30 Cheap Gift Ideas People Will Actually Like
November 29, 2022 10 min read
It’s time to start thinking about holiday shopping, and you have a list of people to buy gifts for as long as your arm. It could get expensive, but it doesn’t have to be.
First, making a holiday budget can help you decide what you have to spend. Then, setting yourself a per-person dollar limit can help you stick to the budget. Whoever you’re shopping for, there are a ton of affordable but thoughtful gifts out there. Here’s a look at 30 inexpensive gifts for under $30.
1. Gua Sha Facial Roller
Gua sha is a traditional Chinese healing method believed to stimulate blood flow, reduce puffiness and promote radiant skin. Studies also suggest it has benefits for a range of ailments from migraines to perimenopausal symptoms. Sephora’s gadget doubles as a gua sha tool and a facial roller and offers an easy way to introduce the practice into any self-care routine.
Shop: Sephora Collection Gua Sha Facial Roller from Sephora
2. The Five-Minute Journal
Doodle, jot, draw or write—however you approach it, journaling can help ease anxiety, regulate emotions and even speed up physical healing. Intelligent Change’s Five-Minute Journal features structured prompts and exercises your loved ones can do in five minutes—perfect if they’ve always wanted to try it but never thought they had the time.
Shop: Intelligent Change The Five-Minute Journal from Amazon
3. Foot Therapy Reflexology Set
Sit back, put those feet up and roll away the day’s stresses with this reflexology set that includes a roller and a pair of socks with a pressure-point map. Reflexology uses gentle pressure on different parts of the feet and is thought to ease stress, boost energy and in some cases alleviate pain.
Shop: A&G Foot Therapy Reflexology Set from World Market
4. Soaking Salts
Is there anything a warm bath won’t fix? Not much, especially if you sprinkle some of this into it. Epsom salts are a good source of magnesium, a mineral that benefits the heart and nervous system. And this bottle is filled with other goodies, like peppermint and marigold, to calm inflammation and soothe sore muscles. Plus, it’ll look gorgeous on anyone’s bathroom shelf.
Shop: Well Kept Soaking Salts from Anthropologie
5. Positive Affirmations Meditation Cards
Repeating positive phrases can disrupt negative self-talk and improve how people think and feel about themselves. You can give the power of positivity with this set of 52 self-calming cards that help promote relaxation, mindfulness and stress relief.
Shop: Mindful Messages Positive Affirmation Cards from Amazon
6. Limited-Edition Boxed Candle
How did a simple candle make the list? Well, it’s a Voluspa candle, a renowned luxury product, with an affordable price tag. It’s hand-poured and clean-burning. It’s made from the finest ingredients that have been sourced from all over the world. And it looks as beautiful as it smells. Sold.
Shop: Voluspa Limited-Edition Boxed Candle from Anthropologie
7. Women’s Cabin Slipper Socks
Imagine the scene: Your loved one curled up on a sofa, hands encircling a mug of steaming hot chocolate, watching dreamily as the snow falls outside. Complete the picture with these festive and super snuggly slipper socks. Wood cabin optional.
Shop: Cabin Slipper Socks from Land’s End
8. Kastehelmi Tea Light Holder
Finnish company Iittala has been designing glass and tableware that’s almost too beautiful to use since 1881. The classic dew-drop Kastehelmi design on this pretty tea light holder was created in 1964 and still looks stunningly modern.
Shop: Iittala Kastehelmi Tea Light Holder from Bloomingdale’s
9. Multi-ccino Mug
Budding baristas can enjoy artisan-level beverages in the comfort of their own home with this clever glass mug from MoMA. Printed recipes on the outside show how to make a variety of coffees including macchiato, cortado and cappuccino.
Shop: MoMA Design Store Multi-ccino Mug from Nordstrom
10. Plush Throw Blanket
A throw blanket’s the perfect thing to cozy up with on cold days. This one’s soft and fluffy on one side and smooth and silky on the other, so your loved one can mix things up depending on their mood.
Shop: Threshold Plush Throw Blanket from Target
Kitchen & Food Gifts
11. Fresh Popcorn Maker
From the brand that brought you those super cute mini waffle makers comes this—also cute—popcorn maker that makes up to 16 cups of fresh popcorn in minutes and bills itself as easy enough for kids to use.
Shop: Dash Fresh Pop Popcorn Maker from Bloomingdale’s
12. Milk Sea Salt Caramel Truffles
There’s a box of truffles, and then there’s a box of Charbonnel et Walker truffles. The British chocolatier is known for the rich flavor and silky texture of its handmade goodies. This flavor adds a touch of saltiness into the mix.
Shop: Charbonnel et Walker Milk Sea Salt Caramel Truffles from Neiman Marcus
13. The Cheese Board Card Deck
When party time rolls around, this cute little deck of cards will give your entertaining-loving friend food for thought. Each of the 50 cards features a quick-to-make-cheese-board idea, with beautiful photography, ingredients lists and tips for swaps. There’s inspo for every occasion, from holidays to dinner parties to game days.
Shop: The Cheese Board Card Deck from World Market
14. Tivoli Monogram Spoon Rest
For the home chef who has everything, there’s this monogram spoon rest. Decorated in a retro Italian style, it makes a charming personalized gift.
Shop: Tivoli Monogram Spoon Rest from Anthropologie
15. David’s Top 12 Tea Sampler
A beautifully packaged sampler featuring 12 of the tea company’s most popular blends. There’s something here for everyone, from the stuck-in-a-rut English Breakfast drinker to the adventurous flavor fiend.
