*This is a paid post in partnership with Boots.*
I remember the first time I walked into a Boots Pharmacy when I was 13 years old. My mum and I were spending the October half term in London so we could start our Christmas shopping and I could practise my English. I was far too shy and self-conscious to utter a word in English that week. Way too embarrassing thank you very much.
When my mum and I first walked into Boots on Oxford Street, I was in heaven. I’d never seen a shop like Boots before. Sure, we had large pharmacies in France, but they were nothing like Boots. They were much more sterile, way ‘too serious’ and a bit boring. Boots was so bright and colourful and fun. It also smelt divine in there. I remember getting a peel-off face mask, a lip balm or two and plasters for those blisters my mum and I were getting from all our walking in London’s busy streets.
Ever since I settled in England in 2001, Boots has been one of those places I always stop at when going to town, whether it be to buy a birthday card, stock up on Calpol, get supplements to keep colds at bay, restock on toothpaste or get a new lipstick for a night out. When the lovely people at Boots asked me whether I wanted to take part in a Christmas shopping campaign with them, I jumped at the chance.
When do you start your Christmas shopping?
According to a recent Boots Christmas Gifting Survey (11,000+ respondents), almost a quarter of Brits started Christmas shopping in August. My own Christmas shopping doesn’t normally begin until the end of November but I like to start thinking about what I’d like to give the important people in my life much earlier than that. The one thing that invariably sparks my Christmas shopping mojo is the Boots’ Christmas catalogue. As soon as it’s released, I grab a copy, go home, make a cup of coffee and sit on the sofa whilst leafing through its pages, pen in hand. I earmark pages, circle things I want to get and keep the catalogue in the living room throughout the winter. This year, I didn’t even have to get the catalogue because Crevette came back from school with it on the day it was released. Talk about knowing me well!
I’ve got to admit that my intention is always to be really good and have everything ready and wrapped by mid-December, but in reality, I tend to be all over the place and get gifts for my loved ones up to the last minute. I am generally wrapping presents throughout the night on the day before we travel to France…
Which person’s gift receives the most thought?
57% of people who took part in the Christmas survey said seeing the persons face when opening the gift is their favourite part of gifting. That’s definitely my favourite thing too!
The lovely people at Boots challenged me to pick three gifts from their Christmas Gifts pages. One would be for a woman in my life, one for a man and I also had to pick something for myself.
I started with the little man in my life. Crevette might only be 11 years old, but this little human being of mine is a very special one. He is caring, thoughtful and incredibly helpful (reality check: he’s also forgetful, disorganised and awkward at times). He will turn into a perfect gentleman, no doubt about that. I wanted to get him something really special for Christmas. I had a clear idea in my mind and it took minutes to find exactly what I was after in the Christmas Gifts for Him section of the Boots’ website.
I went for this CK One Eau de Toilette Gift Set. Crevette loves looking smart and wearing a jacket with a shirt or slogan T-shirt when we go out. He’s also borrowed his dad’s after shave a few times. CK One is going to be the perfect present for him. To me, it’s a very special fragrance as it was such a classic when I was a teenager. I also bought it for my youngest brother as his first aftershave years ago. CK One is an iconic fragrance that smells fresh and modern yet isn’t overpowering or heady. I also think Crevette will like the minimalistic look of the bottle. The mini eau de toilette will also be great for holidays and so will the wash bag.
The second present I picked was from the Christmas Gifts for Her, for my sister-from-another-mother. Cé is my rock, my sounding board, my tear-moper, laughter-inducing friend. We’re so close we’re just like sisters, really. We giggle a lot and talk about everything, from bodily functions to nits to sleep deprivation to our dreams and hopes. Cé is going to get the cute Benefit gift set below. I love the camper keepsake tin it all comes in. I think she’ll love the holiday set, with the pore primer, brow gel, powder bronzer and mini mascara.
Last (but not least, I guess), I had to choose something for myself. I find it hard to pick something for me, so rather than going for a fancy gift set, I went with something I already loved and wanted. I’ve just run out of my Smashbox Photo Finish Primer and I can’t justify buying it on a whim, so I’m pretty happy I can get it for Christmas. I love it and usually get it for myself for my birthday. My skin is uneven and this lightweight primer is absolutely amazing at blurring imperfections and helping my makeup go on flawlessly. I don’t wear makeup every day but it blends in a lot more easily with the primer and lasts for hours and hours without any touch-ups.
Who do you find it easiest to buy gifts for? Why?
The lovely people at Boots are offering one of my readers the chance to win a Soap & Glory Miracle On 24th Sweet Advent Calendar worth £42. To be in with a chance of winning just complete one or more entries below. Good luck!
How to enter the giveaway:
You can pick and choose a range of ways in which to enter. The only one you must click on to get into the draw is the one asking you to leave a blog post comment. You must also leave a comment telling me who you find the easiest to buy gifts for and why.
This giveaway is open to UK residents over 18 and entries are open until 23.59 p.m. GMT time on Saturday 30th November 2019. Good luck!Boots
Disclosure: This blog post is sponsored by Boots but all opinions and photos are my own. If you’re entering the giveaway, check the terms and conditions on Gleam.