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100+ of the best holiday gifts you can give this year
Saturday, December 07, 2019 at 12:29 AM UTC
The holiday season is upon us, and there’s no better time to start searching for the perfect gifts for all the important people in your life.
Whether it’s someone who’s made the past year memorable, a boss or coworker who makes your 9 to 5 a lot more enjoyable, your extended family or devoted best friend, giving a gift is one of the most simple, yet meaningful, ways to say thank you. But we know nailing down the right present isn’t always a simple task.
To help, we’ve researched the best gifts for every person on your holiday shopping list. We have gift ideas for him, for her and the kids, too. We’ve also got presents for foodies and even those tough-to-shop-for folks. We’ll update this page all season long, so be sure to check back. Here are our top holiday and Christmas gift ideas for 2019. Click through to see even more.
Baboon Backpack 22L ($89; baboontothemoon.com):
Trendy, durable and highly coveted thanks to styles often being sold out, this adventure luggage brand is built to last. The vast array of colors offers something for every personality, and this particular backpack is deceptively roomy. The durable water-repellent coating, reinforced padded shoulder straps, and multiple compartments offer much-needed functionality that helps deliver on the brand's promise of surviving any adventure.
Wrinkle-Free Performance Flannel Shirt ($109; untuckit.com):
A rising star in the men's fashion world, UnTuckit has taken its top performance styles and given them a flannel flair. Choose from five fits for a tailored look — all while appreciating the perfect length and style that encourage the wearer to keep his shirt untucked. What's not to love about that?
Allbirds Men's Wool Runners ($95; allbirds.com):
The signature style of this highly coveted brand, these moisture-wicking, temperature-regulating wool runners are considered a must-have by any Allbirds fan (or soon-to-be fan). From the super soft and comfy feel to the machine washable option to its low-carbon footprint, this shoe is sure to impress owners and onlookers.
Truff Gourmet Hot Sauce ($17.98; amazon.com):
Get a little spicy with this gourmet hot sauce, which has more than 1,000 positive reviews. Featuring black truffle oil from northern Italy and organic agave nectar from Jalisco, Mexico, the smooth sauce is free of preservatives.
Kiehl's Since 1851 Facial Fuel Favorites Set ($48, originally $61; nordstrom.com):
Forget the hotel toiletries; make sure he reaches for this top-notch, tried and true skin care. With this limited-edition set exclusive to Nordstrom, he can first refresh tired skin with the travel-sized energizing gel cleanser, then rehydrate with the moisturizer, and finally depuff any dark circles with the eye treatment, which is packed with vitamin B3.
NFL Uniform Money Clip ($95; uncommongoods.com):
It's one thing to tolerate (er, appreciate) his team spirit; it's another to find a gift made from football uniforms actually used in games! The hand-cut material is sewn to eco-leather, and you can choose from nine popular NFL teams. This is truly a one-of-a-kind find that's worth cheering for.
Goodthreads Men's Soft Cotton Shawl Cardigan Sweater (starting at $27.24; amazon.com):
The experienced traveler knows that layers are key when jet-setting and changing climates — and this super affordable, ultrasoft shawl cardigan offers a low-risk, stylish gift idea. Made from 100% cotton, it comes in 15 colors, and its mid-weight means it can easily be worn over a shirt or under a jacket.
Beer Caddy with Bottle Opener ($30; uncommongoods.com):
This stylish canvas case is the drinking accessory he never knew he needed (but will never forget from now on). There's a removable six-pack separator, a steel bottle opener attached, and a strap for easy carrying. For an added touch of excitement, fill it with his favorite craft brews before you gift it!
Men's Santa Unicorn Christmas Sweater ($44.95; amazon.com):
Turn "Ho, ho, ho!" into "Ha ha ha!" with this cheeky, festive sweater depicting Santa riding a unicorn (and in space, while holding a sword, no less). The Tipsy Elves brand is all about outrageous fun — which sounds like the perfect attitude for a rockin' holiday party.
