One of my favorite working days of the year is the day we do our Christmas gift exchange at the office. (I’m pretty sure I won that last year with this Snoop Dogg cookbook. Wait, is there a winner? I don’t know. Moving along …) It’s just fun to see what everyone comes up with and to enjoy a moment of levity with these people I’m in the trenches with 364 other days of the year.
The challenge, in my book, is to find something that not just everyone will think of. That can take some work, honestly, because you want to avoid the “hot” gift that someone else might’ve picked and you want to steer clear of major pop culture moments from the prior 365 days. (Toilet paper is played out, FYI.) Amazon is a repository of secret Santa gift ideas (and you can even almost wait until the last minute thanks to Prime’s speedy shipping). I’ve pulled together some real crowd-pleasers below. (My coworkers still talk about that cookbook, by the way.)
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The best deals selected by the 22 Words team for you.
Focus On Fitness
O.K., O.K., not everyone on the list is going to be psyched about a fitness gift but I promise you someone will be. This is a unique gift that’s perfectly portable — fitness workout cards that fit into a small box. Choose from workout types including Pilates, resistance bands, foam rollers, body weight, and more. Many of these decks require no additional gear.
This ChomChom Roller Works 100X Better Than Lint Rollers
The amount of dog hair on all of my belongings is truly embarrassing. I have to lint roll multiple times a day, which is why the ChomChom roller is a lifesaver. It helps me get the hair off my furniture, bedding, clothing, car; you name it. And since there’s no sticky paper, you don’t have to worry about running out of sheets. The animal lover in your life NEEDS this gadget!
Gift Them A Garden
Sure, you could gift them fresh produce but what’s that saying about “teaching a man to fish?” This garden grow kit lets your recipient nurture herbs from seeds to mature plants that can be grown indoors or out. The box pictured includes basil, cilantro, thyme, and parsley, but there are other options as well including herbal tea, microgreens, and superfoods.
Try Out Some Tech
Did you know you could buy a wireless doorbell for right around 20 bucks that requires no installation? I didn’t, but I took the leap and purchased one and I absolutely love it. Simply adhere the button to the exterior of your residence and plug the receiver into a convenient outlet and you’re done. This is a perfect gift for someone who lives in an apartment where you can’t hear someone knock if you’re in the back room. Me, I’m someone.
Cue The Cocktails
Let’s be honest: If you’ve worked anywhere over the past two years or so, you’ve probably said, “I need a drink” more than a
dozen hundred times. This cocktail shaker set is just what the doctor ordered. For less than $27, gift this complete barware set that includes a muddler, strainer, shaker, jigger, pourers, and a box of drink recipes.
The best deals selected by the 22 Words team for you.
The best deals selected by the 22 Words team for you.
Buy Them A Blanket
Listen, you can always, always, always buy me (or make me?) a blanket as a gift … and not just because I’m always cold. This authentic Mexican blanket is as lovely to look at as it is cozy to wrap up in. Each Aztec blanket is unique, woven by local artisans in Tlaxcala, Mexico, on a traditional wooden loom, making it a truly one-of-a-kind gift.
Chalk It Up To This Gift
Gift recipients who are especially artsy or who have little kids at home will love this extra-large matte chalkboard paper roll. Expanding to nearly eight feet, this is paper you can write on over and over again with the included chalk markers and can be positioned anywhere thanks to its peel-and-stick technology. Create a menu board in the kitchen or a doodle wall in the playroom for less than $10.
Brews On You
We all have that one coworker who comes in every morning with a paper cup from their coffee shop run. Empower them to make their own coffee treats at home while helping them save money in the process. This French press coffee maker and milk frother set will get a lot of use for cappuccinos, lattes, macchiatos, tea, iced coffee, and more.
Make It A Portable Massager
If you really want to make an impression, go all out with this portable hand massager machine. With six massage and intensity levels, this little machine packs a punch offering relief for sore hands, while releasing stress and helping you relax. Cordless and rechargeable, it can also be taken anywhere (peep the guy packing it neatly away in his suitcase).
Serve Up These Trays
There’s nothing I love more than gorgeous addition to my kitchen and serving ware and these versatile wood serving platters more than fit the bill. Made from acacia wood, these platters are great for serving food at parties or dinners and are the perfect vessel for everything from cheese to charcuterie to cupcakes. A raised outer lip helps to keep food from spilling or sliding off.
