I have a friend who`se husband actually made a wooden Advent calendar and each date has a hand decorated wooden drawer. Every year he fills the drawers with small gifts, toiletries, makeup, hair decorations, chocolates, funny gifts, woolly socks, all kinds of things and then behind the final door which is bigger, he always puts her main gift.
Similar advent calendars can be bought, there`s all kinds of kits to make your own or there`s ready made ones and even including the price of the calendar I reckon you could make something really special for much less money than the branded calendars.
Here`s links to a couple of calendars. I particularly like the third one but there`s lots of different ones available and they`d make lovely personalised beauty gifts.
I used to do that kind of thing for my son when he was little. My god but was it a chore after the first couple of years!! I'd start looking for bits and bobs in January. It cost a fortune and I had to really think about which order to put the gifts so he didn't love one and then find the next two a bit of a let down. He loved it though and still talks about it when anyone mentions an advent calendar. It was made of card and after a fair few years it fell apart. Boy was I grateful lol.