11 Thoughtful Gifts for Secret Santa and White Elephant Exchanges

Uncommon Goods
Uncommon Goods

Finding a suitable gift for a Secret Santa, Yankee, or white elephant exchange can be challenging, especially if you don’t know the recipient all that well. We wanted to help, so we found 11 items that anyone would be happy to receive.

Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we only get commission on items you buy and don’t return, so we’re only happy if you’re happy. Thanks for helping us pay the bills!

1. Bourbon-Infused Coffee

We could all use a little kick in the morning, and this Tennessee-brewed coffee is sure to do the trick. A splash of Kentucky bourbon lends the Arabica beans their unique aroma and flavor, but it doesn’t actually contain alcohol, so it’s plenty safe for sipping at the office.

Find It at Uncommon Goods for $20.

2. Bento 3-in-1 Splash Box

A set of containers
Amazon

Plastic-free is increasingly becoming the new norm. The Splash Box has three non-toxic stainless steel food trays that lock together for easy transport, while simultaneously keeping your peas apart from your mashed potatoes. It’s leak-proof, shatter-proof, and safe for the dishwasher, oven, and toaster oven on medium heat.

Find It on Amazon for $35.

3. Clinique Mascara and Balm Travel Ornament Set

A makeup set
Walmart

This travel kit is the perfect accessory for frequent fliers who want to freshen up after touching down in a new city or country. Clinique’s black High Impact mascara and cleansing balm are wrapped up in a convenient—and TSA-approved!—travel ornament.

Find It at Walmart for $16 and also at these other retailers:

4. “Weird & Wacky USA” Jigsaw Puzzle

A U.S. map puzzle
True South

Help someone discover the quirky side of America with this 500-piece puzzle illustrated by an award-winning designer. Colorful icons highlight the odd roadside attractions in each state, and who knows—it might even inspire an unforgettable road trip.

Find It at the True South Puzzle Company for $27.

5. Italian Chesemaking Kit

The cheesemaking kit
Uncommon Goods

Give the gift of good cheese this season with a DIY kit. The box holds enough ingredients to make 10 batches of cheese, including classic varieties such as mozzarella, burrata, and ricotta. No prior cheesemaking experience necessary.

Find It at Uncommon Goods for $25.

6. Jam Hang Up Portable Bluetooth Speaker

A portable speaker
Best Buy

Music lovers will appreciate this durable Bluetooth speaker with a built-in suction and stick pad. They can slap it on a shower wall, mirror, or other smooth surface around the house or backyard and get their groove on. It can be submerged in water for 30 minutes and comes with a rechargeable battery.

Find It at these retailers:

7. SmartKlear Carbon Smartphone Cleaner

A smartphone cleaner
The Grommet

NASA uses SmartKlear’s carbon cleaning technology in its space station, and it can now be used to scrub the germs and grime from any smartphone or electronic screen. Simply swipe the device across a screen, and the carbon substance it contains will get to work repelling any dirt or oil it encounters.

Find It at Amazon for $16 and also at these other retailers:

8. The Tile Mate

The Tile Mate and Slim Combo Pack
Amazon

We all know that one person who’s constantly misplacing their things. The Tile Mate Bluetooth tracker will help jog their memory. It hooks onto keychains, suitcases, purses, bikes, and more to help the user find their items via a companion app. It also works in reverse: Pressing a button on the Tile Mate makes the user’s phone ring, even when it’s on silent.

Find It on Amazon for $10 and also at these other retailers:

9. Homesick Books Candle

The Books candle
Homesick Candles

The Books candle from Homesick would make a thoughtful gift for any bibliophile who already has a stack of unread novels at home. Top notes of orange and nutmeg are rounded out by earthy fragrances like sandalwood and cedarwood. Splashes of vanilla, balsam, and amber form the base and help recreate the unmistakable scent of a good book.

Find It at Homesick Candles for $30 and also at these other retailers:

10. Chocolate-Covered Snowman Oreos

A box of chocolate-covered Oreos
Amazon

Who doesn’t love holiday-themed chocolates? These milk chocolate-drizzled Oreos from Philadelphia Candies come with candy snowmen on top. There’s also a dark chocolate version, as well as a milk chocolate version with winter snowflakes on top.