GTX Duffel Bag ($98; mackweldon.com):
Designed to be durable, the GTX duffel bag features water-resistant wax canvas, a sturdy and protective rubber bottom, and an anti-odor inner lining. Six interior pockets and a shoe compartment complete the functionality for all your guy's needs — gym, travel, whatever.
Free People Ottoman Slouchy Tunic ($148, nordstrom.com):
When the temps drop, many women really want to put on a big ol' sweater, and you can't go wrong with this trending one. The oversized tunic's extra-wide mock neck is warm (but not constraining), while the stretchy, ribbed fabric makes it extra flattering. Available in eight colors, the sweater can be worn over leggings, tucked into jeans or even solo as a dress.
Nest Fragrances Classic Candle ($44; nordstrom.com):
Candles might sound like the socks of home gifts, but remember when we said cashmere socks were the exception? Same goes for Nest candles. Luxurious with mellow scents, the candles come in sleek glass jars with matte stripes that will blend in on a bathroom counter or nightstand rather than stand out. And nearly 2,000 Amazon reviewers agree that this is the brand to invest in. The hardest part is choosing between best-selling scents Bamboo, Moroccan Amber, Grapefruit and Ocean Mist & Sea Salt — and whether you splurge on the three-wick stunner.
Outdoor Voices Exercise Dress ($100, outdoorvoices.com):
Fan-favorite workout brand Outdoor Voices recently launched this adorable workout dress, and we're more than a little obsessed. Proving ladies can get in a tough-as-nails workout while wearing a dress, this one has built-in shorts and a phone pocket, and comes in seven colors and patterns.
Cathy's Concepts Monogrammed Acacia Tray with Metal Handles ($85, nordstrom.com):
A handsome tray is never a bad idea, especially one that you can use to serve her breakfast in bed! We like this monogrammed one from Cathy's Concepts, which would be perfect as a cheese board or for corralling loose items on a coffee table.
Parachute Classic Bathrobe ($99, parachutehome.com):
Here's something we're sure of: You can never go wrong with a sumptuous bathrobe, and this one from Parachute hits all the right notes. With nearly 1,000 positive reviews, the unisex Classic comes in four colors and sizes and has two big front pockets, an oversized shawl collar and, most importantly, a super plush texture that will make her never want to take it off.
Tory Burch Gemini Link Wristlet ($128, toryburch.com):
Perfect for the women who's always on the move, this coated canvas wristlet from Tory Burch is big enough to fit the necessities (iPhone, keys, credit cards, cash and lip balms), but small enough that it won't weigh her down. The best-seller bears both the iconic double-T logo and Tory's new Gemini link pattern, and it comes in seven colors, from bright and punchy to sleek and sedate.
Veja V-10 Sneaker ($150, nordstrom.com):
You know what's never, ever going out of style? A classic white sneaker. And this one from certified B Corp brand Veja is not only Meghan Markle-approved, but also feels good. How so? The sneakers are truly eco-friendly, made from organic fair trade cotton, vegan leather, wild rubber from the Amazonian forest and recycled plastic bottles. The best part: The crisp, clean design will look great with everything from a dress to jeans and a button-down shirt.
Wishbeads Intention Bracelet ($58, uncommongoods.com):
Nail two birds with one stone with this gift. First: The bead-and-brass combination is beautiful and totally on trend, with the stacked bracelets look that is de rigueur right now. But secondly — and more importantly — show her how thoughtful you are by tucking a sweet note inside the bracelet opening that she can keep forever, either in the bracelet or tucked away somewhere so she can write her own daily intention. (A set of perfect-sized sheets comes with each bracelet.)
Fossil Fiona E/W Crossbody ($88, fossil.com):
In the world of structured totes and heavy hobos, just about every woman welcomes a crossbody bag. And this one from Fossil is slim enough to hold the essentials and nothing more, which any mom will tell you is a welcome respite! The hardest part is choosing which of the seven cute patterns she'll love most.
