It’s the most Goopiful time of the year!

Last year, I shamelessly copied my friend Beck’s idea, who brilliantly reviews Oprah’s Holiday Gift Guide each December.  I need a slightly easier ticket to ridiculousland, so I’m reviewing one of Hollywood darling Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop Gift Guides.  If you’re in for a few minutes of abject embarrassment (or titillation, if you’re completely different from I am) you can check out her gift guide for lovers here.  It contains mainly underwear and high end sex toys, many of which I’m sure were featured in the Fifty Shades movies (which I haven’t seen).  But because my mom reads my blog, and because I have very little experience in the sex toy arena, I won’t be reviewing that list.  Instead, since Gwyneth is who she is, and I have a little experience with health care professionals in a constant patient sort of way, I’m taking on the health nut list.

 

I think we can go ahead and just get the obvious out of the way – the majority of these gifts are intended for the same people who benefit from Trump’s tax plan – the rich and frivolous.  They’re incredibly overpriced and many of them, if you think “that looks interesting” could be found for a more reasonable cost somewhere else.  Shall we deep dive?

The Health Nut List:

shamansays

Shaman Says sweater by Lingua Franca x goop – $400

Goop scoop: This cushy cashmere pullover sweater is about as cute and giftable as they come—it has a cheeky “shaman says” saying hand-stitched in sky-blue and made just for us.

It should come as no surprise to anyone that Gwyneth has her own personal shaman.  Apparently that’s the “in” spiritual guide this season.  Goodbye yogis!  Farewell priests and priestesses!  Make way for the shamans.  Sorry, I’m not trying to be insulting, I just feel having a personal spiritual guide of any sort leaves room for a lot of abuse and personal gain on their part.  Anyway.  This sweater is cashmere and hand-stitched, which justifies a little bit of the price, but still out of the average consumer’s reach.  IF you are wealthy, AND you have a family shaman or your friend does, and you are from a culture that includes shamanism…I could see this being a cute gift.  Otherwise, I think it’s a little kitschy and demeaning to a religion.

Alternate idea – buy a cashmere sweater yourself and pay to have it embroidered by a local seamstress.  Or, opt for a nice sweatshirt and hit up one of those personalize anything sites.

 

leggings

Star Bra and Legging Gift Set by LNDR – $215.00

Goop scoop: This technical tight and bra matching set comes with a retro starry-print graphic—a no-brainer gift for the active type. Snug yet breathable, sporty yet feminine—the set is extra supportive and great for any sweat session.

I publicly stated last year and have not changed my opinion – giving workout clothes to anyone is a bad idea unless they specifically ask for them.  And even then, I personally would offer a gift card so they could pick the size and print.  These are obviously high end and I’m sure feel lovely.  Not my taste in print.

Alternative idea:  Kate Hudson’s line of workout wear has been favorably reviewed and is much more cost-friendly.  And you can say it’s from a big name actress, as well.  You could get both a pair of leggings and a sports bra for around $100.  That’s without signing up for her VIP package, too.

 

soma

GOOP glass water bottle with Soma – $32.00

Goop scoop: This lightweight water bottle, made from a shatter-resistant glass, will go everywhere with you. Designed just for us, it has a protective silicone sleeve rendered in a neutral blush with the “goop” logo and a bamboo cap. Plus, it’s slim, so you can stick it in your gym-bag or work tote. More reason to love it? For each bottle purchased, a donation is made to the nonprofit group, Charity:Water, to support safe drinking globally—sold.

I can’t bash this without admitting that we own a Soma water filter and love it.  They’re a lovely company and I wouldn’t mind owning a glass water bottle once I have a child who doesn’t steal everything of mine and drop it repeatedly.  Would I pick one emblazoned with the goop logo?  No.  But if that’s your thing, I don’t see why this wouldn’t be a good gift if you can afford $32 for a water bottle.

Alternative idea – Note that if you are an Amazon shopper, you can get many styles of Soma glass bottles for cheaper than $32.  And if you are just considering this because of the charity water plug, why not make a straight donation to charity water in the recipient’s name?

 

bowl

Facial Treatment Bowl by May Lindstrom – $40.00

Goop scoop:Handmade in L.A. by designer Melissa Brown exclusively for May Lindstrom, this clay bowl is the perfect vessel for mixing facial treatments and masques. Use it with Lindstrom’s facial treatment brush.

I had to do some research, as no one in my social circles has ever mentioned or needed a facial treatment bowl.  Apparently, it’s used to mix up facial masks or potions for beauty treatments.  Does the average person need one of these?  Totally not.  Every woman I know would rather shell out $40 to go to a spa to have someone else mix up a mask and apply it than spend the same amount on a bowl.  As far as I can tell, not even Gwyneth is claiming that this bowl adds anything other than an element of beauty for the eye to your facial routine.

Alternative idea:  A spa gift card for $40.  Or if you’re dead set on buying a facial treatment bowl, go to one of the plethora of craft fairs going on during the holiday season and find a potter who runs their own business and buy something from them to support small business.

 

mask

The Problem Solver Correcting Masque by May Lindstrom – $100.00

Goop Scoop: It starts out as a powder (a blend of raw cacao, bamboo charcoal, soil nutrients, and spices), only releasing its potent elements once mixed with water. The resulting mousse helps reduce the appearance of blemishes and inflammation, and tightens the appearance of pores pretty much instantly. Use Lindstrom’s facial treatment bowl and brush to mix the paste.

Do you see where this is heading?  Read my opinion on the bowl and apply it to this.  Rather go to a spa, etc etc.  Skincare products are even more personal than workout wear.  Many people have allergies and sensitivities, so if you opt for skincare and beauty products as a gift, make triple sure you’ve got it right.

Alternative idea: Like I said, spa gift card.  Or a gift card to somewhere they can pick their own skincare product.

 

brush

Facial Treatment brush by May Lindstrom – $30.00

Goop Scoop: An incredibly useful tool for applying both the Honey Mud and the Problem Solver Correcting Masque without making a mess. Use it with Lindstrom’s facial treatment bowl.

And rounding out the trio, we have a special brush for your recipient to use once or twice and then get lost or trashed in their bathroom.  If we’re tallying, that’s $170.00 for one masque and the “required” tools to use it.  And why would you buy just one of these elements?  Smart marketing there, Gwyn.

