‘Tis the season for online shopping!
Not that you haven’t been all quarantine long, but now your retail habit has more of a productive purpose — checking things off the holiday list for everyone who has helped you survive 2020.
Giving gifts is a competitive sport for some, and searching for something unique can be a marathon of scrolling through gift guides and advertisements. Exhaustion sets in and your mom ends up with another pair of fuzzy socks and the kids get gift cards. If this sounds familiar, we’ve got you covered.
Below is a curated list for every member of your inner circle, from the grandparents, your significant other, and your boss and co-workers . . . Even if your co-worker is the cat right now. (We have something for them, too!)
This is not an excuse to not call your mom!
However, this gift is a great way to immortalize an old letter or cherished card. Plus, it’s way more unique than running to the corner store for a greeting card.
“As our technologically advanced world moves us further from the art of letter writing, it’s comforting to know that Diane Scaman is keeping the power of the pen alive and well. Her loose-leaf-paper-styled, 100% cotton blankets create a cozy customizable medium for your messages of love,” said the product description on the Uncommon Goods website.
Customize this cozy throw with any message of your choosing, either from your attic archives or create a new message straight from the heart. The blanket is 100% cotton and measures 52 inches by 37 inches.
Whisky Advent calendar, $173
Pour one out for Dad . . . or pour 25, we won’t stop you.
Better than your average liquor store bottle buy, this calendar is perfect for your pops, and even better if you never know what kind he likes the best. The box from the Really Good Whisky Company delivers on its name, providing 30 ml of premium whisky in each of the 25 drams.
They come in a wide range of flavors and types, and to not spoil the surprise, we will just say they have everything from single malt scotch to Irish blended whiskies.
“Each day, a new whisky has been specially chosen to give a maximum workout to your taste buds and send you on a build up to Christmas on a whisky tasting frenzy! 25 x 30ml glass bottles of good quality and interesting whiskies, plenty of Cask Strengths, single malts, peaty pests, surely sherrieds (see what we did there?) hidden in numbered boxes complete with tasting notes for each dram — why wait?” said the product description.
For your wife
On the first night of Christmas, my true love gave to me . . . a different candle for each of the next 12 nights.
A candle is a classic gift, but the array of scents and the surprise of an Advent calendar make this a dressed-up version she is sure to enjoy.
Celebrate the best smells of the holiday season with this candle set from Anthropologie. Each day has a unique design on the tin, and once lit, enjoy four different seasonal scents inspired by the famous carol. Fragrances include Apple Cranberry Wassail, Holly Jolly Wreath, Old-Fashioned Candy Cane and Holiday Cookie Dough.
Gift them, and then leave her alone to relax in Christmastime bliss.
For your husband
If she gets an Advent calendar, then so should he.
This one is for the bearded or mustachioed men in your lives, but also for the men who shave off their furry faces and are in need of some skin soothing.
The Barber Pro face mask Advent calendar from Urban Outfitters contains 12 different packets of skin care products made for men, designed to treat post-shave irritation, dry skin, puffiness and more. Enjoy sheet masks, eye masks, cleansers and peeling putty — fun for the whole family while you teach him how to use it.
For a couple
MeUndies Match Me, prices vary
A match made in heaven. And you two look cute together, too.
Take #CoupleGoals to a whole new level with a subscription to Match Me from MeUndies. The adorable patterned underpants company has made it easy for you to match your significant other, no matter your underwear preferences (except commando).
First, choose a pair for yourself. Select a cut like boxers, briefs, hip huggers, thongs and more. Once you pick a size for yourself, it instructs you to choose a gender, style and size for your matching pair. The site mulls over your answers for a moment and then comes back with all of the available patterns.
Customers can check out as a one-time purchase or can sign up for a subscription at a discounted per-pair rate, saving $4 to $8 per item. Who said getting socks and undies as a present was lame?
For the sister
Forget taking a quarantine walk, take a quarantine roll.
Roller skates made a huge comeback when the pandemic hit, and we don’t see them going anywhere anytime soon. Urban Outfitters knows this all too well, bringing back this retro style in all sorts of colors and sizes.
