The general feeling in my inbox is that Christmas is 12 days away and the panic is setting in. So while I’m not doing a full gift guide, I will be offering up some emergency gift ideas.
A caveat: I generally don’t like buying things that take up space or need to be stored or are a “one use” item.
Food is an underrated gift because everyone eats. It’s kind of foolproof. And, depending on the recipient, food is chance to splurge on something fancy or stock up on a staple you know they love. (Also, I’m a beagle in human form and am highly motivated by food.)
-Japanese bbq sauce (I can drink Bachan’s).
-Honey from somewhere nearby.
-Nice bottle of olive oil from one of those bougie shops that has samples. This will require a special trip but that’s what makes it a special gift, you know?
-Black garlic salt in a tin. Any kind of salt in a tin really.
-An assortment of hot sauces. Not in a premade pack but like the good ones you get at small grocery stores. Crispy chilies, vinegary hot sauce, smoky chipotle - mix up those flavor profiles.
Skin and body care
This category is a quagmire because everyone’s skin responds differently to products but I came up with some basics.
I made a gossip chaos package for my niece and mixed Rhode and Rare Beauty.
Sheet masks (I believe Lainey likes these) or one really expensive sheet mask (Augustin Bader), SKII.
Foot masks and hand masks (don’t sleep on the Aveeno – inexpensive and great).
A dry brush. (A little goop-y, I know. This doesn’t have to be a big spend and you can get ones that are made with no plastic.)
Everyone says Laneige lip sleep mask but if you have time to get it, the Klavuu one is great (IMO better!).
L’Occitane shea butter creams. Moms love it! (Me. I’m moms.)
For the person who has everything or wants nothing
A new pillow because NO pillow is a lifetime purchase. Pillows should be switched out every year or so even if they can’t use it right this second they will eventually need a new pillow.
Crocs because they are ugly but useful and that’s the uncomfortable truth no one wants to acknowledge.
Stanley cup, Nalgene or Hydro Flask. Basic? Yes. But sometimes the basics are the best.
An extra-long phone charger, great for lying in bed and doom scrolling.
I got my nephews a video game controller stand and charger because what else does a 15-year-old care about?
Something unexpected that feels like GIFT
This is my favourite category because it allows for a bit of showing off. Wow them with your gift giving prowess.
A magazine subscription (with a copy of corresponding magazine). First off, print magazines are chic and second, it’s supporting print.
Two glass tumblers (this is what I drink out of, really elevates my Diet Coke).
Crew socks from - and I am LOATHE to blow up my spot here - Le Bon Shoppe. It’s cutting it close online but they sell in a bunch of very cute shops.
Thom Browne pencils because anyone can use a pencil. Even minimalists use pencils.
Anyone can buy an expensive candle but you know what people don’t usually buy themselves? A bottle of matches and candle snuffer. This is the kind of gift you can do fairly inexpensively from Amazon or splash out on from a high-end home décor store. Mid-range there’s Anthropologie, which has a leopard candle snuffer (very Alexis Colby).
OK, back to the celebrities. (PS: if you are really stumped and need an emergency gift from like Shoppers Drug Mart on December 24, hit me up.)
Elizabeth Banks, AGAIN
I wrote about Elizabeth Banks last week and I’m back because I have a note about her cropped blazer. I love it. Haven’t found the designer yet and not sure if she was styled by Erin Walsh but after seeing this, I googled “cropped blazers” and there’s so many! So is everyone running around in cropped blazers and no one told me? I can confidently say I don’t think I’ve ever seen this look in real life and yet these blazers are everywhere online. That’s all to say that I really like this on her BUT would have chosen a darker jean.
Hailey Bieber’s polka dot puffer
I get a lot of requests for Hailey Bieber and lucky (for me) there are some very detailed fan accounts. The puffer jacket below is by ERL and they makes all kinds of interesting puffers.