Despite an avalanche of shopping options, it seems giving a gift that is truly fun and functional—something the recipient will actually use and enjoy—is harder than ever. Here are 11 stand-out functional gifts we think folks will appreciate, and that will make you a gift-giving superstar.
Take your drinks to the next level
A can’t-miss gift that will make any party the talk of the town is Glo Drinks Light Up Cubes. The light-up cubes are engineered to glow when they touch liquid, then turn off when the glass is empty. They change to nine different colors and last up to eight hours.
Tea with an artsy twist
If you’ve got a tea lover in your life, this cool household gift will endear you to them forever. A Blooming Tea Flowers & Teapot Set from
Flower Pot Tea Company makes tea time extra special, as blooming tea flowers take shape inside a glass pot that delivers delicious flavor.
A candle with a hidden surprise
If you’re looking for gifts that leave a lasting impression, a candle is usually at the bottom of the list. However, this one melts away to leave something “wicked” and memorable behind. The PyroPet Animal Skeleton Candle straddles the line between cute and twisted. As a candle burns, the animal melts away to reveal its skeleton, which can be kept on display.
Eco-friendly and fun
Watches are often too expensive or too cheap-looking to gift. I Like Paper’s Tyvek® Printed Watch is fun, functional, affordable, eco-friendly and made of water-resistant and surprisingly durable paper. Artist and illustrator-designed patterns pack each one with personality and charm, making it something the wearer will want to show off.
For the kiddos
Dunk more than just cookies
All kids want to play with their food, and this mug allows them to do just that. The oversized Sport Mug from Maxi’s Creations brings game time to meal and snack time. Originally designed by an 8 year-old to hold hot chocolate and mini marshmallows, it can be used for berries and cereal, oyster crackers and soup, or anything else your child can think of.
Teach them to eat constructively
Adding to the “mealtime can be playtime” theme is Constructive Eating’s Mealset and Placemat, which creates a mealtime worksite that features a plate with food ramps and utensils like a forklift fork, front loader spoon, and bulldozer pusher. Kids will run to the table to get on the job and devour their dinner.
The smarter way to dunk
Kids love to dip cookies in milk, but too often the cookie ends up at being fished out of the bottom of the cup. The Dipr Cookie Spoon is the ultimate utensil that allows your child (or, let’s face it, you) to dip a cookie in milk without the mess and stress of dropping it.
Socks can be considered a “borderline” gift, but hear us out on this one. Sukeno Socks have realistic-looking designs and come folded as cupcakes, sushi rolls, sashimi, popsicles, and doughnuts. They’re created on state-of-the-art Japanese knitting machines that helps the designs stay crisp even after washing.
Dinner time might sometimes be a struggle for parents, but bedtime is consistently tough. With Snurk Living’s Whimsical Character Duvet Set kids get to play dress up as they get tucked in and have some fun at bedtime. Kids can be mermaids, astronauts, or ballerinas just by snuggling up under the covers.
Palm-sized pet, room-sized sound
There’s no better gift than the gift of music, and this fun and functional speaker will allow your kids to listen all the time. My Audio Pet’s Bluetooth Speaker looks like a tiny animal but plays music. It has a wireless selfie remote shutter, a built-in mic for phone calls and pairs via Bluetooth to any phone or music device. On second thought, this gift works for both kids AND adults.
For the pets
An unexpected fetch partner
OK, technically a pet will never be disappointed with any gift you give it, but this one will be a true home run for both of you. The iFetch Automatic Ball Launcher is an interactive, on-demand ball launching toy designed to let your dog or cat play fetch without you. When your pet drops the ball into the hopper, the iFetch shoots it out for a game of chase.
When you thoughtfully balances thoughtfulness and usefulness, it’s a gifting win. If you give any one of these fun and functional gifts to him, her, the kids, or your pet, it’s sure to be a memorable one they reach for year after year.
Interested in more clever & functional gifts for pets? Here are some of the best stocking stuffers for pets this year.
Never miss a post, video, or feature. See what’s new on What’s Next!