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December 10, 2018

The 8 Best Gift Ideas For the Ones You Always Forget Till the Last Minute

It never fails. You’ve made your list and checked it twice — and still always manage to forget that one coworker or friend or person who just helped make your life better last year. Well, no longer! Be on top of your gift-giving game this year with some last-minute gift ideas sure to be universally appreciated and ready to be proffered at a moment’s notice. No one will know they were an afterthought! 😬


I once read an article called “The Five Hidden Benefits of Procrastination” — mostly to add to my stockpile of confirmation biases about why I am the way that I am — but the article made a lot of sense. Unfortunately, procrastination when it comes to gift buying doesn’t usually have a great outcome. You’re stuck giving the kind of thoughtless gifts that have those forgotten people on your list feeling, well, forgotten! Some might even say a bad gift is worse than no gift at all (me, I am saying this). So this year, redeem yourself!


I don’t mean to brag, but Beautytap is kinda actually killing it with their BeautytapASAP free 3-day U.S. shipping, which was the inspiration behind this story. This is exactly what I have been waiting for, and boy, does it solve so many potential problems, especially at this time of year. At several points this year friends and relatives in the States have asked me if I knew of any easily accessible K-beauty gifts they could give. A lot of my rural and suburban friends mistakenly thought they either had to travel to the nearest large city and sift through whatever selection curations the brick and mortar stores happened to have, or order months ahead of time to ensure a Christmastime delivery from Korea.


With BeautytapASAP, not only is there a large selection of some of my actual, for real for real favorite K-beauty buys, they ship stateside and arrive in just three days! You might be thinking, “OK, but what about Amazon?” Well, unlike Amazon, you don’t have to worry about fakes or expired products (two huge complaints I’ve seen in the beauty community tbh). Beautytap has fresh, authentic product available at the click of a button. Add to this the excellent price points and fun new curated sets and we might just ace this holiday season. It’s almost as if we weren’t the last-minute procrastination goblins that deep down we know we actually are.


last-minute gift


Take a stroll with me down gift-giving easy street. Here are eight choice universal gifts you need to make sure to have on hand for the people you always forget until the last minute!


I’m going to go ahead and spoil you on my first three picks, which are these amazing Leaders boxes. They fill a certain now-defunct Korean beauty box shaped hole in my heart that’s been missing for a long time. Even better, these are more cohesive as they’re themed boxes with three different skin goals in mind.


1. Leaders Pearl Box — Brightening Treatment


This box is a great “one size fits most” box that would work for any skin type. It has some great picks for instant pick-me-ups, including not just sheet masks but argan oil-based cleansing tissues for quick but gentle point makeup removal, a charcoal cleansing foam to tackle pore care, and of course the signature of all great skincare routine selfies, a cat-ear headband.


last-minute gift
Leaders Pearl Box.


2. Leaders Moonstone Box — Moisturizing and Nourishing


This box is perfect for the folks in your life with mature skin: mom, grandma, aunties, or even just a girlfriend you know who struggles with dryness, which can strike at any age. The selection of masks here are Leader’s most hydrating (I especially love the Moisturizing Recovery Mask and the Aquaringer!) and include both gel and sheet versions. Also included are the bamboo cleansing tissues, a mist for a quick shot of hydration, and of course those adorable cat ears.


last-minute gift
Leaders Moonstone Box.


3. Leaders Rose Quartz Box — Acne Treatment


Here’s the box for all the youngster in your life who are always notoriously difficult to shop for. Do you know what teenagers and college age people are into these days? I barely do, and I have several in my immediate family. Take the pressure off yourself, and them, by not presenting them with some last-minute misguided awkward gift they have to pretend to appreciate in front of you when they open it. Instead give them this pampering box filled with Leader’s best treatment masks. It also has that great charcoal cleansing foam from the Pearl box as well as the argan oil cleansing tissues to help maintain the moisture barrier while cleansing. And yes, those cat ears are front and center and ready to outshine any Snapchat filter.


last-minute gift
Leaders Rose Quartz Box.


4. The History of Whoo Mi Luxury Lipstick in Rose


This one is a stunner that will make the recipient feel like a queen. There is nothing about this that screams last minute — quite the opposite! The History of Whoo Mi Luxury Lipstick in Rose is a lovely universal shade that works for just about any skin tone.


last-minute gift
The History of Whoo Mi Luxury Lipstick in Rose.