Wine And Chill
Whether your gift recipient is a wine drinker or not, they’ll still find a great use for this vacuum-insulated chiller gift set because it works for a variety of beverages. Durable and unbreakable with technology that ensures your drink stays hot or cold, this set includes a wine bottle, two tumblers, and lids. It also comes in great colors and patterns including marbled looks and ombre designs.
Grab a Pass
Passwords are the bane of my existence … and I suspect yours, too. An uppercase letter, a lowercase letter, a number, a special character … but wait, not that special character. Oh, you’ve used that password before. Stop me if this sounds familiar. This password book is a great place to log those internet passwords, in a design purposefully constructed to resemble a regular notebook.
This Whiskey Set Rocks
I’ve never been a whiskey drinker, but I have pondered whiskey stones as a gift a time or two. This whiskey gift set includes eight stones (that resemble ice cubes) plus so much more like two whiskey glasses, coasters, metal tongs, and a box of cocktail cards. It’s all packaged neatly in this rustic wooden crate so you don’t even have to wrap it.
Give Them Glove Love
If you live in a wintry climate, you know that gloves are always going to be a necessity. These touchscreen-sensitive gloves take it a step further by being the perfect accessory to keep your hands warm while keeping you tap, tap, tapping away at your smartphone. The highly-sensitive conductive material on the thumb, forefinger, and middle finger means no more removing your gloves to respond to that text.
Put It On Their Back
If your friends are the beach-going, festival-attending, hike-up-a-mountain type, they’ll love this insulated waterproof cooler bag. Designed to wear like a backpack, this cooler keeps drinks, food, and snacks arctic cold from sun up to sundown. It’s made of a heavyweight material that won’t rip and “can” (see what I did there?) accommodate up to 24 cans of your favorite beverages plus ice.
These Bands Will Make Them Dance
Over the past few months, it seems like people have turned more toward at-home fitness gear that doesn’t take up a ton of room and can be moved around as needed. This resistance band set certainly fits that bill. Complete with five levels of resistance bands plus door anchor, wrist straps, ankle strap, storage bag, and quick start exercise guide, they’ll appreciate this option they can take anywhere.
Tell Them They’re Adapters
In a day and age of always carrying around a gadget that needs juice, can you ever have too many adapters? This universal travel adapter is the perfect solution for people who love to travel, offering three AC ports and four USB outlets. The best part is that this unit has adapters that work for overseas travel just as well as they work for charging at home.
Throw This In The Mix
Remember earlier when I said a blanket is never the wrong gift? It still holds true and this super-soft sherpa throw is a perfect example. Who wouldn’t want to receive a luxurious throw that’s reversible with microfiber cashmere velvet and ultra-plush faux-sheepskin in one package? It comes in some great shades for fall and winter, too, including the Buffalo check pictured.
Make It Mat
Everyone needs a good quality yoga mat, but not everyone is savvy enough to find this particular yoga mat, which features illustrated images of popular yoga poses. I love this one because it requires literally nothing else to get a good workout — no streaming services, no videos, no smartphone apps. Just follow the poses on the mat itself and you’ve got a great all-in-one workout.
Pop This One On Them
Everyone likes popcorn and if they don’t, you should stop talking to them because you don’t need that kind of negativity in your life. This microwave popcorn popper is a unique gift that will allow them to enjoy their favorite treat at home. Made of silicone, they won’t get burns handling it when it’s hot and it’s collapsible to store out of the way when not in use.
Egg Them On
We’re all looking for easier ways to tackle breakfast and this quick egg cooker is a sure-fire winner. Prepare eggs, omelets, frittatas, and more in just two easy steps with an end product that looks something like an egg popsicle. They’ll love this because it requires no dirtying of pots and pans and is easy to use and easy to clean.
They’ve Got Game
We could all use a little de-stressor at work, couldn’t we? This tabletop ring toss game is a great alternative to a fidget spinner in a much more grownup-looking package. Whether it’s displayed in a cubicle, office, classroom, or at home, no one will be able to resist this friendly piece of competition as they walk by. It’s available in both bamboo and chrome finishes.
Jot It In A Journal
You don’t have to be a writer to enjoy this two-pack of lined journals. I have coworkers who use these to take notes in meetings, compile to-do lists or use them in a more traditional journaling sense. This set includes two journals with soft-touch covers, an inner pocket folder, ribbon bookmarks, and 130 easy-tear perforated pages. Add a nice pen for a complete gift.