Best gifts for the foodie or home cook
When it comes to the foodie in your life, give gifts that will make their time inventing new recipes, whipping up soufflés or hosting dinner parties even more enjoyable. From a fondue set to a molecular gastronomy kit, all of these gifts are *chef’s kiss* perfect.
Cactus Citrus Juicer ($29.99; amazon.com):
This twist on the classic citrus juicer is a stocking stuffer your foodie family members will absolutely adore. And it looks great on a kitchen countertop.
Ceramic Fondue Set ($89; food52.com):
With so many retro products back in vogue (Polaroid cameras, analog record players, anything and everything Lisa Frank), it's no surprise that some nostalgic kitchen items, like the classic '70s fondue set, have recently become must-haves. Host a modern-day fondue party for friends and family with this complete set, which comes with a ceramic pot, burner, stainless steel base and four fondue prongs, so you can enjoy all that cheesy and chocolatey melted goodness.
Deluxe Cheese Grater and Server ($24.72; amazon.com):
This genius cheese grater with a built-in server solves the common kitchen problem of how to cleanly contain your freshly grated Parmesan, so you can easily pour it into your sauces or on top of salads.
Vitamix Explorian Blender ($269.95; amazon.com):
If you're going to buy a blender, you might as well make it a Vitamix. These heavy-duty appliances can pulverize nuts, frozen fruit, vegetables and more.
ChefSteps Joule Sous Vide ($250; amazon.com):
Want to know how professional chefs can make the perfect medium-rare steak without fail? The answer is sous vide, which can cook proteins (sealed in plastic) to absolute perfection in a temperature-controlled water bath.
Cookbook and iPad Stand ($25.50; amazon.com):
For your friends and family, cookbooks are meant to stay in prime condition. After all, the best of them will be passed down. Help them stow their favorite recipes in a safe place while they meal prep with this handy stand.
Molecular Gastronomy Kit ($49; uncommongoods.com):
Take your cooking skills to new, avant-garde heights with this easy-to-use gastronomy kit; it comes with all the ingredients and tools you'll need to get experimenting.
Instant Pot DUO60 ($64.95, originally $99.95; walmart.com):
When in doubt about what to gift your loved ones, go for the Instant Pot. This crowd-pleasing appliance replaces seven devices, plus it can cook entire meals with little effort on your part. It doesn't hurt that it's also one of the trendiest products you can have in your kitchen right now.
Le Creuset Round Dutch Oven (Starting at $150; lecreuset.com):
With a lifetime warranty and unparalleled design, Le Creuset is considered by many chefs, professional and amateur alike, the Rolls Royce of Dutch ovens.
Isiler Pasta Maker ($37.95; amazon.com):
Fresh pasta is just as much fun to make as it is to eat. Let your foodie friends and family members whip up fettuccine, spaghetti, lasagna and more at home with this affordable pasta maker.
Unique gift ideas for that hard-to-shop-for person
Grafomap Custom Map (starting at $49; grafomap.com):
Memorialize a special place with a Grafomap custom map. The service allows you to create a map of any city in the world and then tailor the final look and feel of the print with the colors, stickers, and descriptions and the zoomed-in or -out view of your choosing.
Homesick Candle ($29.95; amazon.com):
If the people you hold closest to your heart are the farthest away this holiday, give them a candle that will help them feel a little less homesick. Homesick Candles come in a variety of countries, cities and states that will help them feel like they're home sweet home, even if they're far from it.
Custom Painterly Pet Portraits (Starting at $180; uncommongoods.com):
Celebrate four-legged family members with a custom pet portrait that's created from a photo.
23andMe Health and Ancestry Kit ($99, originally $199; 23andme.com):
Who isn't a little curious about their ancestors? A health and ancestry DNA kit, like this one from 23andMe, can satisfy that curiosity, and even bring bonus revelations. Your gift recipient can see how genes might have influenced their personality traits, see their ethnic breakdown from more than 1,500 regions and get a DNA-based health review.
Storyworth ($99; storyworth.com):
Buy the sentimental types on your list a subscription to Storyworth, a company that will compile a year's worth of sweet, funny and surprising stories about their life into a hardcover book. This pretty much can't miss for a grandparent.
