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By Erin Williams

This is one of my favorite groups! So many neat things that I never knew existed –

You know all those towers of petit fours and “apple of the month” clubs your grandmother puts you on? Fruit is nice, but bath salts are so much nicer. Bathtopia.com has an amazing service where you can choose Bath, Spa, Cream, Soap, or Candle of the Month. “Bath” is all kinds of soaks, foams, bubble baths, and syrups. “Spa” is mini at home kits, salt and sugar scrubs, body masks, candles, and massage oils. “Cream” is all things moisturizing – body mousse, whipped body cream, body butter – you name it. The other two you can figure out. I’m a Spa girl myself, and from a website that carries top quality products from a variety of lines from all over the world, you won’t be disappointed. I love it!! Gifts are available as 3, 4, 6, or 12 times per year. www.bathtopia.com

For the makeup junkies there’s Alcone’s Beauty Club. This is another lovely alternative to the monthly delivery of pears. Each month Alcone, beloved by professional makeup artists everywhere, sends a different kit – from tools, to concealors, lips, and eye; they’re all focused on a very specific area of the face and give you everything you need to achieve a certain look. You let them know skin type/tone and preferences and they do the rest. At the end of the year, you’re ready to go on the road and beat a face like a pro (sounds violent but that’s the lingo kids). www.alconebeauty.com

If you are in charge of the holiday party for your corporation, well, do this next year. You need 60 days advance notice, but this service is great. Klein Creative Communications designs luxury gift bags with high-end products for celebrity and corporate events among many other things. You give them a theme, talk to them about your vision and they go to town designing and filling your gift bag and you just have to show up to the party and pick one up. What could be easier? www.kleincreative.com

Now this may seem like it’s straying out of the beauty world but go with me for a second. Donia Lilly is an artist who does the most incredible things with a piece of paper and some paint. The cool thing about her is she has really reasonable rates for commissions, and they’re so wonderful and personal. I’ve called her up before, and spoke with her about a piece of her work that I’ve thought was amazing. I told her about the person that I’m thinking of giving the piece, personality, etc. We talk colors and size and viola! A personalized piece of art that is truly beautiful and so special since it was made just for you. She’s a wonderful artist and person. www.donialilly.com

Originally published December 2004
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