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I can’t quite believe it’s time to start talking about advent calendars but here we are. 2020 has been a strange old year and while it has taken a lot of our freedom and spontaneity, I certainly won’t be letting it spoil Christmas. The festive season is such a positive and uplifting time and I still get a buzz from the excitement of it all. I get so much enjoyment from planning out gifts for friends and family and putting time and effort in to surprising them with different ideas each year. It’s the most rewarding and satisfying feeling to give someone something they weren’t expecting. Christmas has always been a magical time in my family and I don’t ever want to lose that.
Advent calendars have changed drastically from the relatively basic chocolate versions we all grew up with. Nowadays they are a major feature of the festive season and help mark the countdown to the big day. Each year brands go bigger and better with the selection of items included and the extravagant packaging. There are more options than ever from jewellery to stationary, to beauty and skincare. The variety is incredible and 2020 is no exception.
I’ve rounded up some of the best options available this year to save you any hassle and to have them all in one place. There are options to suit all budgets from affordable options like ASOS and Sephora to more high end options such as Jo Malone or Fortnum & Mason. Some brands are even offering different tiers i.e. a 12 day reasonably priced calendar as well as a more expensive 24/25 day option. A lot of brands have already launched while others are on pre-order or still to be released. I’ll keep updating this page as new ones drop.
While I fully appreciate these extravagant Advent Calendars won’t be to everyone’s taste, some of them are good value for money in terms of the contents. They are also a great idea if you want to try out some products from a brand without having to buy everything individually. I’ve pulled out some of the best options in terms of what’s included and the price point:
1. Charlotte Tilbury – Bejewelled Chest of Beauty Treasures £150
Charlotte Tilbury is a higher end brand in terms of the price point however the Advent Calendar is one of the best in terms of value for money. While the content list hasn’t been released at the time of writing, the 2019 Advent Calendar (still available) contained 4 full size products which came to the value of £91 along with a further 8 travel sized products. I’m sure the 2020 Advent Calendar will be in line with that value and it goes without saying it’s a great way to try out a variety of products from the brand without having to spend a lot of money on individual products that might not suit. The packaging this year is also really versatile and the chest could be used for storage after the festive period.
2. Benefit – Shake Your Beauty £59
While the Benefit advent calendar doesn’t contain any full sized products, it’s full of mini versions of the top sellers and therefore you get the best selection from the brand. I use a lot of Benefit products in my makeup routine including Gimme Brow, Dandelion Blush, Benetint as well as They’re Real Primer and Mascara and I often prefer the mini versions. The brush on the mini Gimme Brow for example is smaller and enables a more precise application. The same goes for Benetint, the applicator is neater than the full size product and a little goes a long way. The smaller sizes also come in really handy for travelling or on the go in handbags etc. To buy the 12 minis individually would cost £125+ therefore getting them all for £59 is incredible value.
3. Sephora Favourites €119
I’m a huge fan of Sephora and I love visiting their stores particularly in Paris. I always stock up on all my favourites to try and see me through to my next visit. I don’t know why we don’t have a store here in the UK yet, I know we have other similar options however a lot of the products I like are from Sephora’s own collection. Thankfully I’ve still been able to shop online with delivery from France and on my latest browse I discovered that Sephora have 3 advent calendar options for 2020. They start at €44.99 increasing up to €119 for the Sephora Favourites collection. I’ve included it in the top 3 advent calendars for 2020 simply due to the quality of the brands included. You have Huda Beauty, Sunday Riley, Christophe Robin, Marc Jacobs, Mario Badescu, Tarte Cosmetics, Benefit, Hourglass, Ren as well as Sephora’s own collection. The products average at €4.76 each and while one or two might come in just under that value, most would cost much more with the Huda Beauty Palette alone retailing at £27.
I’m keeping everything crossed for Laduree offering an Advent Calendar again this year. I missed out on it last year as it sold out extremely quickly but this time I’m checking daily in the hope I’ll be able to snap it up as soon as it becomes available. I’ll of course include it above if they do release it.
Will you be buying a non-chocolate Advent Calendar this year?