The Cult Beauty Advent Calendar and its contents for 2022 have been announced – and some new, interesting changes have been spotted. The Cult Calendar is one of the most loved out there – but is it really worth it? With a steep price of 235, are the contents actually good and who would they suit the most?
235 GBP (worth over 1000)
CONTENTS: 37 items
MAKEUP: 5 items
Eyes: 2 items
A strong item in the Cult Beauty Advent Calendar for 2022 is the popular Charlotte Tilbury Bigger, Brighter Eyes eyeshadow palette in Exaggereyes. This comes in full size (5.2g) and costs £43. It comes with four shadows – a shimmery ivory cream, a light shimmery champagne, a darker, sparkly rose gold and a pink toned brown. The “define” shade in pink toned brown does not look dark enough for all skin tones but the shimmery, sparkly colours would go well on all skins.
The second item for the eyes in the Cult Calendar is the Hourglass Caution Extreme Lash Mascara which comes in a travel size (5.5g) worth £14. This is a popular and loved mascara. It is supposed to give extreme volume and length. It is also cruelty free.
Complexion: 2 items
For the complexion there are two items in the Cult calendar. The first one, the Pai Skincare The Impossible Glow Hyaluronic Acid Highlighting Drops is actually a hybrid – an in between skincare and makeup product. It comes in a travel size of 10ml which is worth £19. It comes in the shade Champagne, which is a lovely warm toned gold. It is sheer and offers more of a luminosity to the skin rather than being an actual highlighter so it should suit most skin types. It’s supposed to hydrate while also offering luminosity to the skin. Cult describes it as “lending a warm, summer-holiday lustre”. However, the second ingredient in this product, following water, is Citrus Limon Fruit Water. Lemon is a potent skin sensitiser.
The second complexion product in the Cult Beauty Advent Calendar for 2022 is another highlighter. The Roen Roglow Skin Stick comes in full size (8g) and costs £29. This product is again, a hybrid in between makeup and skincare, being able to both hydrate and nourish the skin while also providing the luminosity and shine of a gentle highlighter. However, it does contain perfume and the potential skin allergens Linalool and Limonene which can sensitise and irritate skin. This highlighter comes in shade Glaze, which is a cool pearlescent. The colour is advertised as being suitable for any skin tone.
Lips: 1 item
For the lips there is only product. This is the Huda Beauty Power Bullet Cream Glow Sweet Nudes in Sweet Cheeks or Bossy Browns in Hustla. This comes in full size (3g) costing £23. The formula is creamy and nourishing and is packed with skincare ingredients such as peptides and antioxidants. The shade Sweet Cheeks and Hustla are both nude shades ideal for medium skin tones.
SKINCARE: 19 items
Cleansers: 1 item
There is only one cleanser in the Cult Beauty Advent Calendar for 2022. This is the Drunk Elephant Beste No. 9 Jelly Cleanser which comes in a travel size (60ml) worth £14. This cleanser claims to remove makeup, oils and sunscreen. It contains antioxidants, omegas 6 and 9, and also hydrators such as glycerin. It is perfume and allergen free. It is also vegan.
Serums: 7 items
There are several serums in the Cult calendar. The Sunday Riley C.E.O. 15% vitamin C Brightening Serum comes in full size (30ml) and costs £70. The main claims of the serum are to reduce hyperpigmentation, reduce pore size and tackle visible signs of ageing such as dullness and dehydration. It contains Vitamin C, Squalane, as well as some exfoliants such as Glycolic Acid. However, it is filled with perfuming ingredients and potential skin allergens such as Limonene, Citrus oils and Linalool.
The second serum in the Cult Calendar that comes in full size (50ml) is the Biossance Squalane and Copper Peptide Rapid Plumping Serum which costs £52. This is a product that is supposed to plump and smooth skin, containing Squalane, Hyaluronic Acid and peptides. This serum is free of perfume and does not contain any of the 26 potential skin allergens signalled by the EU. This product is cruelty free.
