Paint away those winter blues


Those struggling to find a gift for the beauty-obsessed in their life still have plenty of time to nip to the high street for a gift set or two. Where hampers are rather an ostentatious gift more style than substance, the beauty equivalent often represents true value.

If you know your intended recipient's favourite scent, a set comprised of this with shower gel or body lotion will ensure a bright start to their day in the bleak January mornings. Luxurious miniatures are just the thing for frequent fliers who are sick of decanting their lotions and potions into leaky plastic bottles.

Those who still have to buy for the nail-obsessed in their life would do well to turn to Boots' 17 cosmetic range, which has launched something of a nail art coffret (£20, After all, 2012 has been the year that nail art, previously a daring beauty trend seen solely on the tips of fashion-forward folk, slipped out of the salons and into the mainstream. Containing polishes, foils and nail gems as well as useful tools such a mini-tweezers, scissors and an orange stick, the set is the perfect starter for someone who wants to experiment with their look.

Elsewhere on the high street, special effect polishes and adhesive stickers and foils abound with pocket money prices and professional-looking finishes ensuring a high take-up rate among those whose creativity is let down by dexterity or lack there-of. While Topshop's popular make-up line has sets of glitter polishes and glosses (from £10, just waiting to add some much needed sparkle to the season.