30 Thoughtful Gifts for Coworkers for $25 or Less
Shower your colleagues with personalized presents that let them know just how much you care—without having to ask the boss to chip in.
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The art of choosing gifts for coworkers
Whether you work in a stuffy office or even a more casual atmosphere, it’s important to keep gifts for coworkers fun, but not too personal. “Gifts of clothing should be avoided because the quickest way to embarrass a co-worker is with a clothing size that is either too big or small,” says Susan Hosage, MS, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, a senior consultant with OneSource HR Solutions. “Men gifting jewelry, cologne, or other personal items to women, and vice versa, can also have unintended implications and consequences.”
Another consideration is that food items can be problematic since there are many allergies and medical conditions that restrict what an employee may be able to consume. Finally, you also want to ensure you’re compliant with any company policies. For instance, although it was very common decades ago, Hosage says it’s strongly advisable to refrain from gifts of alcohol on the company premise or outside of the office as they may be against policy and create unnecessary legal liability for the individual and the company.
The gift ideas included in this article were chosen to help keep you in your recipient’s good graces and out of hot water with your HR department—when in doubt, brush up on these 14 gifts that might send the wrong message and always err on the side of caution.
Note: Prices listed were accurate as of press time; pricing fluctuations may occur.
Speks’ Super Oilslick
How does one de-stress during a hectic workday? Since martini lunches are typically frowned upon by most employers, a playdate with Speks’ Super Oilslick set of three magnetic balls could be the answer for your coworker. They can roll them around in their palm, stack them to form a desk sculpture or use them to attract errant paperclips. Soon everyone will be stopping by their office to check them out. And if you already have gifts for coworkers covered, check out these 26 corporate gifts your clients will love this holiday season.
Panasonic RP-TCM125 in-ear headphones
Some coworkers are amazingly productive despite cubicle chatter; others need to “plugin” with some tunes to drown out the noise and get their work done. The Panasonic RP-TCM125 in-ear headphones with microphone and call controller fit perfectly in any desk drawer, briefcase or work bag. Plus, these handy little headphones come in 15 different colors and with three sizes of earpads to ensure a comfy fit.
While one of the cardinal rules for gifts for coworkers is no clothing, we promise you can’t go wrong with one-size-fits-all socks—especially when they’re made out of a snuggly soft blend of baby alpaca fibers by artisans in Peru. They are lighter, yet warmer than wool, and luxuriously soft with a silky sheen. The best part? They are hypoallergenic and machine washable. Did you know wearing crazy socks is a scientifically proven way to make you more successful?
Remember the last time your coworker volunteered to drive your team to lunch? You shouldn’t have been surprised that their vehicle was as cluttered as their cubicle! Help them keep a clean car with Car Cache, an easy-to-install hammock that sits between the front seats behind the center console. It’s the perfect spot to stow your purse or bag—plus, it also has a pocket to hold things like umbrellas, sunglasses, and a first aid kit. It can even act as a dog barrier when your furry friend is in the back seat. Speaking of pets, these are the best gifts for dog lovers.
Gerber Dime Multi-Tool
You know the coworkers who chat about all the DIY projects they do at home each weekend? Buy him or her a tool that’ll help make small jobs easier: a Gerber Dime. Don’t let the size fool you (it will fit on a keychain), because it’s a fully functional multi-tool that includes scissors, file, knife, tweezers, pliers, and a few other features—including a bottle opener for when the project is done.
Sometimes, a coworker needs a little reminder that they are capable and competent. Bracelets from MantraBand are stamped with inspirational and uplifting messages to help encourage anyone who needs a little boost of confidence. They are made from hypoallergenic, lead-free, and tarnish-resistant stainless steel and adjustable for the perfect size. Consider the “You Got This” or “Keep Moving Forward” designs for a little dose of optimism and mindfulness. These 50 inspirational quotes will get her through a tough morning.
Titan Gear Stainless Steel Coffee Mug
Every office has an individual who runs out the door on Friday afternoons so they can escape to the great outdoors. Get them something they can enjoy at the office and use on weekend camping trips. Titan Gear stainless steel coffee mugs keep your coffee hot longer than ceramic mugs or plastic cups found in your office, which means no more nuking your coffee between meetings. Plus, they are shatterproof, should they tumble off your desk or out of your tent. When not in use, you can fold away the handles for easy storage. Make sure the recipient knows these tips for making the perfect cup of coffee.
Belkin Car Vent Mount
From salespeople who spend a lot of time in their car driving around their territory to office workers who take conference calls during their commutes, it’s essential to have a hands-free way to navigate and use the phone. The Belkin car vent mount secures your smartphone to your car’s air vent without the need for tools. The adjustable brackets ensure a snug fit on any phone model, and it swivels 360 degrees for portrait or landscape views. These are 20 more car accessories that will change the way you drive.
