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Face it, the only way you're going to make it through the holidays alive is if you remember the true reason for the season: buying for yourself.
I love shopping for gifts, but come on, the most important person on my Christmas list is me. One perk of the holiday season is all of the beauty sets that are released around this time of the year. Sure, they make great gifts, but who cares about that? Beauty sets are the best way to score yourself a variety of great products for a fraction of what you normally pay.
If you're lucky, you can grab your favorite product in a variety of colors, or even change up your skincare regime altogether and try out a whole new line without having to invest in full-size serums, eye creams, and moisturizers. But landing a truly worthwhile set can be a little tricky. You've got to know what you're doing so you don't end up cluttered with a bunch of lip gloss and eye shadow that you're never going to use.
Below are some of the best sets out there right now. Pick them up before January rolls around and they disappear again until next year!
If you're a fan of eyeliner and you haven't grabbed this set yet, I truly do not know what you're doing with your life. Urban Decay's 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencils are the definition of a cult favorite. They hug your lash line effortlessly, they're extremely pigmented for huge color payoff, and they stay all day.
With this set, you get eight shades of the best pencil liner on the market for measly $39. It includes four different shades and finishes of black (yes, there are shades of black) and then a brown, a grey, a navy, and an eggplant. With eight colors under $40, it's basically fiscally irresponsible not to buy this set. And if there's anyone who knows fiscal irresponsibility, it's me.
I'm usually apprehensive about buying a new mascara because they're not always the cheapest, and there's really no way to tell if the product is going to work for me until it's purchased and applied. If it's not right, then I'm out $35 and stuck with a mascara that I hate. That's why mini mascaras are so great; they give you the chance to road test the product before making a commitment and buying a full sized. Plus, anything "mini" is automatically cute.
Sephora's LashStash includes ten of the best high-end mascaras in the industry from brands like Benefit, Smashbox, and my personal favorite, YSL, plus a primer and a remover. If you've been thinking about making the jump from drugstore mascaras to something a little bit more luxe but weren't sure where to start, this set is basically made for you.
Racked Video: Sephora Holiday Gift Guide Haul
This is a great example of what a beauty gift set should be: A killer product, in a wide range of colors, for a great price. If you're looking for lip color sets, this is where your search ends, trust.
The Kat Von D Studded Kiss Lipsticks became an instant favorite when they dropped this year because the color collection is amazing and the staying power is nearly unmatched. This set includes nine of the hottest colors from a cherry red to a Barbie hot pink, a Kourtney K. orange to shimmery Lorde purple, and deep aubergine to a really killer blush mauve. This set will have you covered with the best lip colors well into 2015.
Skincare sets are a great way to revamp your skincare routine without going broke in the process. A year or two ago, I picked up an Origins set a lot like this one, and it was one of the best decisions I could have made for my skin.
This set includes a full size High Potency Night-A-Mins Mineral Enriched Renewal Cream (NIGHT CREAMS ARE SO IMPORTANT), the GinZing moisturizer and eye cream which are both, just, so good, and the Drink Up Overnight Mask.
If you're not careful, the winter weather can really do a number on your skin. The night cream, mask, and GinZing creams are the perfect offense to protect you from dry, dull-looking skin, keeping your skin hydrated, merry and bright all season long. Though three out of the four products included are smaller than normal, you're still going to get a few months of use out of them, so they'll definitely get you through the next polar vortex.
You always hear that it's better to give than to receive, but I really love to receive—that's why I do so much shopping for myself. In fact, when people ask me what I want for Christmas, I always say "nothing." It makes me sound selfless and humble, when really it's just because I've already hooked myself with all of the beauty gear I could ever want. If you have to suffer through the holidays like everyone else, you might as well look great doing it, right?