(Photo: Original image made using Canva: Georgia Laganiere, The Puma Prensa)
by Georgia Laganiere, A&E editor
While the holiday season is a great time for ice skating, presents, and wonderful decorations, it is also the time of being overworked, studying for finals and having mental breakdowns. The holiday season is also, unfortunately, the season of spending unreasonable amounts of money on ridiculous things for your friends that will probably only be used once. So here is my guide of semi-reasonably priced (sorry, we still live in Jeff Bezos world) gifts to get you and your friends through the stages of finals week: studying obsessively, the inevitable mental breakdown and the happy relaxation period after.
For the first and most productive stage—studying obsessively—we have three gifts for the Ultimate Study Kit. First, we have a Clever Chef coffee press (Amazon $12.99). We all know that finals at Maria Carrillo are very difficult and are often filled with all-nighters. Give your friends the tool to make easy coffee, so they can refrain from spending all of their money on Starbucks. They are going to need the energy boost. The second thing is a 2021-2022 academic planner (Target $9.99). While most people got a planner at the beginning of the school year, most have also abandoned it at some point in the past few months. Get them a shiny new planner to help clear their brain and keep them organized. Any brand from Target will work but my favorite is the Blue Sky version as it is minimalistic. We all know that when you are studying, you want something to snack on. Double up on the caffeine craze and get your friends (or yourself) some Espresso Beans from Trader Joes. One pack is only $3.85, and you’ll need the pick-me-up.
After a bit of studying, you’ll eventually find yourself in the mentality characterized by the Winnie-the-Pooh character Eeyore: misery. Finals can do that to you. This Mental Breakdown Kit solely exists because if you’re going to cut, bleach and dye your hair, at least do it well. First off is bleach. Doing your research before you get bleach is essential, and I recommend a bleach that is ammonia-free as it will be less damaging. Bleach can be pretty cheap if you research the best thing for your buck. Personally, I would choose L’oreal Paris Colorista Bleach (Amazon $9.98). Next is color; if you are looking for natural colors, I recommend Madison Reed (Madison Reed $26.50), but for less permanent and more vibrant colors, go with Arctic Fox (Amazon $10.99). Lastly, if they are going to cut their hair, please don’t let them do it with kitchen scissors. At the very least buy your friend a professional kit (HIMART, Amazon $15.99).
You finally made it through finals! The last stage you and your friends will experience is the relaxation stage. This stage is best with other people, so if you buy something for a friend, buy it for yourself and enjoy it together. First in the Relaxation Kit is an aromatherapy candle from Bath and Body Works, specifically the Stress Relief scent ($14.50). We all need it. Secondly, if any of your friends don’t have Spotify premium (or even Apple music), do them the favor of getting them a few months’ subscriptions for $9.99 a month. Third, to complete the ultimate relaxation time, buy some Paper Mate Gel Pens (Amazon $14.98) and a Strathmore pad of paper (Amazon $12.35) and draw all of your frustrations out.
Hopefully, with these gifts, you and your friends will be able to survive finals week. From the Prensa to you, we are sending wishes for good grades and a relaxing break!
