Neal here today.
Hope you’re having a very merry holiday season! We published this gift guide a few weeks ago, but today, we’ve updated it, per your request, to include even more budget friendly (and many original, out of the box non-clothing items) for you to shop for every guy on your list. If this is your first time viewing this guide, I hope you enjoy it! If you’ve been here before, scroll all the way down to the bottom for our news updates!
Mens Gift Guide
Scarves are can’t miss gifts for any guy-assuming you buy quality, good looking scarves 😉 Make sure he dresses for the cold like he cares about how he looks. Nordstrom always has a great selection (their cashmere scarves are marked down) J.Crew’s scarves are also great (plus, Jess says they’re always on sale) and Barbour scarves (top-notch quality and you can’t beat the tartan patterns.)
Speaking of dressing warm and caring how you look–he’s likely in need of a glove upgrade. This leather pair is high quality, comes in several colors, and are lined with cashmere. (Runs small, heads up!) This black leather pair are tech gloves (so if he wants to be able to use his phone while wearing them, maybe these are a better choice. They’re marked down to under $50 too!)
This was actually Jess’ idea. At first glance I thought it was dumb but now I really want one. It’s a classy way to store an iPad, organize a desk, etc. Get it for you dad/brother, your office secret Santa, or the dude you’ve been on dates with but “like are still not really dating 😉”
Jess got me this jacket last year and I absolutely love it. Can be dressed up (even over a suit) and certainly looks great with anything else. My go to for early and late winter months. Whatever style you think he’d like best, a Barbour jacket is always an A+ gift in my book that will earn you huge brownie points.
I like this brand because it’s classic, versatile, & affordable timepieces for the guy that needs a good looking watch. Jess got me this one last Christmas, which I love (I spotted it in GQ and dropped the hint). It’s a remake of a classic 1960’s design.
Every guy, whether he asks for them or not, wants good skincare products. I always ask for them for Christmas–this year, Jess’ favorite clean beauty brand, Beautycounter, came out with a special set just for guys–the products are high quality and I love that it comes with a little travel bag. It includes a face wash, shave cream, aftershave, and face lotion for a steal at $45. I also love Brickell’s products, but they don’t come in a cool gift set!
Remember this jacket from this post? I’ve owned this jacket for about a month and I’ve worn it more than any other jacket. I never thought I would be a puffer jacket guy, but this thing is light, crazy warm, and not remotely bulky, so it is still very stylish. I even wore it to the Bears game when it was freezing and stayed really warm. Plus, it rolls up into nothing, making it ideal for travel.
Jess always gets asked what jeans I recommend for men–and Levi’s are my go-to. Always! But these are a nice change up from my dark skinny jeans. Great for daytime or to offset a darker sweater or jacket. Shop more styles here. (I’d recommend the 511’s for most guys–they’re stylish and slim fitting without being super skinny.)
Shinola is one of my favorite American brands. I carry one of their wallets every day and own several of their watches. If you read my gift guide last year, you already know––I can’t stand the giant George Costanza wallet. If he has a giant bulky wallet, he needs this instead. It only holds what he needs and is invisible in your pockets. (Nordstrom also makes a $50 version if that’s more within your budget!)
One of those gifts that doesn’t seem that cool at first, but it’s really awesome when you’re traveling. Jess got me one years ago and I absolutely love it. Plus it makes me think of her every time I am dealing with a TSA agent. If you want to get your guy a trip but want something for him to open, this is the perfect gift for that! Plus, this one comes with a luggage tag, too, so you don’t have to use those crappy airline tags that will inevitably fall off the one time your bag actually gets lost.
The most versatile boot in the game. Perfect for the office or egg nog with Aunt Edna. Sure to up any man’s style. I have a couple different pairs and they are my #1 pair of shoes in the winter. This pair is only $65 and very sharp–they come in both leather and black. If you’re willing to splurge–I’d recommend Vince’s boots–this is basically this year’s equivalent to the pair I got last year and I wear them every week. Plus, this Vince pair is 40% off!
