My beauty-filled Christmas countdown

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Tessa MAuricio-Arriola

Tessa MAuricio-Arriola

Around this time last year, I was homebound from an overdue visit to England where I spent a good part of my teens.

My suitcases were bursting to overweight, not with shopping for myself, but with goodies I enjoyed from childhood when my elder brothers and sisters went back and forth from boarding school, until the time it was finally my turn to do a magic-less Harry Potter.

Like every parent, I wanted my two young boys to experience and enjoy what I savored at their age, mostly foodstuff that ranged from powdered custard to smokey bacon crisps. And of course, because my trip happened on a “-ber” month, I brought home for them the one big thing that signaled the coming of Christmas for me as a child—the chocolate advent calendar.

Feeling silly to buy three when I only have two kids, I sheepishly felt envious when my little rascals squealed with delight as I told them the concept of the book-like box. That they would be counting down the days to Jesus’ birthday by opening a window with a daily chocolate treat beginning December 1.


OK. I was more than sheepishly envious. I was downright sad. Secretly.

And no amount of face time (with the mirror, that is, to re-touch my makeup, as opposed to the iPhone kind), made me feel better for not having my own advent calendar! Secretly.

Five or so days into December 2013, though, I felt silly all over again for doubting that makeup could—and as always—make everything better. Secret Santa must’ve seen my secret sadness from the North Pole so that lo and behold, I had my very own advent calendar to open out of nowhere. And it was filled with makeup!

Yes, that was the highlight of Christmas 2013 for me—I mean, after family bonding time, of course—when I discovered that one of my most favorite makeup brands, Benefit of San Francisco, made advent calendars with miniatures of their best selling products!

Given exclusively to good little girls back then, I write with good news today that Secret Santa has apparently made the 2014 Benefit Advent Calendar publicly available to one of the brand’s biggest markets (yes, the Philippines). The giant of a box is available at all Benefit boutiques and counters beginning November 4.

And because I am a very practical girl, I do recommend the purchase of this innovative Christmas tradition as it contains travel size versions of my—and so many other women’s—cannot-do-without Benefit products. I tell you, they’ve been everywhere with me all year round, and there’s still all this good stuff to be had in the tubes!

Dubbed the “Candy-Coated Countdown Advent Calendar” to go with the brand’s “Sweet Shoppe” theme this year, hiding behind the windows are That Gal highlighter/concealer; the magical Porefes-sional balm that wipes away any trace of shine from the face; Bene- ChaCha—and Posie Tints; Stay Don’t Stray eye primer; Stay Flawless face primer; and They’re Real mascara, just to name a few. In three words, these are the epitome of “beauty on the go” beauty products.

So if you know in your heart you’ve been good all year, go and start feeling—and looking—like Christmas. Count down the days beautifully to the best holiday of the year.

For Benefit’s complete Holiday Limited Edition 2014 collection, follow the brand on Instagram @benefitbeautyph.

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