India's premier luxury lifestyle women's magazine
Beauty
December 22, 2018

14 New Beauty Products And Advent Calendars That Should Be On Your Festive Lust List

Text by Sadaf Shaikh

Halls aren’t the only ones that need decking. From gorgeous palettes inspired by the twinkling lights of New York City to a product line designed by a top Indian couturier, we bring you a definitive round-up of the recently launched products that you deserve to own whether you’ve been good or bad this year

L’Occitane

You know good things are in store when two French entities collaborate on an Advent Calendar and the bar is set even higher when those two brands happen to be L’Occitane and Castelbajac Paris. Featuring 24 Doors of Delight with colourful pop illustrations that house travel-friendly versions of the Shea Butter Shower Oil, the Verbena Cooling Hand Gel, the Almond Milk Concentrate and 21 other products, the calendar makes for the perfect Christmas present for your loved ones or even yourself, if you’re feeling exceptionally self-indulgent. A word of caution though: the products come in sample-sizes that you can actually procure for free at any international store and with some bottles holding only 5 ml of solution, you might run out of your favourite items sooner than you imagined.

Verve loves: The Cherry Blossom Hand Cream that transports you straight to the Land of the Rising Sun without having to take a flight.

Buy it here.

Kiehl’s

The popular cosmetics brand enlisted the help of American artist Andrew Bannecker to create a truly desirable Advent Calendar that includes the brand’s best-selling cleansers, face masks, facial serums and moisturisers. Integrating Bannecker’s trademark use of vivid colours and bubbly characters, the packaging features adorable figures with big button eyes that compel you to buy the products in case its contents aren’t enough to get the job done. The artist’s designs have also made it to Kiehl’s annual calendar where they have been illustrated as animated marshmallows, pretzel vendors, acorns, lanterns and other random objects. The brand has donated over a million meals with the proceeds that they’ve earned this season so this collection really is all about spreading some Christmas cheer.

Verve loves: The Ultra Facial Cream that promises to prep your skin for all the makeup you’re going to unload on it for that New Year’s bash.

Buy it here.

Innisfree

The Korean cosmetic brand’s holiday collection is entirely fetching with its scented candle that comes in a retro wool warmer package and perfumed diffusers with colourful pom poms. But we’re paying attention to what the all-natural beauty brand is best known for — its attention to quality and a special knowledge of ingredients from Jeju Island. Naturally, we were drawn to the Green Tea Seed Serum and the Green Tea Seed Cream which are packed with anti-oxidants that are capable of blessing your skin with an enviable glow. And Innisfree didn’t forget that this edition was a Christmas special so make sure you keep an eye out for tiny stockings and Christmas trees on the packaging. If that isn’t festive enough for you, the brand is even giving away DIY stocking kits at a discounted price of INR 100 with each hamper, part of which they will donate to charities that support underprivileged children.

Verve loves: The charming Perfumed Hand Cream Miniature Set with six different fragrances from Jeju which include sunshine wildberry, autumn leaves and pink coral.

Buy it at Nykaa.

Molton Brown

We believe that 90 per cent of looking good comes from feeling good and one of the most effective ways to draw out the best version of yourself is to smell like a little piece of heaven. This is why Molton Brown, one of UK’s leading personal care brands that launched in India in early September, has already become a favourite with fragrance enthusiasts here. The brand’s Advent Calendar — described as a cabinet of scented luxuries — houses classic favourites like body washes, body lotions, hand creams, mini candles, scrubs, shampoos and hair masks. The brand successfully attempted a double bonanza with their latest launch — a festive limited edition collection called Muddled Plum — which has orange, saffron and elemi as its top notes and makes you feel like you’ve stepped into the palatial homes of London.

Verve loves: A scented glitter for your home and Christmas ornaments to induce Winter Wonderland feels in Mumbai.

Buy it here.

Sephora

One of the most gorgeous holiday collections this season, Sephora has packed its holiday-appropriate bold and metallic hues into star-spangled midnight blue boxes that exude a spirit of the festivities to come. Comprising an eyeshadow palette, a holographic transformer stick, a lip palette, experiential masks and a nail paint set, the multi-chain beauty store has taken care to ensure that the makeup products look as good on your drawer as they do on your face.

