‘Tis the Season, friends! It’s time to sing Mariah Carey, hang your mistletoe, and jingle all the freaking bells you can find. It’s the season of budgets and lists and boxes and presents hidden-in-closets. It’s time to pull out that dang Elf-on-Shelf from the attic and to spend every other free minute you have shopping or wrapping or cookie-decorating or gifting. And it’s all magical!
It’s a wonderful time of year, isn’t it?
If you so happen to be a mom or a dad or a grandma or aunt or uncle or friend of a teenager, it may also be a very stressful time of year. Shopping for these hard-to-read creatures can be maddening! It can feel like they have everything already. Furthermore, they may not be the best at communicating their wants, needs, desires or thanks, for that matter. And with a nationwide product-supply-shortage and a budget that is much tighter than usual (have you seen the gas prices, people?), panic is sure to set in.
Lucky for you, however, I have done my research, made my lists, checked them twice, and developed a creative, affordable, and unique list of gifts for every teen in your life.
Skateboarding is totally trending at the moment and I freaking love it! My kids took up the habit sometime during the pandemic and their boards are due for an upgrade. My 11-year-old, who has wanted a surfboard every Christmas for as long as I can remember- despite only having surfed once, mind you- will be getting a long skateboard (Hana Pintail Longboard from Magneto). It resembles a surfboard but will get much more use since we don’t live near the water. It really is aesthetic (as the kids would say): 42” long and the deck is an 8-layer laminate with a hard maple core and a beautifully-stained striped bamboo. Perhaps the most refreshing part of this purchase was the 5-star review from a self-proclaimed “42-year-old boy!” That made this is 43-year-old-girl feel young and ready to pop an ollie.
Winter Museo is a wonderful online shop with a boutique feel that aims to “fill your walls with joy.” They offer a wide variety of illustrations, travel photographs and art prints. I went for a beautiful sunflower poster (clearly for my biggest Harry Styles’ fan) and a stunning, snow-covered New York City illustration. It’s the perfect gift for the teen whose room is already TIkTok-ed out with LED lights and tapestries. These prints and posters make a great gift for the soon-to-be college student or your favorite co-worker, too.
Mom, where’s that pink underwear with the little hearts on it? My girls are very picky about their underwear. They each have a pair or two they love and about 10 pairs that just don’t do the trick. These are itchy. They don’t fit right. Noooo, mom, they show panty lines! I can’t wear those while playing hockey! My god, child—it’s just underwear! What happened to the days of princess underwear filling all the requirements? Well, enter Tommy John underwear. I first heard about this luxury, no slip, stay-in-place, panty-line free, most-comfortable-underwear-ever from a 40-something friend, but they have proven to be the undergarment favorite of all ages. My girls both agree that their favorite fit is the Air Cheeky. In the words of my daughter, “it’s like you are not wearing any underwear at all—but you are!” Ahhh, the wisdom of a 14-year-old. And hey, you might as well throw some comfortable Tommy John jammies into your cart while you shop. Feel free to keep those for yourself and consider it your new wrapping-wear!
Who would have thought water bottles would be such a popular gift among the teen crowd? Yetis and Hydro Flasks have remained to the go-to gift in our house for quite some time now, but I will be damned if I am shelling out another $60 for a luxury water bottle! A great alternative for your water bottle lover is the totally-customizable Nalgene water bottle— and the price is right at $20. The process of personalizing is quite easy with the Nalgene Customizer and a little creativity. You can upload photos, hashtags and choose from a variety of at-your-fingertips templates. The process itself is quite fun and requires that little extra touch of thoughtfulness that will let your teen know they are loved!
I am so excited to give this gift to my kids! We have a serious sock problem in our house and I have given up on matching socks altogether. There are so many sock subscription services out there and I have done some hard-core research! My favorite to date is Say it with a Sock. The price is right (options starting as low as $12.99/month) and it is reported that socks arrive with all sorts of punny jokes, which is right up our alley. While I have yet to receive the socks, I am super excited and confident that they will be a HUGE hit for all! Socks also come with a happiness guarantee (how cute is the word choice there?) so if you for any reason you don’t like a pair, they will send you a replacement with your next shipment! This gift will ensure that at least 2 days a month, all of my kids should be wearing matching socks. And I’m okay with that number.
There you have it! My top 5 gifts for teens for 2021! If you have some to add to the list, go ahead and write them in the comment section—because teens are hard and we need all the help we can get!