Alternative idea: You can get a similar brush, including the all-natural bristles, for about $8 on Amazon.  And you can even get some Alaskan glacial mud along with a brush for only $40.  Or, like I’ve said twice now – spa gift card.

 

amethystquartzrosequartzsmokyquartz

Crystal Bottle by Glacce (in Amethyst, clear quartz, rose quartz, or smoky quartz) – $80

Goop scoop: This gorgeous glass water bottle is designed with an obelisk-like clear quartz crystal to infuse water with positive energy. Tied to cleansing and clarity, clear quartz is thought to generate a productive energy, channeling focus into positivity. /Made with a heart-opening rose quartz to remind you to seek out positive energy, give love, and remain open to new, healthy relationships and experiences./A soothing crystal, amethyst is thought to help transform negative energy, enhance existing psychic abilities, and calm the mind./A grounding crystal, smoky quartz is thought to reduce feelings of anxiety, encourage relaxation, and protect from negative energies.

Personally, I don’t want my water to taste like rocks.  Unless it’s whiskey stones.  And my water is whiskey.  They do make a disclaimer on Glacce’s home site for this listing that you shouldn’t expect any actual effects from drinking water from these bottles unless you are healed by beauty.  They also say these are exceedingly fragile and I for one am not soft on my water bottles.  They get tossed around in my car, my purse, fall off my desk and bedside table – so this seems like a poor choice for a gift unless your recipient likes drinking micro crystals and isn’t worried about their stomach lining.

Alternative idea:  Skip the crystal in the water bottle and buy a pretty crystal for their bedside table or desk – and put it under a glass cloche.  If you want a glass infuser water bottle, you can get one for about $25 online.

 

sweats

“Happy Everything” Holiday Bundle by Alternative Apparel – $98

Goop Scoop: The kind of perfect piece you’ll want to give and receive, this “happy everything” sweatshirt and drawstring pant combo is as cozy as it is festive. Done in an eco-fleece cotton-blend, they’ll be the first thing you’ll reach for the moment you get home.

It’s unfortunate, but I do need to point out that “Happy Everything” is a trademarked statement by another company called “Coton Colors.”  They do not carry sweatpants/sweatshirt bundles, which is maybe why Alternative Apparel has these.  Once again, I feel obligated to tell you I am the sort of person who would love to receive sweatpants and a comfortable sweatshirt for Christmas, as long as you’re not going to guilt me for wearing them whenever the hell I want.  I would caution you against giving holiday themed wear on Christmas, Chanukah, or Kwanzaa as then the recipient has a very short amount of time to wear them without being mocked.

Alternative idea:  If you’re dead set on buying some expensive sweatpants, I can wholeheartedly recommend MeUndies – they carry sweatpants for about $80 and I have heard nothing but stellar reviews about their company.  Otherwise, get some from Uniqlo for $20.

 

goop

In Goop Health gift card by Goop – $650.00

Goop Scoop: Give the goopiest gift of them all—a ticket to our next wellness summit happening on January 27, 2018 in NYC. In goop Health brings together the most compelling corners of the wellness world for a celebratory deep-dive into well-being that spans mind, body, and soul. During our second-ever summit, we’ll be hosting additional health-defining doctors, more of our trusted experts, and fresh sets of self-care sessions and well-being practices.

Oh man, the self-promotion is here.  This would be a good gift for a recipient who adores Gwyneth and Goop, has no medical conditions, and plenty of free time to rearrange their schedule to be able to attend this conference a mere month after receiving this gift.  I almost wish I could be a fly on the wall at this “health summit” to hear some of the fun new ways they’ve found to treat people.  They’ve already covered vaginal steaming, fecal facials, and encouraging your water verbally…wonder what will be in this next year?

Alternative idea:  Some well written pamphlets or an intervention by a real medical professional.

meditation
Meditation Band by Muse – $350.00
Goop Scoop: Keep calm with this techy meditation headband, perfect for anyone looking to improve or deepen their practice. It uses soothing sounds from the great outdoors to gently guide you back to a meditative state: when your mind starts to wander, the weather intensifies.
So, I looked into this and it’s actually a bit of a simplified EEG machine dedicated to helping you meditate.  Basically this thing detects when your brain has focused brain waves like during meditation and plays soft nature sounds.  If you get distracted, it begins to play turbulent ones to get your attention and refocus you.  This throws up a few red flags for me.  First, similar to parents with at home fetal monitors, people could get way too invested in how their brain waves are doing.  Second, there are options on this device to share your brain wave data with the Muse company.  Any electronic with this option can be hacked, and while I don’t think there’s anything nefarious a company could use your brainwave information for, this is a world where personal information of any sort goes for a premium price.  And if your meditation habits are in need of a $350 device to keep them in line, you may want to invest in a class rather than a gadget.
Alternative idea:  I can highly recommend the Headspace app for meditation.  The free version has 10 ten minute sessions that are guided and fantastic for meditation and paying for a subscription will open up meditations on a variety of topics such as insomnia and anxiety.  Also, you can buy this device for only $250 from Muse’s site.
roller
Vyper 2.0 Fitness Roller by Hyperice – $199.00
Goop Scoop: This hi-tech riff on the traditional foam roller has a grooved exterior and three powerful vibrating speeds to ramp up the muscular penetration while gently massaging. Great for athletes looking to warm-up, cool-down, or hit hard-to-stretch sore spots (back, feet, IT bands, quads, even shoulders).
Ok, so I’m not sure what adding vibration will do to ramp up muscular penetration when you’re using a foam roller.  Other than the obvious.  I feel like this would make a good gift for a very specific sort of person.  A sort of person who is really into working out and toning their muscles.  I know no one in this category other than my friend Ross, but he would probably wonder why I spent $200 on it.  This is a very niche gift.
Alternative idea: I can’t find any other vibrating foam rollers on the market, which means Hyperice has cornered the market for this.  But if you’re looking to cut costs I’m sure you can find a significantly cheaper foam roller without the vibrating option.  Also, this item is a teensy bit cheaper on Amazon.
burner
Burner Gym Duffle bag by Vooray – $50.00
Goop Scoop:  This slick navy mesh gym bag is also super-practical: Reinforced for supreme durability and protection, it’s got an extended dual-zipper track, so you can open it wide and find anything you’ve buried in there. The leather handles are magnetic, too, making it especially easy to close.
It’s a gym bag.  I mean reinforced with fancy handles and probably a bit on the durable side, but it’s a gym bag.  Guys, this is a boring gift.  Super boring.  Don’t get this.  That’s like getting someone socks.
Alternative idea:  A gift certificate to work out with someone (if that’s your jam).  Or the number one rated gym bag in the world for $21 – the Everest Gym bag.  But be more exciting than a gym bag in your gift giving.
apple cider
Organic Apple Cider Vinegar Capsules by Tonik. – $25.00/120
Goop scoop: For people who want the benefits of apple-cider vinegar but hate the taste, these brilliant, gelatin-encapsulated pills are the chicly bottled, easy-to-swallow solution. Each capsule contains 1,000 mg of powdered apple cider vinegar, along with “the mother”; take one or two a day to add beneficial live bacteria to help maintain a healthy gut.
I’m not going to lie to you.  I would totally buy these.  But not as a gift!  I’ve taken acv in the past and it has increased my gut health, but it’s disgusting to take in liquid form.  My in-laws both take it, so I would totally buy them this.  If you know someone who is on the acv train, this would be a cool gift.  And I think it’s pretty good value.  And yeah, I know it’s probably better for you to take it in liquid form or incorporate it into recipes, but I’m lazy.
Alternative idea:  Got none.  Though if you search for an alternative brand, make sure it has a lower dosage of acv on the scale.  Too high can give acid reflux or cause burns.  And buy from a reputable company you trust.