Verve loves: The Midnight Eyeshadow Palette that allows you to oscillate between being delightfully classic and mysteriously bold.

Buy it at Sephora.

KIKO Milano

Although a relatively new entrant in the Indian beauty market, leading Italian cosmetics brand KIKO Milano has already become a hit with those who are not afraid to step out of their comfort zone. Their fittingly-christened Sparkling Holiday Collection has everything that will appeal to edgy beauty fiends right from the Metallic Blue Eyeshadow to the Glittering Nail Lacquers. They’ve helpfully slotted each product into distinctive personality types so the Baked Blush is perfect for the chic rebel while the glam diva gets the Volume Mascara. There’s something for you even if you want to dress down; check out their subdued cinnamon matte lipstick and you’ll know what we mean.

Verve loves: If you’re someone who likes to mix personas, say robot-meets-mermaid, you will love the All of Blue shade of the Metallic Eyeshadow.

Buy it at Nykaa.

Bobbi Brown

Think of New York on New Year’s Eve and what is the first image that comes to mind? But of course, it’s the ball drop. Apparently, we aren’t the only ones who can’t get enough of the Big Apple’s twinkling city lights because Bobbi Brown’s Fall 2018 Holiday Collection also borrowed inspiration from the glittering demeanour of New York during the holidays. From the Highlight and Glow Highlighting Powder Duo and Luxe on Luxe Mini Luxe Lip Colour Collection to the Starlight and Smokey Crystal Eye Palette and the Nudest Nudes Lip Gloss Kit, Bobbi Brown has carefully curated a melange of products that will have you covered in the makeup department. However, they were also thoughtful enough to cater to our skin and olfactory needs which would explain why they included the Power Trio Skincare Set and the Best of Beach Fragrance Set.

Verve loves: The Smokey Crystal Eye Shadow Palette because what better occasion than a New Year’s bash to flaunt smokey eyes? If you’re feeling unusually courageous, you could also apply two different shades on each eye and see where that gets you.

Buy it here and at Nykaa.

M.A.C

M.A.C Cosmetics has named its Advent Calendar Shiny Pretty Things and we are giving away no prizes (although they might) for guessing why. Offering a multi-hued trip into the realm of its holiday portfolio by way of an LSD-fuelled presentation which comprises some of their bestsellers, including the trust Ruby Woo, the box is a one-stop-shop for all your cosmetic needs. Again, as is the case with Advent Calendars, the products come in sample sizes so you might prefer investing in the regular-sized versions if you are someone who doesn’t get swept away in the frenzy of holiday gifting.

Verve loves: In Extreme Dimension 3D Black Lash Mascara that will temporarily bestow you with the kind of lashes you could only dream of having.

Buy it here and at Nykaa.

Bath and Body Works

After launching two brick-and-mortar stores in Delhi earlier this year, Bath and Body Works inaugurated a third store in Mumbai just yesterday so understandably, there is a high level of excitement amongst consumers to get their hands on the first spoils. Where you would earlier need to rely on beauty hauls from international trips to get access to the brand’s exquisitely fragrant products, their new Indian stores offer a sensorial experience that begins with a hand wash, and is followed by a scrub with a moisturiser and mist of your choice so that by the end of the session, you know exactly what you want to buy. Bath and Body Works’ holiday collection presents an array of products in four delicious fragrances named Winter Apple Candy, Vanilla Bean Noel, Snowy Morning and Coconut Mint Drop which promise to deliver Christmas right to your footstep.

Verve loves: The Snow Morning shower gel with shea butter because is there a better time than Christmas morning to luxuriate in a long bath?

Available at the Bath and Body Works store in Mumbai, Palladium.

