This Year’s Best Advent Calendar

With December just over a week away there’s no better way to get us in the Christmas mood than with an advent calendar. Over the last few years more and more brands have brought out their own festive countdowns so that you can celebrate the coming of the ‘most wonderful time of the year’ with your favourite products. Chocolate is nice, but are beauty products nicer? You decide with our Advent Calendar round-up…

Harrods

There’s little more satisfyingly beautiful than the Harrods’ Advent Calendar. Luxuriously presented in a stunning navy blue coffret adorned with a beautifully illustrated picture of Harrods itself, it houses a divine host of beauty products to keep you looking beautiful right through to Christmas Eve. Brands featured include Anastasia Beverley Hills, Nars and Omorovicza.

Available at Harrods £250

Naked Marshmallow

The Naked Marshmallow calendar features 25 wonderfully gooey pieces of handmade gourmet marshmallow in a variety of original flavours. Open the large central door (Day 25) to retrieve a Belgian milk chocolate spoon to be transformed into a delicious hot chocolate drink. The door also hides a marshmallow which, should you fancy it, could be submerged in the drink to make a perfect Christmas Day belly warmer.

Available at The Naked Marshmallow £17.50

Seed Advent Calendar

The perfect gift for a gardener friend, the Seed Advent Calendar features a different variety of seed or gardening wisdom for each day of Advent. Specifically the packets contain British grown wildflower varieties that attract butterflies and bees and help re-build lost habitats.

Available at Not on the High Street £35

Fortnum & Mason

The Fortnum’s Feasting Advent Calendar is the perfect way to keep your festive excitement piqued throughout December. 25 delectable treats hide behind each door including F&M tea, coffee, confectionery, biscuits, preserves, condiments and alcohol. Save them all up to share them with the family or happily polish them off yourself. (It’s your Christmas too!)

Available at Fortnum & Mason £200

Hobbycraft

A lovely one if you’re into crafting and would like something that will last for years to come. Hobbycraft has a selection of advent calendars that you can DIY including a wooden truck and this gorgeous Wooden House Advent Calendar that can be completely personalised with paint, glue and glitter to make every day of Advent unique and special.

Available at Hobbycraft £15

Clinique

Clinique’s 24 Days of Clinique is a neon pink advent calendar designed to make any Clinique junkie swoon. Bursting with products include award-winning moisturisers and cult favourites from the collection, some in mini and some in full-size.

Available at John Lewis £80

Swizzels

Count down in retro style with Swizzels advent calendar featuring all of your old-school favourite sweets including Drumsticks, Refreshers and Love Hearts.

Available at Sainsbury’s £4

Bonne Maman

Allowing you the option to treat yourself with a new flavour of jam or marmalade every day of Advent, Bonne Maman’s calendar features a 30g jar behind each door. With flavours such as mango, peach and lime and orange and cinnamon, the calendar will allow you to start each festive day in the sweetest way possible.

Available at Bonne Maman £23.99

Morse Toad

A really fun idea from Morse Toad. Each door has a chocolate letter behind it so that you can spell out a message to the calendar recipient. Apparently last year someone spelt out ‘Will You Marry Me’ only to use the last 4 letters for the word ‘JOKE.’ Spare a thought for the poor soul who spent a day in December thinking they were engaged! Nevertheless, it is a sweet idea if used for kinder messages!

Available at Morse Toad £13.95

Joe & Seph

Perfect for fans of popcorn, this nicely designed Advent Calendar is illustrated as a snow-covered Joe & Seph’s Victorian shop-front. Each of the 24 doors hide snack-sized packets of 12 delicious flavoured popcorn including Salted Caramel, Speculoos Chocolate Orange and Banoffee Pie.

Available at Joe & Seph’s £25

The Bourbon Advent Calendar

Set to tantalise your (grown-up) tastebuds every day of Advent, The Bourbon Advent Calendar features the very best bourbons in miniature form. The countdown to Christmas just got a lot more blurry.

Available at Selfridges £150

Paul & Joe

An elegantly pretty calendar from Paul & Joe packed with the brand’s make-up, skincare and body care in both mini and full size. The very feminine design features Paul & Joe’s designer Sophie Mechaly’s cats – Gipsy & Nounette.

Available at Beauty Bay £80

Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity

A beautifully illustrated calendar created to raise funds for Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity.  100% of the proceeds will go to the charity to help support the hospital’s most urgent needs. These include pioneering new treatments for children with complex conditions, support services for children and their families like parent accommodation, state-of-the-art medical equipment and the essential rebuilding and refurbishment of the hospital.

Available at Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity £2.99

Marks & Spencer

This striking calendary isn’t just a beauty advent calendar, it’s an M&S beauty advent calendar. And doesn’t it deliver? Featuring beauty treats worth over £300, the Advent Calendar is just £40 when you spend £25 on clothing, Home & Beauty.

Available at Marks & Spencer £40

English Tea Shop

English Tea Shop’s advent calendar offers 25 tea bags form their vast spectrum of gourmet teas perfect for the tea guzzlers amongst you.

Available at Amazon £12.48

Paperchase

And once it’s all over there’s the opportunity to start again with Paperchase’s 12 Days of Christmas calendar specifically for the 12 Days after the event, ending on the 6th January. Begin the year with a brand new stationery set as behind each door you’ll find pens, pencils and desk accessories.

Available at Paperchase £12

The first day of advent (1st December) is actually the Kensington Mums’ Family Christmas Fair – have you RSVPd?