schmidt

Jasmine Tea Sensitive Skin Deodeorant Stick by Schmidt’s – $11.00

 

Goop scoop: A brilliant solution for people with with a sensitivity to baking soda (most clean deodorants rely on it), this jasmine-tea-scented deodorant smells incredible—and, most importantly, really works.The coconut oil- and shea butter- infused stick glides on smoothly, plant-based powders naturally absorb wetness, and the certified-vegan formula contains no aluminum or other potential toxins, and it’s absolutely baking-soda free.

 

Unless you’re a mom or a grandma, I don’t really think deodorant is a great holiday gift.  That may be my privilege showing.  And also, see my comments on buying skin care products as gifts.   However, that aside, I do like Schmidt’s brand and have used their deodorant.  It works well as long as you don’t want an anti-perspirant, and their scents are great.  So if your recipient enjoys skin care products as gifts and also the smell of tea AND has no allergies you know of, this might work.

 

Alternative idea:  I don’t have one, but I will put in another plug for Schmidt’s.  They have a holiday line! (Which I think is hilarious.) They have travel sizes that would be good for sampling their scents and blend! My favorite scent is their cedarwood + juniper.  Mmmmm.  They also have deodorant in fragrance free if that’s your cup of tea.

 

bag

Keep it Clean pouch by Coral Clark – $60.00

 

Goop scoop: Perfectly sized to stash all your clean beauty essentials, this zip-up pouch comes with a cute “keep it clean” saying illustrated across the front. You can easily toss it in your everyday bag, so it’s great for travel, work, even the gym.

 

This is literally just a linen bag with a saying stenciled on it.  From France.  I’ll admit linen is a lovely fabric and if I was not a heathen who stored her makeup in mason jars and cute baskets in her bathroom, this might appeal to me.  Or if I wasn’t a heathen who never re-applies makeup during the day.

 

Alternative idea: Check out the literally hundreds of small business shops on Etsy to find something similar.  The only thing I could find that might be Coral Clark as a company is a fashion blogger from France.  Keep it local, people.  Also, spend less money on storing your makeup.  See also, above why gym bags are boring gifts.  This is in that same vein.

 

diffuser

Stone diffuser by Vitruvi – $119.00

 

Goop scoop: This gorgeous ceramic aromatherapy oil diffuser is handcrafted in Taiwan and works as a stunningly simple piece of home decor at the same time that it softly streams essential-oil-infused steam out into any room. Use it simply to non-toxically fragrance your environment, or use it to treat everything from colds to low energy with essential oils. Ingeniously, it’s got longevity and safety off-switches, so it’s worry free. One of the most gentle, beautiful, life-enhancing ways to detoxify we know.

 

We use a diffuser in our bedroom.  No, we are not on the essential oils cure everything train, but I do like diffusing pine scent during the holidays, eucalyptus during cold season, and various other oils for scent throughout the year.  If you really want to drop this much money on a gift of a diffuser for someone, based on the reviews I would recommend you think twice.  Many customers say this has a very small basin (continuous run time of 3 hours, for comparison ours runs 36).  It’s more of an art piece that is functional in a small room than something you can count on to really diffuse effectively.  So maybe if your friend lives in a tiny house with a modern esthetic and is a huge fan of EO.

 

Alternative idea:  Any of the thousands of other diffusers that are cheaper online.  I got my sister one made of treated wood a few years ago that is beautiful.  Plus, this is porcelain, which means unless your recipient’s household is child free (or this is for their office) it’s probably going to get broken.

 

oil

Pink Grapefruit (pictured), Lavender, or Eucalyptus essential oil by Vitruvi – $10-$15

 

Goop scoop:Made of 100% USA-grown pink grapefruit, this essential oil is refreshing, uplifting, and rejuvenating; it’s also a brilliant brightening and cleansing treatment mixed with carrier oils; it’s also effective for breakouts. Diffuse into the air with Vitruvi’s gorgeous Stone Diffuser, or breathe in via direct palm inhalation, it smells fantastic and invigorates both body and spirit. / Made of 100% certified-organic lavender harvested from high alpine fields in France, this essential oil is paradoxically soothing and energizing all at once. Antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal, lavender’s powers can be accessed via Vitruvi’s gorgeous Stone Diffuser, or through direct palm inhalation. For blemish-prone, sensitive skin, it’s also a gentle-yet-effective spot treatment. / Sourced from France, this certified organic essential oil is known for its fresh, herbaceous scent—hence its popularity in spa steam rooms. The stimulating oil is brilliant to use with Vitruvi’s White Stone Diffuser to cleanse, detoxify, and clarify the air in your home/office/personal sanctuary.

