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For Dr. Shereene Idriss, Everything about the Holidays Is a Little Extra

Including skin care, of course.

Holiday Haul
dr shereene idriss
Ashley Combs

Dr. Shereene Idriss is a longtime friend of Coveteur's. As a Board Certified Dermatologist, founder Of Idriss Dermatology, and creator of the #Pillowtalkderm series, Dr. Idriss is one of our go-to sources for all things skin care and skin health, delivered with her signature candor and bubbly personality. But unbeknownst to us, she's also a living embodiment of a Mariah Carey Christmas meme.

As Dr. Idriss tells us, the holidays start in her home immediately after Halloween, when the tree goes up. "Why are you going to just enjoy a Christmas tree for a week when you can enjoy it for two months?" she postures. This more-is-more approach seeps into her decorating and the lavish feasts she plans with friends and family. Fittingly, even her holiday-season skin-care routine gets a little bit of extra attention as she provides tips for anyone else about to celebrate a Champagne-, sugar-, and late-night-party-filled season. Below, Dr. Idriss paints us a picture of her most perfect holiday plans, and shares derm-approved beauty gifts for spreading the joy, too.

dr shereene idriss
dr shereene idriss

Three words to describe your 2021 holiday season state of mind:

"Excited, sparkly, and energetic!"

What is your most meaningful holiday tradition? Why is it special and how do you continue to keep it alive year after year?

"My most meaningful holiday tradition is putting up the Christmas tree after Halloween! I don't know if that's a tradition or a thing everybody does, but I love it. It's my favorite time of year. Why are you going to just enjoy a Christmas tree for a week when you can enjoy it for two months? It makes everything feel cozy, safe, warm, and homey. I keep it alive pretty much every year."

What has 2021 taught you about gratitude? And how do you practice gratitude during the holiday season?

"I am insanely grateful for everything. I'm grateful that my practice is up and running. I'm grateful that above all we have our health and that my family is healthy. And finally, that the kids are back in school because I was losing my mind. It doesn't change. I practice gratitude every single day, I wake up and say 'thank God' for everything. And for my health, first and foremost."

Skin care is, of course, such a personal purchase. What are your suggestions for skin-care products or gadgets that typically make for amazing gifts for most people?

"I think a skin tightening gadget is always a fun product because we're all going to eventually lose elasticity and sink or sag, so everybody can pretty much benefit from it unless you're pregnant. And it's also a splurge that most people would never spend on themselves or think to spend on themselves. I like, for example, the NuFace device or the ZIIP."

dr shereene idriss
dr shereene idriss

As the holidays can be a stressful and indulgent time (when it comes to late nights out and perhaps a little more Champagne than you may normally consume) are there any specific things you do to maintain skin health during this time?

"Absolutely. I make sure to really spend that extra time showing TLC to my skin. In fact, given that the sun sets earlier, you can definitely benefit from using retinol slightly earlier throughout the wintertime. Once I come home, I literally slap everything off and apply my skin care, especially my retinol products, on my face. I also think exfoliating with a brightening exfoliating acid, like glycolic acid or lactic acid, can make all the difference during this party season. And given all the alcohol consumption, I do recommend hydrating. Yes, hydrating is sometimes considered fluffy, but it can make a difference if you are consuming more than normal alcohol."

What are your favorite ways to express your creativity during the holiday season?

"I love to decorate a home. Last year I wanted my home to feel like a Downton Abbey Christmas Holiday Special. I put garlands and nutcrackers everywhere; somebody would sit and a nutcracker would pop out of the couch. It just makes it fun—not just for the kids, but also the adults."

Your idea of a perfect holiday celebration:

"It starts with waking up, getting that turkey ready, having your family all around you, fighting, and then making up right after. And then, it's going out for a walk while the turkey's baking and having all your friends come over in the afternoon to just basically pig out as much as you can and not feel guilty about it. Finally, topping it off by going to the movies to watch a really bad holiday movie. It's my perfect and ideal way of celebrating. But the thing I cherish the most, other than family, is the smell of a house on Thanksgiving Day. If I could bottle that up, I would take it with me everywhere."

Your holiday 2021 theme music:

"I mean, Mariah Carey always sets it off. And this year, followed by 'Levitating,' by Dua Lipa."

Dr. Idriss' Holiday Haul:

Skin Food


The Body Cream

Augustinus Bader

Concealer SPF 25

Clé de Peau Beauté

Glowscreen SPF 40


Photos: Courtesy of Dr. Shereene Idriss

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Holiday Haul

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