The 2021 advent calendars we actually really want

Advent calendar season is upon us! Here are this year's must-haves...

A selection of the best advent calendars include chanel, mac and charlotte tilbury
(Image credit: Chanel / MAC / Charlotte Tilbury)

It's November, which means we're one step closer to Christmas and better yet, the return of the advent calendar! 

Aside from the endless food, being surrounded by loved ones, and creating memories, the best thing about the festive season is by far the advent calendar countdown. The idea of waking up to a nice little treat every day leading up to the 25th in the month of December brings us the kind of joy that makes us jump out of bed—even on the cold dark mornings. Especially, now that Santa's little elves have totally upped their game with the content behind those tiny little doors. 

As kids, chocolate advent calendars were enough to brighten our days. And while we still love a sweet treat, things have changed significantly over the years with brands—including some of the best biggest in beauty—transforming the traditional advent calendar with their own take on the Christmas staple. 

From skincare favorites like Rituals to makeup heroes like Benefit Cosmetics and MAC, beauty brands have become the reigning champions of the advent calendar, curating some of the best in the business. They've become the one chance in the year for us to stock up on the best products, for a bargain price as most beauty advent calendars contain a value of products worth almost double as much as they're sold for individually. 

So, what are you waiting for? It's time to look at this year's offerings to make sure you and your loved ones get the best of the best. Luckily, we've made the process a lot easier for you by listing all the beauty advent calendars worth getting for Christmas 2021... 

1. Benefit Cosmetics 

Benefit Cosmetics advent calendar

(Image credit: Benefit Cosmetics )

Benefit Cosmetics never disappoint when it comes to their Christmas offerings and this years' advent calendar is no different. At a reasonable price of $80 (£58.50), you'll get 12 of the brand's most-loved products including mini versions of Benefit's Roller Liner, BADgal BANG! mascara, They're Real Magnet! Mascara, Roller Lash Mascara, They're Real Mascara, 24-Hour Brow Setter, Gimme Brow+ in Shade 3, Precisely, My Brow in Shade 3, The POREfessional Pore Primer, The POREfessional Hydrate Primer, Hoola, and Danelion. 

Benefit Advent Calendar,  ($90 (opens in new tab) | £58.50 (opens in new tab)) - Worth ($150 | £132.46)

2. Look Fantastic 

Look Fantastic advent calendar

(Image credit: Look Fantastic )

This year's Look Fantastic advent calendar not only looks the part—that gorgeous festive maroon is making us want to dance around to Christmas songs already—but it's full of luxury products from some of the best brands in the business. From the Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate and Kate Somerville's Goat Milk Moisturizing Cleanser to the NARS Blush (Shade Orgasm), it's guaranteed to have you smiling from ear to ear on all 25 days leading up to Christmas.  

Look Fantastic Advent Calendar, ($118 (opens in new tab) | £85 (opens in new tab)) - Worth ($574.83 | £414)

3. NYX Cosmetics 

NYX Advent Calendar

(Image credit: NYX )

The NYX Gimme Super Stars! Holiday Advent Calendar is bringing all the glitz and glam to our festive season this year with 24 amazing products combining a mixture of minis and full-sized bottles. The brand hasn't dished all the dirt on what we can expect just yet but we do know that we can expect popular face, eye, and lip products, including the viral Butter Gloss in multiple shades. Yass! 

NYX Gimme Super Stars! Holiday Advent Calendar, ($60 (opens in new tab) | £45 (opens in new tab)) - Worth ($60 | £45)

4. Dr. Barbara Sturm 

Dr. Barbara Sturm advent calendar

(Image credit: Dr. Barbara Sturm)

Not only is Hailey Bieber (queen of flawless skin) a huge fan of Dr. Barbara Sturm but she's just one of many A-listers who have co-signed the brand and the skincare genius behind it.  A veteran in the game, this year's advent calendar combines a mixture of full and mini-sized bestsellers including the brand's cleanser, lip balm, darker skin tones hyaluronic acid, face cream, face mask, super anti-aging hand cream, hyaluronic serum, eye cream, brightening serum, super anti-aging serum, body cream, a couple of other face masks, creams and serums as well as a toner,  anti-pollution drops and an anti-aging primer. 

Dr Barbara Sturm Advent Calendar, ($495 (opens in new tab)| £405 (opens in new tab)

5. Charlotte Tilbury 

Charlotte Tilbury advent calendar

(Image credit: Charlotte Tilbury)

The Charlotte Tilbury advent calendar was one of our absolute favorites last year, surprising us with 12 makeup and skincare heroes including the brand's popular  Pillow Talk Push Up Lashes Mascara and Magic Serum Crystal Elixir, as well as a host of other beauty bag essentials. We also couldn't get enough of the incredible packaging, following the brand's signature rose gold theme with a little bit of extra sparkle for Christmas. However, as expected, it sold out almost immediately which is why you'll have to get in there quickly to secure yours this year. 

