The things I am getting myself for Christmas. From another country.

This Christmas is unusual for me. Because, for the first time in years, I will be spending money on myself, frivolously and on items I want rather than need. Why would I do that, you might wonder, especially if you are coming to this blog post from somewhere within the ‘debt free’ community. The answer is simple – because I chose to when creating my 2019 budget, despite being known as a frugal, borderline tight-fisted, person. I have been skipping the indulgent personal spending for a long time and I got to the point of feeling like I need some beauty in my life.

So here are the things I am treating myself to this Christmas. None of the links are sponsored or affiliated – this is a pure ‘I am buying this because I want to’ sort of a post.

The unusual thing about this post will be that all items are from Poland. Some of you will know this – I’m a dual citizen of Poland and the UK and bilingual, giving me additional shopping options. And I thought today would be a good day to bring some of those options to you too.

A fancy decorative tray.

I like artsy things. Not too artsy, but just enough to make the functional beautiful. And since I really wanted a drinks tray for my home, I decided to buy one, and buy one which I will love for both looks and function. The tray I chose is handmade by a resin artist and is therefore unique. Lucky for you, the artist is not the only person in the world making these and you can find them occasionally on etsy. I tracked mine down through instagram – you’ll find the artist, Oliwia Styrylska in my ‘following’ list if you want to check her work out.

The exact tray I purchased is this one:

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Continuing purchases of handmade goods from Poland, I also got some PJs. You will not be able to order international delivery through the website, but I had no issues getting that arranged the other weekend, the artist herself is surprisingly well organised and sorted the order for UK delivery for me within minutes.

I also considered purchasing resin coasters from a UK based artist, unfortunately her shop was out of stock and the items she did have available on etsy weren’t quite right for me. If you would prefer to support a UK artist, it’s http://www.lunaartresin.com/.

Grown-up PJs.

This is my second purchase from this small company called Lunaby. They specialise in premium women’s sleepwear and release new collections approximately every six months. Only a couple of fabric patterns are permanent.

International postage is available directly on the website which makes ordering easier if you do not speak Polish.

I purchased the first two sets in November 2018: two short-sleeve & shorts sets which I still have and wear frequently. They held up beautifully.

This time around I opted for two long-sleeve winter sets which look incredibly comfortable but also presentable enough to walk around when other humans are present. It’s worth saying that I dislike jersey PJ sets, anything stretchy or fleecy. I’m a pure cotton and linen sort of a nighttime woman and heavens forbid you ever gift me stretchy PJs. Just give me non-stretchy ones that are well-tailored instead, ok?

The first time I heard about Lunaby was through a podcast with Michal Szafranski, a well known Polish money blogger. You should know that Poland is a challenging place to start a business and the story of the founder really resonated with me. Handy that she was also selling the sort of goods I was looking for.

Here are the two pajama sets I got:

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The first one direct link: https://lunaby.com/produkt/pizama-damska-laura-marble/

The second one direct link: https://lunaby.com/produkt/pizama-damska-laura/

I have not found anything comparable in the UK, so if you know of any businesses who sew premium loungewear in Great Britain or are one such, do give me a shout.

Delightful cosmetics.

Not every body butter and body oil is what I want. If you’ve ever wandered over to my ‘Empties’ highlight bubble on Instagram you will know – I am a harsh critic of cosmetics and not only I want quality, I also want a reasonable price and an assurance that the brand does not test on animals. And clean ingredients, sustainable packaging, decent labour practice… Basically, I want a moon on a stick and take my word for it, it’s a hard one to find. But I sort of found one and once in a while I’ll ship myself some goodies.

You will not necessarily know this unless you have visited a Polish drugstore, but Poland is basically on par with South Korea when it comes to beauty products. It’s a big claim, I know, and it’s a truthful one. But the marketing is not so great, so it’s pretty rare for people outside of Poland to actually know just how competitive and high quality the brands produced in that country are.

The one worth mentioning is Tołpa. I’ve used their skincare and haircare products on and off and granted, not all of them are exactly right for me, but the ones that are really worked incredibly well.

The core product range is focused around ingredients found within a fairly unique forest peat – there is a whole long science explanation which I just cannot translate for you. That aside, I’ve loved their skincare for a while now and I am so happy to see that they now are starting to stock in estores outside of Poland.

The quality of cosmetics is different to that available in the UK and it’s a little hard to draw comparisons for me. If I were to compare to any international brand, I would compare with South Korean ones – their premium range would be comparable to Sulwahsoo and their mid to lower price tier would be a lot like Innisfree in terms of quality. I am pleased to say that they are now stocking in other countries through online resellers, the list can be found on the bottom of this page: https://tolpa.pl/obsluga-klienta#dostawa . I’m personally purchasing an eye cream, a light moisturiser and a hair masque as I type this blog post. And I can’t wait for them to reach me already!

If you were to treat yourself to something, what would it be?

 

 

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