The Next beauty advent calendar is here and it’s brimming with big-name treats

·5 min read
There’s six full-sized products to enjoy in Next’s calendar  (iStock/The Independent)
There’s six full-sized products to enjoy in Next’s calendar (iStock/The Independent)

It may seem like months away, but now that summer is over we’re officially on the countdown to Christmas – so of course our attention goes to advent calendars. A chocolate advent is compulsory to count down the days in December, but beauty advent calendars have also become a must-have in the last couple of years. Honestly, who wouldn’t be tempted by 24 beauty products?

All the big beauty brands are now getting in on the act – with the likes of Bobbi Brown and Jo Malone offering face care, hair care and beauty treats galore.

Next quietly entered the market in 2019 with its beauty calendar, then made a big impact with last year’s version, which sold out in just 19 days. So, will this year’s offering do the same?

At just £69, Next’s offering is more affordable than other beauty calendars, and has some big names behind its doors – with six full size products to unveil. And if you thought beauty calendars were just for women, you’d be wrong – as Next has a men’s version too.

How we tested

We analysed everything from how the calendar was presented to us, what big-name brands were included, the quantity and quality of products that were behind the advent calendars doors and how many different products were featured – from hair care to beauty. We tested each individual product to consider whether the overall offering is worth the money.

Read more:

Next women’s beauty advent calendar: £69, Next.co.uk

 (Next)
(Next)
  • Number of days: 24

  • Products: 24

  • Product sizes:

  • Value of products: £243

  • Price: £69

  • Rating: 8/10

Packaging

The first thing you notice about this calendar is how huge it is – it comes in a deep box, and it’s quite hefty. We placed it on our dressing table, and it took over two-thirds of it – so if you’re looking for a dainty calendar then this isn’t it. But it means you’ll remember to open each draw during the countdown to Christmas as it won’t fade into the background, like a small chocolate advent has the habit of doing.

Just like last year’s design, the box is festive enough to get you in the Christmas spirit without being overbearing – the front of the calendar is adorned with pink and silver wreath and icicle patterns. The two cardboard doors then open out to 24 different shaped drawers, with silver, purple and glittery details. You won’t have to squint to find the right date to open, as the drawers have big numbers embossed on them. Each draw then slides out and is decorated with crinkled tissue paper hiding the day’s beauty surprise.

Products

We were impressed with the big-name products we found in the drawers – from Mac to Liz Earle and Marc Jacobs to Elizabeth Arden. And they weren’t all mini versions of products either – we were excited to find a 100ml Clarins body lotion (£33, Clarins.co.uk) among the drawers and a full-size Mac lipstick.

 (Sarah Finley)
(Sarah Finley)

If you know your retinols from your hyaluronic, or just have a sweet spot for skincare products, then prepare to get excited with this calendar. One of our favourite inclusions was the Elizabeth Arden retinol capsules (£82.56, Feelunique.com) – which feel like silk as you rub the serum into your face. Estee Lauder’s mini bottle of advanced night repair serum (£35, Esteelauder.co.uk) was a massive luxury for under our eyes, while Beauty Pro’s hyaluronic acid mask (£5.95, Beautypro.com) was just the thing for reviving tired skin – perfect to apply after the Christmas party. We also loved the smell and feel of the two small gel moisturisers from Origins and REN – a great way to sample a product before you dive in and buy a full-sized bottle.

If you are more about looking after your locks, Philip Kingsley’s full size elasticizer (£19.50, Philipkingsley.co.uk) is a cult classic and gave the ends of our hair a much-needed hydration boost. The mini Moroccanoil treatment (£13.45, Feelunique.com) is perfect for popping in your suitcase – and is even small enough to pass through security.

Apart from the full-size red Mac lipstick (£17.50, Maccosmetics.co.uk) the only other make-up product we were excited about was a small Bobbi Brown mascara which glided effortlessly on to our lashes. If you’re a make-up fan the calendar does include a setting spray, glosses and Benefit’s 24-hour brow setter (£22.50, Lookfantastic.com) – but we would have preferred to trial some blushers or eye shadows instead.

The verdict: Next beauty calendar

Just like a beauty box, a beauty advent calendar is a great way to test out products and brands you’re not familiar with. But there’s always going to be ones which don’t quite take your fancy – and we found this with the odd lip-gloss and shower gel in this calendar. However, the number of quality products outweighed our disappointment – with highlights including the mini Marc Jacob’s Daisy perfume (£45, Lookfantastic.com) and the deep pillow spray from This Works (£19.50, Lookfantastic.com).

We would have loved to have seen more full-sized products from big-name brands in the calendar – we’d just got a feel for the Elizabeth Arden retinol capsules and then they were gone. However, for just £69 we think Next’s offering is great value for money, with products which will last way beyond the festive season.

Next beauty advent calendar

Buy now £69.00, Next.co.uk

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Read more about the best beauty advent calendars for 2021

Beauty advent calendars 2021 – Our ultimate guide to this year’s Christmas treats from M&S, Cult Beauty and more

Fortnum & Mason advent calendar – From traditional to 3D pop-ups versions, food fit for a feast and of course, the beauty advent calendar, you’re spoilt for choice

Body Shop advent calendar – This year’s calendar features a selection of the ethically conscious brand’s cult classics

Cult Beauty advent calendar – It’s overflowing with skincare and make-up from Charlotte Tilbury, Sunday Riley and more

Benefit Cosmetics advent calendar – Calling all Bene-babes, the gift you’ve been waiting for all year is here

LookFantastic advent calendar – Brimming with skincare, haircare, make-up and bath treats from all your favourite brands