Find It on Amazon for $15.

11. Ulla Hydration Reminder Bottle

The water bottle on a desk
The Grommet

We often forget to stay hydrated, but this water bottle accessory from Ulla makes it easy to foster healthy habits. The silicone band fits over most bottles and sends out reminders to take a swig any time the user has gone too long without water. Get one for a health-conscious coworker, or perhaps that one person you know who seems to be subsisting solely on coffee.

Find It at The Grommet for $25 or on Amazon for $29.

Making Your Bed Is Easier Than Ever With These Amazing Sheets

The Button Sheet Collection, Kickstarter
The Button Sheet Collection, Kickstarter

Do you wake up every morning in a stifling cocoon of tangled bedclothes that 1) makes it hard to get out of bed in the first place, and 2) makes it impossible to fathom making your bed more often than whenever you wash your sheets?

The Button Sheet Collection is here to save you. The set contains a fitted sheet, a flat sheet, and a blanket, which all fasten neatly together with four buttons that sit along the bottom edge of your bed.

The buttons ensure that your blanket will never slide off your flat sheet, your flat sheet will never slide off your fitted sheet, and you will never slide off the edge of sanity.

But that’s not the only way the Button Sheet Collection simplifies the sleeping process. Slits in the bottom two corners of the flat sheet and blanket guarantee that both items lie perfectly flat—there’s no need to fold and tuck them underneath the mattress. Also, there are extra inches added to the flat sheet and blanket, so you have an optimal amount of wiggle room no matter what your go-to sleeping position is.

In the morning, all you have to do is give the flat sheet and blanket a quick fluff and walk away from your now perfectly-made bed.

The long-staple cotton, 400 thread count, and sateen weave make the sheets just as comfortable as they are functional, and here’s yet another reason you can (literally) rest easy with the collection: it’s Oeko-Tex certified and free from any harmful chemicals.

Prices for the Button Sheet Collection—which includes one pillowcase, a fitted sheet, a flat sheet, and a blanket—start at $239; you can check out more buying options on Kickstarter, and estimated delivery is in November.

Since you’re going to spend around one third of your day asleep, it’s worth maximizing your experience in whatever ways you can, from buying Button Sheets, to ending the covers tug-of-war, to finding the perfect mattress, and beyond.

This Adjustable Bag Mate Makes Traveling Anywhere Much More Convenient

NEX
NEX

Carrying a backpack for a long period of time can lead to aching in your neck, back, or shoulders. Plus, keeping essentials in your bag, like a passport or phone, can make them a hassle to retrieve when necessary. NEX, now raising money on Kickstarter, is a three-in-one bag mate that makes traveling with a backpack pain-free and convenient.

This new "bag mate" is designed with air cushions that evenly distribute the weight of your backpack across your shoulders. Since it makes your bag feel 30 percent lighter, it also helps improve your posture.

NEX features functional and hidden pockets to not only make it easier to grab your essentials when on the go, but also keep them secured—since they are much safer on your shoulders than in your bag where people can easily steal them. Each strap is designed with three inner pockets as well as a hidden pocket to store everyday valuables such as your keys or cash.

Cash and keys going in a pocket on a NEX bag mate
NEX

Sometimes a backpack isn't necessary for quick outings, so NEX can act as a cross-body bag as well. Easily clip it on and adjust the fit to your liking, and now NEX can be used when you're simply going out for a run or grabbing groceries. Plus, it's designed with recycled waterproof material, meaning you don't have to worry about your valuables getting damaged due to the weather.

guy walking with blue cross body bag
NEX

With over a week left in its campaign, NEX has already surpassed its goal of $1000, raising over $47,000 as of June 25. By pledging $19 or more, you can get your own bag mate on KickStarter. Shipping is scheduled for August.

Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we choose all products independently and only get commission on items you buy and don't return, so we're only happy if you're happy. Thanks for helping us pay the bills!

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