 

First off, don’t put pure essential oil in your hand.  That’s a good way to get a rash, a burn, or accidentally get it in your eyes.  Second, people who are avid essential oil users generally have loyalty to one brand, whether it’s this brand, youngliving, DoTerra, or something else.  So if you’re dead set on buying your friend essential oils, do a bit of research on their preferences.  And as a sometimes essential oils user, I would put this on the same line as a skincare product in terms of preferences and sensitivities.

 

Alternative idea:  A gift card to their preferred essential oil provider.

 

blue_cocoon

The Blue Cocoon by May Lindstrom – $180.00

 

Goop scoop:  This deeply luxurious, miracle-working pale-blue balm genuinely (and immediately) transforms irritated, sensitive, or delicate skin, and it feels incredible, no matter what your complexion. Intensely moisturizing, it melts into skin on contact and calms, nourishes, and softens with anti-inflammatory concoction of blue tansy, botanicals, and oils. Created by reactive-skin-sufferer/former model/gorgeous-skin-guru May Lindstrom, the glacial-blue formula is as gorgeous as it is effective.

 

See ad nauseum – skincare products.  Don’t buy them for people unless they ask for them by name.

 

Alternative idea:  Like I’ve said several times before, spa gift certificate.  Gift card to boutique skin care shop, or generic gift card to buy their own skin care products.

 

tea

Ritual Tea Set by Matchaful – $95.00

 

Goop scoop: This set, packaged in a gorgeous, highly giftable 100% bamboo box, has everything you need to make the perfect cup of matcha. The USDA-certified-organic Emerald Grade Matcha is sourced directly from Japanese farms that use sustainable and organic growing techniques. Also included is a bamboo whisk and porcelain whisk holder, a ½-tablespoon scoop for easy serving measurement, a sifter for the matcha powder, and detailed instructions to make your homemade matcha as delicious, invigorating, and uplifting as you’d get at a legit matcha bar, every time.

 

I have never had matcha tea, so I have no frame of reference for rating this.  Would I enjoy getting a fancy tea kit?  Maybe.  Is your recipient the sort of person who loves matcha, and has the time to make tea-making a ritual on a regular basis?  If you answered yes, then maybe this would be a good gift?  I am told you need a special cup to drink matcha out of to get the full experience, and this kit doesn’t contain that…so…there.

 

Alternative idea:  *insert shrug emoji*

 

matcha

Reserve: Limited Release Matcha tea by Chalait Tea – $60.00

 

Goop scoop: Sourced from Japan, this complex tea tastes a bit nutty, with subtly sweet floral hints, and a light seaweed flavor. Although it’s naturally fragrant, don’t expect any of the bitterness you get from regular matcha. And it’s adorably packaged, making it a worthy gift for any tea lover.

 

It seems in bad taste to promote two different brands of matcha.  But with a little digging, I found that Goop has a business relationship with this company and sources their matcha for their matcha lattes at the goop pop in NYC.  I’m not sure how a tiny tin counts as “adorable” packaging, but whatevs.

 

Alternative idea:  I don’t have one, yet again, but I will post a warning.  You should only consume one cup of matcha a day, or risk lead poisoning.  Also, if you choose to purchase matcha, confirm it is pure matcha and not something like powdered and sweetened milk.

 

bowl

Large Standard Singing Bowl set by Incausa – $185.00

 

Goop scoop: Here, everything you need to aid your meditation practice, in one beautiful bundle: a petite pillow, mallet, and a hand-hammered brass bowl crafted by skilled artisans in Nepal. The incredible-smelling incense and vegan soap are all handmade from sacred plants and raw ingredients said to help better connect with your spiritual practice.

 

I can’t use anything like this with my meditation because it triggers my anxiety – the droning same tone in the background.  Also, I’m not sure how you’re supposed to be still and meditate and make a bowl sing at the same time.  It would seem awkward to have someone near me while meditating just to make some bowls sing.  I’m sure if your recipient wants these for something other than decoration, they’ll figure out a way.

 

Alternative idea:  I’ve mentioned the headspace app before and I’m sure there are many other apps you could gift that include the sound of singing bowls in meditation aids.  Unless you just want to buy your friend really beautiful bowls, in which I say find a local artisan.

 

floss

Cocofloss by Cocofloss – $8.00

 

Goop scoop: Try clean, refreshing Cocofloss once, truly, and you’ll be forever ruined for regular floss. Never mind its non-toxicity and social impact, it’s simply better than anything we’ve tried–ever. Created by two Bay Area sisters, one a dentist, the other an artist, Cocofloss is thick, yet glides smoothly between your teeth, is strong but flexible, and just feels—fantastic, transforming a chore into a pleasure. The floss has the faintest hint of the coconut oil its infused with, and the mint scent is especially fresh and invigorating.

 

It’s…it’s dental floss?  I guess I would try this?  I don’t expect it to making flossing “a pleasure” b/c I know very few people who actually enjoy flossing at all.  *cue someone commenting “I love to floss!* Also, be aware that many people are allergic to coconut so this would be a bad bad gift for them, obviously.  Plus it’s FLOSS.  Also, when I first saw this picture, I totally thought this was a light up condom.

 

Alternative gift:  Sadness.  B/c if you’re stooping to buy someone dental floss, you might as well just slap them in the face.

 

wipes

Essential Face Wipes by Ursa Major – $24.00

 

Goop scoop: The company’s miracle 4-1 Face Tonic formula is infused into each individually-wrapped bamboo-cloth face wipe—use as a pH-balancing cleanser, gentle-but-powerful exfoliant, potent skin-healer, and firming hydrator, for all skin types. The wipes smell subtly of orange, fir, and lavender—refreshing after the gym, beautiful for taking off makeup, life-changing for the breakout-prone.

 

I love face wipes – not that they do that great a job, but I think they’re convenient and transportable.  I, once again, don’t know how great of a gift these would make.  I am, generally, of the belief that a gift should be something the recipient wouldn’t necessarily purchase themselves.  Traditionally in my family, we get small hygiene items as stocking stuffers but I can’t see spending $24.00 on a stocking stuffer.  But I’m not married to Daddy Warbucks.

 

Alternative gift:  First Aid Beauty Hello FAB Caffeine Matcha Wake Up Wipes – highly rated and a bit cheaper, I think these would be a great alternative.

