Gifts under $20 that are actually useful


The holidays are right around the corner, and with the holidays come those super-fun-but-super-hard-to-shop-for gift exchanges. When there’s a price limit so everyone can ball on a budget, it’s sometimes difficult to find a good gift that’s cheap and useful. You can find something under the limit in no time, but is your money really worth a gag gift that will be re-gifted next year?

Check out our list of gift items under $15 that someone will actually use.

Holding onto things like a phone, wallet, and keys during a workout is pretty inconvenient. This $14.99 will allow your fitness-loving friend to stay connected and keep track of their stuff without worry. With compartments for credit cards, an iPhone 5, 6, or 7, and a place to feed headphones through while listening, this bottle will keep all the important stuff in one place.

If you’ve got a friend who can’t live without the tunes, give them the gift of a portable speaker. This metal matte portable Bluetooth and AUX speaker comes in four colors and is only $12.99, but plays tunes with super crisp, high-quality sound. The recipient won’t be able to be anywhere without it.

If you have someone in your life that reads up on black holes instead of watching Netflix, this aesthetically pleasing $20 moon lamp could really light up their day. Even if your pal isn’t an avid space lover, this lamp is just 10x more exciting than the traditional lampshade — it even changes colors.

We all know that one person who is obsessed with their dog a little bit more than the average person. This gift is for them. The Pooch Selfie dog selfie stick for $12.99 makes taking selfies with their dog effortless —thanks to a tennis ball holding the dog’s attention.

Virtual reality, meet cardboard. OK, so this isn’t the most high tech VR headset out there, but for $15.00, it’s pretty darn impressive. The Google Cardboard is a headset that works with the person’s smartphone and an app, allowing them to become immersed in whatever is on their phone screen.

Everyone knows how risky it is to leave a wine glass sitting in the sink or on the counter (cats are real brats.) A 4-pack of for $12.95 is the perfect, worry-free gift for the wine lover in your life. 

If you’re shopping for a person who misplaces all of their belongings on a daily basis or constantly leaves their phone lying around in a public place, this is the toy for them. For $14.99, give your slightly spacey friend the gift of being able to track and find their phone, wallet, luggage, keys, pet, and all other important belongings with a Bluetooth and app enabled smart tracker and alarm.

It’s sad that arcades aren’t really a thing anymore — especially with the premiere of Stranger Things 2, it’s easy to wish those classic games were still around. ThinkGeek makes that possible with these mini handheld arcade games: choose from Asteroids, Centipede, Frogger, or Q’bert and take the gamer in your life back to the good ol’ days.

Spice up someone’s morning routine with a self-stirring mug for $13.89. This mug’s exterior is already cool enough on its own, perfectly resembling a DSLR camera lens. The self-stirring feature makes drinking on the go even more convenient — perfect for the lazy morning person.

We all know that friend that spends entirely too much time waiting in the Starbucks line — should we even mention the money? Luckily, this mini coffee maker is on sale at Urban Outfitters and perfect for a fast morning cup (up to 14 ounces). Just insert a K-cup, press the button, and enjoy a fresh brew in minutes. Get it for just $19.99 here.

We all know that one person who keeps everything —wristbands, receipts from special events, and especially tickets (I’m that person.) This $12.99 ticket stub diary is every nostalgic hoarder’s dream — with page after page of clear sleeves with multiple pocket sizes and margins below to write down details from the event. Every memory can now be stored in an organized way with this adorable book.

Tons of Bluetooth headphones exist, but they can be ridiculously expensive, obnoxiously big, or die in an hour. However, this pair of wireless Bluetooth earbuds are something your music loving friend will flip over. They’re so small they’re basically invisible to other people, last for 4-6 hours, and are rated super high on Amazon. Get them for $19.99 here.

If you’ve got a friend or family member that loves all things science, why not get them a science gift that doubles as a sick decoration? This $14.99 Galileo thermometer is just as classy as it is functional. The glass spheres on the inside are all different densities that individually rise or fall depending on the temperature. We bet they don’t have one of these yet.

If you’ve got a friend who has to take a picture of everything with their Polaroid camera, this is what they need. For $12.00, they can hang Polaroids or developed film on a string of whimsical lights with photo clips.

This R2-D2 measuring cup set is too adorable to not use — it even stacks up into a full Artoo decoration, and who wouldn’t want that in their kitchen? Get it (or the BB-8 version) for $19.99 here.

log in

reset password

Back to
log in