The third and the last full size (30ml) serum in this beauty advent calendar is The Inkey List Polyglutamic Acid Serum which costs £14.50. This is a hydrating serum that contains Polyglutamic Acid which is supposed to hold even more moisture than Hyaluronic Acid. This serum is fragrance free and does not contain any of the 26 potential skin allergens signalled by the EU. It is also vegan.
Another hydrating serum, this time in a travel size of 15ml is the NIOD Multi-Molecular Hyaluronic Complex, worth £20.50. This product combines twelve forms of Hyaluronic Acid in the hope that it will prevent moisture loss and plump the skin. This product is free of fragrance and of the 26 potential skin allergens.
The Zelens Power D Fortifying and Restoring is a step forward from the hydrating products already mentioned as it contains more of a complex of ingredients that hydrate but also sooth, strengthen and protect the skin. The Zelens serum comes in a travel size of 10ml and costs £47. It contains plant-derived fatty acids, Vitamin D, ceramides and plant oils. The list of ingredients looks amazing and very well put together.
Another serum intended for hydration and glowiness is the Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Niacinamide Dew Drops which comes in a travel size of 15ml worth £12. This is another hybrid in between makeup and skincare offering skincare benefits but also a beautiful glow. It contains niacinamide, sodium hyaluronate and plant extracts. The Glow Recipe serum does contain perfume but it is free of the 26 potential skin allergens. It is also cruelty free and vegan.
Lastly, there is an exfoliating serum and the only one of this kind in the Cult Beauty Advent Calendar for 2022. The Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta Pore Perfecting & Refining Serum comes in 15ml and is worth £34. As the name suggests, it contains both Alpha and Beta Hydroxy Acids such as Glycolic, Lactic, Malic, Citric and Salicylic). Exfoliation is very important in a skincare routine because it will clear out the skin of dead skin cells, it will clear the pores and leave the skin smoother. However, this serum is filled with potential skin allergens and irritants such as Lemon, Jasmine Oil, Lavender and Bergamot. It also contains Farnesol really high on the ingredient list which can be a skin allergen.
Face Creams: 6 items
In terms of face creams there are several options in the Cult Calendar. Starting with the full sizes again, there is the Farmacy Honey Halo Ultra-Hydrating Ceramide Moisturiser in 50ml which costs £42. This is a moisturising cream for dry and dehydrated skin. Packed with moisturising and emollient ingredients and antioxidants, it contains Shea Butter, Honey Extract, Ceramides, Propolis, Bisabolol. This product does contain flavour (aroma) but it is free of the 26 potential skin allergens identified by the EU.
Another full size moisturiser cream is the Byoma Moisturising Gel Cream that comes in 50ml and costs £12. This product is also meant to help with skin barrier repair after over exfoliating. It is supposed to be light and it contains Ceramides, Niacinamide and Green tea. It is free of perfume and of the 26 potential skin allergens. It is also cruelty free.
Another full size moisturiser is the Youth to the People Adaptogen Deep Moisture Cream which comes in 59ml and costs £50. This cream is intended for dry, reactive and sensitive skin. It contains Squalane, Jojoba Oil, Shea Butter, peptide complex, and Aloe. It does contain Ethylhexyl Palmitate as the third ingredient, which is high up on the comedogenicity scale. Whether that is bad or not, remains uncertain – if you want to find out why comedogenicity is more grey than you think, read the Wayne Goss’ Luxury Cream Foundation: Is it comedogenic? Ingredient Analysis article on this blog. The Adaptogen Deep Moisture Cream is free of fragrance and of the potential 26 skin allergens. This cream is also cruelty free and vegan.
Another full size (30ml) cream is the Dr. Levy Switzerland Pollution Shield 5PF which costs £79. It is supposed to soften the skin texture and protect it from environmental factors like pollution. The ingredients include probiotics, antioxidants and moisturisers. The name is misleading, as you could easily mistake this for a sunscreen, but this Pollution Shield 5PF does not contain any UV filters. This cream is free of fragrance and of the potential 26 skin allergens. This cream is also vegan and cruelty free.
