It’s that time of year when the majority of us start to get excited about the Christmas countdown – even if we don’t always like to admit it. Whether we openly embrace the Christmas spirit or opt for a discreet celebration, there is no reason not to start the Christmas countdown this year in style. And so we have rounded up this year’s cream of the crop, the best advent calendars to lead us through December. From beauty products to truffle chocolates, this year’s selection will be sure to suit every taste. (Even those who favour a good old fashion wooden calendar.)

A 3D work of art, The Christian Lacroix ‘Shaman Night’ advent calendar by Libretto is sure to impress. Featuring a striking center pop-up with four unique characters — Zebra Girl, Shaman, Jungle Leo, and Wild Bird — and surrounded by panels that expand into a four foot long tableau. Along the tableau you’ll find the pop-up windows for the twent-four days before Christmas, and it all conveniently folds into a smart hardback folio - the perfect calendar to be brought out in anticipation year after year.

For those of us who prefer a sweet treat to indulge in (it is Christmas after all) the Harrods Brompton Road advent calendar, filled with Harrods Couverture Truffles, is a sure choice.

For a festive tiple, The Gin Foundary has teamed up with the Drinks by the Dram team to bring us the Ginvent Calendar. A gin-filled advent calendar featuring award-winning spririts from top distilleries. Behind each of the windows you’ll find a sample of gin.

For a more feminine Christmas countdown, there’s plenty of choice. The Beauty Workshop calendar by Selfridges, containing twenty four exciting products; Charlotte Tilbury's Book of Makeup Magic, made up of twelve make up cabinets, each containing a travel or full size product from the iconic collection; or the calendar from Diptyque, featuring a selection of mini candles, hand creams and fragrances.

Finally, for those who still prefer to fall back to the classic advent calendar, Fortnum & Mason, of course, does not disappoint. The traditional Christmas tree calendar has twenty-four little doors, behind which a small gift or chocolate can be hidden. Alternatively, a slightly more musical choice – a wooden advent calendar, decorated with the facade of Fortnum’s Piccadilly store – plays a different Christmas tune upon opening each of its little doors.

With all the choice there’s no excuse not to be prepared this year...