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Which secret Santa gifts are best?
Secret Santa: It’s a fun tradition, especially in offices. Everyone draws names and buys gifts for assigned people. By design, recipients never know who gave the gift, hence the “secret.” But it’s not easy to choose a gift for someone you may only know in passing. It can be even more challenging if you’re forced to stay below a certain price limit.
To help you, we’ve pulled together a list of suggestions for your Secret Santa shopping. The majority of these will help you stay below a $50 maximum. Whether you drew the name of your boss or the dude on the second floor who won’t hold the elevator door for you, this list should help save you time so you can resume your other holiday tasks.
Do you need a few more gift recommendations this holiday season? Check out these gift guides:
Top secret Santa gifts to buy below $50
Essential Oils Set: Essential oils remain a hot trend this holiday season, and they are an affordable gift. Scents like peppermint, eucalyptus, and lavender can promote relaxation, alertness, and more. Lagunamoon’s six-oil gift set has those scents, plus lemongrass, orange, and tea tree. It arrives in a visually appealing box for easy wrapping and gifting.
LED Tea Light Candles: Candles are perfect for setting a relaxing mood, whether at home or in the office. A high-quality set of LED candles can keep your coworker safe while also providing the same flickering light seen with real candles. The Homemory Flameless LED Tea Light includes a set of 12 small candles that can be used in candle holders or alone.
Sheet mask: Farmacy is one of our favorite skincare brands and we think just about anyone would be excited to get one of their face masks that have garnered a cult following. You can get one for less than $9 in three different styles.
Starbucks Gift Card: Even if your coworker isn’t the type to stop by Starbucks on the way in, everyone at least occasionally likes a cup of coffee. A Starbucks gift card is the perfect gift for your recipient. They ship in bundles of four, so you’ll have three extra to hand out to others on your giving list this holiday season.
Phone Case: If you know the type of phone your recipient has, you can find a classy yet affordable smartphone case. For iPhone 7 and 8 owners, the TORRAS Slim Fit iPhone 8 Case/iPhone 7 Case is a safe bet.
Cookie Cutters: At Christmastime, thoughts turn toward baking. A holiday-themed cookie cutter set can give your coworker hours of enjoyment. When we think baking we automatically think of Wilton so we recommend grabbing this Christmas set from them.
Popsocket: Everyone seems to have a Popsocket on their Christmas wish list this year. Your gift will attach to your recipient’s smartphone so it’s easier to grip throughout the day. It attaches directly to any glass-backed smartphone.
Wallet Multipurpose Tool: Give the gift of convenience. A wallet multipurpose tool fits snuggly into a wallet, billfold, or purse pocket so it will be on hand when your recipient needs it. The Wallet Ninja multitool has 18 tools in one, including a box opener, eyeglass tightener, ruler, screwdriver, can opener, and cell phone stand.
Bicycle Mount: For the busy biker in your office, a bicycle mount can be the best gift. If you can, check that they don’t already have one, then find a bike mount that will work with the type of phone they have. The Roam Universal Premium phone mount holds phones up to 3.5” wide, including iPhone models 6s or later and Galaxy models S7 or later.
Manicure Set: Keeping nails in shape can be challenging, especially for a busy professional. A manicure set is a gift just about anyone can use. The Keiby Citom nail clipper set is available in two different styles and includes all the tools necessary for hand, foot, and facial care, including toenail and fingernail clippers, tweezers, and a nail file.
Bullet Journal: Yes, some people still use paper-based journals. Bullet journals are all the rage these days, and the Dotted Bullet Notebook/Journal is both useful and eco-friendly.
Insulated Water Bottle: If your coworker always has bottled water nearby, why not replace it with something that will keep drinks cold longer? The Bubba Trailblazer Vacuum-Insulated Stainless Steel Water Bottle is available in a variety of colors and promises to keep drinks cold for 24 hours.
Travel Pillow: One of the biggest challenges of traveling is not having the comforts of home. The TETON Sports Camp Pillow is both lightweight and comfortable.
Travel Dog Bowl: Don’t forget about Fido. If your recipient is a dog lover, the Ollydog might be the perfect gift. It’s a water bottle that can be used for both humans and dogs – just pop off the attached bowl for your four-legged friend.
Codenames: If your coworker is into games and puzzles, the Codenames game is a must. Teams compete to discover the codenames of 25 secret agents.
Laptop Cooling Pad: Overheating can cause a laptop to slow down, especially if your recipient spends a great deal of time gaming. A cooling pad is a budget-friendly Secret Santa gift that can be used in the office or at home. The Cooler Master laptop cooling pad has a mesh surface and one fan to keep air circulating. Its heavy-duty but ultra-slim build also is ideal for gaming laptops.
Electric Wine Opener: Technology has made everything else easy, so why not opening a bottle of wine? The Oster Cordless Electric Wine Bottle Opener can remove a cork in a matter of seconds. You’ll enjoy 30 or more uses on just one charge.
Gift Card for a Favorite Lunch Spot: If your coworker has a favorite lunch spot, treat them to a meal. You can buy gift cards to every type of restaurant from fast food locations like Wendy’s or take a quick drive to the local place.
YETI Rambler Vacuum Insulated Cup: YETI has become the most recognized name in insulated drinkware. The YETI Rambler Lowball Stainless Steel Cup fits your budget, holding 10 oz. of liquid.
Adult Coloring Book: Adult coloring has been a popular trend for a while now, and it can be the perfect stress reliever for your coworker. The Posh Adult Coloring Book features stress-relieving patterns, with everything from flowers to intricate sheep to cityscapes.
