You know the old saying "stuck between a rock and a hard place?" That's how it can feel when there's an occasion coming up and you're not sure whether to buy a gift or just give that person you're thinking of a card. You don't want things to be awkward. You don't know if they're getting you a gift. Heck, you don't even know if you're at that gift-giving stage yet. Well, make like the Boy Scouts and be prepared with these 45 great gifts under $8 that are way better than giving a card, and that means you don't get caught empty-handed — and you're not over-spending, either.
This list is extremely comprehensive, so you're sure to find something for every in-between gift-giving situation you're up against. Additionally, the price point on these gifts means that if you're looking for a more upmarket gift, they're great for combining. For example, if it's a cook you're shopping for — let's say it's the cook who has everything — how about putting together a basket with this pastry wheel, these waffle tongs, and this cotton produce bag. Add a couple of hand towels and a nice bow and you're all set. Make combinations from this list for beauty lovers, guys, teens, travelers, and friends from the office — or stockpile these inexpensive treats so you always have a gift on hand for those occasions that slip your mind: because the struggle is real.
1This One-Piece Stand Provides Simple Hands-Free Device Operation
With solid aluminum construction that's strong enough to accommodate everything from the smallest smartphone to a tablet or an ebook, this stand is not only practical but also sleek and attractive. Suitable for use in both portrait and landscape mode, it's great to use while watching videos, browsing the internet, or taking in a conference call while working at the computer. Its lightweight construction makes it perfect for travel, too.
2A Lip Balm From A Best-Selling Skincare Brand
Crafted with all-natural ingredients, this lip balm provides instant relief for the delicate, chapped lips. Naturally emollient and conditioning shea butter and vitamin E soothe irritation, and green tea delivers an antioxidant effect. This balm also features SPF 25 protection to guard from the sun's damaging rays, and it's available in three flavor combinations.
3The Pastry Wheel With Two Blades For Fancy Finishes And Plain
Make your favorite baker very happy with the gift of this dual pastry wheel that features a pair of stainless steel cutting blades — one fluted, one flat — for beautiful decorative crusts, pastry shapes, raviolis, and trimming. It features a soft neoprene handle that makes it comfortable and easy to use, and it's suitable for both left- and right-handed chefs.
4This Tool Brings A Million Tiny Things So Much Closer
With a magnetic head and a telescoping handle that extends to 30 inches, this pick-up tool brings the small screws and nails used in the workroom — or paper clips, staples, from the office — closer to hand. This magnet is capable of picking up 15 pounds, and is topped with a cushioned handle for ease of use. It's great for finding bobby pins or even valuables — so it's a great gift for someone who keeps dropping their jewelry.
5The Coloring Book For Completely Serious Adults
How much fun is this hysterically inappropriate coloring book that features handsomely-dressed wildlife consuming cocktails, with the recipes for their delicious adult beverages included right on the page. Okay, some of the animals aren't exactly wildlife: There's a house cat with a white Russian, for example. Color, have a drink, and enjoy the thought of llamas kibitzing at happy hour: It's unlimited fun.
6These Cloths Are Ultra-Soft And Remove Makeup Quickly And Easily
Soft and luxurious, these makeup remover cloths are easy on the skin and the environment — both at the same time. While they're crafted from microfiber, so they're antibacterial and suitable for even the most sensitive skin, they stand up to a machine wash and eliminate the need for disposable wipes and cleansing chemicals. They're also available in a variety of colors.
7A Journal To Help Record The Best Things In Life
The ability to self-reflect and give thanks for what's going right in life is an important life skill to possess, and this journal provides a space to do so. It's organized in weekly spreads featuring inspirational quotes, as well as space to record those special highlights, big or small. While the daily structure bolsters the journey, the book's weekly checkpoints provide a prompt for reflection in anyone's busy schedule. Get one for yourself, too.
8The Gadgets That Turn Any Citrus Fruit Into A Flavor Sprayer
Adding the flavor of citrus to any food has never been easier with these sprayer gadgets — sure to be a hit with any avid cook. Crafted from ABS plastic, they can lightly flavor salads, water, and cocktails — and are even strong enough to use with watermelon. They feature a screw-like design that's efficient and easy to use.
9These Pens Are Great For Anyone Who Loves To Live Colorfully
With an assortment of colors, this pen set opens the door to vivid correspondence, bullet journaling, homework — the works. The fine tip writes smoothly without smudging with bright, durable color. With ink that's completely acid-free and non-toxic, these pens are perfect for kids, and they're easy to hold, too. "OBSESSED OBSESSED OBSESSED," says one reviewer, who gives this set a five-star rating.
