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The special people on your holiday list deserve the perfect gift, and this gift-giving guide will help you find it.
There are times all year round when you need to get your special someone a perfect gift. Whether it be Christmas gifts, birthday gifts, Valentine’s Day gifts, or any other special occasion, it’s always the right time to consider gift ideas for the special someone on your list.
This gift guide corresponds with Christmas, but the ideas on this list work all year and on any special occasion to help you make your loved one’s day.
Table of Contents
2023 Gift Guide: Find the Perfect Gift for Everyone on your List!
This gift guide is a little different.
The perfect gift is a gift that is personalized and speaks to the person receiving it. It makes the person feel special because you knew them so well that you knew exactly what to get them.
Since we can’t know everyone individually, we’ve broken the guide down into personality types and generalized things people like. Identify your special someone’s personality type and consider a gift geared towards them!
Gift Ideas For Women vs. Gift Ideas for Men
Men and women aren’t monolithic groups who all want the same things. Not all women wish for pampering, makeup from Sephora, scented candles, and bath bombs. Men, on the other hand, don’t all love watches, gadgets, and power tools.
I reject the idea that every member of a specific group will want the same thing. Separating gift guides by gender or family position isn’t helpful because these identifiers don’t say anything about what a person likes.
I’m not going to tell you what to get your husband or mother or best friend when I have no idea what types of people they are. Not all moms like the same things, just like not all mothers-in-law, husbands, and best friends like the same things.
This gift-giving guide celebrates what people like to do. It will help you find the perfect gift ideas for everyone, from the outdoorsy adventure seeker to the stay-at-home comfort seeker!
Gifts for the Adventurer
The best gifts for adventurers are experiences. If you have someone with a lust for adventure in your life, get them something they can do!
The ideal gift for an adventurer is a trip somewhere. Book tickets to their top bucket list destination, or arrange a weekend getaway. The adventurer on your list will be thrilled to go someplace new!
Vacations are expensive. If a complete trip isn’t in your budget, consider getting tickets to a special event, like a concert, sporting event, or theme park. Most cities offer CityPASS tickets that allow people to access the top attractions for a fraction of the cost. If you live near a large city, this might be an excellent option for the adventurer on your Christmas list!
Sometimes, experiences are hard to come by, and you want to get your loved one something they can open up on Christmas. Consider getting them something that will help them on their next adventure.
If they enjoy hikes, gift them a new ruck, shoes, or a tactical coat. Search for hiking gear on Amazon for thousands of ideas.
Your SCUBA diver friend will enjoy the best new snorkel or face mask. There are unique gifts for your beach-loving friends, rock-climbing friends, road trip-loving friends, and every other type of adventurer on your list.
Consider their favorite activity, and let that be your guide.
Another great option is something that will green up their living space without much effort. Adventurers love the outdoors, so bring the outdoors to them with a houseplant that doesn’t need much maintenance. This way, they can keep their living space fresh, but the plant won’t die when they go on an adventure.
Gift Ideas for Gamers
The best gifts for the gamer are this season’s hottest new games! Consider Sonic Superstars for Xbox lovers, Baldur’s Gate 3 for PlayStation gamers, or Super Mario Bros Wonder for Nintendo Switch users.
The consoles themselves also make fantastic gift ideas for the serious gamer in your life.
You can’t go wrong with new gaming accessories if your gamer has all the games and consoles. Better headphones or a new controller/mouse make excellent gift ideas, as do capture cards and other streaming accessories.
For even more fantastic gift ideas for the gamer in your life, check out our massive guide of gifts for gamers.
Gift Guide for Super Fans
Superfans are the most accessible people to buy gifts for. Identify their fandom and get them anything related to it. As a huge fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, I’d appreciate any Buffy-themed gift – from t-shirts to mugs to action figures!
The super fans on your list might celebrate shows, sports, games, or movies. They would love to get something related to their favorite thing.
Gift your super sports fan a new jersey, your TV show fan a book related to the show, and your movie fan a limited edition poster. The possibilities are endless when you have a loved one in love with a specific fandom.
Great Gift Ideas for Endless Learners
We all have a special someone with an insatiable love of knowledge. This person will love a new book. Find out what their favorite topics are and find books that are related.