Gerrard’s Coffee Shop Scented Candle
Mmmmm, the delicious aroma of coffee without the mid-morning caffeine jitters? Yes, that’s what you’ll get with Gerrard’s Coffee Shop Candles. Inspired by creator Gerrard Larriett’s favorite pastime—spending lazy summer afternoons at a local indie coffee shop with his dog, Dada—each bespoke fragrance in this giftable candle collection will remind you of one of your favorite café treats. After burning, simply recycle your coffee mug and use over and over again. It comes ready to present to your coworker in a beautiful burlap coffee bean bag-inspired gift box.
TeaDrops Sweetened Organic Loose-Leaf Tea
If a coworker on your list is always sipping a cozy cup of tea, then he or she will love Tea Drops. Made from 100 percent organic, loose-leaf teas, the drops dissolve in hot water for the perfect cup of tea without the bag or steeping tools—which makes it easy for the office. And since it comes packaged in a beautiful wooden box, you won’t even need to take the time to gift wrap it. Discover 60 of the best gifts on Amazon Prime.
Grit and Grace: Uncommon Wisdom for Inspiring Leaders Designed to Make You Think
Amp up the boss lady vibe in your office by gifting the book Grit and Grace: Uncommon Wisdom for Inspiring Leaders Designed to Make You Think. This collection of quotes, thoughts, and advice from female pioneers will inspire women who want to lead. It uses the strengths and successes of today’s women—including Meghan Markle, Tina Fey, and Vera Wang—to drive a generation of future leaders. Along the same lines, here’s a list of 10 books written by female authors that every woman should read in her lifetime.
India Big Shop Spectacle holder
Coworkers who take their glasses on and off throughout the day often leave them everywhere—other people’s desks, conference rooms, break rooms, and possibly even the restroom. Help them keep track of their spectacles so they don’t miss any important meetings with a hand-carved wooden statue made specifically for that purpose. It’ll also double as a great conversation starter, as it’ll enhance any office décor. This would also make an excellent present to take to your next white elephant gift exchange.
Fred & Friends Daily Mood Chart
It can be hard to navigate moods around the office sometimes—and nobody wants to play “read the room” games in the middle of a busy workday. “Fred the Daily Mood” desk flipchart is a crucial workplace tool that can help you avoid awkward conversations and office faux pas. Simply turn the chart to any of the 47 moods and coworkers will immediately know who’s in the mood to chat, who’s ready for happy hour, and who to steer clear of. Don’t miss these outrageously pricey holiday gifts people have actually given.
Totally Bamboo State-Shaped Cutting Board
Sure, you could acknowledge your coworker’s hometown pride with some sports memorabilia, but how about something a bit more useful? A bamboo serving and cutting board in the shape of their favorite state is a fun conversation starter and perfect for entertaining. Plus, they come with pre-drilled hanging holes, in case your recipient would like to hang it in their cubicle after the office potluck. Find out the best gift to give from every state.
Hangover Secret 6-Pack
Yes, we suggested steering clear of alcohol when choosing gifts for coworkers—but that doesn’t mean you can’t help out a coworker who likes to party a bit too much on weeknights. A six-pack of the Hangover Secret is sure to put a little pep in their step the morning after a big night on the town, thanks to its amino acids for a speedy detox, antioxidants to look refreshed, and electrolytes to clear away the cobwebs. Make sure you don’t cross the line to become one of these 13 annoying coworkers.
Gaiam’s Balance Cushion
You’ve probably heard that sitting is the new smoking. So if your office hasn’t yet embraced the standing desk phenomenon, you can still turn anyone’s boring desk chair into an active one with Gaiam’s Balance Cushion. It forces the user to perform constant micro-movements that will strengthen their core, plus, it can improve posture and even boost circulation—something nobody gets enough of during back-to-back conference calls. Is your coworker more of a friend? Then don’t miss our best gifts for every type of friend.
Back to the Roots Organic Mushroom Farm Gardening Kit
How great would it be to grow your own organic mushrooms? Coworkers who love to know where their food is sourced from will enjoy Back to the Roots easy indoor gardening kits. Assuming your corporate policies allow for plants, they can start gardening right at their desk (or take it home if not). Once the veggies are fully grown, maybe they’ll even share the bounty with you by cooking a special team lunch. Win-win! Check out the 50 most popular gifts on Amazon.
Gaiam Stainless Steel Water Bottle
Watching single-use plastic water bottles pile up in your coworker’s garbage can is enough to drive any environmentalist nuts. Help them out by gifting an 18-oz. wide-mouth stainless steel water bottle from Gaiam, which will also keep their hot beverages piping hot and cold drinks chilly. Plus, the no-leak vacuum seal and no-sweat construction keep all their paperwork and electronics safe from leaks and condensation. You should also consider these smart water bottles to give as a gift.