I also love…
A signature gift for the mountain man in your life. These are legendary. I wore a pair of my grandpa’s on my first construction job and I still wear the brand today–if your guy needs quality, stylish winter boots, get these. They will last forever. They will outlive all of us.
If you know me, you know I’m not a backpack to the office man (backpacks are not professional–that’s what briefcases are for), but this thing is perfect for travel and fun. I used this exact bag to haul my stuff all over Italy this past summer.
Nice booze deserves nice glasses. Don’t stop at buying that nice bottle for your boss, dad, or brother. These are a great way to put a boozy gift over the top. Paired with a great whiskey or bourbon (I recommend Basil Hayden if you’re looking to spend around $30 or Blanton’s if you want to splurge) this combo is also the ideal gift for a guy you recently started dating but aren’t super serious with yet–it’s really nice, thoughtful, but not over the top.
14. Cool Sweaters & Thermal Tops
Sweaters really are having a moment. I love that trendy now seemingly means anything from crazy patterns to classic winter prints. Heavier tops seem to come and go with fashion, but this year brings some awesome items that work for layering if he’s headed to a football game or to ski, but are perfect on their own too.
Any guy would love to receive this, but in particular–this is for the guy who drives everyone crazy because he insists on wearing his hoodie everywhere in public. (Not acceptable.) With this, he can be comfortable and stylish at the same time. It looks great with Levi’s and any of the boots I linked above, or with sneakers.
I don’t know one guy that doesn’t need to up his workout gear at least a little bit. Keep it simple and at least make him shelve the college frat wear. (There’s no way he will agree to toss it–but you better not make him!) My favorites: this Nike dry-fit hoodie (Under $50), Nike joggers, and I haven’t personally tried these Zella shorts but they have great reviews and are on my wishlist. (Hint hint.)
To replace his ratty sweats–they’re nice and versatile enough for brunch or the gym, comfy enough for the couch. Get em for your brother!
You know I’m a Ray Bans guy, but sometimes I like to go against the grain of every single person wearing Ray Bans. Raen is a newer California based brand that I’ve started wearing and I’m very impressed. If your guy needs sunglasses but likes to be a little different, get him a pair. (These are the ones I have–Jess will link more below.) On the flip side, Ray Bans also make an incredible gift–they’re high quality, classic, and never go out of style. I have a bunch of different pairs and you can’t go wrong. If you’re looking for a similar look but more budget-friendly, 1901 (a Nordstrom brand) makes a bunch of similar styles for $25!
If he likes music and hasn’t gotten into vinyl, it is certainly not too late. This is a great way to create a new hobby through a gift. (Get him a few of his favorite albums on vinyl to go with it–it makes it a really meaningful gift!) You just can’t describe the difference between a night in playing records and a night in playing Spotify.
We have this Audiotechnica player which is a professional turntable that we connect to our Sonos speakers–note: it doesn’t have built-in speakers, so it’s a great option if you have a bit more to spend and your guy is a sound junkie and wants it to connect to his high-end speakers. BUT If you want one that plays independently with its own speakers, is a little more budget-friendly and also compatible with Bluetooth–I’d recommend this one. Crosley is a great brand!
More gift ideas under or around $50:
Three great “experience” gifts:
I’m actually including these in a separate round-up to come, but wanted to put here just in case you miss the next one–these would be great for guys in particular!
New York Times Sunday subscription: Several of you guys suggested this! What a great idea! The gift that truly keeps on giving–he’ll love reading it every Sunday and always think of you! Plus, wouldn’t it be cute to give along with a Yeti mug and slippers to enjoy while he reads it?
A flying lesson: One reader said this was the best gift she ever received–apparently introductory flying lessons are easy to find wherever you live and they’re relatively affordable, too! Great for an adventure-seeker.
2019 National Parks Pass: Gets you access to any state park or monument. Such a thoughtful gift for any guy who loves the outdoors! Available at REI (who donates 10% of the pass sales to the National Park foundation!)
Do you have any other request you’d like to see? We’ll continue to add to this throughout the season, so let us know!