Last-Minute Holiday Gifts They’ll Never Suspect Were Last-Minute

’Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house, not a creature was stirring—except for the frantic procrastinator trying to figure out where to get gifts for their friends and family with mere hours to spare. Sound familiar? Trust us, we can relate!

The hunt for a last-minute gift during the holidays is almost as inevitable as the one for an outfit to wear to an ugly sweater party, and the thought processes for both are often the same. Though we’ve had months to prepare for this, we’re always scrambling to pull something together the eve before.

Nothing says “I had no time to find a present” like a wrapped bottle of Chateau Diana, so to spare you the trouble of carting a bottle of drugstore wine into your next holiday party, we put together a list of great last-minute beauty gifts you can pick up, whether you’re shopping at a department store, the mall, or the drugstore around the corner. The best part? The recipient will never be able to tell the gift was picked up only minutes before being unwrapped. Just remember to remove the price tag.

RELATED: Holiday Gifts for the Beauty Junkie

If you’re at a department store:

Though it feels like a scramble, you’re in a good place if you opt to shop for a last-minute gift at a department store. Swing by the fragrance counter to pick up a set like Marc Jacobs’ rollerball trio ($ 44; dillards.com), or look for makeup mini sets like Tom Ford’s Lips & Boys Set ($ 96; nordstrom.com)—the mini-tubes fit in even the tiniest clutches, perfect for any party touch-ups.

Not sure of the fragrances or makeup your friend likes? Opt for a gift set that does the body good. You can never go wrong with a Kiehl’s Creme de Corps bundle ($ 59; nordstrom.com), or the Moroccanoil Luminous Body set ($ 90; nordstrom.com) for that matter. Each box is so pretty, you won’t even have to wrap it! For an extra-festive gift that won’t hurt your wallet, seek out Molton Brown’s Pink Pepperpod Cracker ($ 25; saksfifthavenue.com), which combines a fun tradition with a price tag even Scrooge would love.

RELATED: Gorgeous Gift Wrapping Papers

If you’re at the mall:

You may have to elbow a few shoppers in your way, but luxurious beauty gifts from the mall is a totally possible feat, just be sure to hit up the usual suspects, and don’t get distracted by any too-good-to-be-true deals. Sephora never disappoints in terms of options, and we certainly wouldn’t mind being gifted Soap & Glory’s Three for All bodycare set ($ 25; sephora.com) or Buxom’s massive Lip Gloss Roulette kit ($ 59; Sephora stores). The latter makes a statement on its own, but is equipped with such a wide rainbow of shades, you can break up the set and split the glosses among three or even four of your friends.

The Body Shop’s Wild Argan Premium Selection ($ 27; thebodyshop-usa.com) is another one of those gorgeous gifts that doesn’t need to be wrapped, and same goes for the Victoria’s Secret Fearless Fragrance Ring ($ 45; victoriassecret.com), which combines a trendy accessory with a sexy solid perfume. When in doubt, bring a candle—the Bath and Body Works 3-Wick version in the Peach Bellini scent ($ 23; bathandbodyworks.com) is decked out in a gold motif that adds a touch of luxury to any surrounding, even after the holiday season has passed.

RELATED: The Best Holiday Hostess Gifts

If you’re at the drugstore:

Avoid succumbing to those “the struggle is real” types of thoughts—finding a gift at the drugstore is possible if you believe in yourself and seek out the right products. If you happen to find yourself at a Target, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to find that the retailer carries CHI’s full lineup, so after picking up a pretty patterned version ($ 100; target.com) for your BFF, head over to the home section to get a Caldrea candle ($ 16; target.com) for that colleague who unexpectedly got you a gift, and you need to pick up something in return.

Fragrance gift sets like Elizabeth Arden’s ($ 22; walmart.com) can be found behind a glass cabinet at most drugstores, but if you don’t have time to get an associate to unlock the case, make a beeline to the makeup aisle and find Iman’s Deja Vu Lip Kit ($ 5; imancosmetics.com). Makeup tools and bags always prove to be useful gifts, so grab a few of Drew Barrymore’s Flower Beauty brushes ($ 7 to $ 12; walmart.com) and stuff them into the brand’s Foldover Makeup Bag ($ 10; Wal-Mart locations nationwide), which can double as a clutch depending on the outfit.