The Body Shop

The brand’s special edition festive collection rightly falls under the purview of ‘seasonal treats’ (as it has been christened) because the products look edible and effective in equal parts. Four sub-editions — Peppermint Candy Cane, Berry Bon Bon, Vanilla Marshmallow and Enchanted Forest — are part of this special line and you would be lying if you said the first three names didn’t get you to drool a little bit. Understandably featuring the aforementioned festive paraphernalia on its packaging, there is an impressive range of products on offer such as body butters, shimmer mists, body scrubs, bubble bath solution and candles. By the time you make your way through the whole range, we promise you’ll pretty much smell like a treat yourself.

Verve loves: The Vanilla Marshmallow Bubbling Bath formula for the simple reason that it takes us back to much-cherished childhood memories.

Buy it here.

Clinique

While most Indians love December for the sheer reason that it signals the coming of an elusive and delayed winter, the cooler months also bring with them the hassle of chapped lips and flaky skin. During such times, applying even the slightest amount of colour to your lips is out of the question because chemicals only aggravate the situation. Cue Clinique’s Dramatically Different Lipstick Shaping Lip Colour. A lip-conditioning lipstick that smoothes and defines lips while delivering long-lasting colour for up to eight hours, the product prompts the lips to become more defined and smooth thanks to a centre core packed with peptides and smoothing actives. Additionally, the narrower bullet provides precision in terms of application and the sculpted tip makes it easier to define the cupid’s bow.

Verve loves: The collection boasts 50 unique shades ranging from nudes and pops to creams and pearls but we have our heart set on the Ginger Flower which is a subdued coral red interspersed with a dash of shimmer.

Buy it at Clinique stores across India, Shoppers Stop, Sephora and online on Nykaa.

Smashbox

The result of a collaboration with Los Angeles-based artist Jen Stark, Smashbox’s festive collection has been named Holidaze because of the hypnotic artwork that adorns all the packaging. Comprising products such as the Always On Eye Liner Set, Always On Liquid Lip Set, Artist Brush Set, Contour + Spotlight Palette and Photo Finish Travel Primer Trio, the collection feels like looking at Staedtler’s envy-inducing watercolour pencils from our childhood on acid. With smudge-free liners that allow you to maintain your smoulder all day long and brushes for the wannabe makeup artist, this is a collection that implores you to discover its contents during a sleepover with your girlfriends.

Verve loves: The Lash Liner set that gives you eyelashes for days.

Buy it at Smashbox Boutiques, Sephora Stores, Online on Sephora and Nykaa.

Manish Malhotra Haute Couture Makeup

Close on the heels of L’Oréal Paris’ collaboration with ace couturier Sabyasachi Mukherjee comes top Indian designer Manish Malhotra’s partnership with MyGlamm. Dramatic and dreamy in equal measure, his foray into the beauty industry closely resembles his creations for the ramp with his maiden cosmetics venture comprising a mixed bag of eyeshadow palettes, glosses, highlighters, lipsticks and nail varnishes. With products that steadily transition from matte to metallic like the modern woman who slides from a 9 to 5 job to a fancy networking event, Malhotra has opted for black and rose gold packaging which is surprising minimalist when pitted against his larger-than-life design sensibilities. And for those who are averse to sporting an over-made-up face, the 46-product collection also includes a host of neutral-toned products that add just the right amount of subtle glamour to your evening.

Verve loves: The Seduction Blush Stick that melts easily into your skin and lasts for hours.

Buy it here.

NYX Professional Makeup

A brand that is aimed at the youth and knows how to have fun with its products, Nyx Professional Makeup has always encouraged its patrons to treat their face as an artist’s canvas and allow the colours to reveal their magic. It comes as no surprise then that their New Year launch is called Born to Glow and comprises Duo Chromatic Lip Glosses in hypnotic hues, Metallic eyeliners in sparkly shades and Highlighting Palettes packed with luminescent pearls for the most intensive glow. Interestingly, the instructions on the package instruct you to mix shades without really recommending which ones go best together, so you’re left to your own devices, which is never really a bad thing when it comes to breaking the mould.

Verve loves: The Born To Glow Highlighting Palette which catches, reflects, and refracts the light around you as if the sun were your very own Man Friday.

Buy it here.

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