Portable Phone Charger: We’ve all had a cellphone die on us when it’s least convenient. The Anker PowerCore Mini is our favorite budget option and comes in five fun colors – great for any personality. This is perfect for your friend who always asks to borrow a charger.
Spa Gift Set: After a long, stressful day at the office, nothing beats a long, warm soak in the tub. A gift basket can be a great way to offer the gift of relaxation. The Bath and Body gift basket is lavender-scented, which is the recommended aroma for reducing stress. The gift basket includes shower gel, bubble bath, body lotion, bath salt, two bath poufs, and a loofah back scrubber.
Store Gift Card: If you know where your recipient likes to shop, consider giving a gift card and leaving the shopping up to them. You can buy $25 gift cards for a variety of stores, including Ulta Beauty, JCPenney, Old Navy, and Cabela’s.
Himalayan Salt Lamp: Himalayan salt lamps have become a popular way to relax. The Himalayan Glow 1000 Salt Lamp is made from professionally carved Himalayan salt from Pakistan.
Stainless Steel Water Bottle: Give the gift of all-day cold water. The Healthy Human Insulated Stainless Steel Water Bottle comes in a wide range of colors and designs to allow you to pick the style that fits your recipient best.
Throw Blanket: We all have that coworker who can never seem to warm up. If that’s the person whose name you drew this year, the Comfort Spaces Sherpa/Plush Throw Blanket will be the perfect fit.
Succulent Set: Plants can soften up any workspace, and this Set of 4 Succulent Plant Glass Display Vases brings greenery without maintenance.
Professional Pen: Professionals prefer to take a more formal pen to meetings. You can’t go wrong with the Cross Tech3+ Satin Black Multifunction Pen, which does double duty as a ballpoint pen and stylus.
Emergency Car Kit: The holiday season kicks off a long, cold winter, boosting everyone’s odds of being stuck by the roadside. An emergency car kit can be a winning gift for any personality. Best of all, if the recipient ends up in an emergency situation later on, they’ll send a quiet thank you to their Secret Santa. AAA brands this 42-piece emergency kit that includes jumper cables and a high-quality aluminum flashlight.
Restaurant Gift Card: With a higher budget, you have the opportunity to give your recipient the gift of a fancy dinner at one of the best restaurants in town. You find gift cards to several restaurants, including Red Lobster, The Cheesecake Factory, and Outback Steakhouse.
Portable Espresso Maker: If your recipient prefers espresso to coffee, how about a portable espresso maker for their office? The Wacaco Minipresso GR Portable Espresso Machine has an innovative design for rich and flavorful roasts.
Personalized Growler: These days, it seems everyone’s into craft beers. If your recipient is one of that crowd, the Personalized Etched 64oz Amber Beer Growler is a must-buy. Your coworker will love having their own last name imprinted on the growler.
Cocktail Shaker Set: Have your coworker making drinks like a professional with the Cocktail Shaker Set. It includes a martini shaker, muddler, jigger, spoon, pourers, ice tongs, corkscrew, and stainless steel stand.
Bluetooth Headphones: Bluetooth headphones are perfect for replacing annoying workplace sounds with more pleasing noises. The Sony Wireless On-Ear Headphones are great for commuting and offer great value for someone looking to be an impressive secret Santa.
Roku: Cord-cutting is a great way to kick off the new year. The Roku Streaming Stick+ makes it easy, providing everything your coworker needs to watch TV without a hefty cable bill.
Prank Pack: Imagine being able to comfortably nap anywhere. The Prank Pack Nap Sack promises the ability to nap throughout the day by merely slipping the hood over your head.
Desktop Flip Signs: Offices can be a constant flurry of activity, and the DeskMate 24 Desktop Flip Sign lets its recipient easily communicate when they aren’t available to chat.
Chalkboard Coloring Book: Teacher Life: A Snarky Chalkboard Coloring Book isn’t like any other coloring book you’ve seen. It’s filled with plenty of laughs for grown-ups.
Desk Flipchart: When you work in an office, every day can be a new adventure. The Fred THE DAILY MOOD Desk Flipchart helps your coworker pick out each day’s mood and let everyone around know.
Donald Trump Chia Pet: Everyone knows to avoid talking politics at the office, but the Chia Pet Donald Trump can unite co-workers across the political spectrum. Besides, it’s a great gag gift.
Fanny Pack: Fanny Packs often bring plenty of laughs, but the Dad Bag Fake Belly Waist Pack Unisex Fanny Pack is a true fashion faux pas. You’ll have everyone laughing at the fake belly.
Snarky Graphic T-Shirt: There’s no limit to the options here, but this Funny & Snarky Zombie Vintage Art T-shirt will elicit laughs all around.
Essential Hangry Kit: The Essential Hangry Kit will be the hit of the party. It features a variety of sweet and salty treats, including salted peanuts, peanut butter crackers, Knott’s Cookies, and Laffy Taffy.
Cat DJ Deck: Only the cat lovers in your office will fight to win the SUCK UK Cat Playhouse Series. It features a mixing deck-shaped cat scratch mat and spinnable deck.
Breakfast Sandwich Maker: Whoever wins this gift will need to cook breakfast for everyone in the office. The Hamilton Beach Breakfast Sandwich Maker can make delicious breakfast sandwiches in only 5 minutes.
Bonsai Tree Kit: Bonsai trees are both beautiful and fun. The Bonsai Tree Seed Starter Kit has everything you need to grow bonsai trees, including a how-to video.
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Stephanie Faris writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.