PHOTOS: Holiday Gifts at $ 25 and Under

Brad Pitt Turns 51! See His Life in Hair

Happy birthday, Brad Pitt! The three-time Oscar nominee and star of Fury turns 51 today. The actor and producer first stole our hearts in 1991, when he starred in his breakout film role in Thelma and Louise. Since then, the actor has demanded our attention for more than two decades, but for much more than just his smoldering good looks.

Following critically-acclaimed performances in Interview with a Vampire, 12 Monkeys, Fight Club, and later Mr. and Mrs. Smith, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, and Moneyball, the actor has become one of the most renowned and highest-paid players in Hollywood—in addition to becoming one of our most-watched celebrities.

RELATED: Brad Pitt Holds Down the Fort at the Unbroken Premiere for Chicken Pox-Stricken Angelina Jolie

Earlier this year, the father of six married longtime partner Angelina Jolie in a intimate ceremony in Chateau Miraval, France. Apart from their respective acting careers, the pair are active humanitarians and philanthropists, having started the Jolie-Pitt Foundation in 2006.

In honor of his birthday, take a look back at Pitt through the years and watch him go from a handsome newcomer to Hollywood’s number one leading (and, of course, ever-so-handsome) man.

PHOTOS: See Brad Pitt’s Transformation Through the Years

Jessica Chastain On Why She Won’t Be Making Any New Year’s Resolutions

Don’t count on this star to be making a list of her goals for 2015! In a behind-the-scenes video filmed during the photo shoot for our January 2015 issue (on newsstands now), cover girl Jessica Chastain reveals the reason why she no longer makes New Year’s resolutions.

RELATED: For the Full Feature, Subscribe to InStyle Now

“I stopped doing New Year’s resolutions,” Chastain shares in the video above. “I used to do them a lot, but then I stopped…I would make the New Year’s resolution and I was like, ‘I’m never going to go to the gym six days a week so why bother saying it.’”

RELATED: Jessica Chastain Reveals the Best Gift She’s Ever Received (And It Will Surprise You!)

Instead, the star has a new take on what ending one year and beginning another should really be about—spending quality time with those you love. “Now, I’m more excited about the idea of New Year’s Eve—what have I done in the past year and who do I wish I’d seen more of,” the actress says. “So for me, definitely the holidays are about getting together with my friends and my family, trying to connect with them. And that’s the most fun part.”

Watch the full behind-the-scenes video above, and for more of the beautiful Jessica Chastain, pick up the January issue of InStyle, available on newsstands and for digital download now.

PHOTOS: Style 100—The Best Looks and Trends of 2014

Jingle Ball 2014 Rocked! Ariana Grande, Charli XCX, Taylor Swift and More



‘Tis the season for… amazing music performances! The annual iHeartRadio Jingle Ball, which took place at Madison Square Garden in New York City last night (Dec. 12) brought a serious line-up of heavy-hitting pop stars worth fangirling over. The red carpet was literally jam-packed with the likes of Gwen Stefani, Pharrell Williams, Iggy Azalea, Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande, Jessie J and Charli XCX.

It’s tough to pick but here were some highlights: “Boom Clap” singer Charli XCX (below) walking the red carpet in a sheer white slip dress with marabou puffs over, ahem, strategic areas. Onstage, the Brit did a wardrobe change into a peppy cheerleader uniform with “Sucker,” the title of her recent album, emblazoned on the chest.

Then there was Swift, who knew how to “Shake it Off.” She sang her bona fide hit at midnight just as she turned 25– talk about a sweet way to ring in a quarter of a century.

