Skin Deep

Don’t know what to get that special someone? Try these cosmetic gift ideas.

Old and expired cosmetics can harbor dangerous amounts of bacteria. A new one is a great holiday gift.
Old and expired cosmetics can harbor dangerous amounts of bacteria. A new one is a great holiday gift. TNS

In what seems to be the blink of an eye, it’s already time for holiday shopping! If you read my last column, you know I covered stocking stuffers for lips and hands. I love giving gift ideas for the holidays because this is the best time of year to get unique beauty necessities. I admit I am a sucker for the holiday eye palette collections. Today I will focus on the best skincare gift ideas of the season — whether that be for your family, friends, or a special indulgence for yourself.

Cosmetic bags are always a great gift because they get so messy with spills and need to be replaced often. is a French brand with cute cosmetic bags for $17-$22. has Florida-friendly “Destination Pouches” for $58. Diane Von Furstenberg has Nylon Zip pouches at for $98 in two fun fabrics. Tory Burch has a cute assortment of cosmetic bags from $49-$110. Tumi luggage has the Lesley Cosmetic Bag for $75- $125 (depending on the fabric) that I love for more than just its name (Lesley).

Gift ideas from patients — My patients are always a great source of inspired information. One of them told me about the “Hand Bag Raincoat” at How clever! It covers your bag and saves your handbag and valuables inside from Miami deluges. Mine has already saved me twice.

Eyeshadow Palettes — A few pointers from your dermatologist about eyeshadow is that you want to put darker colors in areas that you want to look deeper and brighter colors in areas that you want to stand out. If you have excess saggy eyelid skin, use a dark color over it and put the lighter color higher up near your brow. Anyone with fine lines around their eyes should avoid shimmery shadows because they accentuate the wrinkles. Most of the holiday eye palettes this year had shimmery shadows, so I was not tempted. Instead you can go to MAC or Laura Mercier and work with them to create a custom palette with colors right for your age group and eye needs.

Eyeshadow Primer — Using a primer prior to eyeshadow can help “spackle” over the lines to hide them. The Bare Minerals 5 in 1 BB Advanced Performance Cream Eyeshadow serves as an eyeshadow, a “spackling” product to fill in fine lines and a sunscreen. It comes in several colors, so choose one best for your skin tone. This is a great way to protect your lids daily from the aging effects of sun.

Men — Don’t feel left out. I have gift ideas for you too. You need to get on a correct and consistent skincare regimen right for your skin type. How about a gift certificate for a consult with a dermatologist? They will help your gift recipient get on the path to healthy skin. Most male patients like SkinMedica Facial Cleanser followed by a daily sunscreen. The dermatologist can recommend a sunscreen right for your skin type. My male patients like PCASKIN Sheer Tint Broad Spectrum sunscreen and Elta MD Clear Broad Spectrum SPF. You should use this as your moisturizer every day unless you have dry skin and need something heavier.

Please visit me at and share your gift ideas with me. Have a happy holiday! My next column will feature the best new products of 2017.

Dr. Leslie Baumann is a board-certified dermatologist, New York Times best-selling author and CEO of Baumann Cosmetic & Research Institute in Miami.