Moving onto the minis and the travel sizes, there is the Augustinus Bader The Rich Cream in 15ml which costs an eye watering £69. The rich cream version is more suitable for normal to dry skin types. It contains soothing Aloe Vera, brightening Ascorbic Acid, as well as some richly moisturising ingredients such as Avocado Oil and Omega 6 rich fatty acids. It also contains some antioxidants. It seems to be free of fragrance and also free of the potential 26 skin allergens. The new formula is now vegan.
Lastly in this category there is the Laura Mercier Pure Canvas Hydrating Primer, which comes in 25ml that costs £18. This is a lightweight yet moisture rich primer which can be used under makeup for a more smooth application of foundation. It contains a variety of moisturisers and emollients such as Glycerin, Ethylhexyl Olivate and Squalane. It is free of fragrance and also free of the 26 potential skin allergens.
Eye creams: 1 item
There is a cream intended for the eyes as well. This is the REN Clean Skincare Brightening Dark Circle Eye Cream which comes in the full size of 15ml that costs £44. It is packed with moisturising and emollient ingredients such as Undecane, Glycerin, Jojoba and Shea Butter. It is free of fragrance but it does contain the potential skin allergen Benzyl Alcohol. This product is vegan and cruelty free.
Masks: 3 items
In terms of masks there is only one product which comes in full size. This is the Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask in Chocolate. It comes in 20g which costs £19. It is intended for dry, chapped lips. The specific list of ingredients for the flavour Chocolate was not found, but it seems that most other flavours contain a mixture of emollients and of fruit extracts. It does contain perfume.
The rest of the masks in the Cult Advent Calendar are travel sizes. The 111Skin Oxygen Express Mask comes in 30ml which is worth £38. This is another luxury item in the calendar. It is supposed to refresh, energise and refine tired skin, claiming to use oxygen to brighten and tighten the skin. It contains several types of the hydrating Sodium Hyaluronate, antioxidants, and soothing Aloe Vera. It is free of perfume and of the 26 potential skin allergens signalled by the EU. While oxygen is towards the end of the ingredient list, this mask is packed with skin beneficial ingredients and for its mouth opening price, it certainly makes it a fun item to receive in this calendar.
The last mask in this beauty advent calendar is the Medik8 r-Retinoate Intense which comes in a tiny size of 15ml which is worth £65. For this product the function of paying in instalments would certainly come in helpful… This mask contains ‘encapsulated’ Retinyl Retinoate combined with Retinal, Peptides, Ceramides and Hyaluronic Acid. Retinyl Retinoate and Retinal are forms of retinoids, known for their anti-aging qualities. However, this mask contains perfume and several potential skin allergens such as Limonene, Linalool and Citral. This product is vegan.
Sunscreen: 1 item
There is only one sunscreen included in the Cult Beauty Advent Calendar. This is the Supergoop! Unseen Sunscreen SPF 30 which comes in a tiny size of 15ml which costs £15. This sunscreen contains Avobenzone, which provides good UVA protection. However, it is not photostable. It also contains Homosalate, which protects from both UVB and UVA but again, it is not photostable. Homosalate can also be irritating to the skin, causing small pustules in the hair follicles for some. Octisalate and Octocrylene are other chemical filters included in this sunscreen and they offer UVB protection. Overall, these UV filters are not the strongest out there on the market. If you do want to find out more about these ingredients and why these filters are not the best, please read my article here in the sunscreen section. Nevertheless, it is nice to see sunscreen included in a Beauty Advent Calendar as we should wear sunscreen everyday of the year, including in winter. It is just a shame that 15ml will probably last you for a week with the correct amount of sunscreen applied to the face. This sunscreen is vegan and cruelty free.
HAIRCARE: 9 items
Shampoo & Conditioner: 2 items
Moving onto the haircare section of this calendar, the Cult Beauty Advent for 2022 has a generous selection. Starting with washing your hair, there is both a shampoo and a conditioner which both come in 100ml. They are the Sachajuan Scalp Shampoo and Conditioner. The shampoo is worth £14 while the conditioner is worth £8. If you have never heard of the brand, Sachajuan is a hair salon in Stockholm. The Scalp Shampoo and Scalp Conditioner are intended for dry and itchy scalps, offering an alternative to anti-dandruff products. These products contain the anti-fungal Piroctone Olamine and Climbazole. It also contains some exfoliants, such as Lactic Acid and Salicylic Acid. However, they contain the potentially skin irritant Rosemary Oil, as well as Menthol, which can be another skin sensitiser and irritant.