But perhaps our fave was the adorable Ariana Grande (top), who channeled the best of the season in sequined antlers and was flanked by backup dancers dressed like candy canes. The petite Grande wowed with her voice of course, but also took it to a personal level, dedicating her last song to brother Frankie Grande. Her number one fan, Frankie raved earlier to us on his sis’ performance at the recent Victoria’s Secret fashion show. “It was really phenomenal,” he said. “She really killed it; she looked gorgeous, she sounded amazing. I wasn’t prepared for her to sing four songs—I had no idea what was actually going to happen, and it was a rainbow runway, and it was a lot for me to process. It was amazing.”

RELATED: InStyle Stays Up All Night with Ariana Grande

Jessica Chastain Reveals the Best Gift She’s Ever Received (And It Will Surprise You!)

In a behind-the-scenes video filmed during the photo shoot for our January 2015 issue (on newsstands now), cover girl Jessica Chastain spills on the greatest gift she’s ever received. While she admits it was difficult to decide on just one, she settled on something every teen dreams of getting: a car (though it was far from shiny and new).

RELATED: For the Full Feature, Subscribe to InStyle Now

“This is going to be a hard question to answer because my family is very into giving gifts,” Chastain says in the video above. “I remember I got a car when I was 16, which was huge. It was a beautiful, used green Volvo that I named Vern. That was probably, like, the most exciting gift I’ve ever had.”

RELATED: Read an Excerpt from Jessica Chastain’s InStyle Interview

Not only is the star grateful for the gifts she’s received over the years, but she’s also a pro at giving them, too. “Last year I surprised my family—they all opened boxes at the same time and it said, ‘We’re going to Disney World tomorrow’ if you added up all the words. That was the most fun I’ve ever had and I filmed it all,” she says. “That’s probably the best vacation I’ve ever had, and my favorite moment of gifts.”

Watch the full behind-the-scenes video above, and for more of the gorgeous Jessica Chastain, pick up the January issue of InStyle, available on newsstands and for digital download now.

PHOTOS: 100 of Jessica Chastain’s Most Amazing Looks Ever

Kate Middleton Recycles a Midnight Blue Dress for Her Last Night in NYC


December 9, 2014 @ 11:33 pm

So nice that she wore it–not twice–but thrice! The Duchess of Cambridge has been the talk of the town this week in New York City as she and Prince William continue to make the most of their whirlwind tour of the Big Apple, and her outfit selections have certainly been a popular part of the conversation.

RELATED: Prince William and Kate Middleton Visit New York’s September 11 Memorial

Tuesday night, the Duchess of Cambridge chose an off the shoulder ink blue silk tulle frock with a black velvet belt by British designer Jenny Packham to attend the St. Andrews 600th Anniversary Dinner at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (above, left)–but this isn’t the first time we’ve seen her in it.

RELATED: LeBron James Gives William and Kate a Mini Basketball Jersey for Little Prince George

Kate first wore the gown to the 100 Women in Hedge Funds event back in 2013 (above, right) and later, she resurfaced the dress for her first public appearance of 2014 at The National Portrait Gallery in February (above, middle). But on this most recent occasion, she accessorized the gown a little differently than ever before–with a baby bump!

Earlier on Tuesday, the expectant Duchess and the Prince made a stop at the Creativity is GREAT event, which was held at NeueHouse especially in their honor, before making their way downtown for a touching stop at the 9/11 Memorial, rocking a $ 99 black turtleneck dress and bright pink Mulberry coat for the occasion. No matter what part of the world she’s in, we continue to admire the Duchess for her ongoing effort to keep it real when it comes to mixing affordable pieces into her wardrobe, and re-wearing many of her favorites.

PHOTOS: See Everything Kate Middleton Has Worn in N.Y.C.

Jessica Chastain Inside the New InStyle: “There Are Two Kinds Of Roles For Women”

As we gear up for Awards Season (kicking off Thursday with the announcement of Golden Globe nominees), one name we’re likely to hear a lot is Jessica Chastain.