Made by C7skates, the skates come in the pictured pink floral design, sunshine yellow, teal green and light peach.
“Premium design features a faux leather lace-up boot with a padded build, propped on lightweight aluminum trucks with carbon bearings, classic wheels and toe stopper,” said the product page.
The skates are available online only and have the option to pay in installments with Afterpay.
For the brother
This gift is sure to be a swish for any basketball lover or streetwear fanatic in your life.
In a collab between NYC streetwear brand Chinatown Market and Smiley (you know, the brand behind the smiley face?), Urban Outfitters has an exclusive ball for you. Reacting with the sun’s UV rays, the ball becomes more vivid when playing in the sunshine — and changes back when it’s time to go inside.
The color-changing ball is available to order online and for in-store pickup in select locations.
For the younger kids
CrateJoy craft subscription boxes, prices vary
Subscription boxes are the gifts that keep on giving. This one has the added bonus of giving parents more free time while occupying the kiddos for hours.
CrateJoy specializes in all things subscription and released a whole roundup of their own for children’s boxes. They range in target age, gender and special interest, making these the best option for the kid who has a short attention span and always wants the newest toys. So, every kid.
For the baby
Go ahead, ball out for your baby.
This 400-piece ball pit from Balu Organics is straight out of Chuck E. Cheese but without all the other kids’ germs. Keep it nice and sanitary with your very own ball pit that comes in a gender-neutral gray, pink or blue. The balls also come in many different colors by the 100-pack, so for the large pit, parents can mix and match with gray, pink, blue, white or clear.
“Made from super cushy fabric designed to prevent bumps and bruises, this polyurethane-free, non-toxic foam pit is safe for your baby to play with, jump in and explore. The included crush-proof balls are light and durable, and are just the right size for your little one’s hands to grasp, toss, and explore!” read the product page on the Tot’s website.
The recommended age is seven months and older. We won’t put an age cap on this, parents.
For the grandparents
Right now, seeing Grandma and Grandpa is a little more difficult. So why not use the holiday as a perfect excuse to teach your kids how to use good old-fashioned snail mail.
This adorable pen pal kit from Anthropologie includes stationery to send back and forth between grandparent and child. It contains four cards, four letterhead sheets of paper and eight envelopes, all with cute designs and writing prompts to ensure a fun-filled trip to the mailbox.
The stationary set can be purchased online at the Anthropologie website, and some storefront locations offer in-store pickup as well.
For the family home
Family portrait from Paint Your Life, prices vary
If a picture is worth 1,000 words, how much is a painting of a picture worth?
Find out with the Paint Your Life team, where real artists transform a photo into a hand-painted masterpiece. Customers first choose the subject of their painting, including parent and child, grandparent or even baby or pet. Then you choose your medium, like oil, charcoal, acrylic paint and more. The most fun part is choosing your artist by browsing through their past work. Upload your photo and choose a size, and 14 to 21 days later (give or take, especially during the holiday season), your masterpiece will arrive in the mail.
Bet you can’t find these paintings at any ordinary gallery.
For a long-distance bestie
Long distance friendship lamp, $85 to $170
While we are all at home during the pandemic, it’s nice to feel like someone out there is thinking about you.
These long-distance friendship lamps take that thought and turn it into a tangible reality. No matter the distance, when one friend taps their lamp, the other one will light up, letting them know they are loved. Perfect for long-distance relationships, best friends working in different states and grandparents and children who just want to say a quick, “I love you.”
“Each person sets up their lamp via Wi-Fi, then reaches out and touches the lamp whenever they want to let their loved one know they’re thinking of them. With every touch, the lamp cycles through a rainbow of colors, one at a time,” read the description on the Uncommon Goods website.
For the friend group
Walnut desktop photo calendar clipboard, $30 and up
Seasons come and go, but best friends are forever.
Celebrate each month with a new photo of you and your friend group with a personalized calendar from Artifact Uprising. A few key things make this stand out from other calendars and customization companies. First, each month is customizable with your own photos, a choice of starting month and beautiful foil or printed script for the month name and dates. Second, the base of your calendar doubles as a clipboard, made of reclaimed pine wood. No more ripping or folding pages, so you can keep the photos intact as a keepsake when the month is over.
