Gifting: Decoded – Self Care Edition

The 2021 Holiday Gift Guide is here!

This year’s Gift Guide is all about self care. There have definitely been some bright spots this year, but it’s also been a tough one so we could use a little rest, relaxation, and recovery. But here’s the thing: while it’s supposed to be self care, a lot of people feel too guilty or rushed or unmotivated to jump start the [necessary] process of caring for their mental health on their own. If you know someone who could use a little extra push, this guide is for you.

Some may say November 9th is too early for a gift guide, but Chanukah starts in less than 3 weeks so if you (or the person you’re buying for) celebrates, you really need to start shopping now. Or perhaps, like me, you’re expecting to birth a bambino on Xmas day so the shopping needs to happen early. Whatever the reason, I would consider the relief that comes from crossing “buy gifts” off your to-do list its own form of self care.

  1. Can’t gift self care stuff without considering face masks! This set has it all and while I already offered several reasons to start shopping now, here’s one more: the Sephora sale is happening right now so this is actually the ideal time to buy.
  2. One of my favorite methods of self care is a nice glass of wine or cocktail (or 5) plus some trash tv. In case your giftee is abstaining from alcohol, I recommend gifting something like Aura Bora, Seasons Sparkling, or Betty Buzz. These are non-alcoholic seltzers/mixers with gorgeous packaging and fun flavors. They can be enjoyed on their own (poured into fun glassware to still feel special) or used as mixers if the recipient is imbibing. Whether or not you’re boozing, it’s always nice to have a spiffy, stylized bar cart.
  3. A journal with prompts is my kind of journal. A big part of self care is becoming self aware. The Do It For Yourself journal encourages mindfulness and looks super groovy too.
  4. Sometimes self care means drinking a fancy coffee instead of the basic stuff. But since sometimes the cost of regularly buying a fancy coffee might result in more stress than self care, give them something that will help them be their own barista. An electric milk frother is the easiest way to up your coffee game and there are some that look great on the countertop. Obviously I lust after the Smeg but at $200 it might be too much of a splurge. The HadiNeeon and illy are great (and good looking) alternatives.
  5. Since self care often conjures images of spa day, lean into those vibes with a nice robe. I’ve heard great things about Weezie towels and love that their version has short sleeves and can be personalized.
  6. Honestly, my preferred form of self care is comfort food, specifically pasta. A mac and cheese subscription would be right up my alley.
  7. You’re probably expecting a candle on this list. I love candles but that’s just too predictable on a self care list (or any holiday gift guide for that matter). Instead, I’m going to suggest a candle making class. I know this is something Candlefish does (Atlanta and now Charleston), but I’m sure plenty of other cities have similar classes. And if your city doesn’t offer this, you can get a kit like this to have the same experience at home.
  8. A gift card might seem lame, but if your friend uses exercise as a primary method to get in the right headspace then it’s just the ticket. This list from Brides is actually quite comprehensive, but pretty much every city now has some form of Barry’s Bootcamp or reformer studio or other fun boutique fitness class you can gift. There’s a class for any kind of fitness fan.