The star of Interstellar (in theaters now) and A Most Violent Year (in theaters Dec. 31) is known for her red carpet prowess as much as she is for the strong female characters she plays (Maya of 2012’s Zero Dark Thirty comes to mind). But inside the January InStyle, available on newsstands and for digital download Friday, Dec. 12, the 37-year-old tells us finding such diverse, strong female characters hasn’t been easy.

RELATED: Go Behind the Scenes of Jessica Chastain’s Cover Shoot

When first embarking on her acting career, she found that “there were two kinds of roles for women,” she tells writer Emma Jane Unsworth. “You are either the girlfriend, incredibly beautiful but not much going on, or the victim, like the weird neighbor. It’s like the two ideas of women that are talked about: the slut or the wife. And that’s not so interesting.”

And so Chastain set out to find better roles for herself. “As an audience member I go to the movies a lot, and I want to see women portrayed like the ones I know—women who are really intelligent and strong and vulnerable,” she says. “I’m not interested in playing a stereotype.”

To learn more about what Chastain is interested in, including a rare glimpse into her intensely guarded love life, pick up the January issue of InStyle, available on newsstands and for digital download Dec. 12.

PHOTOS: 100 of Jessica Chastain’s Best Looks

Pick Your Top 10 InStyle Covers for a Chance to Win a Limited-Edition Donald Robertson Tote!

As we enter the final month of InStyle’s 20th anniversary year, we’re taking a look waaaay back at our star-studded cover archiveand offering five lucky fans a chance to win a chic tote bag featuring an exclusive sketch by Donald Robertson. We teamed up with culturalist.com, a site that lets you create and share top 10 lists on a range of pop culture topics, for a look back at our cover collection. Take a peek at all of our covers, then make your own top ten lineup and share it on Twitter and Facebook using the hashtag #InStyle20 and you’ll be automatically entered to win a tote bag. Need some inspiration? Check out InStyle editor Ariel Foxman’s picks here. You must create and share your list by Dec. 14so go ahead, play favorites!

Click here for the full contest terms and conditions.

Model Mogul Tyra Banks Celebrates Her 41st Birthday Today


December 4, 2014 @ 7:15 am

One of the world’s original top models turns 41 today: Tyra Banks!

The one-time Victoria’s Secret catwalker-turned-mogul boasts a modeling career that spans over two decades, and has also successfully delved into acting, hosting her own talk show, fiction writing, launching America’s Next Top Model (now in its 11th year!) and most recently, her own makeup line.

PHOTOS: Must-see Moments From the 2014 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

The one thing she won’t be doing? A Victoria’s Secret reunion. “I said no, because I was trying to be taken seriously as a talk show host and an executive producer and a business woman,” Banks told Bravo’s Andy Cohen about the offer she received a few years ago. She added, however, that whenever she sees “the OG, original Angels,” Heidi Klum and Gisele Bündchen, she still feels like “we have a connection.”

Take a look back at the model mogul’s standout beauty moments, starting with this gem from Banks’s early years, walking on the Paris runways.

PHOTOS: Tyra Banks’s Transformation

Happy Birthday, Britney Spears! See the Star’s Best Beauty Moments Through the Years


December 2, 2014 @ 7:14 am

Happy birthday, Britney Spears! The performer rings in her 33rd year today. It seems like just yesterday that the one-time brunette shot to stardom with her single “Baby One More Time” at the age of 16. Since then, the Princess of Pop has delivered chart-topping hits and best-selling fragrances, has launched a lingerie and sleepwear collection, and has even delved into acting with her leading role in 2002’s Crossroads, opposite Zoe Saldana and Taryn Manning, and her stint on How I Met Your Mother.

The Grammy winner currently headlines her own Vegas show (she’s had the residency for the past year) and plans to stick around through 2016. It’s been a whirlwind career for Spears—who as a working mom to sons Sean, 9, and Jayden, 8, makes it look seamless—and her recipe for success couldn’t be more straightforward. She tells InStyle, “Finding balance and happiness—and being healthy” are the keys to a fulfilled life.

PHOTOS: Britney Spears’s Transformation