Fun With Fidgets
I know, I know, I said the ring toss game above was better than fidget toys, but these fidget spheres are an updated take on the youth favorite. This buy includes 12 palm-pleasing magnetic pentagons that can be configured in a variety of shapes. Stack, shake, snap and build your way to your own creation when what you should probably be doing is paying attention in that Zoom meeting.
Stick It To Them
One of the greatest gifts you can give anyone is the gift of convenience. This cell phone wallet adheres nicely to the back of a smartphone, giving the owner immediate access to cash, cards, and identification. It snaps closed to keep things secure and is compatible with most styles of cell phones. Grab it in black, red, or purple for less than $10.
Cue Up A Candle
I get it, you don’t want to gift a candle because candles are overdone and what dude wants a candle? Hang in there with me, O.K.? These candles from Craft & Kin are not your typical candles because they’re designed with men in mind, from the dark, delicious packaging to the unusual scents like whiskey caramel, English leather, and wood. (Women will still like them, too, I promise.)
Protect Their Peepers
If you work in an office-style setting, you and your co-workers probably spend a lot of time on a computer. Heck, even if you don’t, most of the people you know are probably spending a fair amount of time on one. These blue blocker glasses make a great gift that’s truly functional and useful. These come with a protective case and are great for wearing while on a computer, gaming, or even driving at night.
Pack A Snack
A gift that can be shared with others is one of the best gifts out there, in my opinion. This picnic backpack has four sets of dishes, cutlery, and glasses for a romantic meal for two or a family feast for four. This is a high-quality set, too, stainless steel flatware, a bamboo cutting board, cheese knife, wine opener, and waterproof cooler pouch.
This gift option is totally affordable at less than $13 and will provide years of use for its recipient. An armband phone holder that’s made of sweat-wicking, breathable fabric, this is the perfect way for a fitness buff (or even an outdoor enthusiast) to keep their phone close while keeping their hands free.
Make Them A Traveling Barista
It’s one thing to take your coffee on the go, but it’s another thing entirely to make your coffee on the go, but that’s exactly what this pour-over coffee travel mug does. Just pop on the stainless steel mesh filter, add ground coffee, then pour over water to make hand-drip coffee directly into your travel cup. The vacuum-layered stainless steel will keep everything hot and toasty, too.
Pick A (Fanny) Pack
Children of the 1980s, may I have your attention, please: Fanny packs are very much back in style and you probably think: A. Totally tubular or B. Gag me with a spoon. Seriously, though, this could be a great and useful gift or even a funny one for a less serious gift exchange. It has a dedicated headphone hole, six zippered compartments, and a strap extension.
On A Roll
People will love it when you “roll” out this Secret Santa gift — an ab exercise wheel that features a double-wheel design and non-slip handles. Proponents of exercising with an ab wheel say it gives you a full upper body workout. One reviewer offered, “It is very smooth and stable, and small enough to throw into your suitcase.” Anyone from beginner to advanced can get use out of this.
Upgrade Their Vinyl Collection
My guess is you’ve got more than a few melophiles (that’s people who love music) in your life; some of them probably even have a record collection. This record storage holder is a great option for keeping their vinyl organized, holding up to 30 albums. It features sleek, minimalistic styling and features an angled end plate so records can be easily browsed.
Pack A Pet
When you just can’t figure out what to buy for a human, buy something for their pets. Our pets are usually more spoiled than humans! This pet travel bag is TSA-approved and has tons of storage pockets, collapsible bowls, and containers for everything from toys to food. This is available in black or gray and will hold up for years to come.
Gift On A Stick
Are we still doing selfies? We’re still doing selfies. This two-in-one selfie stick and tripod is the perfect gift for someone who’s always snapping pictures of themselves solo or with others. When not extended, this gift will fit right in their pocket and the phone mount works with virtually all smartphones. Just tell them to “say cheese” and hand them this little selfie-worthy present.
Purchase This Padfolio
Here’s another great gift idea that a colleague is likely to love (or at least get a lot of use out of), a zippered leather portfolio binder that’s stuffed with pockets to accommodate everything from a cell phone to business cards to a tablet. Available in black or blue, this streamlined design will accommodate all their work gear whether they’re in the office or on the road.
Give The Gift Of Greenery
When all else fails, go green. Anyone will enjoy this bonsai trio kit, which they can nurture from seedlings to beautiful plants. This set includes a silver birch, red maple, and mountain pine for three distinct looks and even includes growing pots, peat blocks, and plant markers. One reviewer said, “Got these a couple of weeks ago. They are already sprouting and I am super excited to watch them grow!”