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This year may have been all about skincare thanks to Covid, but now that the holidays are here it’s makeup junkies’ time to play. Christmas and New Year’s may be the most fun time to wear makeup because there’s so much sparkle and shine. You honestly can’t leave the house between December 23 and January 2 without a metallic something on your eyes, lips, or cheeks and, believe us, we’re here for it.

The other fabulous part about makeup this time of year are the discounts. Black Friday may have come and gone and some sites Cyber Monday sales are now a thing of the past, but holiday gift sets and product promos are here to stay until the last ho, ho, ho. We know the socially acceptable thing is to say it’s better to give than to receive this time of year — and it is — but we also live by the mantra, “treat yo’self” and there’s no better time to do just that. That’s why we’ve put together this gift guide of glam goodies everyone from your bestie to your sister would love to have in their stocking this year. And no judgment if everything we listed is going under your own Christmas tree, we’ll probably pick up a few things for ourselves too.

Celebrate Your Heavenly Luxe Makeup Brush Set

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Before you even get into product, it’s important to have the right tools for application, which is where this Celebrate Your Heavenly Luxe Makeup Brush Set from IT Cosmetics comes into play. The special limited-edition holiday set comes with four full-size makeup brushes for flawless application of your makeup base – the Effortless Blush Brush, Effortless Powder Brush, Effortless Precision Brush, and Effortless Shadow/Smudger Brush — all of which were crafted from award-winning, cruelty-free Heavenly Luxe brush hairs. After use, you (or the person you’re allegedly buying this for) can store the brushes in the included case.

Pro Filt’r Instant Retouch Primer

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The foundation of any great foundation is a good primer and we’re a bit partial to this one because, really, who wouldn’t want Fenty Beauty under their tree this year? The Pro Filt’r Instant Retouch Primer isn’t just all name, however, the product quickly became a fave among makeup junkies for its ability to mattify oily skin, conceal pores, and smooth one’s skin overall — and it only takes one drip of the primer to do all that, making it worth every penny.

Fro Ho’ Ho’ Brow Kit

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Remember when we explained brows shape 75% of our face in our Beautiful Brow Guide? If you haven’t gotten yours together yet, now is the time and this kit from Black-owned brand Uomo will get you right.

Precision is the name of the game when it comes to crafting a full, natural brow and this set comes with two brow pencils to shape and define: Fro-To-Go has a slim triangular tip on one end for filling and shaping, while the built-in sheer brow highlighter and sponge applicator add depth. Baby Hair, the brand’s ultra-slim brow defining pencil allows you to create micro-thin hair-like strokes for a natural effect. Finally, the Blow Out Brow Gel increases volume and adds color.

exa High Fidelity Foundation

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If adding more eco-friendly items to your makeup collection is on your to-do list, exa is a great place to start. Good for your skin and the environment, the makeup line launched by clean beauty brand Credo, features a 43-shade set of high fidelity foundations formulated with protective microalgae actives, maqui berry, and hyaluronic acid for a buildable semi-satin finish that smooths, hydrates, and shields skin from free radicals.

The foundation’s bottle is also made from recyclable glass, the cap from recycled plastic, and the box it comes in from 100% post-consumer waste.

Brighten & Bronze Complexion Trio

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Add more dimension to your foundation base with this Brighten & Bronze Complexion Trio from Latin-X brad Alamar cosmetics. The Dark/Rich set comes with deep neutral shade Oye Morena!; a warm tan powder called Cinnamon Sugar, and a Bright mid-toned orange known as Golden Hour. Each powder is talc free and formulated with hyaluronic acid to go on skin smoothly.

You can use the brightening Golden Hour shade to illuminate under the eyes, while the bronzer should be brushed along the perimeter of the face. Follow up with the deepest shade, Oye Morena!, to create depth around the cheekbones, forehead, and jaw.

Benefit Cosmetics Roller Liner Duo and Bag

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If no one’s ever told you, you can never have too much Black eyeliner. And the last position you want to find yourself in is in front of the mirror getting ready to beat your face and finding out your liquid liner has run out. That’s why we’re a fan of this Benefit Cosmetics duo. The set comes with two of the brand’s bestselling Roller Liner liquid– a personal favorite of ours – and a bag for toting one around in your purse for midday touchups while you keep the other secure at home. Did we mention they’re full-size? You truly can’t go wrong with this easy-to-use, fast-drying liner.

Lash Freak Volumizing Mascara

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Let’s just get right into the stats with this super-pigmented, flake-proof mascara from Urban Decay. Lash Freak creates 23.6 times more volume and 40% more visible length, hence the name. With a wand designed to define and lift even the tiniest lashes, this mascara instantly opens eyes and adds intensity.

As a bonus, it’s also smudge proof, sweat proof, and lasts for up to 20 hours. That would certainly bring us some holiday cheer.

Elements of Glam Eyeshadow Palette

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You just can’t do holiday makeup without glitter and shimmer which is why we’re in love with this eyeshadow palette from the Atlanta-based Black-owned Glamatory. Fifteen highly pigmented shades fill out this palette — four of which are glitter shades, six shimmer, and five matte, meaning you can use this year-round.

We love the variety of colors, from neutral pinks and nudes to bright golds, silvers, and burgundies which provide a shade for every mood. The colors also work well together so you can create your own color combos like a true makeup junkie.

Lip Water Liquid Gold

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Doesn’t that name automatically make you want to put this product in your cart? Lano’s Lip Water Liquid Gold is a lightweight, hydrating, non-sticky gloss infused with peppermint oil to refresh lips and splashes of gold shimmer to make lips sparkle.

The theme this year is hyaluronic acid and this gloss is packed with it to keep lips hydrated, along with lanolin, the brand’s hero ingredient which they dub “nature’s wonder moisturizer.” Use this alone or over your favorite lipstick and watch your mouth glow from the reflective particles that scream festive.

Pillow Lips Solid Serum Lip Gloss

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Want a bit more color with your hydration? Opt for IT Cosmetics’ Pillow Lips Solid Serum Lip Gloss that offers just a subtle flush of color and plenty of moisture. Collagen, hyaluronic acid, and tri-oil complex are the stars of this product which is like a lip balm, lipstick, and lip gloss in one. Choose from eight different shades of pinks and berry tones to keep it cute and colorful for at least four hydrating hours with this winter must-have.

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