“Handcrafted in Colorado using reclaimed walnut once considered wastewood. Due to the unique nature of the wood, each woodblock will vary slightly and may include knots and unique markings,” read the site.
Unique wood, unique gift, one-of-a-kind friendship.
For your co-workers
Do you miss both your lovely co-workers and the office snacks they used to bring in?
Send them this sweet reminder to have a happy holiday with a box of personalized cookies from Uncommon Goods. The shortbread biscuits come individually wrapped in a box of 24, plenty for working and snacking from home. At checkout, enter one to three lines of text to be imprinted on the cookies and sent to your team.
For your boss
Rocketbook smart reusable notebook, $24.64 and up
Sometimes an iPad or tablet doesn’t feel the same as traditional paper for taking notes.
Treat your boss to the best of both worlds and the best for the world with this reusable notebook from Rocketbook.
Available on Amazon, this notebook comes with 36 pages. However, when you have written your fill, simply take the included microfiber cloth, add some water and watch your pages revert back to blank slates for more brilliant business ideas. Or doodles, that works too.
An added bonus, you can upload your notes to Google Drive, Dropbox, Slack and more, so don’t worry when it’s time to wipe the page and start over.
For your pets
Furbo dog camera and treat tossing device, starting at $198
Right now, our pets are our favorite co-workers, but once it’s time for us to return to the office, Fido needs a friend at home
Meet Furbo, the electronic dog-sitter that doubles as a treat dispenser and syncs to your smartphone. The HD camera has night vision capabilities and a 160-degree view, so you can livestream your pup day or night. Once paired with the smartphone app, fill the machine with your dog’s favorite treats before you leave the house and Furbo will toss a treat to your dogs at the tap of your screen.
One more heartwarming thing: Furbo has a dog-face sensor and will snap a selfie when it detects your dog is facing the camera. Say treat!
For the gamers
Facebook Oculus Quest 2 VR headset, starting at $299
Be the main character in your video games with the insanely immersive Oculus Quest 2 from Facebook.
The second edition of the groundbreaking virtual reality headset, the Quest 2 has 3-D cinematic sound, 6 GB of RAM power and comes with two Oculus Touch controllers with precise hand-tracking capabilities.
The VR device comes in two different storage sizes, a 64 GB and a whopping 256 GB for $399.
For the gardeners
BloomsyBox flower subscription, prices vary
Sending flowers isn’t unique. Sending a weekly or monthly box of curated bouquets; that’s next level.
BloomsyBox is a subscription flower delivery company with a wide variety of blooms to choose from, and on a schedule tailored to you or your gift recipient. Choose between weekly, bi-weekly or monthly, and BloomsyBox will handpick, bundle and ship a unique bouquet to any doorstep — with free shipping to boot!
“Receive unique hand-tied bouquets every week! Our weekly plan is a great way to brighten up your home or as a gift that keeps on giving every single week,” read the weekly plan description.
For the chef
Discover some unique flavors this holiday season with holiday seasonings from all over the globe!
The 10-pack from Spicewalla is embracing all the flavors of the holiday, incorporating Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas and more into a worldly selection of spices. Some seasonings include chai masala from India, herbs de Provence from France and Za’atar from the Middle East.
“From Tandoori Turkey and Cajun green bean casserole to Berbere brisket and Za’atar Potato latkes, you’ll find new and exciting ways to prepare your favorite seasonal feast dishes!” said the product description.
MasterClass monthly subscription, $15/month
New year, new you.
Buying presents for yourself can be hard to justify sometimes. So instead of new clothes that end up in the back of the closet or a new piece of tech that will be outdated in a year, why not invest in yourself and learn a new skill?
MasterClass brings A-list celebrities at the top of their game right to you, teaching their unique skill to you via videos on the MasterClass platform. From cooking with Gordon Ramsay to scientific thinking with Neil deGrasse Tyson, there are over 90 different classes with more being added all the time.
The video learning platform is on a subscription model, with a $15 billed monthly, totaling $180 for a full year of sharpening your skills with the pros.