Advent calendar is simply to die for. Each of the pristinely designed 25 drawers contains a treasure from Diptyque—from roller perfumes to the brand's most famous candle scents (psst: Baies and Roses are both included).
Best Products Inside: Figuier Cande, Flocon Candle, Fleur de Peau
Payot Skincare Advent Calendar
French skincare brand Payot has launched the ultimate Advent calendar full of 24 minis. So starting December 1, you can discover a new favorite skincare product every day until Christmas. And it's très chic.
The Best Products Inside: My Payot CC Glow, Gommage Amande, Bubble Mask Peeling
Kiehl's Skincare Advent Calendar
The Kiehl's Advent calendar is one of our favorites each holiday season, and this year is no different. From the festive packaging to the treasures inside, this one's a winner for any skin type. Inside, you'll find everything from classic Kiehl's products that earned the brand its claim to fame, to newer launches we love.
The Best Products Inside: Creme de Corps, Calendula Deep Cleansing Face Wash, Ultra Facial Cream
Huda Beauty House of Huda Advent Calendar
Huda Beauty's first-ever Advent calendar is setting the bar high. Inside, find 12 favorites from the brand, including OGs from the Huda Beauty makeup line, curated picks from Wishful Skin (including the latest launch, Get Even Rose Face Oil), and fragrance selects from Kayali.
The Best Products Inside: Mercury Retrograde Palette, Thirst Trap Cocoon Mask, Yo Glow Papaya Enzyme Scrub
Charlotte Tilbury Beauty Dreams and Secrets Advent Calendar
You can't go wrong with Charlotte Tilbury. This year's Advent calendar contains 12 drawers stuffed with the brand's bestsellers (in both the skincare and makeup categories). This is one calendar whose packaging you'll want to keep after you've claimed all of your treasures, too.
The Best Products Inside: Pillow Talk Mascara, Matte Revolution Lipstick, Hollywood Beauty Lind Wand
Benefit Cosmetics. The More the Merrier Advent Calendar
Makeup lovers can't go wrong with this Advent calendar from Benefit Cosmetics. Packed with 12 nights of efficacious products in that famous, cheeky Benefit packaging, this is the perfect way to stock up on minis of your favorite products.
Best Products Inside: The Porefessional Primer, They're Real! Mascara, Hoola Bronzer
111 Skin Luxury Advent Calendar
The 111 Skin Luxury Advent Calendar is one of the best skincare-focused calendars of the year. Loaded with serums, patches, and the brand's cult-favorite sheet masks, there's something for everyone here.
Best Products Inside: Celestial Black Diamond Eye Mask, Rose Gold Brightening Facial Treatment Mask, Vitamin C Brightening Cleanser
e.l.f. Snow One Loves You More 12-Day Advent Calendar
With e.l.f.'s 12-day Advent calendar, you practically get an entirely new skincare and makeup routine for $39. This year's selection includes an array of the brand's best-sellers, including a few of those viral TikTok products (which, btw, you can see in e.l.f.'s holiday TikTok movie, Big Mood Big e.l.f.ing City, out now on @elfyeah).
Best Products Inside: Luminous Putty Primer, Wow Brow Gel, Holy Hydration Mini
What to Look For in a Beauty and Wellness Advent Calendar
Advent calendars typically come with anywhere from 12-25 products. If each of them are fully, individually wrapped, then that's a lot of excess waste. Look for advent calendars made of recycled and recyclable materials to avoid a massive environmental footprint this holiday.
Opportunity to Experiment
Inasmuch as you want to make sure you'll use the products in your calendar and you like the brand you're buying from, this is also an opportunity to branch out and try new products (many of which are trial-sized). A beauty and wellness advent calendar provides you with new beauty products to try, so pick one that you're excited to branch out of your routine for.
What is in an Advent calendar?
An advent calendar is a countdown to Christmas in physical form, and they make a great holiday gift. Original calendars would countdown with a figurine or piece of chocolate for each day of December until Christmas. But as you can see, modern calendars are quite creative and can be used to count down to any holiday you desire, revealing a new beauty product on each day.
Is an Advent calendar a gift?
An Advent calendar does make for an excellent gift, but there is nothing at all wrong with buying one for yourself. If a beauty or wellness advent calendar will perk up your day, give you a lovely gift to look forward to each morning, and improve your beauty or wellness routine, those are beautiful reasons to buy one for yourself.