Celebrate the Year of the Rat with these fabulously festive gifts
The Lunar New Year in 2020 starts on Saturday, January 25th when we welcome in the Year of The Rat. Despite Western (mis)conceptions about this animal, the rat is highly regarded within the Chinese zodiac. In fact, the rat is the very first animal to appear in the zodiac.
According to mythology, the Jade Emperor announced a great race, in which the first 12 animals to cross the finish line would be honoured with a permanent place in his zodiac. The rat, quick and confident but tiny, convinced the ox to let him hitch a ride on his back. The ox figured he'd still finish first and didn't care who came in second, so kindly allowed the rat aboard. However, moments before the ox crossed the finish line, the rat jumped ahead of the ox, robbing him of first place.
Sure, it wasn't particularly ethical, but the rat did show ingenuity, strategic thinking and even charisma. And those are the qualities associated with people born in the Year of the Rat and are also the dominant themes trending throughout the lunar year. Overall, if you put in the work, you'll be rewarded this year.
Whether you celebrate with a family dinner on Friday, January 24th (New Year's Eve), or go out for dumplings with friends over the weekend, share some of these special Lunar New Year gifts, which are all designed to tap into the very best parts of your inner rat.
1. Rosee du Matin Rose Gold and Ruby Horizontal Bar Pendant by Maison Birks
You can't go wrong with jewellery, and this ruby horizontal bar pendant with 18 kt rose gold is a lovely way to incorporate lucky red into any outfit throughout the year.
Available at Maison Birks, $750
2. The Little Rat and the Golden Seed, a bilingual book by Li Jian
If you're wanting to introduce little ones to the culture behind Lunar New Year, this children's book tells the story of how the clever little rat ended up as one of the Chinese zodiac animals. It's presented in both English and Chinese and is illustrated beautifully with unique Chinese ink paintings.
Available at Chapters Indigo, $22.95
3. Stunna New Year Highlighter & Lip Set by Fenty
Complete with limited edition packaging, this Fenty set features two cult favourites: Killawatt Highlighter in Mean Money and Hu$tla Baby and Stunna Lip Paint in Uncensored.
Available at Sephora, $66
4. Year of the Rat Gift Box by Purdys
You can't show up to a Lunar New Year event empty-handed, and this box is ready for gift giving. This beautiful laser-cut box features Purdys' best-selling chocolates including passion fruit, coconut mango crea and petit chocolat. Made with sustainable cocoa.
Available at Purdys, $22
5. Good Genes All-in-One Lactic Acid Treatment Lunar New Year Edition by Sunday Riley
Start off the new lunar year with newly refreshed skin. This product is a cult favourite for its exfoliation properties, using purified grade lactic acid, which is one of the most hydrating alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs). This serum exfoliates the surface layers of the skin, revealing clearer, fresher and smoother skin.
Available at Sephora, $207
6. Chinese New Year Campaign by H&M
This limited edition campaign is fronted by Chinese actors Zanilia Zhao (赵丽颖) and William Feng (冯绍峰). The capsule collection features playful cherry red hues and contemporary designs that echo the festive spirit of the Lunar New Year. The collection features over 100 pieces for women, men and children.
Available at H&M, starting at $6.99
7. Red Strappy Heels by Call it Spring
Make an entrance with these red vegan heels. The ankle strap and metallic heel add just the right level of festivity to any outfit.
Available at Call it Spring, $54.99
8. Wallet by Fendi
Possibly the most fashionable rat interpretation ever, Fendi's Chinese New Year limited capsule collection includes this red bifold wallet. It's lined, has eight card slots, and a bill compartment. Made in Italy, of course.
Available at Fendi, $520
9. Gift with purchase by Caudalie
Direct from the vineyards in Bordeaux, France, Caudalie's luxury skincare is powered by the exceptional properties found in grapes and grapevines. With a minimum spend of $160, receive these Caudalie hero products in a vibrant red tote: Vinoperfect concentrated Brightening Essence (50 ml), Vinoperfect Radiance Serum (10 ml) and Vinoperfect Overnight Renewal Cream (15 ml).
Available online, complimentary with $160 spend
10. Ruby Clutch by Poppy & Peonies
This is the kind of red envelope that every girl wants! This envelope clutch features a top zipper closure that'll keep your phone, sunnies and lip balm secure.
Available at Poppy & Peonies, $59
11. Lunar New Year Kit by Sephora
Sephora's kits include some of their bestsellers—and this one is another winner. It contains 12 of their favourite products from top brands, such as Farmacy's Green Clean Makeup Meltaway Cleansing Balm, Origins' Mega-Mushroom Relief & Relisilence Soothing Treatment Lotion, and Tatcha's Luminous Dewy Skin Mask.
Available at Sephora, $85
12. No Show Socks by Stance
Just because you can't see these once your shoes are on, it doesn't mean they're not top performers. Like all other Stance socks, these lucky red "invisible" socks are extremely comfortable.
Available at Stance, $15
13. First Care Activating Serum Lunar New Year Limited Edition by Sulwhasoo
This K-beauty (Korean beauty) cult serum is available in special Lunar New Year packaging and special pricing.This is a unique prepping serum that hydrates and nourishes, visibly firming skin.
Available at Sephora, $185
14. Lunar New Year Diamond Light Highlighter by Too Faced
This limited edition Lunar New Year packaging makes Too Faced's Diamond Light highlighter all the more special. This highly reflective highlighter is infused with real crushed diamond powder and light-reflecting pearls for buildable sparkle.
Available at Sephora, $45
15. Inspire HRFitness Tracker by Fitbit
Be like the zodiac rat and increase your motivation and productivity. And keep track of these healthy habits with a FitBit fitness tracker, which will monitor things like sleep cycles, weight, heart rate and more!
Available at FitBit, $99.95
16. Magic Red Matte Revolution Lipstick by Charlotte Tilbury
This limited edition lipstick is a sultry, deep berry red that leaves you with a long-lasting matte lip. Magic Red is the recreation of Charlotte’s Shanghai Nights lipstick and is the deepest red in the Matte Revolution collection.
Available at Charlotte Tilbury, $42
17. Solglimtar Collection by IKEA
For the first time in Vancouver, IKEA is launching a limited edition Lunar New Year collection. There are pieces for every corner of your home, including LED lantern chain lights ($14.88), a doormat ($4.88) and cushions ($9.88). The aesthetic is inspired by peonies, narcissus flowers and plum blossoms, against a backdrop of deep ruby red.
Available at IKEA Coquitlam and Richmond locations (not available online), $1.88-$15.88
18. Elixir Ultime Hair Oil by Kérastase
Kérastase is re-releasing their bestselling hair oil in limited edition Lunar New Year packaging. This cult, multi-functional spray offers heat protection while also nourishing hair. Have salon-sleek tresses in the comfort of your home just in time for this year's festivities.
Available at Kérastase, $60
19. Sneakers by Disney X ALDO
Technically, Mickey is a mouse, not a rat. But we can forgive this detail and just accept that these are crazy cute sneakers. The Lunar New year Disney X Aldo is back for their second collaboration, including these cup-sole sneakers with gold Mickey ears.
Available at Aldo, $90
20. Santal Carmin Limited Edition by Atelier Cologne
For the first time ever, Atelier Cologne has released a limited edition fragrance for Lunar New Year. The translucent ruby red glass bottle is adorned simply with an oversized gold lotus flower. A unisex fragrance, it's woody and smoky yet elegant, balanced by Australian sandalwood and Italian bergamot.
Available at Sephora, $320