the best stocking stuffers for any budget


hiii - can you believe christmas is in two weeks? wild.

it seems as though everyone is completely in gift-buying mode by now, and although i finish my shopping early every year, there always seems to be a last-minute gift to buy - a little something for your neighbor, or all of a sudden your one friend gift exchange has turned into seven before you even know it.

i try to avoid the mall like the plague during the holiday season - the crowds are just nuts. so over the past few years, i have developed a strategy and found it best to keep a box of grab-and-go stocking stuffers. this may sound super impersonal, but i include things that i genuinely love and think my friends will love as well.

when your fifth holiday party rolls around and you are blanking on what to bring for the gift exchange, try something on this list. the price range varies, so it should fit whatever criteria you have, too.

the best stocking stuffers for any budget


1. Plush beanies

these are the best beanies ever. they’re so good that when a friend kept “borrowing” one, i eventually gave it to him. they have the perfect amount of slouch and they’re super soft thanks to the fleece lining. i’m obsessed.. and any girl/ guy/ human on your list will be, too.

2. fair trade coffee + tea

these gifts are great for those who already enjoy coffee and tea because you know they will be used. i’ve linked options that are fair trade so you know that your money is going to a good cause, thus making the gift a little more special. my favorite place to get fair trade coffee and tea is the little market, with equal exchange being a close second. disclaimer: i can only speak on the tea; i’ve never really had coffee before! just not my vibe.

SHOP: fair trade coffee + tea at The Little Market and Equal Exchange

PS - i think you could get just about anything from the Little Market and it would be a great gift! love their tote bags and they have amazing curated gift boxes (or you can customize one).


3. KL nail polish

this is great for any beauty lover, and i’ve given them to friends’ kids as well. all of the polishes are 12-free, meaning there are less toxic chemicals than some of the polishes sold in drugstores. the formula is super long-lasting and comes in so many colors that just about anyone will find a color they like. i’m pictured wearing “Pinky” and “Das Esspensive.”

4. Equal Exchange chocolate

growing up, the holidays were not the holidays without a box of chocolates on every coffee table, and they were always given each host or hostess, too. while i do not have the biggest sweet tooth, i have tried personally tried Equal Exchange (a fair-trade company) and they are super yummy - the chocolate mint is my favorite. they are even highly praised by my See’s and Godiva obsessed friends! they are great about curating special gift sets, so definitely keep an eye on those.

SHOP: Equal Exchange chocolate available for purchase here


5. hair tie carabiners

sometimes you just need to go for the practical, useful gift. you don’t have to be a DIY expert to do this, and you can make quite a few for less than $20 total. all you need is a carabiner (they usually come in sets of 2) from a sporting goods store (or amazon), and a pack of hair ties. you just string them all on the carabiner, and if you are feeling fancy, add a bow for an extra touch. if you are on a sports team or in a sorority, these are the perfect gifts and super cheap, too.

6. just about anything from Lush

no matter who you are shopping for, you will absolutely find something for them at Lush. I’ve yet to meet anyone who absolutely hated Lush, or had problems with their products. their ingredients are natural, and usually vegan/ vegetarian, so they are less irritating than the local body stores at malls. i love giving a lip scrub and chap stick as a combo, and the Sleepy lotion is great for friends who travel a lot. Lemony Flutter cuticle butter is also a staple - the lemon scent is strong, but it really does wonders. my mom knits and keeps one in every bag, so keep this balm in mind for any of your crafty friends :) don’t ask me about the bath bombs, they freak me out.

SHOP: Lush lip balms+ scrubs // Sleepy lotion // Lemony Flutter // curated Lush gift sets


7. hand crafted ornaments

i know, i know. ornaments are usually too cliche and overdone, and everyone already has tons that could fill their tree three times over. but i love giving a handmade ornament, especially now that a lot of my friends are living in their own places with their own trees to decorate. buying handmade also supports artisans, so win-win.

PS: if you travel a lot, this is one of the best souvenir- type things to buy. my family went to Disney World every year the week after Thanksgiving and the ornaments we got there are still some of my favorites. if you aren’t sure where to look, check out the local farmer’s market, they will have the best selection :)

don’t wanna leave the house?

8. music!

support local artists and buy albums old-school, or digital copies through their own websites. if you don’t know what specifically to get, digital gifts on iTunes also make this fairly easy, as well as subscriptions to places like Spotify or Apple music. and if you are more into buying experiences as opposed to traditional gifts, concert tickets for you and a friend to go see your favorite band together is so fun. sometimes i will make this an “i owe you” style gift until i know their schedule, and once it’s set, i’ll buy tickets ASAP.

SHOP: Apple Music subscriptions and gift cards // Spotify subscriptions // find local concert tickets at TicketMaster


9. Kendra Beshk keychains

I’ve talked about these so many times on my blog, but they really are that great. you can order custom tags, but her pre-made tags are just as fun. and if you are shopping for someone who doesn’t like color, there are metals available as well - perfect for any gender neutral person on your list.

10. a good old-school gift card

unoriginal? yes. predictable? for sure. but if you know someone will absolutely use that gift card i don’t see why not. they say “cash is king,” so i think it’s safe to say that gift cards are second best (especially for any students! i thought grocery store gift cards were absurd until i lived alone). 

what are your favorite stocking stuffers?

PS for anyone looking for a cheat-sheet, here is a shoppable guide that includes everything on my list:


shop this post:

1. Plush beanies

2. fair trade coffee + tea at The Little Market and Equal Exchange

3. KL polish

4. Equal Exchange chocolate

5. hair tie carabiners: carabiners available here, hair ties here

6. Lush lip scrubs + chapsticks, Sleepy lotion, Lemony Flutter, or check out their curated gift boxes

7. Kendra Beshk keychains

8. music: Spotify + Apple Music gift cards or visit TicketMaster for concert tickets

9. hand crafted ornaments - check out your local farmers’ market (or find one when you’re out traveling), or visit

10. gift cards - no explanation necessary haha