Masks & Treatments: 5 items
The Cult Beauty Advent Calendar for 2022 also contains several hair masks and treatments. However, most of them are pretty small in size considering they are for the hair. There is the Briogeo Be Gentle, Be Kind Avocado + Kiwi Mega Moisture Superfood Hair Mask which comes in 59ml which costs £15. This mask is intended for damaged hair, especially from heat. Packed with fatty acids, antioxidants and smoothing ingredients, this mask is supposed to deep condition without dragging down the hair. It is also vegan and cruelty free.
The Cult Calendar also contains the Hair by Sam Mcknight Deeper Love Intense Treatment Mask which comes in a travel size of 50ml. However, no information was found about this mask, and therefore its value or ingredients are unknown.
Another 50ml hair mask is the one from Hair Gain, the Nourishing Miracle Treatment Hair Mask which costs £14.50. This mask is supposed to help with hair growth, to nourish and hydrate your hair, while also protecting it from frizz, heat and colour fading. As this is a mask that is recommended to also be massaged into the scalp it is worth mentioning that it is perfumed and it contains several potential skin allergens such as Linalool, Limonene and Citronellal.
The Cult Calendar also contains a mere 5ml of the K18 Leave-In Molecular Repair Hair Mask which costs £9. This treatment has certainly gained popularity recently against the Olaplex No.3. It is supposed to repair damaged hair by fixing broken chains in the hair strands through its peptides. This treatment does not require rinsing off.
Oils: 1 item
Another tiny size of 9ml is given with the Virtue Healing Oil, which is worth £7.50. Intended for dry hair, it contains a combination of proteins, antioxidants and oils. It is supposed to nourish and hydrate your hair while also giving it shine, all without weighing down your hair.
Styling: 1 item
Although some other products in the Cult calendar can also be beneficial to styling your hair, the one that its sole purpose is this is the Color Wow Dream Coat Supernatural which comes in 50ml, which costs £12.50. This product is intended for porous, colour treated hair, and is supposed to help with frizz. It is activated by heat and lasts up to a few washes in between usage.
Vitamins: 1 item
The Cult Calendar also contains some vitamins, the HUM Nutrition Hair Sweet Hair. This comes in 14 gummies worth £6. These contain Zinc, Biotin, Vitamin B12, Folic Acid, and soy, nuts and gluten free. It is also vegan. These vitamins are supposed to help with the health of your hair. The company states that the results can be seen in 4 – 6 weeks and they recommend two gummies a day. The calendar gives enough gummies for a week.
BODYCARE: 2 items
Other than hair products, the Cult Beauty Advent Calendar for 2022 also contains a cream and a perfume oil for the body. The Sol de Janeiro Bom Dia Bright Cream comes in 75ml and costs £20. This brand is known for their delicious scents. This cream is supposed to hydrate while also exfoliating the skin. However, some of the fruit enzymes used for exfoliation can be skin sensitising such as the Papaya Extract. It also contains the potential skin allergen Benzyl Alcohol. Also, as something that is known for its delicious scents, you can also expect high amounts of fragrance in.
Another heavily fragranced item is the Malin+Goetz Dark Rum Perfume Oil, which comes in a full size of 9ml which costs £27. This is a roller that allows you to apply the perfume on your wrists, for example. The fragrance is described as having notes of Bergamot, Plum, Anise, Leather, Rum, Vanilla, Amber, Patchouli and Milk, being suggested for both a summer or a winter scent. As expected since it is a perfume, it is filled with potential skin allergens such as Benzyl Alcohol, Citral, Eugenol, Farnesol, Geraniol, Limonene, Linalool, amongst others. This product is vegan.
OTHER: 2 items
The miscellaneous section of the calendar only has a few items in. For example, there is the Cult Beauty Mulberry Silk Sleep Mask in the colour pink. Whether or not it’s made of 100% silk we do not know as there is not any other information about it online. Its value is also unknown.