Hand Carved Flower Himalayan Salt Lamp ($34.99; amazon.com):
Said to purify the air in a room by releasing negative ions, salt lamps have become one of the trendiest gifts. Casting a warm, pinkish glow, they're soothing and just plain pretty to look at. This one, carved into the shape of a rosebud, is extra tempting.
Baseball Park Map Glasses ($35; uncommongoods.com):
Raise a glass to America's favorite pastime. Though they may have tons of memorabilia, here's something that pays homage to their favorite team that they can actually use: a pair of whiskey tumblers bedecked with a map of their favorite major league stadium.
HP Sprocket Select Portable Photo Printer ($149.95; amazon.com):
Is there a teen in the house — or a photo-loving parent or close friend? This tiny portable photo printer has their name written all over it. Download the app to print 2 x 3 photos from your smartphone on adhesive paper. You can even tag photos from social to print later and add customized stickers and frames.
Make Your Own Hot Sauce Kit ($35; uncommongoods.com):
Thanks in part to the popular YouTube series "Hot Ones," hot sauce is officially the new mayo. This kit makes it fun and simple for your giftee to whip up a custom batch of the spicy stuff, exactly to their liking. Ingredients range from the traditional (cayenne) to the nouveau (guajillo peppers). They can even bottle their concoction and add custom labels.
The Comfy Blanket Sweatshirt ($39.99, originally $44.99; amazon.com):
We all have that one relative or friend who is happiest just chilling at home. Consider this their dream gift: A plush fluffy sherpa blanket styled into an all-encompassing hoodie. This is a one-size-fits-all gift that is sure to please anyone who's already excited about using their holiday vacation to snuggle up and catch up on "The Crown."
The best gifts for kids at every age
The children in our lives make the holidays magical. But sussing out what, exactly, to gift a baby or an energetic toddler feels slightly less magical. That’s why we’ve culled the top presents for kids this season, so whether you’re shopping for an infant, a 15-year-old, or any age in between, you’ll want to check out what we’ve discovered.
Clover Signature Bacon and Eggs Baby Blanket ($30; cloverbabyandkids.com):
Soft and charmingly quirky, this big blanket will keep wee ones cozy on stroller rides now and live on as a lovey later.
Baby Jack & Co. Sensory Crinkle Tag Square ($13.95; amazon.com):
Babies love crinklies and ribbons. This take-along has a nice feature: The ribbons are sewn closed so little fingers don't get caught. The fabrics are all designed by kids, through a partnership with children's charities.
Melissa & Doug Chomp & Clack Alligator Push Toy ($49.99; nordstrom.com):
An easy-to-manage handle and nonskid wheels that roll backward and forward make for a push toy that's a clear winner with toddlers. They'll happily click and clatter many a day away. Good to know: It's painted with completely nontoxic dyes.
Nickelodeon 'Paw Patrol' Mighty Lookout Tower ($69.99, originally $78; amazon.com):
Little 'Paw Patrol' fan kids will get a big thrill out of this nearly 3-foot-tall command center for the Mighty Pups. It has all the fun stuff: lights, sounds, a zip line, an elevator and a working telescope.
Fisher-Price Power Wheels 'Toy Story' Jeep ($299.99; target.com):
A prime contender for the "big gift," this colorful ride-on has a pretend radio that "broadcasts" updates from Woody and the gang. It's big enough for two riders, squelching squabbles over whose turn it is.
AirHogs Zero Gravity Laser ($24.88; walmart.com):
When he was little, did you tell him (again and again) to stop "driving" his cars on the wall? Then this toy will be a dream come true. Armed with the laser controller, your kid will have the car careening up walls and even across the ceiling. And no, it won't mar your paint.
Loog Mini Guitar ($79; amazon.com):
With a three-string design, this first guitar made of real wood is a contender for the Rock & Roll Toy Hall of Fame. Nice extra: Flash cards to help preschoolers learn chords. Move over, Eric Clapton.