Every office has a crazy cat lady—you know, the one who talks about her cats as if they are human roommates and watches cat videos on her computer any time the boss isn’t around. Give her more feline-fanatic décor with a six-pack of cat magnets, which she’ll probably use to hang up more pictures of her beloved cats on the filing cabinet.
AirPods may be the greatest thing since sliced bread—but keeping track of them? That’s a whole different story. Any Apple-centric music buff will appreciate a PodPocket, a precision-molded silicone pocket specifically designed to keep your AirPod’s secure. Just attach the case to your bag or keychain; a little access area along the bottom allows for charging the earbuds while they are still in the pocket. Genius. Don’t miss these tech gifts you’ll want to keep for yourself.
Instant Happy Journal
Who couldn’t use a little boost of happiness? The Instant Happy Journal provides 365 days of inspirational messages, intentions and thought-provoking questions to ponder that are sure to brighten anyone’s day. It’s a great reminder to slow down and appreciate the little moments in life, which can all-too-easily be overlooked. Find out 15 must-have gifts for book lovers.
Simply Charmed Wine Charms
At first, you might not think sky-high stilettos go hand-in-hand with wine-drinking, but that’s only because you’ve never seen the Simply Charmed magnetic high heel wine glass charms. What a classy way to help distinguish between wine glasses at any soiree, without having to play the “Is this my lipstick shade?” game. Check out these most popular holiday gifts on Amazon while you’re at it.
If you have a coworker who loves cheeky games (think: Cards Against Humanity) and also has little ones at home, then they will love Kinder Perfect. The game offers 400+ card combos from their original game and newly released expansion packs including one for parents of teens/tweens and for parents who are a bit naughty. After all, if you can’t find the hilarity in the crazy things your kids do, well, then it’s gonna be a long 18 years. Find out the best stocking stuffers for everyone on your list.
Moroccan Magic Lip Balm
You know your colleague who is constantly reapplying lip balm all day long? Well, she would really appreciate a three-pack of Moroccan Magic—USDA-certified organic lip balms that are infused with 100 percent pure argan oil, an ingredient regarded around the world for its intense anti-aging and conditioning properties. When incorporated into a lip balm, the result is an effective treatment that’s quick absorbing and highly moisturizing. Learn the tricks behind giving truly thoughtful gifts.
STICK-AMIS Selfie Phone Sticker
Nobody wants to lug around a selfie-stick these days, which is why the STICK-AMIS comes in so darn handy. Simple affix the sticker to your phone or tablet and then stick it to your cubicle wall, car’s dashboard, plane or train trays and windows, and more. It’s also helpful for video conferences and video chats—and you can get 1,000 sticks out of it, so it’s the perfect accessory for an on-the-go lifestyle. These 21 fun office supplies also make top gifts.
1,000 Places to See Before You Die page-a-day calendar
We all have a life outside of the office, right? Help your wanderlust coworker book some of that unused vacation time by giving the gift of travel inspiration. Choose from one of these 20 gifts for the jet-setter, or pick the 1,000 Places to See Before You Die page-a-day calendar. Either way, you’re sure to expand their bucket list and inspire some awesome vacation planning — but hopefully, you won’t be stuck working on all their projects as they jet off to Fiji.
Burts Bees Tips and Toes Kit
If you’ve noticed a colleague needs some TLC, then the Tips and Toes kit from Burt’s Bees makes for such a great gift. It comes with six travel-size products, including two hand creams, a foot cream, cuticle cream, hand salve, and lip balm. There’s no better way to nourish and moisturize your skin during the brutal winter weather. Find some more Christmas gift ideas for people who are impossible to shop for.
Xleader Portable Bluetooth speaker
Give the audiophile in your office the gift of high-definition sound in a super-compact design. This portable speaker with Bluetooth 4.1 technology offers 12 hours of music, and pairs with smartphones, tablets, and laptops. That means your coworker can take their tunes from home to the office without missing a single beat. Find out some gifts specifically for your male coworkers that’ll make you look like a hero.
AGM Cinema lightbox
It’s fun to decorate your cubicle with personalized messages — especially when you can swap them out whenever you have a new sentiment to share. And with 90 different letters, numbers, and symbols, your coworker’s motivational or snarky messages are sure to be read loud and clear. Bonus: This is also a lot of fun when used in photos, say for your upcoming office party. Find out how science says to organize a productive cubicle.
VicTsing Essential Oil Diffuser
Known to relieve anxiety, promote a better sleep environment, create a romantic ambiance and invigorate your senses, essential oil diffusers are an easy way to add the numerous benefits of aromatherapy to anyone’s life. A stylish diffuser will enhance the surrounding décor, and the changing color lights will suit any mood. Buying for your supervisor? Don’t miss these 20 clever gifts for your boss under $25.
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