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2018 Gift Guide: 30+ Gift Ideas $50 & Under We All Secretly Want


Guys, there are SO MANY great gifts under $50. So far, we’ve collated over 100 picks over on our big Gift Guide landing page (check that out here) and had to stop ourselves to not overload you and inflict paralysis of choice. So, for anyone who has champagne tastes with a prosecco budget, this is your gift guide. We have tech items, great books, home goods I def wouldn’t mind under my own tree, beauty and travel picks…basically, a little bit of everything for honestly just about everyone on your list. Got a Secret Santa you’re stressing about shopping for? Need a budget-friendly (but impressive) gift for your sister-in-law/neighbor/co-worker? Consider it done.

1. Escape, $30: Gray Malin became the art sweetheart of the design world a few years ago with his birds-eye-view photographs and quirky animal prints. His pieces are a bit pricey, but for $30, you can bring his unique point of view to your coffee table with this beautiful book.

2. Scented Votive Candles, $44: I can remember back to a time in high school where my best friend Claudia would take her brother’s cologne, spread it into a piece of clothing and tell people to close their eyes, take a whiff and say “isn’t is just like a cute boy who smells REALLY good walked by?” In retrospect, that was very strange (particularly because it was her brother’s fragrance), but if you know someone who likes to always conjure the feeling/scent of a man, this trio from candle company Boy Smells will be a hit.

3. Baggu Duck Bag, $32: A great just large enough tote (with both handles and a strap) for everyday life at a great price. Plus, who can’t get behind a company with eco-friendly ethos?

4. Native Union Smart Charger Set, $45: For anyone who has that friend who’s always asking to borrow a charger, this one has an eye-catching reinforced braided cord and a handy leather strap to keep said cord from quickly transforming into a knotted pretzel.

5. Soma Glass Water Bottle, $32: Get ahead of a friend’s New Years resolution of drinking more water and getting healthy (again) with a seriously good looking glass water bottle that comes in six colorways.

6. Pedicure Set, $20: Donning heavy boots all winter can take your feet from sandal-ready to pretty gnarly, so do a friend/sister/coworker a favor and get her this callous-erasing pedicure set (and go ahead and pick one up for yourself in the name of #selfcare).

7. To-go Bowl, $25: For all those salads, soups and veggie bowls your giftee is bound to bring for lunch to work in the coming weeks.

8. One Step Hair Dryer, $60: A previous boss (with really good hair) raved about this brush hair dryer and when I finally bit the bullet and got it, I was instantly sold (as was a friend who came to visit this past summer, used it and came out of the bathroom specifically to tell me how much she loved it, as she swung her perfectly blown-out locks from side to side).

9. Luxe Hair Turban, $30: I recently purchased a hair towel from this brand and while I really do like it (no more heavy floppy body towel on my head, makes my hair dry much faster), if I could go back in time, I’d pay a few more dollars for THIS one with the button and loop to keep it in place.

10. Wood Spoon Pair, $48: If anyone is reading this that needs to buy me a gift this year, I wouldn’t be mad at this beautiful wood spoon set should it find its way under my tree. Thanks in advance.

11. Round Cutting Board, $25: Basically every kitchen ever photographed over here at EHD has beautiful wood cutting boards layered against a backsplash.

12. Half-Dipped Vase, from $12: There isn’t a speckled ceramic vessel that isn’t EHD-approved for gifting…or life.

13. Drybar Detailing Iron, $49: We all have that friend who always seems to have a change of clothes in their car to do a wardrobe swap, right? That same friend always seems to have a bulking curling iron or straightener sticking out of their bag at the office. Do them a favor and upgrade their after-work sprucing routine with this tiny Drybar iron for pre-happy hour touch-ups.

14. Essential Oil Diffuser, $22: The holidays can be stressful. Evidently, essential oils are the anti-stressor. To make this diffuser extra special, put together a trio of oils so they can start using it right away (we hear ylang-ylang, lavender and chamomile mellow out anxiety).

15. Wood Block Photo Prints, $20: Here’s a no-fail personal and thoughtful gift (for about as much as you probably spend every week on coffee) for anyone who would love to see your face every day (mom, BFF, BAE, grandparents and beyond).

16. Brass Mister, $38: A very good looking addition to any plant parent’s indoor garden.

17. Moon Dominoes, $45: Fun that doubles as decor? Now there’s a great idea. Throw in a “coupon” your giftee can cash in for game night, and you’re all set.

18. Corkscrew, $50: Rabbit makes FANTASTIC corkscrews and bar accessories, and this matte black and brass line is perfect for your wine-loving loved one who not only has great taste in vino but also in decor.

19. Bartender Book, $17: A fun, easy gift for any cocktailing adult in your life.

20. Ceramic Planter with Wood Stand, $25: We love the color and mid-century styling os this planter and wood stand FOR $25 (actually, it’s currently on sale for about $19, so less if you snag it before the deal expires). It’s absolutely a gift someone will think cost you way more than you actually spent (though the $$$ amount shouldn’t matter, of course). Throw in an easy-to-care-for snake plant that basically no one, not even the blackest of black thumbs, can slaughter.

