58 ideas for gift-giving and sharing gratitude with the special people in your life.
As we begin to shift our thinking from fall to the holiday season, how will you reimagine gifting in 2020? Yes, it has been a year we all want to forget but does that mean the holidays are exempt of fun and joy—I truly hope not! In fact, it’s more reason to celebrate those you love with something special. Whether it’s a small treasure or a large luxury, this year’s gifts will signal to those near and dear to you that you are thinking of them, even if you have a small budget.
We’ve developed a list of choices that are classic, practical, whimsical and luxurious and we hope this makes holiday shopping more pleasurable than expected:
Beauty Lover's Bundle of Joy
Whether you love a minimalist look or have many glamorous girlfriends, there are so many simple, thoughtful beauty gifts that will give anyone a pick-me-up after opening.
This multitasking shampoo is an essential for healthy hair! Its first-of-its-kind formula creates visibly stronger, healthier, and shinier hair after just one use by replacing lost vitamins with a potent fusion of anti-oxidants, bioactives, and Hyaluronic Acid. Also, as a shampoo, conditioner, and treatment in one bottle, it’s the perfect product for traveling light.
If you are not able to treat yourself to a manicure, Chanel‘s long lasting color makes it really easy. This is a particularly sophisticated and festive color but there are multiple shades for all seasons.
This lighter-than-air setting powder is the luxurious cherry on top for a glamorous makeup look. The powder, which comes in five shades, gently covers any imperfections and fine lines, and is incredibly blendable, buildable, and unbelievably soft to the touch.
This is the palette for your creative friends who simply thrive with bold, colorful makeup looks, or at least those who have always wanted to experiment with hues outside of their comfort zone. From a deep teal, festive Forest Pine to a bright, blood-orange Saffron, these colors don’t shy away from the spotlight; even just a dash of color from this palette will completely elevate the look.
This simple makeup set comes with three makeup essentials — and those are all that we really need. Included in the set are Glossier’s best selling Boy Brow, Cloud Paint blush, and to top it off, the Lash Slick that complements the fluffy brows and subtly rosy cheeks to achieve that fresh-faced look. Both beginners and experts in makeup will appreciate the ease that this set has to offer.
If there’s a skincare starter kit to trust, it is this one: inclusive, healing, and gentle, in particular to uneven skin types. This skincare kit also does not sacrifice integrity for its high quality. Free of harsh cosmetic chemicals, these products are handmade and eco-friendly, which is great news to the skin. Plus, a tree is planted for every product sold, so it’s a purchase worthwhile for both you and your skincare-loving friend.
This natural face oil, made with love and rich in antioxidants, gently removes breakouts, scarring, and other blemishes that may arise from the holiday season’s chaotic whirlwind of planning events. Not only is this oil soothing and effective on the skin, but it also calms nerves and stress while keeping the face radiantly glowing on the go!
We love Bobbi Brown’s new launch, Jones Road and her start up kit. Those four practical items in the kit do just the trick to elevate a transparent, modern look in just five minutes or less.
Red lipstick is highly coveted as a timeless classic, but oftentimes, it can be hard to pick out which exact shade of red works best for you or a friend. Look no further than Tom Ford’s Deluxe Sheer Set, which offers not just one, but five different irresistible shades of red that complement all skin tones.
Each brush in this limited-edition, 7-piece makeup wardrobe is handcrafted in Kumano, Japan, with precision from the most prestigious brush maker in the world. The craftsmanship really shines through as these soft brushes are high performing and durable for flawless application. We can thank its sustainable production from the finest hardwood birch and cruelty-free ingredients for the collection’s top-notch quality.
For the Men in Your Life
We love to celebrate the men in our lives with special gestures of appreciation and support. Each of these gifts will provide warmth for the soul and energy to enjoy this winter.
Full-color fish illustrations by New England artists adorn each glass and are flanked by an image of a fly rod and the name of the species. Tall tales get better with tall brews. This is a 21.5-ounce glass of inspiration for any fisherman in your life.
The best kinds of socks are the coziest. Made from the finest, ‘A Grade’, pure cashmere, these socks are a must, whether you’re sitting with a loved one in front of the fireplace, or gearing yourself up for the frigid wintry weather.
Man Crates starting at $50
Man Crates offer high-quality gifts that guys are guaranteed to love! And if that’s not enough, Man Crates take the gift-giving experience to a whole different level as they come in unique forms, shipping from wooden crates, ammo cans, DIY project kits, and puzzle boxes, to even concrete bricks. (pictured: Turkey Transformed Crate, $50)
The high-speed power of this portable charger, the capacity to connect with multiple different devices simultaneously, as well as its sleek design, is an essential for that tech savvy person on the go.