Shop: David’s Top 12 Tea Sampler from DavidsTea
16. Wreck This Journal
Here, kids: Take this book, scribble in it, lick it and smear it with goo. Yep, this super fun book actually encourages kids to do all these things and more. But this isn’t about mindful destruction: As the introduction notes, it’s a challenge to push past fears and perfectionist tendencies. Powerful stuff in a playful package.
Shop: Wreck This Journal from Amazon
17. Tzumi Aura LED Color Strip Lights
Literally what every tween and teen wants in their bedroom right now. These USB-powered strip lights can display 16 different colors in four levels of intensity. They’re controlled via app or remote control, so kids can change them as often as they change their mood.
Shop: Tzumi Aura LED Color Strip Lights from Bloomingdale’s
18. The Wondrous Workings of Planet Earth
A gorgeously illustrated tour of the planet that makes science accessible and entertaining. Through art, maps and infographics, it reveals the importance of ecological conservation by looking at how the world’s ecosystems work to support life on Earth.
Shop: The Wondrous Workings of Planet Earth from Target
19. Busy Ideas for Bored Kids Outside Edition
Kids can make the most of outside play with this travel tin of colorful prompt cards. Whether they’re looking for a creative, lively or quiet activity, they’re guaranteed to find something to keep them busy.
Shop: Busy Ideas for Bored Kids Outside Edition from The Container Store
20. Qwixx: A Fast Family Dice Game
A fun numbers game—is that really a thing? Well, yes, it is. Qwixx is a quick-playing dice game that’s so simple, even the most numerically challenged can play it. All it takes is a mixture of luck and strategy. Plus, it’s small enough to pack up and pull out anytime the kids have a quiet 15 minutes.
Shop: Qwixx: A Fast Family Dice Game from Amazon
21. Bluetooth Sleep Mask
Send your loved one off to a blissful slumber with a mask that blocks out the light and lets them choose the sounds they fall asleep to. This mask features Bluetooth 5.0 technology for an excellent stereo experience and super-soft, breathable materials for a comfortable night, whichever position they sleep in.
Shop: Beyarina Bluetooth Sleep Mask from Walmart
22. Soap Box Hero Shower Speaker
Listen to a podcast, learn a language or let it all out to a favorite tune: They can do whatever they want in the shower with this splash-proof, rechargeable Bluetooth speaker. A suction cup on the back makes it easy to affix to tiles, glass or mirrors.
Shop: Soap Box Hero Shower Speaker from The Container Store
23. Tech Cord Organizing Pocket
Chargers, earbuds, power banks, mice, memory cards and more—taking tech accessories on the go can be a real chore these days. This organizer keeps essentials from falling into a black hole and is compact enough to fit easily in a travel tote or backpack.
Shop: UT Wire Tech Cord Organizing Pocket from The Container Store
24. Tile Mate Bluetooth Tracker
Know someone who can never keep track of their valuables? This one’s for them. The Tile Mate is iOS- and Android-compatible and lets you monitor the location of whatever it’s attached to through a phone, tablet or computer. No more frantic searching for keys, wallet or phone—now, that’s a gift.
Shop: Tile Mate Bluetooth Tracker from Amazon
25. Le Cord Recycled Ocean Plastic iPhone Lightning Cable
Technology, but make it sustainable. Le Cord’s smartphone charging cable is made from plastic that’s recycled from discarded fishing nets and is Apple-approved for durability and flawless performance.
Shop: Le Cord Recycled Ocean Plastic iPhone Lightning Cable from Anthropologie
Health & Fitness Gifts
26. Hedgehog Balance Pods
These little pods pack a huge body-boosting punch. Use the dome side to massage sore feet, boost circulation and ease pain. Use the smooth side to improve balance, engage muscles and tone the core. Their size works for everyone—even kids, who could use them to help develop motor skills.
Shop: Yes4All Hedgehog Balance Pods from Walmart
27. Cold Therapy Muscle Massage Roller Ball
Athletes with intense workouts could benefit from the muscle-soothing effects of cold therapy, which boosts recovery by reducing inflammation, swelling and nerve activity. This stainless steel roller ball has a 360-degree glide design, so it’s easy to target problem areas. Plus, it stays cold up to 20 minutes out of the freezer.
Shop: Gaiam Cold Therapy Muscle Massage Roller Ball from Amazon
28. Cooling Loop Towel
It’s a towel! But not just any old towel. The Nike Cooling Loop Towel cools down when it’s wet to help the body regulate its temperature after a workout. Plus, the infinity design means it can be worn the whole time, so no one has to worry about where they put their towel down ever again.
Shop: Nike Cooling Loop Towel from Kohl’s
29. Heated Neck & Shoulder Wrap
Relieve tension and stress with this hot and cold plush wrap that envelopes your shoulders for a portable spa experience. The weighted wrap is filled with a herb blend including lavender, chamomile and peppermint and can be heated or chilled, depending on the need.
Shop: Sharper Image Heated Neck & Shoulder Wrap from Amazon
30. Exercise Dice Bundle
Which workout shall we do today? Roll these lightweight foam dice and let them decide. Each die features beginner and intermediate exercises in different disciplines, giving adults and kids a fun reason to get off the couch and move toward better health. An exercise manual and carrying bag is included.
Shop: The FitLid Exercise Dice Bundle from Amazon