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Gift Ideas

Christmas
In need of inspiration for your Christmas/holiday shopping list? Look no further! I've put together a few gift ideas for the special people in your life:

Gifts for girls [2014]
Gifts for guys [2014]
Stocking fillers and Secret Santa gifts (£15 or under) [2014]

Gifts for girls [2013]
Gifts for guys [2013]
Stocking fillers and Secret Santa gifts (£15 or under) [2013]

Gifts for girls [2012]
Gifts for guys [2012]
Stocking fillers and Secret Santa gifts (£15 or under) [2012]

Gifts for girls [2011]
Gifts for guys [2011]
Stocking fillers and Secret Santa gifts (£10 or under) [2011]
Bonus gift guide: Tote bag special [2011]

And if you're doing you're Christmas shopping and considering taking a trip to Bicester Village, here are my tips for surviving a trip to Bicester during the Christmas period. The biggest tip is to go on Christmas Eve rather than Boxing Day; according to Bicester Village staff, it's usually quieter on 23rd and 24th December, compared to the hell of the period between Christmas and New Year.

Not Another Bill
Some of my friends clubbed together and bought me a six-month subscription to Not Another Bill for my 30th birthday. This subscription service will send you or a friend or loved one a surprise package in the post once a month. You can select a few categories that you like — stationery, jewellery and art, for instance —and everything arrives beautifully packaged. You can read my review here (spoiler alert: I really liked all six gifts).

Beauty boxes
Inspired by the US-based Birchbox, a number of companies in the UK now offer beauty subscription services. The idea is that for £10 per month (usually plus P&P), you receive a beautifully packaged box of luxury beauty samples (and sometimes you might get one or two full-size products). I have bought a one-off box from Carmine but after researching for several months (and vicariously enjoying my boss's Glossyboxes each month, having persuaded her to sign up!), I subscribe to Glossybox, mainly because I preferred the range of brands and products offered. I'm giving Glossybox a six-month trial, after which I will unsubscribe if a) the quality or range of products has gone downhill or b) I have too many beauty products and pretty pink boxes to use! I have reviewed the December 2011 Glossybox here and the January 2012 Glossybox here.



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