10A Pocket-Sized Cord Organizer For Earbuds
Made from durable, high-quality silicone, this cord organizer is ideal for keeping earbuds straight and untangled in a pocket, handbag, or backpack — as well as keeping computer cords neat in the stretch between outlet and port. The metallic snap allows for easy one-handed opening and closing for quick access, and it's available in 10 colors — one for everyone in the family.
11These Tongs Are Great For Prepping And Serving
Can tongs be adorable? These tongs are. They're slightly undersized for easy handling, and feature a specialized design, with one side that has a waffle paddle design and one with a beveled "grabber" shape to get under foods easily and lift to serve. The tongs are heat-resistant to 400 degrees and BPA-free, and they're topped with a non-slip grip handle for ease of use. They're perfect for grabbing waffles out of the waffle maker, but work for a variety of other foods.
12The Multi-Tool That Will Pass TSA Inspection
Crafted from durable stainless steel with a titanium nitride coating, s is versatile, easy to carry, and (according to reviewers) should pass TSA inspection for carryon items. Featuring a wire stripper, pry bar, small and large flathead screwdrivers, a Phillips head screwdriver, and a bottle opener, it's equipped with a lanyard hole and can be carried on a keychain. At under 3 inches and less than half an ounce, it's easy to slip into a pocket for everyday use.
13The Cosmetics Bag That Holds Everything And Is So Inexpensive
With internal pockets for jewelry — and plenty of space in the middle for large bottles and tubes — this cosmetics case carries everything needed for travel. It's waterproof, too, made from high-quality, durable polyester fiber with an antibacterial coating that provides hygienic storage for all those important products. Available in four colors, it's also great for home or dorm use, with a sturdy drawstring closure that also allows the user to hang it from a hook or doorknob.
14A Lavender Essential Oil With Over 22,000 Reviews
So many soothing treatments and handmade cleaning and beauty products get their start with this lavender essential oil. Lavender is an age-old remedy for sleep and stress-relief, and this 100 percent pure, therapeutic grade oil can be added to a diffuser or simply to scent the air for a welcome release at the end of a hard day. It's great for everything from adding a few drops to the bath to making homemade bath bombs and massage oils — and it's also perfect for eco-friendly laundry, hand, and baby soap.
15A Smartphone Stands That Also Help Get A Grip
Get a two-pack of smartphone stands — and get a grip at the same time — with these rings that are crafted from zinc alloy and stainless steel to create a firm, stable base on any level surface. The ring adheres to the back of the smartphone with ultra-strong 3M adhesive and allows for hands-free viewing in landscape mode, while also serving as a grip, a car mount, and a cable winder.
16These Masks Make It Possible To Give The Gift Of K-Beauty For Less
Give the gift of K-beauty for less with this set of 4 sheet masks from A'PIEU, the diffusion range of noted Korean brand Missha. They're also a little bit of a twist on the traditional sheet mask, as they're styled as little slices, designed to look like the fruit or vegetable (cucumber, orange, watermelon, and lemon) on the packaging and formulated with a deeply hydrating, brightening effect. Reviewers rave about how fun they are!
17A Shopping Bag That's Cute, Trendy, And Eco-Friendly
If you missed it, string bags are having a moment. Climb on the bandwagon and give this string bag that's not only cute and trendy, but eco-friendly. They're great for toting groceries or produce from store to home, and can be carried easily in a purse or backpack so they're at the ready for a spur-of-the-moment shopping trip.
18The Tea Infuser That Looks Like A Deep Sea Diver
Made from food-safe, BPA-free silicone that's heat-resistant to 480 degrees, this tea infuser is also so cute — it's designed to look like a deep sea diver. Purpose-made for tea, it features fine holes throughout that allow the tea to brew in hot water, allowing it to fully encircle the tea and let the flavors to bloom freely. It's easy to open and close, and suitable for cups of all sizes.
19This Wine Accessory With Five Uses
Perfect for the oenophile on your list, this wine accessory has five uses. The BPA-free plastic contraption works as an aerator to add more body to any bottle of wine, it has a wine filter inside to get rid of sediments, is a stopper to prevent leaks, and essentially 'recorks' a bottle to keep it preserved for longer. It also works for sparkling water and soda, and creates such an airtight seal, you can even keep a bottle on its side using this.
20This Cover For The Microwave Keeps Food Moist And Prevents Splatters
Crafted from durable, high-quality silicone that's also BPA-free, this microwave plate cover keeps foods moist, encourages even heating, and also keeps the microwave clean by preventing splatters. Suitable for dinner plates, it also pops up to accommodate bowls, but it collapses so that it's almost flat for storage. Plus, since it's heat-resistant to 600 degrees, it can go right in the dishwasher for easy cleaning.