21. 4-Way Pillow Cover, $42: Beautifully modern in the colors of the moment, we can not only get behind the design of this throw pillow but also the principles of the company that created it (Equal Uprise stands for quality craftsmanship, conscious consumerism and responsibly made goods).

22. Scratch The World Map, $27: A few years ago, my best friend (not the cologne-loving one, but my other BF), got bit with the travel bug, so for Christmas I got her this scratch-off map so she could document all her past trips and it was definitely a winner.

23. Hydro Flask, from $30: If you did a quick span of the EHD headquarters, you’d think we were sponsored by Hydroflask…more than half of us have one on our desk at any given time because they are GREAT. I once accidentally left mine filled with ice water at home (it was a VERY sad work day for me), and when I grabbed it the next morning, it still had ice chunks floating in it. This is what all water bottles should aspire to, methinks.

24. Bliss Teapot, $49: A sweet ceramic teapot for anyone in your life you’re sweet on (even if just in a platonic way).

25. Memory Foam Slippers, from $20: I may or may not have these currently sitting in my cart for myself. I received an adorable set of crushed velvet pom-pom slippers last year from my brother, but I quickly realized that the soft sole would have to stay indoors and I couldn’t run out in them to take out the recycling on a crisp, dewy morning without ruining them. Enter these, with a rubber slip-resistant sole (and memory foam insole). Do your favorite homebody a favor and scoop these up (with the teapot from above or cold brew maker from below).

26. Iced Coffee Maker, from $30: Perfect cold brew is a science, right? (At least it feels that way). Let it look that way, too.

27. Glass Straws, from $36: These glass straws (which come in a set of 4 in multiple colors, straight or bent) would look super cute on a bar or your coworker’s desk, and fit perfectly in a stocking. And while steel straws are nice, does it make anyone else feel funny that they can’t actually see if it’s clean inside? Glass for the win.

28. Work It Out Gym Bag, $35: It’s all about balance right? Gym then tacos is a message I can absolutely get behind (and I bet your sister or roommate could, as well).

29. Travel Toiletry Bag, $30: A travel toiletry bag is one of those things a lot of people don’t think of buying for themselves until they’re forced to shove all their mini shampoos and toothbrush into a ziplock bag the night before a trip.

30. Remodelista Book, $25: If you are a regular blog reader, the fact that we all have heart eyes for Remodelista’s insanely gorgeous content should come as no surprise. The publisher’s newest tome, The Organized Home, is full of simple and stylish tips (with beautiful photography, of course), to inspire readers to conquer their home’s problem areas.

31. Google Home Mini, $49: We have the full-sized Google Home in the office (which we mostly just use as a speaker for music, demanding certain playlists throughout the day), so we highly recommend the mini version for anyone looking for a great gift for a great price tag.

32. Set of 5 Pouches, $48: EHD friend Joy Cho from Oh Joy! designed these for Calpak and they are GREAT. Use them all for yourself to get your clothes organized while traveling, or set one pouch aside for, say, each kid, so there’s no guessing where things are in a pinch. Comes in three patterns.

33. Wifi Smart Plug, $17: Okay, this thing is seriously cool and is one of those items that would make anyone solidly feel like they lived in the future (except I guess this is just life now, right now). Anything you plug into this smart plug can be controlled via your smartphone, or you can automate your home with voice control by using with an Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Microsoft Cortana. Wait, I want a stocking full of these this year…

Have some more shopping to do? Head on over to our other holiday gift guides to pick out everything you need:


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5 years ago

Hi EH crew. I’ve been a fan and blog reader for years now and have noticed over the last few months more ads and pop-up videos have been added and the site takes forever to load. Kinda takes the joy out of reading your interesting content and I wish there was a way you could fix this.

Elizabeth Smith
5 years ago

What is the thing just to the right of the charger?? I don’t see a number attached or mention of it below (but maybe I missed it).

5 years ago

It’s a wall block that comes with the charger! If you click the charger link, there’s a second picture that shows it better.

5 years ago

It’s part of the charger! It’s the adapter for the wall!

Sarah S.
5 years ago

I am loving these gift roundups! I sending people links to these when they ask what I want for xmas! I know this might be more work, but it would much easier to read if the image only had five or so photos and then the list of corresponding links and so on. Thanks for the great work team EHD!

Hilary W Taylor
5 years ago

Love this one. I added a few of the items to my own Amazon cart to buy for myself with the inevitable gift cards I’m going to receive as gifts! Yay me! Thanks for these great roundups this season.

5 years ago

I just have to say, after reading this post this morning I went out and impulse bought the One Step Hair Dryer. As someone who is constantly at war with my damaged, thin hair, it was amazzzzing. I have curly hair (not the pretty kind) and this blow dried it straight and soft in 12 minutes. Thanks!

Barbara Lee
5 years ago

Just a suggestion, and if it requires way too much coding, I understand. Would it be possible when you do these kinds of lists to make the item info w/ price pop up when you hover your mouse over the item? That’s in addition to the info at the bottom that can be more wordy. As it is now, there’s a lot of “scroll up, scroll down…damn, was that the item I was looking for? What’s the number again??” lol. Anyway, great lists and thanks for the gifting help!