The second miscellaneous item in the Cult calendar is the Jo Loves A Home Candle in Christmas Trees which comes in a travel size of 70g worth around £28. Receiving a scented candle in an advent calendar is always lovely as Christmas is definitely the time to enjoy them. It is also worth mentioning that the candle does come in a Christmas appropriate scent.
How does it compare to last year’s Cult Beauty Advent Calendar 2021?
There is only one item that repeats itself in the 2022 calendar and that is the Supergoop! Glowscreen SPF 30 that comes in 15ml once more. However, this should not be an issue as the size is quite small and it was probably used up pretty quickly since last year!
In terms of similar products, the Cult Beauty Advent Calendar for 2022 contains another Briogeo hairmask. Last year it contained the Briogeo Don’t Despair, Repair! Deep Conditioning Mask in 59ml, while in 2022 there is the Be Gentle, Be Kind Avocado + Kiwi Mega Moisture Superfood Hair Mask which again comes in 59ml. In 2022 the calendar contains some HUM Vitamins as well, but if in 2021 they were containing Vitamin D3, in 2022 there is the HUM Nutrition Hair Sweet Hair which contains a different combination of vitamins.
Some brands are present again in the calendar, such as Charlotte Tilbury, Youth to the People, Glow Recipe, Inkey List, Augustinus Bader and Medik8.
In terms of overall contents, the makeup category had a significant downgrade compared to last year. In 2021 the Cult Beauty Calendar contained twelve items, whereas in 2022 it has only five. Skincare stayed the same, if counting the hybrid products as well. The haircare section has grown significantly in 2022, going up to nine items from just two in 2021. There is a candle again, but this time a perfuming oil was included as well.
In my review of the Cult Beauty Calendar for 2021, I wrote the following about missing contents in the calendar: ‘ Items such as a hair styling cream comes to mind, or perhaps a hair oil. A body moisturiser is also missing, as well as nail polish or any fragrance. In fact, the biggest downside of this calendar is the overwhelming amount of skincare. Skincare is the most predominant category, where, as mentioned, the inclusion of fragrance and potentially irritant ingredients might cause some issues to some.’ For 2022, it seems that Cult Beauty addressed all of these issues. For 2022 they introduced hair styling creams, hair oils, a body moisturiser and the fragrance. Cult Beauty has even significantly reduced the amount of skincare with potentially skin irritant ingredients. Thank you Cult Beauty for listening!
The Cult Beauty Advent Calendar for 2022 comes in an elegant and sturdy packaging that contains 25 drawers. The colours are more summer than winter appropriate with its peachy tones and corals.
The calendar comes with 37 items inside, giving six items in the 25th drawer, meaning you get a full set of gifts on Christmas Day.
The calendar contains mostly expensive and luxury brands, so in terms of this, the experience will be a luxurious one. The brands are popular and well known, such as Charlotte Tilbury, Huda Beauty, Hourglass and it also contains some names that all skincare fans will have heard of – Augustinus Bader, Drunk Elephant, Laneige, Medik8 to name just a few. However, the calendar also includes some indie brands for people to discover, such as Sachajuan and Youth to the People.
Cult is also going to donate £75,000 from the sales of the calendar to Mental Health UK, and has partnered with More Trees to plant one tree for every calendar sold.
Moreover, there is the excitement that one of the three £1000 golden tickets will be hidden in your calendar.
Who is the 2022 Cult Beauty Advent Calendar most suitable for?
Given that skincare is the most predominant category in this calendar, it would be most suitable for a skincare lover who likes to experiment and try luxury brands.
Most of the items in the calendar are intended for dry, mature skin, including dry and damaged hair. While this is not to say that a normal skin type would not benefit from these items, some of the creams and serums being offered in this calendar are quite rich and nourishing.
Some items do contain perfume and potential skin allergens but they are few and could be avoided by the people with sensitive skin.
Some items are vegan and cruelty free, but not all of them, however a care for this can be noticed throughout the contents.
