When I was younger, nothing delighted me more than spending the 24 days leading up to Christmas snacking on one chocolate per day from the Advent calendar my grandma would gift me. In more recent years, though, I've begun the tradition of treating myself to more luxe calendars each holiday season, and the abundance of brands that have them make it easy to stock up on my favorite beauty goodies, all in the name of holiday spirit. This year, I had my eyes on the Kiehl's 2018 Skincare Advent Calendar — the skincare giant releases a limited-edition 24-day calendar each year fully stocked with all their iconic best-sellers, and while other brands try to compete, it really is one of the best on the market.
While many Advent calendars channel traditional holiday shapes like Christmas trees, Kiehl's decided to opt for more simplistic rectangular housing, but designed it to resemble a suitcase, as if one were traveling home for the holidays. So cute, right? The packaging was illustrated by artist Andrew Bannecker, and the "suitcase" is adorned with travel stamps from major cities including New York, Paris, London, and Hong Kong, just to name a few.
Swipe for a few photos of the Advent Calendar ($70, kiehls.com) and its festive exterior packaging:
Unlike my actual suitcase when I'm heading home for the holidays, this one is packed with luxe skincare samples and minis, not holiday jammies, extra underwear, and my laptop charger so that I can call in sick on the 26th and work from home. According to the Kiehl's site, the 24 gifts within the calendar could be cleansers, face masks, facial serums, moisturizers or other skincare goodies, so the variety is real, and you won't have to worry about ending up with 24 mini moisturizers you can't possibly use all at once.
Here's what the calendar looks like inside:
I spy in the Instagram post above a sample of the brand's famous Midnight Recovery Concentrate ($47, kiehls.com)! In some of the comments on the calendar's listing on the Kiehl's website, customers are clear to note that a lot of the items in the calendar are free sample-sized, which is something to keep in mind if you were hoping to get a ton of full-sized favorites. Still, at $70, the calendar definitely offers a lot of bang for your buck, whether you're already devoted to a Kiehl's skincare routine, or new to the brand and wanting to try out a variety of products before you splurge on full-sized items.
Kiehl's knows a thing or two about how to create a desirable item, so it's no surprise that, as of now, the limited-edition skincare calendar is out of stock on their website. It isn't sold elsewhere online — unless you're willing to pay almost double the $70 price tag on eBay — but you can still snag it in stores. In fact, customers can actually reserve and buy a calendar from their local store all on the Kiehl's website, and then go pick up the product from the shop in person. While technically, December 1 has come and gone, you could always double up on treats in the amount of time left before Christmas, or continue opening your calendar after December 25 comes and goes. Or, if you're really eager, you can buy it, Instagram the cute packaging, and then open up all the samples at once. It's technically "wrong" to do this, but I understand the feeling of being excited over new skincare, so do your thing.
If you're not dead-set on a calendar but still want to stock up for the holidays, you should know that Kiehl's is doing a lot this season to give back, and you can score some great products while doing your part:
The Kiehl's x Andrew Bannecker for Feeding America holiday collection this year will have all net profits donated to hunger-relief organization Feeding America, and there are three great kits to support the cause. The Kiss Me With Kiehl's ($25, kiehls.com) set includes three of the brand's popular lip balms, and each purchase provides 205 meals to Feeding America. The Smooth Skin Delights ($35, kiehls.com) kit contains a trio of soothing hand creams, and one purchase provides 282 meals. Finally, the Collection for a Cause ($50 kiehls.com) includes best-selling products like the Calendula Deep Cleansing Foaming Face Wash, the Calendula Herbal Extract Alcohol-Free Toner, the Calendula & Aloe Soothing Hydration Mask, and the Ultra Facial Cream, and provides 408 meals to people in need. No, there's no suitcase-inspired packaging, but is there anything more festive than helping others in need enjoy the holidays? Kudos for Kiehl's for making holiday cheer a reality for so many.