Do they love science? Look into books on astrophysics, anthropology, or new technologies. History lover? There are thousands of books on every period you can imagine, up to and including current affairs.
The learner in your life will love getting books on their favorite topics.
Another epic gift idea for the learner in your life is access to an online platform for education. Coursera Pro is $400 a year, but your learner can take classes on various topics from accredited universities like Northwestern and the University of Illinois. They can earn a certificate in many subjects with this platform.
Udemy offers a variety of great classes for hobbyists. With courses in everything from coding to photography, self-development to data science, there is sure to be a course that your learner will love.
If neither of these platforms offers the perfect course for your learner, check out our complete list of online learning platforms. One of them will make the ideal gift for your learner.
Special Gifts for Hipsters
The Hipster in your life doesn’t want something trendy from Amazon. Show them you know them well and give them a different kind of present.
Try custom apparel from Teepublic that showcases their favorite things. Gifts from print-on-demand sites support small creators over large corporations, and the hipster in your life will appreciate the effort to think outside the box.
The hipster in your life might also appreciate something nostalgic, like a print or figure from one of their favorite childhood shows or a band shirt from a 90s rock or grunge band.
Gift Ideas for Jocks
The best thing to get the jock in your life is Sports Gear! Get them equipment to help them play their favorite game, like rackets, bats, gloves, or even shoes designed explicitly for field play.
Another great gift idea for the sports lover in your life is something that commemorates their favorite team. You can’t go wrong with jerseys, pint glasses, dish towels, or anything with their team’s emblem.
One of the best gifts I ever received was a cat bed made with Chicago Bear’s fabric. It was handmade, too, which made it extra special.
New Age Gift Ideas
The term “new age” can encompass many different things, so it might be hard to identify what the new agers on your list might like.
Candles can be a big hit for most new agers – they are perishable, and most people, especially those into anything esoteric, would probably appreciate it.
There are lots of other gift ideas for those into New Age ideas. Crystals, meditation aids, incense, and even yoga gear are lovely gift ideas for new agers.
You can get them guidebooks, tarot cards, or anything else that might speak to them on a spiritual level. Spiritual guides can be tricky for those you don’t know well. A well-meaning book on the wrong topic could be taken offensively, so be sure you know what they are into before giving them something spiritual.
Gifts for Homesteaders
Even the homesteader who has it all could use more jars! These get used quickly when you can and juice all your fruits and vegetables.
If the homesteader in your life doesn’t have it all, consider getting them a new composter or some garden tools. They also might be interested in plants, seeds, or other things they can grow.
Foodie Gift Guide
Food lovers don’t want that curated meat gift set from Pepperidge Farms. Instead, get them food gifts for their refined palates. A trendy new cookbook or a reservation at the local gastropub would make excellent gifts.
You can also get foodie gifts that will enhance their experiences with their favorites. Consider specialized gifts for tea lovers, beer lovers, or gourmet food lovers. There are specific gifts for most specialized tastes, so consider the foods they are most obsessed with before deciding.
Food gifts can be personalized as well. If you are a great cook, you can make them something new that they will love from your very own kitchen. Just please try to avoid the fruit cake.
Sentimental Gift Ideas
Sentimental folks love gifts that you put a lot of thought into. If you are crafty, use your craft to create something unique for them. If you aren’t crafty, you can also make them a photo album or get a framed photo of the two of you together – that will brighten their day!
Sentimental people will also appreciate nostalgic gifts just as much as the hipsters. If you can’t put something together, get them something that will remind them of you in a different way. A toy from their childhood or memorabilia from an event you shared would make ideal gift ideas.
Gifts for Creatives
If you have a creative person in your life, get them something they can use in their craft.
The sewer/crocheter may love new fabrics or threads. Painters can always use more canvases and paints.
An easier option is an adult coloring book and some colored pencils. Many creative people would love to just zone out with some simple coloring.
Creative folks may also enjoy getting new notebooks or stationery for their journaling needs. You can even personalize some of these items! Soothi allows you to customize the cover of leather-bound journals with favorite quotes, initials, or anything else you desire.
For more gift ideas for the artist in your life, check out these great gifts for artists.
