holiday gifts

The Cut Gift Guide: What We’re Giving This Year

Photo-Illustration: by The Cut; Photos: Retailers

All year long, we can think of so many things we want. However, when the holidays come along, our minds seem to go blank. What should I get my new boyfriend’s mother? Or my sister, who watches Emily Mariko videos? We have a gift guide for you. Right this way …

A gift for those who like comfort

The Zyllion Shiatsu Back and Neck Massager has rave reviews and comes highly recommended by our friends at the Strategist. I bought one for my brother a few years ago, and he loves it, so this holiday season, I’m getting one for my sister. She is pregnant and achy all over, and I think she’ll enjoy it. —Rachel Bashein, managing editor

A gift for fans of indulgence

This Senteurs d’Orient body oil has been on my gift list for the past couple of years. It includes 14 plant-based oils like safflower seed, macadamia, jojoba, and olive oil and smells like bergamot, jasmine, and orange blossom. —Joanna Nikas, deputy style editor

A gift for the hard to please

Byredo Suede Hand Wash

Since the pandemic, hand hygiene has become front of mind. Since we are washing our hands a lot, we might as well add some luxury to it. This Byredo Suede hand wash, which includes notes of bergamot, violet, and pear, is a great gift for that hard-to-please person in your life. —J.N.

A gift for the new cook

My 13-year-old sister has discovered that she loves to cook, so I’m getting her this sampler of Southeast Asian recipe starters from Omsom so she can make stuff like Filipino pork sisig and Thai larb. For $29, these kits make it super-easy to cook. —Jordan Larson, features editor

A gift for your significant other’s mother

You can’t go wrong with flowers — even when it comes to the most-difficult-to-shop-for-and-you’ve-gotta-impress-them person on your list. The beauty of a gift like the Deluxe Bouqs subscription is that fresh flowers will keep showing up at their home throughout the year (you can set the frequency yourself when you first order), with zero effort from you, covering you for any future family get-togethers, holidays, birthdays, etc., etc. Plus, it’s a regular tabletop reminder that you’re great. The gift that keeps on giving. —Jen Ortiz, deputy editor

A gift for those not-so-green thumbs

We are not a family of green thumbs, which is why mushroom-grow kits are so satisfying: They’re much easier than growing a plant, plus you get to eat them. I’m buying my mom this black-oyster kit, which comes from a farm in Washington; it just needs some water, perlite, and a spot on the kitchen counter to get going. —J.L.

A gift for the fashion-forward

As a Sandy Liang fangirl, I’d truly buy anything the woman would put in front of me. But these earrings are particularly great — a weirdly chic mismatched pair of earrings that are bound for discussion. The studded tooth promises conversations comparing teeth-falling-out dreams, which is personally something I always want to discuss. —Kerensa Cadenas, senior editor

fA gift for the TikTok lover

I realize I’m a little bit late to the soap-brow trend, but I want to put in a word for TooD’s “Turn It On Soap Brows,” which I’ll be gifting to all my girlfriends and probably my boyfriend this Christmas. Yes, it is just vegetable soap, but having gone through many an ABH pomade pot and too many Boy Brows to count, I’m convinced that soap is really the only thing you need for a perfectly groomed or feathered brow. Plus, TooD — which is known for its 100 percent biodegradable glitter — boasts a fully vegan soap formula with recyclable packaging. —Sangeeta Singh-Kurtz, senior writer

A gift for a group

I have four siblings, all of whom have partners, so last year (to spare myself the time and expense of buying eight different gifts), I gave each pair Sugarfina’s “8 Nights of Light Candy Tasting Collection.” This year, the company rebranded it as “8 Nights of Delight,” but the concept’s the same: Each night after you light the menorah, you get to have a new delicious candy. It’s a crowd-pleaser — just about everyone likes sweets, and you’re not saddling someone with stuff that’ll clutter their home. I’ll be doing a repeat this season. —R.B.

A gift for the eco friendly

A few years ago, I began to tire of replacing my $200 down puffer every other winter, so I took the plunge and got a winter coat from the Nordic brand 66°North, which got its start making Arctic apparel for Icelandic fishermen in the 1920s. Not only does it have a lifelong repair warranty, but the brand is carbon neutral, uses recycled, upcycled, and biodegradable materials, and has never put anything in a landfill (the company makes only what it can sell, and everything else goes to a secondhand market just for its jackets). It’ll last a lifetime, and did I mention they look chic? —S.S.K.