This practical and modern carry-on bag, perfect for weekend or business trips, is sturdy all the way down to its cotton twill stitch. What’s more important, the bag is incredibly spacious, with pockets that he can zip up his belongings.
Be ready to raise a glass the minute there is some good news! This handsome, personalizable white pine box contains a single bottle of your favorite drink and ten shot glasses.
Live at the Hollywood Palladium – Keith Richards & The X-Pensive Winos Super Deluxe Box Set $175
Although the pandemic has halted large concert gatherings, there are no rules in wanting to relive a concert experience in your own home! Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones has restored the hit classics of the Talk Is Cheap live tour in this super deluxe box set which contains a DVD of the original concert film from 1998, Keith’s custom Hollywood Palladium guitar pick, and promotional wine label and bag from the show, among other exciting archival items to relive the exhilarating past.
A handmade needlepoint belt customized to his interests! There is nothing like a customized gift this year––and this belt is a one-of-a-kind treasure that displays his passions and lifestyle and will be versatile enough to go with many outfits.
This robust, utility-style jacket is engineered for practicality and multi-functionality. Although the jacket is built for the more outdoorsy folks, it also does not sacrifice style with its classic four-pocket detail, slim-fitting shape, and sleek design.
For Her: Gifts for Girlfriends, Lovers, and Friends
No matter what you choose to gift from this list, you can be sure that it will be loved for a long time to come. We searched for items that combined form and function: beautiful to look at and practical for daily use. Every time your friend, girlfriend, or wife presents a cake on a John Derian cake stand, slips on a recycled brass Laura Lombardi bracelet, or lights a sentimental Love Notes candle, their day will be elevated by the luxurious experience that you’ve gifted them.
Delight anyone with a set of package-free shampoo and conditioner that will last them as long as 2-3 bottles of shampoo or conditioner that come in plastic bottles. Added bonuses: they’re cruelty-free, vegan, and in a solid form that’s convenient for travel.
We could all use some self-care right now, and massaging in Hanahana’s luscious body butter will become a soothing ritual for whoever you gift it to. Enriched with lavender and vanilla, an essential oil combo known to be the ultimate anti-inflammatory reliever, this handcrafted moisturizer will nourish, tone, and rejuvenate the skin.
The classic fragrance of gardenia is blended with sweet pink grapefruit in this candle to create a sentimental experience perfect for any season and gardenia lover.
Drawing on an eclectic fine arts background, Laura Lombardi recontextualizes recycled materials and found objects. Her designs balance industrial style with classical art motifs to create jewelry that is always tied to a memory. This versatile bracelet will become an everyday staple.
Nike Space Hippie 04 $130
For the athlete/environmental activist/person who keeps saying they’re going to start going on morning runs. These sneakers come in beautiful, unexpected colors, are made of at least 25% recycled material by weight, and are incredibly lightweight. They’ll add joy to any workout!
Beloved by Julien Farel’s team of celebrity hairstylists, this hair dryer will make drying hair at home every day an absolute breeze. It has 2 speeds, 3 heat settings, and overheating protection so any user can tailor it to settings that best suit their own hair.
Let those in your life know how much you love them with a pair of glamorous heart earrings. The hand-swirled black acetate provides a lustrous finish, with dozens of mini crystals enhancing the shine.
Beautiful accessories deserve a beautiful carrying case. Anyone will be sure to love this case that blends luxury and functionality. Even if they won’t be traveling, it makes for a beautiful accent on a vanity or dresser.
Inject a bit of sparkle into someone’s life with this shimmering top that brings to mind the night sky. The draped front subtly accentuates curves, and the v-neck elongates the neck for an elegant look.
These crystal earrings look a bit like delectable, shimmering pieces of candy––and they’re eye candy for sure. Gift these festive earrings to your boldest friend, just in time for holiday parties.
A striking update on the traditional pearl earring for the true romantic within your circle. They can wear these versatile clip-ons (so as not to strain their ears) year-round.
For a truly show-stopping present, gift this handmade to order cake pedestal from John Derian, known for their decoupage pieces. Trained artisans cut and collage reproduced imagery from the company’s collection of antique and vintage prints onto hand blown glass.
Made of recycled polyester, this fashion-forward coat will allow its wearer to look good while doing good for the planet. The longline silhouette will keep them warm all winter, and the oversized collar is right on trend for the season’s ’80s revival.
Feel-Good Pleasures for the Homebody
As we continue to social distance and stay in our cohort groups, indoors or outdoors, who wouldn’t enjoy a gift meant to be used at home? Whether you are an outdoor type, enjoying time with friends around a bonfire, or just hanging out with your family, I’m sure your loved ones will enjoy these gifts and remember you!