 

serum

Active Botanical Serum by Vintner’s Daughter – $185.00

 

Goop scoop: It’s not surprising that this oil has a cult following: It’s an infusion of 22 of the world’s most active organic botanicals mixed with powerful essential oils. Phytonutrients and minerals balance compromised skin; skin-firming phytoceramides, nourishing fatty acids, and antioxidants stimulate cellular turnover, enhance elasticity, brighten dull complexions, help to visibly reduce fine lines and wrinkles, and protect against free radicals. The revolutionary formula penetrates deeply, restoring moisture, clarity, smoothness, and glow to your skin.

 

If you’re a woman, buying a gift for another woman, this might be a nice gift.  If you’re a man, general rule of thumb don’t buy them anti-aging products unless they specifically request them.  This seems like a quality gift, and this company is highly reputable.

 

Alternative idea: I don’t really have one – I don’t know my serums.

 

goe

Goe Oil by Jao – $49.00

 

Goop scoop: A combination of 28 plant, fruit, and flower oils and butters, this multipurpose, semi-solid oil smells faintly of Monoi (Tahitian gardenias soaked in coconut oil) and moisturizes skin like nothing else. Lighter than a typical body butter, longer-lasting than a moisturizer, it’s made with a high percentage of jojoba oil—not technically an oil, but a polyunsaturated liquid wax similar to human sebum, plus rosehip, hemp, meadowfoam, and rice bran oils, all of which are high in omega and essential fatty acids. Antioxidant avocado, grapeseed, mango, and pumpkin seed butter, plus kukui nut oil protects the skin, while chamomile and calendula calm.

 

I actually wouldn’t mind getting this as a gift.  This oil is supposed to be very close in makeup to the oil in human skin and work for all skin types.  I’m always on the watch for good skin oils somewhere between the retro cold cream and my usual use of sweet almond oil for my facial massages.

 

Alternative idea:  Don’t have one, sorry.

 

lorox

Lorox Aligned Travel Roller by OPTP – $17.00

 

Goop scoop: A workout essential, this foam roller is designed by structural integration practitioner and fascia expert Lauren Roxburgh for superior results. Use it to elongate muscles, tone your body, and get rid of inflammation (thanks in part to the roller’s lymphatic-boosting, textured surface). It’s the perfect size for a gym bag, carry-on, or a fit-it-in-anywhere kind of workout—plus, the contrast color combo is pretty fun.

 

As I said before, a foam roller is a very niche sort of gift.  But at only $17, this might be a good gift for someone looking to get into working out, getting fit, or just generally testing out muscle rolling.  I might like one of these.

 

Alternative idea:  For the third item in a row, I don’t have an alternative, but mostly because I think this is priced right and would make a good gift for the right person.

 

elvie

Elvie trainer by Elvie – $199.00

 

Goop scoop: The Elvie Trainer is a revolutionary device that makes working out your pelvic floor incredibly easy and surprisingly fun. It’s a small, smoothly shaped pod, that you slip in just as you would a tampon. Via Bluetooth, the pod links to the Elvie app, which tracks your progress through five-minute, game-like pelvic floor exercises. If you’ve ever been interested in strengthening your pelvic floor—for more bladder control, a better orgasm, a solid core—but you’ve been unsure about how to do it effectively, this makes it pretty simple.

 

We all knew Gwyneth wouldn’t let us get through any list without a nod to our vaginas and here it is.  This is an insanely personal gift – one I wouldn’t consider giving to anyone, much less a friend.  But if you have a spare $200 and you’re looking to up your kegel game, this might be a good investment…according to Gwyneth.

 

Alternative idea:  Find a class specifically designed around pelvic floor exercises and pay for you and your friend to take it together.  Beneficial and hilarious.

 

vitamins

Balls in the Air/Why am I so Effing tired/The Mother Load/High school Genes by Goopwellness – $90.00/$75.00 with subscription

 

Goop scoop: This antioxidant-rich (beta-carotene, vitamin C, and vitamin E) regimen plays defense so you can play offense, helping to unburden inflammation in the body, ensuring that all systems operate at full capacity. Formulated with a blend of building blocks that boosts the body’s production of glutathione—the master detoxifier—this regimen is designed for women who function at an intense pace, and want to keep it that way. /Formulated with a variety of vitamins (including a high dose of the B’s) and supplements—many sourced from ancient Ayurveda—this helps re-balance an overtaxed system. Replenishing the nutrients you may be lacking may improve energy levels and diminish stress./While undoubtedly magical, having a baby can be a taxing and depleting physical experience for mothers—and effects can be felt for years after. This regimen is a top of the line natal protocol (you can take it prior to conception and while pregnant as well), with extra support for getting new, and not so new moms back on their feet./Formulated for women—particularly in a perimenopausal or postmenopausal state—who feel like their metabolism might be slowing down, and whose bodies are no longer responding to the exercise and diet levers that they’ve always pulled. This regimen addresses numerous systems in the body that may contribute to weight gain when not functioning properly.

 

So – this is their attempt to sell you their Goop brand vitamins.  Like most vitamins, they’re aren’t vetted by the FDA or any government agency.  They’re each developed by different doctors for a specific person.  I would never recommend buying any sort of vitamin or drug for a person as a gift of any sort.  That’s just a bad bad idea.

 

Alternative idea:  Literally anything that isn’t a pill.

 

greens

The 8G Cookbook by 8 Greens – $20.00

 

Goop scoop: To get the eight most-important greens into your diet on a regular basis, this is the (easy, incredibly delicious) solution. Model and cancer survivor Dawn Russell found her young family didn’t like vegetables, so the inventive mother of two started blending spinach, kale, spirulina, blue-green algae, barley grass, wheat grass, chlorella, and aloe vera together and working the combination into her daily recipes. In The 8G Cookbook, she shares the 40 favorite eight-greens recipes—they’re healthy, easy, and delicious.

 

This may be a good gift for the health nut in your life – so good job Gwyneth!  I’d consider getting this for my brother who is very health conscious and normally eats spinach and eggs (when he lived with us, I got to smell slightly overcooked scrambled eggs for the first six months of my pregnancy – super fun).  Almost everyone loves the idea of getting more greens into their diet and so this would probably be a very well received gift to many people.  And, reading the blurb about this book on Amazon, it piqued an interest in her green tablets.