The gift for the beauty obsessive

Photo: Crown Affair

I know that $45 is a lot to pay for a towel, which is exactly why this is a great gift. This Crown Affair microfiber towel, made in Korea, is the most absorbent and stylish one on the market. It not only cuts my drying time dramatically, but it makes me look good while doing it. It twists securely and is extra-large, making it great for all hair types and lengths. —Kathleen Hou, beauty director

A gift for those who love convenience

We all have our weed friends, right? And they all have a bazillion lighters all over the place. So why not get them the ultimate lighter? “Flower,” by Edie Parker, has so many fabulous weed accessories, but its tabletop lighters are absolutely stunning. They are vaguely retro-looking — inspired by vintage tabletop lighters — and the lid doubles as an ashtray. I’m personally obsessed with it in this luscious jade hue, but there are many other great options (including a glitter moment, of course). —K.C.

A gift for the adult in your life

I don’t even have a dining room! And yet the Heath Ceramics dinnerware set is on my gifting list … for myself and my fantasy Very Cool and Adult apartment. Really, it’s a gift for any friends invited over for a dinner party, so maybe they should be the ones buying it for me? Anyway, the rich, earthy, buttery Redwood color and minimalist aesthetic are everything Instagram has taught me to value above all else, including my budget. —J.O.

The gift for the skin-care obsessive

For the beauty junkies in your life, look no further than Matter of Fact’s Ascorbic Acid 20 Brightening C Serum. Developed by K-pop star turned entrepreneur Paul Baek, it’s the only serum that has actually helped fade my dark spots with regular use. It’s also the only vitamin-C serum on the market that remains stabilized for over a year, so it doesn’t oxidize and turn my skin orange after a few months. —S.S.K.

The gift for people afraid of awkwardness

Puzzling is a game of little victories. In the case of this Liberty Puzzles one, 756 little victories to be exact. Unlike the flimsy cardboard puzzles of my youth, each piece is carved from wood, which makes it intensely satisfying when you find the right one and snap it into place. For $75, you won’t have to worry about something “to do” when you’re with family. —K.H.

A gift for the winos

I wouldn’t consider myself to be a wine connoisseur by any means, but I think I have a decent palate. I’m not a big red person, so I’m always interested in trying whites and oranges — the weirder, the better. And this bottle from Tank Garage Winery, based in Napa Valley, is just truly delectable. It’s bright and fuzzy and bubbly and perfect to ring in 2022 (gah!) with friends. —K.C.

A gift for those who like the snow

Last winter, my mother lamented that snowshoes were sold out everywhere, and I made a mental note of it. We’re New Englanders, so it’s only right that I buy her a pair from L.L.Bean. This pair, to be exact. She volunteers at a 30-acre sculpture park that is open year-round, rain or shine (or snow), and it’ll be much easier for her to traverse with these on. —R.B.

A gift for those who like to try things

Snif is one of my new favorite fragrance lines. I’ve truly loved all the scents it has released so far, and I dig its model, where you can try the fragrances first and return what didn’t work for you. It’s now making the foray into candles — where it uses the same model. You’ll receive three sample candles and then three full-size ones, and you keep the full-size candles that you like. I’m already partial to “Off the Grid,” a mix of musk, lily, and sandalwood. —K.C.

The gift for your friends with kids

A few of my friends had kids this year, and for them, Eyes That Kiss in the Corners, by Joanna Ho, is a great gift. This book teaches self-love and empowerment. To round out the heartwarming diverse picture-book trio, I also like to give Hair Love and The Proudest Blue. —K.H.

A gift for the Taylor Swift fan

Maybe I’m basic? But who cares. I’m so excited for Taylor’s Version of Red and have been planning its release accordingly. So for the BIG Taylor fans in my life, I don’t think there’s a better gift than the new version on vinyl, which includes lyrics, artwork, and special goodies for the ten-minute version of “All Too Well,” a song that will emotionally destroy anyone just in time for the holiday season. —K.C.

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The Cut Gift Guide: What We’re Giving This Year