Christmas and presents are unequivocally linked. Shopping for someone more than often feels like a tall task, especially with a short lead time. On the other hand, shopping for yourself or the precious inner circle who are basically sisters from another mother comes a lot easier.
While we all have to manage our budget, the horizon becomes completely open if you shift your considerations dramatically from numbers crunching to emotional appeal. What has she been hankering after all year? Will her face light up when she sees it? That’s when girl math comes in particularly handy.
Girl math is essentially the investment value of the commodities that goes towards one’s happiness, calculated based on the number of times a product will be used. Used mostly by women – hence the moniker – girl math is the, ahem, cognitive justification of why we spend on big ticket items. This game of mental gymnastics breaks down cost-per-wear to assess true affordability and if the stakes are worth the while.
CNA Lifestyle handpicks star gifts that have “you’re worth it!” written all over them. And yes, if you’re thinking of gifting yourself as well thanks to that bonus that has just come in, it works too. Happy Christmas, darlings!
More Christmas gift guides:
Give a thoughtful Christmas gift: From documentary-style family portraits to professional home organisation
EST.LAB VITALIFT A+ SMARTSCULPT BUDDY
Price tag: From S$280
Girl math: These aren’t your regular sunglasses – thanks to the ‘reverse’ innovation, which reduce refection and glare by up to 70 per cent, you’re getting two for the price of one. And by putting money down for a good pair of sunnies that actually helps you see better, you save up on buying eye cream to banish wrinkles around the eyes caused by squinting behind sunglasses that don’t do what they’re supposed to do and maybe even a costly trip to the ophthalmologist.
Available at Ray-ban boutiques.
LULULEMON WUNDERMOST ULTRA-SOFT NULU MOCKNECK SLEEVELESS BODYSUIT
Price tag: S$690
Girl math: Inspired by the winter herbarium, this box set houses 24 different scents, from house icons to newer creations, which you can wear on their own or layer to create a unique sillage. Since each L’Artisan Parfumer scent starts from S$295 per bottle and this nearly S$700 set has 24, paying S$28.75 each is a steal.
Available at L’Artisan Parfumer at Ngee Ann City.
GHD DUET STYLE
Price tag: S$2,590 for 12 vials of Ultra-Potent Concentrate and 1 Ultra-Sensorial Cream
Girl math: Sure, the eye-watering price tag may put some off but hear us out. Let’s begin with quality: The Swiss beauty giant is so confident of its latest breakthrough in the field of haute-rejuvenation that it promises instant results with this set.
More importantly, it’s cheaper than most non-invasive rejuvenation procedures that range from S$3,500 to S$6,000. And most of these procedures require several months before results are visible. So you spend less and get instant results. Take our money now!
Available at La Prairie ION Orchard.
POLENE EROZ CHAIN EDITION 24 CARAT GOLD GILDED EDITION
Price tag: From S$32 for a lipstick case
Girl math: A brand new lipstick costs S$54 but not all new colours are flattering. Rather than be stuck with shopper’s regret, you’re better off shopping for a new lipstick case for your favourite shade to make whipping out your lipstick feel like a brand new experience. At just S$32 for a lipstick case, that’s 40 per cent off buying a new S$54 lipstick and you’ll never suffer the anguish of wasting money.
Available at Guerlain boutiques and counters.
DIOR LADY DIOR PHONE POUCH
Price tag: S$8,850
Girl math: According to the principles of girl math, anything you pay in cash is technically free. So if you have a spare chunk of cash, consider putting it towards building an enviable Chanel collection, which often appreciates on the resale market.
Available at Chanel boutiques.
SKIMS BUTT ENHANCING OPEN BUST BODYSUIT
Price tag: S$10,500 (in yellow gold)
Girl math cost: Like real estate, the prices of these bracelets have been going up, up and away. The sooner you buy it, the more you’ll save. With GST climbing up to 9 per cent come 2024, you’ll effectively be saving S$105 simply by acting ahead of the hike.
Available at Cartier boutiques.
& OTHER STORIES TULLE TOP AND TULLE SKIRT
Price tag: S$2,150
Girl math: The money you saved not splurging on a pedigree can go towards grooming Milo the rescue. This high fashion collar can easily pass off as an ode to the late great Karl Lagerfeld. Think of all the envious stares you and your precious pooch will be getting at the dog park. As a result, if Milo scores a part in a dog TV commercial, the collar will be paid for, with change to spare.
Available at Hermes boutiques.
LOUIS VUITTON CABIN LUGGAGE
Price tag: S$120
Girl math: So, you love the scent of Le Labo’s cult favourite Santal 33. Instead of spritzing it everywhere at home – a 50ml bottle of Santal 33 costs S$325 after all – scent the home with a Santal 33 scent candle instead. One candle for S$40 will get you 60 hours of burn time. Then gift the two remaining candles. How’s that for luxury gifting on a budget?
Available at Le Labo boutiques.
CELINE MEDIUM TRIOMPHE BELT IN TAURILLON LEATHER
Price tag: S$650
Girl math: If you wear this top once a week, it’ll only cost S$12.50 per wear. The Loewe paper bag on Carousell costs more than that.
Available at Loewe boutiques.
DYSON AIRWRAP MULTI-STYLER
Price tag: S$810
Girl math: Instead of buying art, get your pal an Hermes silk scarf. Framed up on the wall, it’ll look as classy as a Monet except it only costs a fraction of a Monet. For perspective, a Monet painting went under the hammer for US$74 million (S$98.24 million) just last month. And that doesn’t even include shipping cost and insurance.
Available at Hermes boutiques.
MONICA VINADER DIAMOND ESSENTIAL STUD EARRINGS
Price tag: S$428
Girl math: For less than a fixed menu dinner at Zen (S$580++), you score stronger and longer hair – to be exact, hair becomes 133 per cent stronger and 2.9 times more elastic. That’s solid results you won’t flush down the toilet anytime soon.
Available at Oribe partner hair salons: Shunji Matsuo, Chez Vous Hair Salon, Backstage Hair Salon and Evolve Salon.
CHANEL N°5 SET WITH EAU DE PARFUM AND SPRAY BODY OIL
Price tag: From S$79.90
Girl math: Marked down from S$149.90, you save S$70 without even trying. Pick her favourite colour to personalise the gift.
Available at Uniqlo.