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Matchy matchy, once a no-no word in both the beauty and fashion community, is no longer the ugly stepsister. From matching your lipstick hue to your nail polish (as seen at Armani Prive’s fall couture show) to repeating the same print in one outfit (a street style staple), doubling or tripling up is trending.

This year, apply the same principle to gift giving—two or three of a kind is infinitely more pleasing to receive than one. Think of a skincare regime. A cleanser that works wonders is even more effective when used with the matching toner and lotion thanks to the active ingredients that are designed to work together, so why not go for all three in a cleverly packaged holiday set?

A tube of mascara is an instant eye-opener, but a mascara packaged with the eye shadow shades of the season is a chance to master the smokey eye in all its glory. Plus, the handy how-to guides that often accompany pre-packaged sets are like a personalized course in makeup application.

Lip glosses paired with corresponding cheek hues take the guess work out of deciding which shade to wear with which, while fragrance sets ensure a signature scent lasts hours longer by allowing the wearer to layer with both the lotion and eau de parfum.

Mini-me kits that incorporate trial size versions of a brand’s best-selling products are a dream come true for beauty geeks, whose desire to test everything under the sun is often bigger than their budgets. These best buys are like little science experiments in look-at-me packaging.

The experts who curate these packages know what works best together and what looks best when applied together, which leads to a win-win for everyone.

Tips and Tricks

• For the beauty novice, give the gift of a beauty education with a set that incorporates all the basic brushes a makeup lover needs, plus a few additional brushes for extra credit.
• Holiday travel means a need for pocket-sized products. Now is the time to find your favourite products in carry-on friendly sizes.

Did you know?

Many gift sets are limited edition or carry limited edition products, which means when they’re gone, they’re gone. It never hurts to pick up one for yourself (no judgment, we swear).