Coffee Maker: https://www.amazon.com/Clever-Chef-Superior-Filtration-Capacity/dp/B00VKR4F8K/ref=sr_1_5?crid=1185KN0FYELGK&keywords=clever+chef+french+press+coffee+maker&qid=1638999559&sprefix=french+press+clever+che%2Caps%2C217&sr=8-5
Espresso Beans: https://www.amazon.com/Trader-Joes-Chocolate-Covered-Espresso/dp/B009RS7VIK/ref=sr_1_1?crid=1R1YPJRBXVFR7&keywords=trader%2Bjoes%2Bchocolate%2Bcovered%2Bespresso%2Bbeans&qid=1638999427&sprefix=espresso%2Bbean%2Btrader%2Bjoes%2Caps%2C302&sr=8-1&th=1
Madison Reed Hair Dye: https://www.madison-reed.com/shop/permanent-hair-color
Arctic Fox Hair Dye: https://www.amazon.com/Arctic-Vegan-Cruelty-Free-Semi-Permanent-Color/dp/B083TN9HR1/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?crid=SSRKTVKVHV55&keywords=artic+fox+hairbdye&qid=1639071183&sprefix=artic%2Caps%2C219&sr=8-1-spons&psc=1&smid=A20PKH797PZDRJ&spLa=ZW5jcnlwdGVkUXVhbGlmaWVyPUExVFZCMUFEUEZIVUYwJmVuY3J5cHRlZElkPUEwMTE1NzA4VVkzQk5VWFJMUUkwJmVuY3J5cHRlZEFkSWQ9QTAyMDc5NDczTDY4Q0VCQVFGVlRKJndpZGdldE5hbWU9c3BfYXRmJmFjdGlvbj1jbGlja1JlZGlyZWN0JmRvTm90TG9nQ2xpY2s9dHJ1ZQ==
Professional Haircut Kit: https://www.amazon.com/Cutting-Scissors-Professional-Haircutting-Thinning/dp/B07PSKCMZV/ref=sr_1_32_sspa?crid=175MFYTJMOLPT&keywords=haircut%2Bkit&qid=1639071208&sprefix=haircut%2Caps%2C232&sr=8-32-spons&spLa=ZW5jcnlwdGVkUXVhbGlmaWVyPUEyUkNQTUEzUDZBUlA1JmVuY3J5cHRlZElkPUEwNDQ3NjYxNU4zRFpHUkpZUzU2JmVuY3J5cHRlZEFkSWQ9QTA5MjY2MTIyMlJHMFhWNDk5Uk1GJndpZGdldE5hbWU9c3BfbXRmJmFjdGlvbj1jbGlja1JlZGlyZWN0JmRvTm90TG9nQ2xpY2s9dHJ1ZQ&th=1
Spotify Premium: https://www.spotify.com/us/premium/?utm_source=us-en_brand_contextual-desktop_text&utm_medium=paidsearch&utm_campaign=alwayson_ucanz_us_premiumbusiness_premium_brand+contextual-desktop+text+exact+us-en+google&gclid=CjwKCAiA78aNBhAlEiwA7B76px4ONnjOyWwk-WtcuOr3e1py5bNqdeBxUEjjkLOM1Gg8zLy5eHK_khoCSp8QAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds
Stress Relief Candle: https://www.amazon.com/Bath-Body-Works-Aromatherapy-Eucalyptus/dp/B005O91CUE/ref=sr_1_1?crid=3TDO6ASSPLAI&keywords=bath+and+body+works+stress+relief+candle&qid=1639071254&sprefix=bath+and+body+works+stress+relief%2Caps%2C227&sr=8-1
Paper Mate Gel Pens: https://www.amazon.com/Paper-Mate-Retractable-Assorted-1951636/dp/B019QBOG3U/ref=sr_1_2?crid=3IM2XPKURXAKW&keywords=paper%2Bmate%2Bgel%2Bink%2Bpens&qid=1639071281&sprefix=paper%2Bmate%2Bgel%2Caps%2C225&sr=8-2&th=1
Strathmore Paper: https://www.amazon.com/Strathmore-455-8-Strath-Sketch-5-5X8-5100SHT60LB/dp/B004O7EFMO/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?crid=1A6OBQX8XWGV5&keywords=strathmore+sketchbook&qid=1639071303&sprefix=starthmore%2Caps%2C228&sr=8-1spons&psc=1&spLa=ZW5jcnlwdGVkUXVhbGlmaWVyPUFZM1dNMjlGMzYxM0MmZW5jcnlwdGVkSWQ9QTAxNjkyMTQxTElIMFZUR0lMRUdLJmVuY3J5cHRlZEFkSWQ9QTA1MzE0MjFRQ0NISVZFN1IxVkomd2lkZ2V0TmFtZT1zcF9hdGYmYWN0aW9uPWNsaWNrUmVkaXJlY3QmZG9Ob3RMb2dDbGljaz10cnVl