 

Alternative gift:  The Kindle edition, if your recipient has a Kindle, is almost $10 cheaper.

 

planter

Solar Hydro-planter by Modern Sprout – $219.00

 

Goop scoop: From peppers and tomatoes to herbs and leafy greens, this self-sustaining, solar-powered hydroponic kit comes in a beautiful wooden planter that you can stash on your sill for sunlight year-round. Great for the green thumbs, it’s designed to water the plants from within, based on a fuss-free, pre-programmed feeding schedule.

 

I would argue that this maybe isn’t a gift for green thumbs for for black thumbs who have a hard time keeping plants alive.  It’s a nifty high tech solution to forgetting to water your windowsill garden.  So all you rich people, buy me this.

 

Alternative idea: A non-solar powered nice window box with plants and an app to remind your recipient to water said plants with notes on how much to water.

 

8g

8G Greens Dietary Supplement by 8 Greens – $14.00

 

Goop scoop: An easy way to get more nutrients from real greens, these effervescent tablets are packed with spinach, kale, spirulina, blue-green algae, barley grass, wheat grass, chlorella, and aloe vera. A single tablet has as much vitamin C as six oranges, as much B12 as seven cups of milk, and as much B6 as six cups of spinach.

 

Not gonna lie, I told my husband I would like to try these next paycheck.  These would make an excellent stocking stuffer for a health conscious person (I might get some of these for my sister in law).

 

Alternative idea:  Nope.

 

uiio

Ullo wine purifier by Ullo – $80.00

 

Goop scoop: What makes this purifier so innovative is its Selective Sulfite Capture™ technology that not only filters out sulfates and sediments (read: no more headaches) but aerates it, too, restoring wine—table or vintage—to its natural, drinkable state. Use it at your next dinner party to pour out your favorite reserve or give it as a gift (to impress the wine-snob on your list). Bonus points: it’s sized to fit directly on top of a variety of wine glasses—no decanter needed.

 

I didn’t actually expect to find gifts on this list, damn you Gwyneth.  My dad loves wine and this would be a quality gift for him.  I like the idea of filtering sulfates out of wine – it might make it easier for me to drink it.  This would also be a fantastic gift for anyone who has a sulfate allergy and misses drinking the vino.  It may seem spendy, but many wine accessories are, so if you’re dunking into the wine market, be prepared to crack open your wallet.

 

Alternative idea:  I don’t know enough about wine to say whether or not this is a rip off.  But I do know most of my friends who drink wine prefer a filter and/or aerator.  There are less expensive ones on the market, but I couldn’t direct you to one, sorry.

 

soma

10-cup water filter pitcher by Soma – $39.00

 

Goop scoop: In a family-friendly size, this pitcher holds up to ten-cups of refreshing water thanks to the plant-based, coconut-shell carbon filter that helps reduce everything from chlorine and mercury to copper and zinc in regular tap water. And when you do eventually need to re-fill it, just stick it under your faucet and voilà, the lid automatically opens. Plus, it’s made from BPA-free plastic and comes with a sleek white oak handle, so it looks chic on your countertop, too.

 

This is very cool and very pretty – we’ve actually owned one for several years.  I don’t care for the idea of buying someone a gift that requires regular replacement of parts, such as the filter in this pitcher.  I can also say that this needs regular cleaning – it’s white and will get a lot of use if it’s the primary filter you use in your household.  And if you allow it to remain at room temperature for an extended period of time and you live in a warm climate, it can mold (don’t ask me the story behind this, it’s gross).  And heads up, if you have friends who are allergic to coconut, they can’t use the water from this.

 

kalumi

Kalumi Marine Collagen Bar variety pack by Kalumi – $19.00

 

Goop scoop: Feed your skin from the inside out with this collection of best-selling marine collagen bars. Each bar contains a full 12 grams of collagen, said to support skin health. Includes 3 bars: Sweetie Pie, Lemon Love, Cocoa Kiss.

 

I tell you what, these better be some damn good bars at $6 a pop.  I get it that it’s a gift, and maybe rich people would use this as a stocking stuffer, but I don’t want collagen protein bars as a gift.  Ick.

 

Alternative idea:  A better snack.

 

firefly

Firefly Running and Biking Lights by Schatzii – $25.00/2

 

Goop scoop: The safe solution to early-morning runs, evening walks, or after-hours bike rides, this brilliant light easily clips onto the heels of your shoes to vividly illuminate your feet in a fluorescent neon green. Did we mention they’re incredibly lightweight?

 

These look cool!  I want to buy these for my brother in law and his wife who are runners.  (I am not a runner.  This would be a bad gift for me as I don’t run unless zombies are chasing me, nor do I bike except for fun once every great while). Anyway, I think these would be a great gift for a runner.  They also come in red and blue!

 

Alternative idea:  I think these are fun!

 

untranslatable

Untranslatable Words card set by The School of Life – $18.00

 

Goop scoop: A beautiful collection of twenty perfect, expressive words gathered from all over the globe—words that don’t quite translate into the English language because of their incredible depth in describing a specific mood or feeling. We think it makes for a thought-provoking gift.

 

Hm.  I’m not really sure what to make of this.  These are a bunch of pocket sized cards (not like greeting cards) with words that don’t translate into English.  They suggest keeping ones that speak to you in your wallet or frame them on your wall.  This might be a cool gift for the bibliophile or writer in your life.

 

Alternative idea:  The School of Life site shop has a ton of really cool notebooks that would also be great gifts – journals for feminists, buddhists, pessimists, etc and pencil bags, drawing notebooks…just cool stuff for people who love journals, doodling, and writing.

 

air

Air Ionic Car Purifier & Charger by Schatzii – $60.00

 

Goop scoop: Not only does this air purifier clean the unwanted smoke, fumes, odors, dust, and pollen in the car using its negative ion generator, but it works overtime—thanks to the built-in dual USB ports—as a handy charger for you and your road trip buddy.

 

Once again, this would be a great gift for a very specific person.  However, this person will probably already have an immaculate car and a preferred brand of air purifier.  Also, multi use port items like these are notorious for failing to work after a short period of time.