More time at home has meant more time for self-reflection. To keep those thoughts organized, gift this journal which is organized around the phases of the moon to encourage journalers to stop and reflect on precious moments in their lives. Also included in its pages are monthly writing prompts and suggestions for physical activities that will offer readers some perspective on the present and their recent past.
American Trench Women’s American Slub Socks $22 per pair
American Trench calls these the “best slub boot sock out there,” and we agree. It’s soft, breathable, warm, and best of all, they don’t fall down at all.
Give this to the person who needs a reminder to take a break. This aromatic bath soak will soothe and rejuvenate their body and spirit. The organic clay salt is hand-harvested in Guerande, France, and an infusion of rosehip oil imparts vitamin C, antioxidants, and essential fatty acids to nourish the skin.
UGG Tasman $100
A classic slipper (5,638 reviews averaging five stars!) for a reason. With a durable sole, these can be worn both in and out of the house. No matter where someone is, the soft sheepskin lining will keep their feet cozy.
Designed to be shared, the Firelight 750 transports your favorite whiskey or cocktail to any outdoor adventure with those in your household. It’s the perfect outdoor gadget for the times we are living in but will also be fun once the pandemic is over. This 3-piece bar set includes two 6-Shooter Tumblers and a 750ml Vacuum Insulated Flask––enough to fit an entire fifth of your favorite spirit or a full bottle of wine––all of which weighs just 29 ounces.
In an ultra-lightweight yet super-cozy alpaca blend, this relaxed sweater is the perfect indoor layer for anyone living in colder climates. The little popcorn flowers add a delightfully playful element, too.
Chic yet unbelievably comfortable, this sweater pant is one of my favorite pieces of loungewear. The ribbed texture adds sleekness, while the wool knit is luxuriously soft to the touch.
For Colleagues and Mentors
Show your gratitude for your work friends, boss, or advisor with one of these practical yet quirky presents. Any of these gifts would be perfect additions to their work space!
iamRoamingBarefoot (on Etsy) Mix + Matchboxes $5 for one, $14 for pack of 3
These decorative, clever match boxes are a great gift for anyone. They look good and have fun messaging for a large variety of aesthetic options.
Perfect for someone who spends a lot of time on their laptop! This stand is compatible with laptops between 10”-15”6 inches long, so make sure that the person you get this for doesn’t use a 17” laptop before you purchase.
A handblown, artisan-made glass tray with a replication of a vintage John Derian print on it would be a perfect trinket to give to an office buddy for their desk.
Light brings hope and hope brings joy and peace. Provide the gift of light to your colleagues and mentors and keep your team energized and calm as we head towards winter.
A perfect gift to help someone set their intentions and fill their space with positive energy while still serving the practical use of a paperweight. This stone was designed for the Pearce family to maintain strength during Kevin’s traumatic brain injury recovery.
Few gestures are as cherished as the time-honored thank you note, especially when they are hand-written and arrive in your mailbox. These notecards are engraved with sophisticated gold type and finished with gold-painted edges. Always keep them in your collection, so you can dash off a note in the moment of gratitude.
This attachable leather card case is a classy and practical gift to give someone: being able to put cards in the back of your phone is a helpful addition to your colleague’s life that they (or anyone, really!) would appreciate.
For the Host Extraordinaire
If you know me, you know that I love hosting parties––seeing people laugh, smile, and enjoy each other’s company in an ambiance I dreamt up is one of my greatest joys. To show how much you appreciate the host(ess) in your life, gift one of these wonderful items that will make entertaining even more of a breeze for them.
This card game is a fun time at parties and gatherings, but since there are less of those in the time of COVID-19, this Self-Reflection pack helps people get to know themselves better.
Lindera Farms Vinaigrette $22 per bottle
Vinaigrette made from sustainable and locally sourced vinegar was made by and for professionals who care about health and flavor, and would be a perfect addition to any kitchen. This can be added as seasoning or in cocktails! (pictured: Olive Oil Vinaigrette)
A loved one with a bar cart deserves more than an aluminum bottle opener! Here are two fun bronze cast openers in the shape of a beagle or Labrador’s handsome head. These openers are six inches long with a matte finish. (pictured: Henry Bottle Opener)
If you love Italy or Italian food, this gift subscription from organic farm Bona Furtuna will be a thrill each month. Each box includes peppery olive oil, fragrant herbs and pasta made from heirloom wheat.
This fire pit has changed our lives at home. We sit around it each weekend with family and our cohort of friends. It does not smoke and is so warm and easy to use. It will keep us outside, socializing around our neighborhood until the warm weather returns.
Featured photo by Sunny Lu.