What to Gift People Who Really, Truly Don’t Want Any More Stuff
Supply chain issues, global warming, the hoards of stuff we’ve all already accumulated—turns out there are plenty of reasons to avoid buying your loved ones any more Things this holiday season. Instead, give something you know they’ll use, but won’t end up in the trash or being regifted for their next White Elephant. Maybe it’s a nearby service (think: massage or facial), a membership to their favorite museum, or a gift card and reservation for a new-to-them restaurant. And if you’re still stumped, find 12 more ideas, below.
1) Language Courses
Have a friend who spent quarantine planning to brush up on their high school-level French? Gift them Babbel, a language-learning app that provides online classes, games, videos, and podcasts to help them learn up to 13 languages. Gift subscriptions range from $42 to $199, offering an option for most budgets. C’est magnifique.
2) Workout Classes
Due to the pandemic, most workout studios are still offering virtual classes, meaning you can gift a subscription, no matter where your recipient lives. A few to try: Alo Moves, which offers barre, pilates, and HIIT; The Underbelly, body positivity advocate Jessamyn Stanley’s online yoga classes; and Socanomics, dance-fitness workouts inspired by Caribbean Carnival.
3) Birth Chart Reading
Much like Airbnb, Uncommon Goods offers up a number of experiential gifts, including this class, where an astrologer charts your personal forecast for the upcoming year. Essential for your BFF who’s constantly checking their Co–Star app.
4) Personalized Celebrity Videos
A few years ago, in lieu of a physical present, I gifted my Gossip Girl-loving roommate a Cameo from Zuzanna Szadkowski, aka Dorota herself. It went over so well that I plan to keep purchasing Cameos—personalized video messages from your favorite celebs—whenever I’m stumped on what to get. Pro tip: Chigs from The Great British Baking Show *is* on there.
5) Talkspace Therapy
Everyone can benefit from a bit of counsel. Now through Talkspace, the online therapy platform, you can gift a one-time video session or unlimited messaging. Just be sure to read through Talkspace’s guide on respectfully sending a therapy e-card before you purchase.
6) Airbnb Experiences
A Central Park bike tour in New York City? A grid-worthy beach picnic in Santa Monica? Nighttime paddle boarding around Miami? Through Airbnb, you can find a host of “experiences” for your loved one to do in their city. Just let them know you’re expecting to be their plus one.
7) Interior Design Membership
This one’s for your interior design-loving friend who’s DMed you one too many inspo photos. Spoak offers a suite of tools that will help anyone—novice or expert—design and execute a room refresh. Joanna Gaines, who?
8) MasterClass Subscription
The solution for all the hard-to-buy-for people in your life: MasterClass offers 100+ online classes taught by some of the world’s best, letting anyone dive deep into an established hobby or pick up a new one. Perhaps start with Alicia Keys on songwriting and producing?