 

small p

Small Pleasures Card Set by The School of Life – $18.00

 

Goop scoop: Because we all need a reminder to stop and smell the roses, this guide is an ode to life’s little treasures—from the joy of midnight walks to late-night whispers in bed—aimed at changing our outlook and even refocusing our attention to the small indulgences of the day-to-day.

 

See review of Untranslatable Words Card set above.

 

incense

Circa Incense Burner: Copper with clear quartz, rose quartz, black quartz by Cinnamon projects – $345

 

Goop scoop: This gorgeous gift set comes with three hand-cut semi-precious stones (clear quartz, rose quartz, and black onyx) that hold your incense stick sideways so it can burn at both ends. It even comes with a clever copper-tone brass tray to collect falling ash (read: no clean-up required). The packaging is so pretty that no additional wrapping is required.

 

I can’t even comprehend shelling out this much for an incense burner.  It is very pretty, but it’s basically an ash tray.  I’m betting if you were motivated, you could make something very similar on your own.

 

Alternative idea:  Get an incense burner from an independent artist on Etsy, then a package of your recipient’s favorite incense.  Probably for less than, yep – found one with mother of pearl and quartz for $65.00!

 

halosport

Halo Sport Training System by Halo Neuroscience – $749.00

 

Goop scoop: Not your average headphones, this specialized high-tech training device uses a twenty-minute neuropriming session, in which soft foam tips deliver stimulation to build a stronger connection between your brain and muscles, which helps improve overall muscle memory. Best part is, you can blast your favorite tunes while doing it, so it’s great for athletes, trainers, musicians, or any tech-lover types.

 

I don’t understand the science behind these, but apparently they massage your head to get you all primed to exercise…and then they’re headphones.  Anyone that’s this into upping their exercise plan (and isn’t an Olympic athlete) probably has some issues.

 

Alternative idea:  Cheaper headphones like Beats by Dre, then throw in one of those weird looking head massagers.  But, currently these are on sale for $499.

 

book

Goop Clean Beauty by Hachette – $30.00

 

Goop scoop: From eating clean, getting good sleep, and making sure that everything else—adrenals, hormones, micronutrients, hydration, mood—is in balance, to how to have glowing skin and optimum energy no matter what your age, GOOP CLEAN BEAUTY is the ultimate guide to the goop lifestyle. You’ll get our favorite detox hacks, staff-obsession workouts, advice on how to age gracefully, our most-loved recipes, vitamins and minerals to make hair shine, best sauna practices, ultimate clear-skin routines, hair and makeup how-tos modeled by goop staffers, and advice from the best experts in health, wellness, fitness, food, and beauty. GOOP CLEAN BEAUTY also covers the unregulated personal care industry in depth, and outlines the easiest ways to evaluate and clean up the products you and your family use every day. You’ll learn the very best clean (i.e. entirely nontoxic and safe) beauty essentials, from sunscreen and shampoo to mascara, and you’ll get all our favorite tips for looking naturally healthy and gorgeous—without compromises. Essentially, this is goop in book!

 

This would be a great gift for the goop-obsessed person in your life.  I don’t know anyone like that in my life, so this gift is worthless.

 

Alternate idea:  a subscription to goop?  Idk.

 

exercisefreak

The Exercise Freak Workout Essentials by Ursa Major – $68.00

 

Goop scoop: Ursa Major’s four best sellers—Fantastic Face Wash, Fortifying Face Balm, Essential Face Wipes, and Hopping Fresh Deodorant—in travel size, perfect for the gym bag or carry on.

 

I’m a broken record.  Toiletries = bad gift unless it’s a stocking stuffer.

 

Alternative idea:  One of the items in this kit as a stocking stuffer.

 

crystal

The Goop Medicine Bag by Goop – $85.00

 

Inspired by the Shaman’s medicine bag from various indigenous traditions, this (goop-exclusive) pouch holds magically charged stones: citrine, clear quartz, black obsidian, rose quartz, amethyst, lapis lazuli, carnelian, and chrysocolla (also known as The Goddess Stone). This essential starter kit—learn more about it here, The 8 Essential Crystals—is a beautiful introduction to the spiritual practice of harnessing one’s own intuition, protection, healing, and inner strength.

 

This is a bag of rocks.  Semi-precious stones some of them, sure.  But it’s a bag of rocks, guys.  I get similar bags of rocks for my daughter when we stop at the highway side fruit stands between my parents and in laws’ houses.  The only one I haven’t seen locally is chrysocolla and you can get it for a few bucks on etsy.

 

Alternative idea:  Don’t call this medicine.  And put together your own bag of rocks, polished if you feel compelled to, for your friends.

 

hum

Here Comes the Sun High-Potency Vitamin D3 vitamins by Hum – $20.00

 

Goop scoop: Do most of your glimpses of sunlight come from behind a glass window, through a screen, or longing from afar? Long days in the office are more common than ever, and have led to widespread vitamin D deficiency across the US, Australia, Canada, and the UK. Even if you spend the right amount of time outdoors, cloud cover, air pollution, altitude, and skin color all affect the amount of sunshine available to the body. That’s why HUM formulated Here Comes the Sun, the”sunshine vitamin,” especially for skin craving the sun. Packed with D3 for strong bones and cellular health and regarded as superior to D2 by many scientists, Here Comes the Sun offers a summer’s day, every day.

 

Again, vitamins are a crappy holiday gift.  So boring.  Friends don’t get friends vitamins as a gift.

 

Alternative idea:  If you’re rich enough to be shopping off the goop list, take your friend to the Caribbean as a gift.

 

palermo

Detox Body Scrub: Tea Tree and Grapefruit by Palermo Body – $48.00

 

Goop scoop: Packed with mineral-rich, detoxifying, and anti-inflammatory ingredients, this scrub is both skin-polishing and profoundly cleansing. The sea clay works to draw out toxins and impurities, while gentle abrasion from the Dead Sea salt and pumice stone slough away dead skin cells and encourage circulation. Tea tree oil and grapefruit tone and calm the skin, while rich coconut oil cleanses and hydrates. A little of this massaged in circular motions in a warm shower or bath (leave it on a little while for complete absorption) leaves skin smoothed, plumped, and primed for other treatments, and it’s a brilliant support to any detox program.

 

I was struggling to find something bad about this, as the right person would probably enjoy it…and then I saw it’s only $18 ON PALERMO’S WEBSITE.  So goop has marked it up by $30.00.  That is garbage.