Truly, the packaging on this lipstick is just stunning and looks like what I imagine bespoke cosmetics for royals would be if they still existed. Ornate and gold without being tacky, this tube of lipstick is so beyond any other in even the most extensive collection that it’s a must-have. The regal case even comes with it’s own lip brush charm for an effortless, diffused look. The red shade is another choice if you want to give a bolder lip to your sassier or sophisticated fancy friends. This is a gift they’ll always remember. Actually, if any of my friends are out there reading this story, your girl would love one of these, I’m just sayin!


5. My Ex Is Gonna Be There — It’s Time to Slay Beautykit


Your giftee doesn’t have to have a trash ex to enjoy this box, but it really can’t be beat as a thoughtful pick-me-up for anyone who’s recently been on the receiving end of a ghosting. I think it’s a good idea to have a couple of these on hand for sh—tty ex-related emergencies.


last-minute gift
My Ex Is Gonna Be There — It’s Time to Slay Beautykit


Be the friend that shows up with a bottle of bubbly and this box when your girl finally got the guts to dump that guy that always gave you the creeps! You can have a great laugh about his unibrow and weird big toe situation while scrubbing those memories right off your body with the Klairs Gentle Black Sugar Facial Polish. Plus nothing makes a girl feel cuter and ready to take a new pic for her Tinder than a great sheet masking session and cute new lipstick, which she’ll get from the Laneige Two Tone Lip Bar and JayJun Intensive Shining Mask. And the Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask is a great prep for new first dates. Or maybe it’s not even that serious — maybe you just want to gift this to someone who deserves all these top-shelf goodies! Either way, this is a great gift choice!


6. Sulwhasoo Bloomstay Vitalizing Cream


This hanbang heavy hitter is truly a skin buffet. One look at the ingredients tells you exactly why this is a premium product and a premium gifting choice. The licorice root, adenosine, and honey extract really gives their skin something to sing about. Unlike the other creams in Sulwhasoo’s lineup, the strong herbal scent is tempered with a lovely light floral aroma. This is a high-end product and a high-end tactile experience — the cream feels as elegant at the ingredient list looks. If you’ve got the dough to be this spendy this Christmas, it will most certainly be cherished.



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7. It’s Because of You That I Get Any Me Time Beautykit


This is a really thoughtful little curation that anyone would be happy to receive. It has those 23 Years Old Rose Gold 24 Masks that I’m absolutely crazy about inside (I am seriously wearing one right now as I write this story). They’re amazing for any skin type and really feel like you’ve had a full day at the spa when you take them off — who wouldn’t love that? There’s also the Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask and Glowy Balm in Grapefruit included in the box. I love putting that balm on under the sheet mask since it doesn’t have a mouth hole — it’s just the right kind of extra. This box really does say “Hey, I care!” instead of “I was at Target and totally forgot about you so here’s this wack coffee mug with Scriptina font on it.”


last-minute gift
It’s Because of You That I Get Any Me Time Beautykit


8. SanDaWha Ultra Rich Hydrating Camellia Floral Water Cream


If you don’t quite have a Sulwhasoo budget this year, that doesn’t mean you can’t also gift a truly luxurious cream! It’s no secret that I’m a devotee of this cream, and for good reason. It’s loaded with antioxidants, emollients, and tons of herbal goodies. At a very modest $38 it performs more like a cream that costs at least double. The water-cream texture makes it a safe universal choice for just about every skin type.



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Have this gift on hand for any last minute “oh crap, I didn’t realize we were exchanging gifts!” situations you might find yourself in this year, and if you don’t end up needing to gift it, I highly recommend keeping it for yourself. Call it a New Year’s gift to yourself and start 2019 off right!


Are you a procrastinator? What are some of your best last-minute gift ideas? Share with us below!



Coco Park is an author, beauty journalist, blogger, podcast host, and all around oddball living in Montreal Quebec with her family. Originally from the southern USA, she worked for several years in the makeup industry as a professional makeup artist and holds a certificate in esthetics. She is a proud member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. Want to know more? Check her out on the Beauty Beyond Basics podcast, on her blog, on Instagram @thebeautywolf, and in her book "Korean Beauty Secrets: A Practical Guide to Cutting-Edge Skincare & Makeup."




I love these ideas! I saw the boxes and debated on whether I should just get one for myself (hehe, TREAT YOURSELF). I regret not getting one, so if it comes out again, I'm definitely going to get it!


With the History of Whoo sale, those lipsticks are perfect for my aunts! It's something they'd probably never buy for themselves because they're just so fancy!