Forget a partridge in a pear tree or gold, myrrh and frankincense. Now you can count the days to Christmas with beard oil, beef jerky and “Game of Thrones” socks.
It’s the start of advent, and in recent years, retailers have been outdoing themselves to create advent calendars catering to every possible taste or interest. And how popular are these offbeat advent calendars? So very popular that they quickly sell out.
We’ve created our own advent calendar of advent calendars, including the most unusual, surprising or outrageous ones we’ve seen. Let’s start counting down.
1. From black pepper alligator to root beer habañero beef, you can say “Meaty Christmas” with a jerky advent calendar from Man Crates. Includes 25 bites of meat and artwork of caroling cows for $69.99. No reindeer, but there are elk, buffalo and wild boar. See mancrates.com/store/products/advent-calendar.
2. We found two advent calendars devoted to the television show “Friends.” One sold on Amazon features “Friends”-themed charm bracelet jewelry for $25.99. The One With the Friends Advent Calendar sold on Etsy for $8.09 has windows that capture moments from the show. That one is made by the same person who also offers “Mental” Geller, Nicolas Cage, Bill Murray and “Die Hard” advent calendars.
3. There’s no place like Sherlock Holmes for the holiday with the “Mr. Holmes’ Advent Calendar,” featuring 24 solve-it-yourself Christmas crimes. Published by mxpublishing.com, it’s about $20 on Amazon.
4. At only $6.99, this would be a perfect Christmas gift — for your servants: “The Downton Abbey Chocolate Advent Calendar.” It includes weekends and features German chocolates, available from worldmarket.com.
5. Santa’s secret sauce can be found somewhere in “The 25 Sauces of Christmas,” a hot sauce advent calendar, available for $79.95 from Amazon.
6. A different sort of spice is on offer with the toys, oils and potions in the “Better Love Adult Advent Calendar,” which includes 24 gifts for $169 from ellaparadis.com.
7. Antibiotic-free salmon and dried seaweed treats are behind the doors in the “Trader Joe’s Advent Calendar for Cats” for $5.99.
8. From superheroes to “Harry Potter” to “Star Wars,” there are plenty of theme sock advent calendar options to warm your toes over the holidays. We like the “Women’s Game of Thrones 15 Days of Socks Advent Calendar” from Target for $15. Because Christmas is coming.
9. The godless can also celebrate Christmas thanks to the “Atheist Advent Calendar”, made by an Australian company and priced at $12.76 on Etsy.
10. Little plastic spaceships, storm troopers and droids welcome the holiday season in the “Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar” for $32.99 at Target.
11. Cleansers, toners, creams, balms and serums made by a German skin-care guru are waiting in the compartments of the “Dr. Barbara Sturm Advent Calendar,” which will set you back $495 at Nordstrom and Sephora.
12. Come and trim your Christmas tree, Santa baby, with some decorations bought at Tiffany’s. Tiffany & Co. says it has the “Ultimate Advent Calendar,” and who can dispute it? Inside an aqua blue box modeled after the jeweler’s Fifth Avenue flagship store are 24 gifts ranging from diamond bracelets to a very nice watch to a sterling silver harmonica. Only $112,000.
13. Lovehoney.com sells Christmas stockings of a different kind in its “12 Nights of Seduction” lingerie calendar, available in regular and queen size, for $88.
14. You can get in the Christmas spirit by getting some Christmas spirits, with advent calendars for wine, beer, tequila, Japanese whiskey or gin. “The Bourbon Advent Calendar,” available from thespiritco.com, includes 24 drams of the stuff for $161.46.
15. Because he’s been a good boy, “Trader Joe’s Advent Calendar for Dogs” features salmon and sweet potato treats for $5.99.
16. Here’s an advent calendar that Santa Claus would appreciate: “24 Days of Beard Treats,” a beard oil advent calendar made by the Bearded Man Co. and found on Etsy for $43.12.