There’s a real art to gift-giving. Some people just know the perfect gifts to get your best friend, both thoughtful and practical. On the other hand, there are people (like me) who don’t have the built-in “knack” for it. As a result, I’ve had to get creative and rely on outside resources to find the best gifts to get my best friend.
You can find countless brilliant ideas for gift-giving if you know the right places to look online. Craft sites, like Etsy, and idea aggregators, like Pinterest, have creators who are constantly innovating. Even with these resources, it can still be tough to make the right choice. So, to make it easier, I’ve assembled a collection of some unique gifts to get your best friend.
Gifts for Special Occasions
When something special happens in your friend’s life, giving a gift is the thoughtful thing to do (think: graduation or making the down payment on a new home). Depending on the special occasion, there can be an added pressure to get a meaningful gift, but the occasion itself can likewise often suggest a solution.
For example, if your friend just got a new house, then a housewarming gift makes the most sense. For these kinds of gifts, I always go in a more practical direction and focus on something useful. My mind always goes to the kitchen, as there are a lot of tools and appliances that many of us don’t have. If you want to splurge, a new mixer or a set of sharp kitchen knives will last a long time. Otherwise, a decent coffee pot or electric kettle is a great idea on the lower end of the scale.
Graduations are another key event that warrants a gift. Graduates often need things that are going to get them ready to start their professional careers. Practical gifts in this category can range anywhere from a new laptop or tablet to covering the cost of a networking seminar in their industry. Those can get pricey, however, so I often look to something simpler, such as a celebratory mug, a new backpack, or a reusable water bottle.
When in doubt, you can also use gift cards to different stores such as Bed Bath and Beyond, Target, and Home Depot. The ultimate “general” gift has to be Amazon gift cards, as I’ve found pretty much everything there.
Ideas for All Occasions
- Amazon and Specialty Gift Cards
- Electric Kettles for Coffee and Tea
- Classic Messenger Bags for Grads
Gifts for Guys
Everyone’s different, but there are some general rules of thumb you can follow. A lot of guys have a few blind spots about the things they need. Speaking from experience, there are a lot of things I just dealt with, as I never realized there was a need for it.
A good example of a “guy gift” would be a decent tie or a good button-down shirt. They fit every occasion and save men from having to shop for themselves. If you don’t want to shop for clothing, practical audio gifts such as Bluetooth speakers and noise-canceling headphones are a safe bet. These are staples in almost all guys’ homes.
Finally, don’t be afraid to gift an experience or an activity. Getting a few other friends together and playing paintball or going axe throwing can end up being much more meaningful than a gift they may not need.
Ideas for Guys
Gifts for Girls
When looking for gifts to get your best friend, if she’s a girl, you’ll generally want to aim for more meaningful gifts. Naturally, there’s nothing wrong with getting something practical that she’ll use, but, I’ve done well by buying limited editions of books that mean a lot to my friends.
I’ve also found that girls also enjoy an experience gift. Like the guys, recreational gifts for girls, such as a day out ziplining or paying for a relaxing spa trip at the right time, can mean a lot.
Or, some of the best gifts that I’ve given to friends of mine have a significant emotional meaning. What that looks like for your friends will be different from what works for my friends but the core idea is the same.
Think of things that you’ve done with your friend in the past or times that you’ve been there for each other. A little souvenir from those places or even a corny gift that reminds you both of what you’ve done together can be better than something much more expensive and practical.
Ideas for Girls
- Gift Cards and Makeup from Sephora
- A Year of Date Cards for Your Girlfriend
- Brewing Chocolate as an Alternative to Coffee
Finding the Best Gifts to Get Your Best Friend
There are a lot of right answers when it comes to finding a gift for your best bud. Ultimately, I always try to make sure that my gifts show that I was thinking about the person. Even if you don’t find the perfect gift, making the effort is often more than enough to convey how much you care.
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