For the Busy Parent
The best gift you can give a busy parent is a night off! Offer to take the kids for an evening so they can do something for them. You can get the parents a certificate for a spa day so they can pamper themselves while knowing their kids are in good hands.
If you aren’t into watching kids, think about gifts that will make the parents’ lives easier. Maybe they could use a new Keurig to make their morning coffee ritual easier or a crockpot to make dinner easier. There are tons of options!
You do need to be careful here, though. Unless your busy parent is a neat freak, don’t get them cleaning supplies. My dad used to buy my mom vacuums, mops, and stuff like that for the holidays. As someone who didn’t enjoy cleaning, those gifts were offensive.
Ensure you are gifting them something they will appreciate, not something that makes them do more work.
Gift Ideas for Kids
Kid’s gifts are so easy. Children like anything they can open up, but I prefer to give them fun yet educational gifts. You can find many children’s microscopes, telescopes, and experiment kits on Amazon!
Get the future engineers’ Erector sets, Legos, or Lincoln logs; the future doctors’ medical playsets; the future botanist a chia pet. These gifts can lead to hours of enjoyment, and the kids don’t even have to realize that they are learning something.
When choosing gifts for kids, do not be intimidated if you have to buy for a disabled child. Most of the time, they like many of the same things non-disabled children like. If unsure, here is a list of the best sensory toys, and a special education teacher put it together.
Another great gift idea for kids is money. I know – kids don’t know the value of money, and it isn’t fun to open. However, some fantastic college savings plans allow non-parents to contribute.
If you’re a parent, check out Backer. It’s a 529 savings plan enabling friends and family to donate as gifts.
You can ask your relatives to split their gifts between college savings and toys this holiday season. The kids won’t know the difference.
If you have a lot of kids to get gifts for or are a parent trying to come up with many gift ideas for your little ones, consider using the 5-gift rule. This rule can work for anyone on your list if you are still figuring out what to get them.
What is the 5 Gift Rule For Christmas Gifts?
The five-gift rule for Christmas gifts helps you narrow down gift ideas. If you are stuck and need help figuring out what to get someone, this rule can help.
The five-gift rule is four ideas with a bonus. Get the person something they want, something they need, something to wear, and something to read. The fifth idea is a bonus and can be something to do, something handmade, or even something to share.
What is a Good Gift to Give Someone Who Has Everything?
If you don’t know what to get someone because you don’t know their style or they seem to have it all, you can’t go wrong with a gift card (unless you are super close to them!).
You can get them a gift card to their favorite store, a general Visa, or an Amazon gift card.
Another option is to get them something handmade or digital on Etsy. Etsy provides unique, handcrafted gift items and digital printables of nearly anything you can imagine.
I sell creative writing prompts and a massive guide to finding your passion in my shop, and I guarantee these would be unique gift ideas. However, you can find anything on Etsy, from woodworking designs to handmade scarves and toys to journal prompts.
What is a Good Gift For Anyone?
Let’s say you don’t know who exactly you’re buying a gift for, either because you are part of a Secret Santa gift exchange or you will play a fun white elephant game. What types of things can you get that everyone will enjoy?
Fun food gift sets can make fabulous generalized gifts. Anything edible is always a good choice when you don’t know what people would want. Other great options are gift cards (Starbucks is always a big hit!) and scratch-off lottery tickets.
A tremendous final option, if you know your audience doesn’t abstain, is a nice bottle of wine. Be careful, though. You wouldn’t want to bring a gift with alcohol to a party where folks don’t enjoy indulging.
What Gifts Should You Never Give?
I hesitate to say that there’s something you should never give. Some folks are likely out there who enjoy getting gag gifts and cleaning supplies for Christmas.
However, unless you know the person and know they will appreciate it, there are some things you should avoid. The aforementioned cleaning supplies are a big one. Nobody really wants a new mop for Christmas.
Most people also don’t want underwear, socks, everyday food, or a fragrance they did not choose. Skincare products are also a poor choice unless you know the person’s preference.
As always, though, there will be exceptions. Spouses, parents, and children can get away with giving these items as gifts.
Gift Ideas For Everyone
Hopefully, this gift-giving guide gave you some epic gift ideas for everyone on your list. Make this holiday epic by giving your loved ones something they will truly enjoy!