By Tara Adamson

There are not a lot of beauty products she hasn’t tried over the last 20 years. Tara Adamson is a self-confessed beauty addict and has spent two decades on a beauty quest to find the best the industry giants have to offer. She is fast becoming our beauty boffin as she seeks out the latest and greatest products out there.

Why not follow me on Twitter; @TaraYMB I’d be happy to answer any beauty related comments or questions you may have.


Elemis has put together a fantastic selection of gifts and kits for this Christmas, with something for everyone. My pick of the bunch are the following;

Scent of Spa Candle (£25)

Presented in a beautiful metallic purple glass holder, this festive candle will add a touch of glamour to your home. With its delicious festive fragrance, this gorgeous candle will fill the room with the luxurious scent of cinnamon, orange and vanilla.

Freshskin Smoothly Does It (£25)
This is a fantastic cleanse, exfoliate and soften gift kit for ‘young skin with a bright future; teens to 20s’. Freshskin Smoothly Does It comes is a lovely patent pink wash bag containing ‘skincare super heroes to leave you looking fresh-faced and radiant all day long.’

DAILY – Clean; Make-Up Away Cleansing Wipes, Hydrate; Softly Softly Daily Moisturiser, Soften; Loving Lips Quenching Lip Balm and for WEEKLY use – Exfoliate; Skin Glow Exfoliating Face Wash, and Smooth; Magical Moisture Quenching Face Mask.

This is a fantastic kit for your daughter, sister or niece and contains a selection of full and sample-sized products; a great way to try expensive skincare before purchasing the full sized products.



Frangipani Secrets (£37.50)

Ahhh bliss! This is my all time favourite Elemis scent; it’s absolutely divine (I so wish they’d bring out a perfume in this fragrance). Frangipani Secrets comes in a lovely rich purple presentation box and is the perfect collection of products to let you enjoy a luxurious, indulgent shower, the scent of which transports you off to an exotic, island paradise.

It contains a full sized Frangipani Monoi Shower Cream; a truly luxe cream body wash which gently cleanses the body with a unique & rich infusion of exotic Tahitian mono oil, a beautiful blend of tiare flowers soaked in copra oil and delicately fragranced with frangipani flowers, leaving skin exquisitely scented, soft and supple.

Follow with the Frangipani Monoi Body Oil; this beautiful silky soft exotic oil melts quickly into the skin leaving dry, parched or mature skin perfectly moisturised and smelling delicious. This is a great multitasking oil which can be used as a smoothing, moisturising treat for skin, hair and nails. All available from


Laura Mercier Colour To Go Portable Palette in Natural Nudes, £31

This is the most stunning Palette for Eyes, Cheeks and Lips; just great as a gift or perfect to take on your travels over the festive season and beyond. Convenient and easy to use with its flattering collection of shades to create a multitude of looks for day and evening; just add mascara, concealer, foundation and powder and you’re ready to hit the town! This Colour To Go Portable Palette contains;

A full sized mirror, along with Eye Colours in Buttercream; a matte base colour, Rosewood; mid toned shade to add a delicate lustre, and Cocoa Brown; a satin defining shade, along with Tightline Cake Eyeliner in Chocolate Brown to line, add intensity, definition & drama. Bronzing Pressed Powder in Matte Bronze to contour and give a radiant glow; Second Skin Cheek Colour in Sweet Mandarin for a beautiful pop of colour on the cheeks; a mini Lip Glacé in Sweetheart to complete your look.

I tried the Natural Nudes colourway, but it is also available in lovely Smoky Violet tones. With palettes, there’s usually at least one colour you wouldn’t use, but with Laura Mercier’s Colour To Go Portable Palette, I’ll be using everything; I absolutely love it! £31 from



Party Survival Kit, £19

I’m relatively new to Korres’ beautiful products; this is a Greek all natural, organic skincare brand set up in 1996. This is their fantastic Party Survival kit and its just the ticket for the upcoming festivities over the holiday period; perfect for the morning after, it contains everything you’d need to make you feel human again!

White Tea Facial Fluid Gel Cleanser (16ml) gently, yet deeply cleanses and refreshes without drying out the skin. Non irritating and suitable for all skin types.

Wild Rose 24 hour Moisturising & Brightening Cream (16ml)

A divine scented moisturising & repairing cream, perfect for overindulged, dehydrated skin. Soothing for dry to normal skin.

Aloe & Dittany Shampoo (40ml) – A gentle, moisturising shampoo rich in proteins & amino acids, gentle enough to use every day without stripping the scalp.

Guava Showergel (40ml) – Awaken your senses with this creamy, foamy indulgent shower gel which will moisturise the skin with Aloe, vitamins C and E, zinc and antioxidant enzymes.

Basil Lemon Bodymilk (40ml) – An energising, moisturising body milk rich in provitamin B5, shea butter, jojoba oil, Aloe, Vitamins C & E, Zinc and Antioxidant enzymes. £19 from


Jo Malone Peony & Blush Suede Cologne, £39

One of the latest offerings from Jo Malone is this gorgeous Peony & Blush Suede Cologne. Released earlier on this year, it is “The essence of charm. Peonies in voluptuous bloom, exquisitely fragile. Flirtatious with the juicy bite of red apple and the opulence of jasmine, rose and gillyflower. Mingling with the sensuality of soft, blush suede. Luxurious and seductive.”

It has top notes of fruity red apple; a crisp note that captures the mouthwatering juiciness of apple, opening the fragrance with an innocent, fruity twist. Heart notes of floral peony, an exquisite floral with delicate rose and honey accents and a subtle, green freshness; fills the fragrance with the scent of peonies as they unfold. Base notes of suede; a supple textural note, complementing the floral opulence of peony and bringing enticing sensuality to the fragrance.

This is a beautifully soft, gentle fragrance; its not too flowery and is very slightly fruity. Peony & Blush Suede is a feminine, young scent, without being too girlie; it is uplifting and delicate with a lovely powdery warmth. It comes in typically gorgeous Jo Malone packaging; an lovely cream and black box, this time tied with a pink suede ribbon which I adore – classic, timeless and truly elegant. This sophisticated collection now comprises a Body & Hand Wash (£32), a Body Crème (£50) and a Home Candle (£39). The Cologne is £39 for 30ml/£78 for 100ml from


Soap & Glory Limited Edition Big Christmas Bag – The Yule Monty, £27

The fabulous Soap & Glory launched their ‘Yule Monty’ collectable Christmas bag on Friday 13th December; designed by British fashion designer Jonathan Saunders, it is filled to the brim with nine full size Soap & Glory hero products.

The Yule Monty is stuffed with Soap & Glory’s bestsellers; Hand Food Hand Cream, a bottle of the legendary Sugar Crush Body Wash (my favourite!), a big tub of the Righteous Butter Body Butter, Peaches & Clean the ultimate Deep Purifying Cleanser for all skin types, Heel Genius Foot Cream, Butter Yourself Body Moisturising Lotion, a tube of the top selling The Scrub Of Your Life Body Buffer, the very glamorous Thick & Fast Super Volume Mascara, and the famous Sexy Mother Pucker XL Lip Plumper (the best-selling lip volumizer in Britain!) in the perfect universal shade of Pink Out Loud.

Its been reduced from £60 to £27 and is available at this price only while stocks last; so move quickly! From and in Boots stores nationwide.