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M&S’s beauty advent calendar is the affordable gift that keeps on giving

Expect a mix of high-end brands and in-house essentials

Daisy Lester
Thursday 26 October 2023 11:19 BST
The calendar’s contents are worth £340
The calendar’s contents are worth £340 (iStock/The Independent)

Just as cherished as our traditional chocolate countdowns, beauty advent calendars have become somewhat of a festive tradition.

From Cult Beauty, Sephora and Lookfantastic to Harvey Nichols, Charlotte Tilbury and Next, top brands pull out all the stops for their opulent offerings. Now, M&S has joined the party by launching its 2023 beauty advent calendar.

Costing just £45, when spending £35 on home, beauty and clothing in-store or online, it’s brimming with £340 worth of products, spanning haircare, make-up and skincare.

Packaged in a keepsake vegan vanity case, the calendar contains 25 treats for every day of your festive countdown. From Philip Kinglsey, Percy & Reed, Eyeko and Ren to Clinique, Aveda, Benefit, Pixi and Dr Paw Paw, the selection of brands found inside includes a mix of cult names and in-house favourites.

A sell-out hit year after year, M&S’s carefully curated calendar should be on your radar.

How we tested

The goodies inside the M&S beauty advent calendar (Daisy Lester)

Ahead of its official launch, we got our hands on the calendar and committed the cardinal Christmas sin of opening it up before December. From the products to the packaging, here’s everything you need to know about M&S’s beauty advent calendar 2023 (spoiler: it’s the stalwart’s best one yet).

M&S beauty advent calendar 2023

  • Price: £45 (when you spend £35 on clothing or home)
  • Worth: £340
  • Number of days: 25
  • Product sizes: 17 mini size, 8 full size
  • Available: Now
  • Why we love it
    • Packaged in a reusable make-up bag
    • Affordable
    • Good mix of full-size and mini products

Overflowing with gifts for every day of your countdown to Christmas, you’ll find 25 beauty products inside the calendar. Scoring top marks for packaging, all the advent boxes are neatly slotted into a large metallic vanity case that you’ll use long after December, whether as a travel case or storage box. A nice touch that adds to the calendar’s overall value, it’s a far more useful addition than most beauty advent calendar boxes.

As always, we’re treated to a nice mix of high-end brands (think Ren and Clinique), as well as M&S’s popular in-house brands (the Apothecary hand cream and clay mask feel luxurious). From a Pixi brow tamer that we used to brush up our eyebrows, that Benefit roller lash curling mascara that has deserving cult status, and a shimmery pink Clinique lip colour, your party make-up is sorted.

Meanwhile, the full-size Ren cleansing gel (worth £25 alone), travel-size Clinque moisture surge and Dr Paw Paw overnight lip mask will help rejuvenate December skin after one too many parties.

Read more: The White Company’s beauty advent calendar is sure to offer a daily dose of indulgence

M&S hasn’t scrimped on its hair and body offering, either, with mini-size Philip Kingsley shampoo and two conditioning formulas; a Percy & Reed volumising oil that doesn’t leave any greasy residue; Nuxe multi-purpose dry oil (which smells exquisite); Aveda botanical repair styling creme, and This Works deep sleep body cocoon all found inside.

Containing both full-size and mini products, some will make lovely gifts, too – particularly the nicely packaged L’Occitane hand cream and the full-size Verveine shower gel.

If previous years are anything to go by, the calendar is likely to sell out (fast). Whether you shop Sienna Miller’s covetable autumn collection with M&S or revamp your interiors with the shop’s homeware lines, you’ll need to spend £35 to secure the calendar for just £45.

Back to top

The verdict: M&S beauty advent calendar 2023

M&S’s beauty advent calendar is one of this year’s most pocket-friendly options. For less than £100, you’re treated to a truly excellent range of products spanning skincare, pampering and make-up. Adding to its overall value, we love the sleek upgrade it’s had for 2023, courtesy of the keepsake vanity case – plus, some of the full-size goodies will make lovely gifts. M&S have nailed it again.

From Selfridges to Charlotte Tilbury, find everything you need to know about this year’s beauty advent calendars in our bumper guide

Voucher Codes

TUI Discount Code
£100 off all bookings over £1000 - TUI discount code
ASOS Discount Code
20% off everything with this ASOS app discount code
Travelodge Discount Code
5% off all bookings with this Travelodge discount code
The Body Shop Discount Code
20% off everything with The Body Shop discount code
The Perfume Shop Discount Code
15% of all orders with The Perfume Shop birthday discount
Cult Beauty Discount Code
Up to 20% off all orders over £40 - Cult Beauty discount code

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