Luckily, the 2021 version is even better both on the inside and on the out, where each door has a glamorous jewel handle. Designed to be opened between Christmas and New years, inside, you'll find three full sizes and nine travel size gifts, with gifts including Hollywood Beauty Light Wand Spotlight (Full Size) Colour Chameleon Pillow Talk (Full Size) Matte Revolution Pillow Talk Medium (Full Size), Multi Miracle Glow (Travel Size), Goddess Skin Clay Mask (Travel Size), Charlotte's Magic Serum Crystal Elixir (Travel Size), Charlotte's Magic Cream (Travel Size), Wonderglow (Travel Size), Walk of No Shame Eyeliner (Travel Size), Legendary Lashes Volume 2 Mascara (Travel Size), Lip Cheat Pillow Talk Medium (Travel Size) and Airbrush Flawless Setting Spray (Travel Size). 

Charlotte Tilbury Advent Calendar, ($200 (opens in new tab) | £150 (opens in new tab)

6. Amazon Beauty 

Amazon Beauty advent calendar

(Image credit: Amazon Beauty)

Amazon is back with a bigger and better beauty advent calendar this year featuring 24 full or deluxe-size products from brands such as Foreo, Max Factor, John Frieda, Elemis, Neal’s Yard, and L'Occitane to name a few—here's a complete run down of everything in the Amazon Beauty Advent Calendar. Worth nearly £260, you won't want to miss out on this one but as we know, Amazon is notorious for sellout successes so you'll have to move fast to secure yours. 

Amazon Beauty Advent Calendar, (£70.00 £39.99 (save £30.01) (opens in new tab) - worth £260) - Only available in the UK

7. MAC Cosmetics 

MAC Advent calendar

(Image credit: MAC)

We love the annual MAC advent calendar for a number of reasons but first and foremost, it's the packaging! The brand always gets it right, experimenting with fun, artistic designs with a festive twist. Then there's the content of course, which is made up of mini and deluxe versions of all of the brand's most popular products neatly tucked away behind 24 little windows. From glittery eye shadows to signature lipsticks and primers, you'll be in for a treat when it drops on October 7! 

MAC Advent Calendar, (£135 (opens in new tab)) - Worth (£340)

8. Chanel

Chanel advent calendar

(Image credit: Chanel)

Be still our beating hearts. Chanel has released their first-ever advent calendar and we couldn't be more excited. From the iconic Chanel no 5—which features on our best perfumes for women edit, obviously—to skincare and make up bits, this is THE covetable calender for 2021. 

Chanel Advent Calendar, (£610 (opens in new tab))

The Body Shop Advent Calendar

(Image credit: The Body Shop)

9. The Body Shop 

This year, The Body Shop is offering not one advent calendar but three for customers to choose from. The 'Share the Love Big Advent Calendar' is the most popular, with 4.1/5 star rating. Priced at £80, it includes products worth £119 with each of the 25 doors leading you to a beauty treat the brand is known and loved for. You'll find:  Shea Hand Cream 30mlStrawberry Lip Butter 10m, British Rose Shower Gel 60ml, Vitamin E Sheet Mask 18ml, Camomile Cleansing Butter 20ml, Camomile Muslin Cloth, Coconut Hand Cream 30ml, Shea Shampoo 250ml, Pink Grapefruit Shower Gel 60ml, Ramie Bath Lily, Coconut Bath Bubble 28g, Himalayan Charcoal Face Mask 15ml, Shea Shower Cream 60ml, Strawberry Soap 100g, Aloe Sheet Mask 18ml, Microfibre Headband, British Rose Face Mask 15ml, Pink Grapefruit Bath Bubble 28g, Shea Body Butter 50ml, British Rose Hand Cream 30ml, Mango Shower Gel 60ml, British Rose Body Scrub 50ml, Vitamin E Face Wash 125ml, Vitamin C Sheet Mask 18ml, Avocado Body Butter 200ml. 

The Body Shop Share the Love Big Advent Calendar, (£80 (opens in new tab))  Worth (£340)

Feel Unique advent calendar

(Image credit: Feel Unique)

10. Feel Unique 

The Feel Unique Beauty Advent Calendar 2021 is an absolute must-have. Why? It's literally filled full-sized and super samples of products from the hottest brands on the market this year, from Laura Mercier and Charlotte Tilbury to Clarins, ELEMIS and Huda Beauty. Currently retailing at £95, the calendar is made up of products worth £385—incredible value for money! 

Feel Unique Advent Calendar (£95 (opens in new tab)) Worth (£385)

Sagal Mohammed
Sagal Mohammed

Sagal is a journalist, specialising in lifestyle, pop culture, fashion and beauty.  She has written for a number of publications including Vogue, Glamour, Stylist, Evening Standard, Bustle, You Magazine, Dazed and Wonderland to name a few.