21The Slipper Socks That Are Toasty Warm And Non-Skid, Too
Now that I'm an adult, I look back on those days I used to always get socks in my stocking fondly, because good socks are expensive. Not so with these handy slipper socks: They're made from super-soft terrycloth to keep feet warm and cozy, and they're equipped with latex grips on the bottom to prevent sliding around on tile, hardwoods, and other smooth surfaces. Plus, they're machine-washable.
22A Scintillating Scalp Massage Is Always On Hand With This Gadget
Invigorating in the morning and equally as relaxing at the end of a long day, a scalp massage delivered by this gadget stimulates blood flow to hair follicles (which can encourage hair growth), soothes tense scalp muscles, and provides an exfoliating and deep cleaning treatment when used in the shower. Made from silicone with thick, firm bristles, it can also be used to provide massage for pain relief during a headache or migraine.
23This Bubble Bath Features All-Natural Ingredients And Scents
Featuring organic chamomile and calendula, plus a light fragrance of sweet orange and vanilla, this bubble bath from Jessica Alba's The Honest Company earns raves for its rafts of bubbles. Suitable for everyone from toddlers to adult bathers, it's free from parabens, sulfates, phthalates, and dyes, enriched instead with naturally derived botanicals. It's gentle bubble bath from a company that prizes transparency in its formulations.
24These Fun Accessories Reduce Cable Wear
Designed to protect the stress point where cables meet the device they're powering, these cable biters are a fun way to extend the life of expensive computer, smartphone, and other device cords. Made from high-quality PVC, they're colorful, durable, and compatible with nearly all standard USB-related cables. Easy to use, they slip onto cables simply through a gap on the underside. While this links to a hedgehog, they come in all sorts of cute shapes like a shark, a kitten, a panda, a turtle, and more.
25The Card Holder That Gives Any Smartphone A Pocket
Constructed from high-quality, anti-slip silicone, this pocket attaches to the back of just about any standard smartphone and adds convenient storage capacity on the go. Outfitted with strong 3M adhesive, it sticks to any smooth surface, so it's suited to hold items anywhere it's needed: It comes in handy on the inside of a notebook, planner, or wallet, or on the reverse of a company ID, for example.
26These Cacti Make Laundry Soft, Not Prickly
Improbable as it may seem, these little cacti can save both time and money in the laundry room. Added to the dryer, they promote better airflow around garments so they dry up to 50 percent faster, saving energy and money. The spines, meanwhile, help fluff clothes and other laundry while they dry. They also reduce wrinkles in clothing, and control the amount of static in garments.
27The Certified Organic Balm That's Great For Rough, Chapped Skin
Face it — with a slogan like "This Stuff Works," you know that this balm has to be good. A cult-favorite both on Amazon and off, this rich, concentrated, ultra-moisturizing balm was created by a New Hampshire contractor to soothe his chapped hands, rough from working outside during the harsh New England winter. The original inventor, "Badger Bill" Whyte, is still at it, making this healing, 100 percent organic balm that's the flagship of a family of high-quality, sustainable health and beauty items.
28An Herbal Soap That Nourishes The Skin And Improves Circulation
Formulated with fresh, organic peppermint that's been used for centuries to nourish and refine skin, this herbal soap features invigorating qualities that can energize while also improving circulation. Crafted with pure essential oils and natural botanical ingredients, it's cold-processed and full of natural glycerin to moisturize and gently cleanse. Suitable for even the most sensitive skin, this soap is fragrance- and preservative-free and has no unnatural colorants.
29The Massage Ball That's Perfect For On-The-Go Relief
Small and portable, this massage ball is the perfect tool for providing accurate trigger-point relief anywhere and any time it's needed. Made from durable solid resin, it rolls smoothly within the holder, which is designed for easy manipulation and is suited for even the smallest hands. This ball is useful for full-body massage, even on the face and scalp, and is great for relieving fatigue and promoting improved circulation — as well as relieving pain and soreness.
30This Vented Brush Provides Scalp Massage And Smooth, Frizz-Free Styling
With an arched, ergonomic design that makes it easy to hold, this brush is uniquely structured to deliver a scalp massage that stimulates blood flow to promote hair health. It's engineered to gently style the hair while calming static, so there are no flyaways and hair has a shiny, smooth appearance. The fan structure of the brush head also has detangles without pulling or snagging.
