It’s got none of the anguish of Valentine’s Day, nor relentless expense of Christmas: Mother’s Day is just the sort of low- pressure, high-joy content we can get on board with at the Trowel*.
*Your mum might be, for any number of sad reasons, absent. That’s really rubbish and we’re sorry about that. Be really kind to yourself on the day, and avoid tea rooms and gastro pubs like the plague.
CHANEL ROUGE COCO SHINE HYDRATING SHEER LIPSHINE (phew) IN MONTE CARLO / LA CRÈME MAIN, £45
There’s nothing quite like those two little interlinked Cs on the front of a gift bag to make you start panting with gratitude. I mean, I think unless you were going for a very full on anti-ageing product (‘Anti – Age Sans Espoir Serum Formule Baba Yaga’ or something) then you really can’t go far wrong with Chanel. I recently bought my mum this lipstick, which is a cheerful suits-all sheer pink with a fun James Bondian name. The egg-shaped hand cream should delight and amuse, as anyone would instantly understand the moment they set eyes on it.
BENAMÔR GORDISSIMO GIFT SET, £26.00 (currently on offer!)
BENAMÔR is an old fashioned Portuguese beauty brand that do really lovely creams and soaps, with that elegant floral packaging their nation excels at. I own and use the rose day cream, which is lovely, but you can also buy gorgeous gift boxes. I would go for the body butter or one of the hand creams maybe? Or go for this gift set which has the soap, body cream and hand cream. They do different scents but the Gordíssimo is my favourite, not least because it means ‘fattiest’ and what can I say I like little chubby objects (see Chanel hand cream). It’s all very attractive and in that nice sweet spot between The Body Shop and Jo Malone.
AROMATHERAPY ASSOCIATES DEEP RELAX BATH & SHOWER OIL, £49
These are absolutely the big guns – don’t be fooled by aromatherapy as a generally hippieish concept – this is the bath oil of Execs and CEOs. It has the mark of a great present in that it’s slightly more expensive than you would buy for yourself (or maybe much more! I don’t know, maybe you exclusively use Matey). They also do a couple of cheaper gift sets which look good value, namely the ‘Perfect Partners’ set at £23, but watch out if your mum is a bit of a present size queen (ew) as they are DINKY.
NEAL’S YARD REMEDIES REHYDRATING ROSE FACIAL OIL, £26
My slightly over the top feelings about oils are well documented, and diss one of mah faves. Smells amazing and feels so luxurious, and I love the pleasing blue glass phial and dropper. They do an orange flower version, also very nice, if roses make you gag.
JO MALONE LIME, BASIL AND MANDARIN 30ML BATH OIL, £18
I agree with Claire that big, instantly recognisable luxury brands are a great way to go for mums. Enter Jo Malone. Now, it’s not my favourite brand; I find their fragrances are better combined (Nectarine & Orange Blossom with Mimosa & Cardamom is heaven) because on their own they’re a bit devoid of depth, a bit ripe, and then wear off after an hour or so. However, what they absolutely smash the granny out of is gifting, so I’d recommend the lovely bath oil for your smashing granny. £15 and they’ll truss it up like a Southern Belle at a sweet 16th: crepe paper, box, bow, bag and another bow. A Jo Malone gift is a bit like pass the parcel that you play solo. Like solitaire is to cards. Or wanking to sex, of course.
I’ve chosen lime, basil and mandarin as Pomegranate Noir simultaneously gives me migraine and reminds me of an Ottolenghi salad.
LIBERTY FIVE MINUTE’S PEACE BEAUTY KIT, £95
We’re pulling out the big guns here, this baby has ‘sorry I haven’t called or visited’ written all over it. But if I was your mum and got this, I’d forgive you anything. Make sure you tell your siblings about this extravagance though or they’ll turn up with their petrol shop flowers and think you’re an actual arsehole.
The Omorovicza daily vitamin C costs £87 itself. So for £8 more you get a full size Votary Super Seed oil (excellent), Herbivore bath salts (luscious), and a Diptyque mini (what’s not to like) among others. Your mum can just clear out her natty old bathroom shelf and start a whole new regime with this. Hell, I might.
ASCENO STRIPE SILK EYE MASK, £55
I think an eye mask is one of the loveliest, most considerate gifts you can bestow as it’s essentially the gift of a great night’s sleep. I have currently lost mine (I only ever wear it in bed so where it is god knows. I blame the cat) and have really suffered for not wearing it.
To actually use the little bag this comes with to keep your eye mask would be a bit Monica in ‘Friends’ - I personally would hang it off a wardrobe to keep hair ties in or the like, as it’s so beautiful. The colouring reminds me of Gino Ginelli ice cream, and if you know what I’m talking about you almost certainly have the jingle stuck in your head and I’m not sorry because it’s iconic.
ALGENIST ALIVE PREBIOTIC MASK, £38
Can’t figure out whether the name of the product is more Mary Shelley or Danone yoghurt. Either way, this is my new favourite thing. Mum's LOVE a face mask and don’t let them tell you otherwise. There’s more than a whiff of nostalgia about it, it changes colour and is a beautiful texture and full review is coming soon. All you need to know is, I am buying it for my own mum.