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December 11, 2013

Christmas Gift Guide: Buy Irish


It's easy to get a bit carried away shopping for gifts at this time of year without thinking twice about where the money you're spending is actually going. Where possible, I do like to support Irish brands and businesses as much as I can, especially when our economy is still crap. What follows is a little edit of Irish gifts I'd love to receive!

1. Skincare is often just what we're in need of at this time of year, plus there are a ton of brilliant Irish skincare brands, so I'm including a lot of it! Kinvara Skincare are top of my list; their range may boast only three products but each one packs a punch - and their Rosehip Serum is one of my favourite skincare products of the last couple of years.

2. For anyone who even has a passing interest in Irish history, this book would make a great gift. Lovingly compiled by his granddaughter, Franz S. Haselbeck’s Ireland documents his long photography career in Ireland, during which he photographed the British army, Irish veterans of the First World War, IRA volunteers and RIC constables as well as plenty of shots of everyday life during the first half of the twentieth century. You don't need to be an expert to flick through this and enjoy it and it's full of pictures that even dedicated history nerds are unlikely to have seen before.

3. Salons have suffered particularly badly over the last couple of years in Ireland, so a voucher from one for a manicure or facial would be a nice way to support them and also pamper someone you care about! I really got into three-week manis this year and liked Let's Face It, Mink and Tropical Popical in particular for my Gelish fix.

4. There are numerous brilliant Irish retailers online these days, and a gift or voucher from any of them is a great way to support Irish business without compromising brand-wise. For their fantastic, speedy shipping and great edit of products, Cloud10Beauty is my pick of the bunch.

5. More Irish skincare - we seem to be pretty good at churning it out! Green Angel have a lot of good products, but the one I repurchased myself after using up a PR sample was the Seaweed Night Cream. It's moisturising and soothing and won't interfere with acne - a good all-rounder for any skin type.

6. Another great, home-grown publication comes from food blogger Rosanne Hewitt Cromwell over at Like Mam Used to Bake - as a long-time reader, I was delighted to see her come out with her very own book this year and will be picking up a copy ASAP.

7. Pixy Natural are Cork's answer to Lush and, seeing as they are stocked in plenty of pharmacies all over the country, could make a handy last-minute gift or Kris Kindle present.They do great individual products as well as cute gift sets - their bath bombs are always a safe bet!

8. Another well-established Irish skincare brand are Voya - their prices definitely err on the side of luxury but, if you really want to spoil someone, I can definitely attest to the quality of their Get Glowing Mask, €38.

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