Overall, the Cult Calendar for 2022 is for someone who loves meticulous routines, has attention to detail and passion for using and trying out multiple beauty items. It is for someone who takes joy from multiple steps, and for someone who is already quite good at their beauty routine. Some of the items require some experience, such as the solid highlighter stick, dewy drops, retinol serum (which will require a specific after care). So if you are a skincare lover that loves that extra step and luxury brands, then this calendar is for you.
Is it worth it?
The Cult Beauty Advent Calendar for 2022 is packed with very popular and loved brands that will make the majority of beauty lovers’ hearts flutter. However, the makeup section decreased since last year, containing only five items instead of twelve like last year. The total value of the makeup items in the Cult Beauty calendar for this year is £128, being a tenth of the total value. While it is true that some of the makeup items are very strong, such as the Charlotte Tilbury eyeshadow palette, and that a mini mascara will last you as long as a full size one, this does make the Cult calendar a bit of a disappointment for the colour cosmetics fan.
However, this calendar does seem to be tailored for the skincare lovers instead – which do indeed receive a treat. With 19 items of skincare intended for the face (even excluding the few hybrid face highlighters) the value and joy of this calendar lies within this category. The total value of the skincare category is £715, which is over 70% of the worth value. There is a vast mixture of serums and creams that essentially nourish and hydrate the skin. Cult Beauty does seem shy of introducing targeted treatments in the calendar. This is not necessarily bad, as moisturising products will mostly be suitable to all – but how many hydrating skincare items do you really need?
One change that is noticeable compared to last year’s is the extra care in choosing more items that are free of perfume and potential skin allergens. The amount of skincare items that lack skin irritants is significantly less than last year, so for this I do have to congratulate Cult Beauty.
It is also worth mentioning the presence of a few hybrids in between skincare and makeup items which are lovely to see, as I do think these are the new generations of beauty items.
The number of haircare items has gone up compared to last year, from only two items to six! This is certainly exciting, and the choices are varied. The Cult Beauty Calendar for 2022 also includes some other fun items such as a scented candle and a perfume oil. The value of the haircare items in this calendar is of approximately £100 (the price for the Sam McKnight mask is unknown); while the value of the bodycare and miscellaneous section is again, of approximately £100 (the value of the silk eye mask is unknown).
The value of this calendar is fantastic, as you are getting more than four times your money’s worth (£235 for a value of over £1000). The Cult Beauty Calendar also contains 37 items which is significantly more than other calendars. For the money you also get a full Christmas gift, as the box allocated for the 25th of December does contain six items, so the calendar would suffice for both an advent calendar and a Christmas day gift.
The calendar contains some fillers, such as the silk eye mask, only seven days’ worth of vitamins, and the full size Inkey List serum, which although we do love Inkey, it is an affordable item in a luxury advent calendar which takes its pride in serving you with 13 full size items. Another similar example would be the Byoma Moisturising Gel Cream which comes in full size that costs only £12. Despite this though, the sizes of the products are quite generous, with most items in the calendar coming in 30ml, which is standard for lots of serums and face creams, 50ml, or even 100ml for the shampoo and conditioner. The mascara is a mini but will probably last you as long as a full size one before you have to replace it (which should be every three months!) and the eye cream, although it comes in only 15ml, will again, probably last you for a while as it is used on a small area. Seeing some other beauty advent calendars for this year already (reviews coming soon) the sizes in the Cult Calendar are some of the best out of there so far.
The calendar is steep in price, but within it it gives a full luxury advent experience, a Christmas Day gift and generous product sizes. So if you are a skincare enthusiast and have a genuine love and passion for these products and are excited to try all these luxury brands, then do not hesitate – it is a fantastic way of trying out as many luxury items as possible!
What do you think of the Cult Beauty Advent Calendar for 2022? Will you purchase it? Let me know in the comments!
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Although some analysis has been performed on the ingredient lists, this is not an exhaustive review of each ingredient for every product.
The claims of vegan and cruelty free products have only been added where they are clearly stated on the brand’s website. For a thorough understanding of which items are truly vegan or certified cruelty free, independent research is encouraged.
None of the images used are Lipstick Café’s copyright and have been used solely for the purpose of reviewing the product.