 

Alternative idea: Buy it off Palermo’s website, not goop’s.

 

brush

Dry brush by the Organic Pharmacy – $15.00

 

Goop scoop: This genius, long-handled natural-bristle brush allows you to thoroughly dry brush every part of your body—especially your back, which feels particularly amazing (and is uniquely hard-to-reach). It’s also the perfect balance of soft and firm, designed to gently exfoliate, support circulation, condition skin, and boost the lymphatic system. Brilliant for detoxing, and equally brilliant for everyday skin-smoothing and energy-generating support.

 

This would be a decent stocking stuffer gift if you know a friend into dry-brushing.  I’d try it.  If your recipient isn’t into dry-brushing, be prepared to do some ‘splainin.

 

detox

Detox body oil by The Organic Pharmacy – $68.00

 

Goop scoop: This invigorating body oil helps detoxify and reduce inflammation with juniper, grapefruit, and rosemary essential oils, improving microcirculation and deeply nourishing skin. Use alone, right after dry brushing, or you can actually apply it with a dry brush, working upwards from the feet in a circular motion, towards the heart for ultimate detoxification and de-puffing.

 

If you’re willing to spend the money, I suppose this would be a nice gift.  But like I’ve said a plethora of times before, people are picky about their skincare products, so exercise caution.

 

Alternative idea:  Gift card.

 

charcoal

`Binchotan Charcoal Body Scrub towel by Morihata – $21.00

 

Goop scoop: Made in Osaka, Japan, the Sasawashi textile is a naturally deodorizing, hyper-absorbent blend of organic Kumazasa plant fibers, and is exclusive to the family-run company. Besides being pretty to look at, this wash cloth has odor absorbing qualities and removes toxins and oils from the skin thanks to an infusion of Binchotan charcoal.

 

So the reason this towel is goop-worthy is the charcoal that helps exfoliate your skin.  I guess it’s a cool idea?  However, the charcoal only lasts 4 to 6 months and isn’t recommended for anyone with sensitive skin.  The odor absorbing qualities aren’t for your body, but meant to keep the towel from smelling bad, which could be avoided by drying it properly and hanging it up after use instead of dumping it on the floor.  So…lots of caveats to this gift – the cool thing about it isn’t really long lasting in the grand scheme of things, if you want to give it as a gift, be aware of your recipient’s skin type.

 

Alternate idea:  A nice set of bath sheets – they provide ample exfoliation for toweling off post-shower.

 

spiralizer

The Spiralizer by Hemsley + Hemsley – $65.00

 

Goop scoop: Bearing a stamp of approval from brilliant culinary duo Jasmine and Melissa Hemsley (who tested their way through every version on the market), the Hemsley Spiralizer is the insanely useful gadget your kitchen’s been missing. Its claim to fame is effortlessly turning fresh veggies (cucumber, carrot, sweet potato, butternut squash…) into spirals or noodles, which are the backbone of so many great recipes in Hemsley + Hemsley’s cookbook, The Art of Eating Well.  Use it to make our noodle pot lunch recipes, too.

 

A spiralizer is a cool gadget for someone who wants one.  Otherwise, it might be somewhat of a bewildering gift.  It would be interesting to own a spiralizer, but I don’t think I’d use it very often.

 

Alternate idea:  There are several cheaper and highly rated spiralizers on Amazon if you absolutely must purchase one.

 

compost

Countertop Compost Bin by Alasaw – $175.00

 

Goop scoop: Set this pretty box on your kitchen counter, or anywhere you like to prep food, and stow away compostables from egg shells to coffee grounds to fruit peels—composting is good for the environment, not to mention good for your garden, and this bin makes it easy by neatly sealing everything up in the process.

 

If this wasn’t so expensive, I might consider replacing our disgusting plastic compost bin with this.  It seems like it’s efficient and easily cleaned – the stainless steel tub part easily comes out of the wooden base.  It also holds a little over 6 quarts, so you probably would only need to trek out to your compost heap or bin once a day (recommended anyway).  But honestly, you can find a less expensive compost bin…and a compost bin isn’t the most attractive of gifts.  I’d advise only giving it to someone who has requested one (not your mother in law who you hope gets into composting but knows next to nothing about it).

 

Alternate idea:  One of the stainless steel compost bins you can find anywhere online.

 

sneaker

Classic Nylon Sneaker by Adidas – $60.00 for adults, $50.00 for childrens

 

Goop scoop: These retro sneakers—famous for comfort—feature a combination suede-and-nylon upper for added breathability. Built with an EVA midsole for lightweight cushioning and a high-abrasion rubber outsole, they have plenty of traction and are perfect for everyday wear.

 

Shoes should be bought with the recipient or very specifically chosen (size, style, color, etc).  Otherwise, these sneakers are classic and I think they’d make a fabulous gift for someone into them.

 

Alternate idea:  Take your recipient out for a day shoe shopping.  Make memories instead of simply spending money.  Corny enough for you yet?

 

glow

Goopglow by goop wellness – $60.00

 

Goop scoop: Drink your way to glowing skin with a mega-dose of skin-supporting ingredients: grape-seed proanthocyanidins, vitamins C and E, and CoQ10, along with the critical carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin. A power shot of antioxidants designed to reduce the free radical effects of the sun, pollution, stress, and more, it helps face down oxidative photo-damage, which can lead to signs of premature aging like dullness, uneven tone, fine lines, and loss of firmness.* Drink as part of a healthy morning-skin ritual—it tastes of oranges and lemon verbena, and looks…like a sunrise as you mix it in a glass or water bottle with water. The single-dose packets fit easily in a gym bag and travel effortlessly, so you can get the goop glow just about anywhere.

 

On par with the goop brand vitamins, Gwyneth is trying to sell us a cure-all for our naturally aging skin.  A mega shot of vitamins to help you feel younger, and possibly look it – though if not you can’t blame them for the fact you’re out sixty bucks.

 

Alternate idea:  Facial or spa day.

 

We’ve made it to the end!  Goop didn’t disappoint with questionable supplements, crazy crystal items, and a nod to our vajayjays’ health.  I was pleasantly surprised to find a few things I wouldn’t mind receiving as gifts and one or two things I may try out on my own.  Got your own gift guide review?  Make sure you comment below!

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