Beauty products won’t fix any significant problems in your life. But they can boost your mood, and a little self-indulgent purchasing can be a comfort when we can afford it. As my email inbox suggests an unusually high number of gift vouchers are still knocking around, let me be the devil on your shoulder.

If you received a lovely voucher for Christmas and you’re thinking anything along the lines of “I’ll buy a nice dress when we can go out again” or “I’ll invest in jeans when my body looks different”, let me recommend that you spend that voucher on beauty products at once. Don’t spend it on products that make you feel sad that you have nowhere glamorous to wear them.

Instead, if you can, choose something you would never normally buy for yourself; something to elevate the everyday and give you tiny, but consistent, moments of sensory pleasure.

My current favourites are particularly indulgent but still practical. Fragrance has become more important to me over the last few months. It festoons your loungewear with a scent that murmurs as you move through the day and helps you to feel polished. It’s also low maintenance, skill-free and never feels inappropriate for the circumstances, provided you love it.

Chanel Le Lion de Chanel, from €175

There are two new fragrance launches that I’m confident won’t be topped in 2021. Les Exclusifs de Chanel Le Lion de Chanel (from €175) has summarily booted all my previous favourites from the top spot. The moment I smelt this, it had me. It is unbelievably sumptuous. Smoky, sweet, leathery and almost hedonistically womanly. Not feminine or girlish but womanly; a deep, textured oriental scent that is utterly and entirely for grown-ups. The adult fragrance is back, and thank goodness for it.

Jo Malone London Scarlet Poppy Cologne Intense, from €101

Jo Malone London Scarlet Poppy Cologne Intense (from €101) is another glorious fragrance, giving you something sweet that is the furthest thing from saccharine, adolescent notes. Combining tonka, fig, barley and poppy, it somehow manages to achieve such decadent richness and depth. It is intensely interesting without being overpowering, and I can’t stop smelling it, frankly.

Fenty Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Powder Foundation, €34 at

For days when I want to wear makeup and to feel kind of nice (but still be kind of lazy), Fenty Pro Filt’r Soft Matte Powder Foundation (€34 at is a marvel. Incredibly finely milled and available in 50 shades, it can be worn alone or to set makeup and add coverage. It doesn’t sit in lines or look flat and doesn’t suck the light from skin as some mattes can. As a devotedly matte-averse person, I love it.

Charlotte Tilbury Hyaluronic Happikiss in Crystal Happikiss (€32)
Charlotte Tilbury Hyaluronic Happikiss in Crystal Happikiss (€32)

Finally, Charlotte Tilbury Hyaluronic Happikiss in Crystal Happikiss (€32 at has been a wearable joy, the ultimate “your lips but better” natural pink shade. I’ve been wearing it for a few months without being able to tell anyone what it is until it launched. Never have I had more queries via Instagram after posting a photo wearing a lip colour. The formulation is so comfortable, and so sheeny.