31An Eyeshadow Palette With All The Options
For the beauty maven on your list, this eyeshadow palette will surely elicit some happy squeals. The colors are super-pigmented and long-lasting, and range from basic nudes to warm- and cool-toned pinks and browns. Plus, the formulas include matte and pearl colors, as well as a few glitter shades. Super versatile, some can even double as blush or contour.
32The Lash Serum From Noted A Renowned K-Beauty Leader
Formulated to lengthen and strengthen lashes, this serum from K-beauty standout Etude House can be applied under mascara or at night for healthy and lush lashes. It's equipped with a wand to apply in the same manner as traditional mascara, and leaves lashes soft, not stiff and sticky. Excited reviewers note that they also use this serum for fuller, more defined brows.
33This Candle Smells Great And Helps You Fall Asleep
34The Sticky Notepad That Has Its Priorities Straight
Some people are just born list-makers, and this note pad will help inject a sense of humor into the daily grind with its clever headings. Designed like an oversized sticky note so that it will adhere wherever it's needed, it features sections marked Most Critical, Would Be Nice, and Not A Chance, along with checkboxes for Completed or Retreated to end the day with a smile.
35A Shelf That Uses An Existing Outlet Cover To Create Space
Designed to install around an existing wall outlet, this shelf is capable of holding up to 10 pounds and provides space for a home assistant or to charge a smartphone or other device. It's sturdy and features a sleek, modern design with a built-in cable management channel for cord management, and it installs quickly and easily using just a screwdriver.
36The Warm White Book Light That Can Illuminate Objects Up To 13 Feet Away
With a warm white light that makes print easy on the eyes, this book light features a beam that's focused yet strong enough to illuminate objects up to 13 feet away. The clip design is compact and features a flexible neck that adjusts to the reader's preferred angle or collapses for storage or travel — and it comes with batteries that will allow this to run for up to 25 hours straight without a change.
37A Bath Bomb That Can Actually Be Used As An Ornament
Tie the Christmas-themed package on to a branch of the tree and watch your chosen recipient light up upon discovering that this bath bomb isn't an ornament — but a treat just for them. It's formulated with essential oils that it releases while fizzing to create a relaxing spa bath experience guaranteed to soothe away everyday stress. Plus, skin will be left soft and radiant.
38These Socks Are Infused With Aloe To Soothe And Moisturize
Soft, smooth feet between pedicures are an attainable goal with these socks — they are made from a nylon-polyester blend that's permeated with aloe and vitamin E to nourish and moisturize. Suitable for most women's shoe sizes, they're perfect for keeping heels from drying out, cracking, and forming calluses. Feet will feel refreshed without being slippery or greasy.
39This Makeup Mirror Is Perfect For Travel
Designed for to throw into a handbag, carryon, or backpack for use while traveling, this makeup mirror is lighted for convenient application on-the-go. The eight LED lights can even be dimmed to accommodate day or evening looks via a touchscreen that controls both the power and the lighting intensity. It features a durable outer shell to protect the assembly from breakage during transport, too.
40This Extra Virgin Coconut Oil Is A Versatile Staple At A Great Price
41A Humidifier That's Tiny But Mighty...And It's A Night Light
Small but powerful, this humidifier dispenses enough cool mist to last overnight, while serving as a convenient LED night light at the same time. Whisper-quiet and with a small footprint, it's easy to fill simply by removing the top, and operates via USB for convenient use at home or in the office. The on-off sensor is triggered by blowing on it, and the light comes on at dusk and turns off at dawn.
42These Two-In-One Butterflies Are Both Potholders And Magnets
It may seem like an odd combination, but the fact that these butterflies can be used both as potholders and as magnets is actually a match made in heaven: If they're on the side of the fridge, they'll always be handy for hot pots and pans or dishes coming out of the microwave. Made from silicone that's heat-resistant to 230 degrees, they're stain-resistant and won't warp over time.
43This Angry Mama Really Knows How To Clean A Microwave
Made from silicone with vents in her hair to let off deep-cleaning steam, this Angry Mama makes cleaning the microwave quick and easy. The cute and clever design disguises an eco-friendly marvel: Just fill her body with water and vinegar, then "cook" her for seven minutes. The resulting steam thoroughly cleans the microwave with just a wipe down needed afterward to finish.
44The Waterproof Eyeliner Pen That's A Mega Best-Seller On Amazon
With nearly 2,400 four-star reviews on Amazon, this eyeliner definitely qualifies for cult-favorite status. Reviewers rave about the ultra-fine tip that makes it easy to use and gives a precise, smooth line. They praise the long-lasting, waterproof gel formulation that "glides right on." And they rave about how it dries in seconds. Even contact lens wearers give this eyeliner high marks for ease of application with no irritation.
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