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Cool and Unique Gift Ideas For The Person Who Has Everything

Updated on January 12, 2012

There always seems to be one person on your list who is impossible to shop for, regardless of the occasion. Maybe they have very particular tastes or are able to indulge themselves in whatever they want to buy. Or perhaps they're trying to limit their accumulation of stuff, and you want to honor that goal.

Regardless of the reason, you're still faced with the challenge of gift giving.

While brainstorming for ideas, I came up with things that I put in three broad categories: Consumables, Experiences, and Practical or Personalized. There's a lot of overlap among my somewhat arbitrary groups, but I was trying to bring some order to this listing! You'll see that I tended to focus on things that are designed to be used as opposed to more decorative items. I've also tried to offer ideas that cover a range of price points, from minimal to lavish.

Some Magazine Options


I've included some items you might not normally consider a consumable, but I was going for a broader definition than normal.

  • Toiletries, particularly if there's a brand you know the recipient wants to try but hasn't yet. Think luxury soaps, bath gels, and body lotions.
  • Restock the spice cabinet.
  • Donate to recipient's favorite charity or cause.
  • Gift certificate, but more personalized than a generic department store or bank card. Perhaps there's a local restaurant they would like to try. If you're shopping for a college student, find out if the university bookstore offers gift certificates: with textbooks easily running $500 per semester, any help for the cause would surely be welcome.
  • A favorite food that is difficult or expensive to get. Maybe a childhood treat. If it's no longer made - or was a homemade item - try making it yourself.
  • Sheets or towels. While it takes a lot longer to use up a bath towel than a bottle of bath gel, it does wear out eventually! Maybe they aren't technically consumables, but people will often put off spending the money when they need replacing. Make it a treat and get the highest quality you can afford.
  • Subscriptions of all kinds. Magazines, gourmet food delivery, a few months of Netflix or Booksfree. There's a lot of options at many different price points.


The gift of an experience can stay with a person far longer than any physical object.

  • Tickets to a sporting event or concert. I gave my nephew tickets to a professional soccer game last year, and he had a blast.
  • Memberships. Museums and botanical gardens are great choices, especially for a family gift. But also consider organizations related to the person's interests, such as the American Sewing Guild for the enthusiastic sewer. Or maybe something as mundane as a shopping club (ex., BJ's, Sam's Club, Costco).
  • Lessons or classes related to an interest. Arrange a few one-on-one sessions with a local golf pro or perhaps photography lessons at an area college. Find an embroidery expert who will teach your recipient the art of goldwork.
  • Visit to a favorite spa. A facial or mani/pedi is welcome any time of the year.
  • Directly support an activity the recipient participates in. Pay for ice time for the budding figure skater or a new pair of shin guards for the soccer player. Start a fund for that round-the-world trip they're dreaming of.

Practical & Personalized

There's some similarities to the Consumables category, but these tended to be my more practical ideas.

  • Pay for a cleaning service for a few months. Or do it yourself for a more frugal option.
  • The ultimate in practicality: a selection of every day household products such as toothpaste, cleaning products, paper towels, even toilet paper. If you plan ahead, use coupons, and shop sales this can also be a reasonably priced gift. Every year at Christmas I give my family members their favorite toothpaste and a new toothbrush or replacement head, and they always look forward to it.
  • At the other end of the scale - but still practical since the end result can be used daily - commission a hand-tailored suit.
  • For the older recipient who is on Medicare, a gift card to the pharmacy where they get their prescriptions. Even with Medicare Part D, medication costs can be quite a financial burden.
  • Start a 529 college savings plan for a minor.
  • Make a customized apron with the recipient's name or initials in applique and as many pockets as they desire.


When pondering gift ideas for that impossible to shop for person, don't hesitate to think outside the box. And remember that the fact you put so much effort into finding the gift will mean as much to the recipient as the gift itself.


Submit a Comment

  • phdast7 profile image

    Theresa Ast 5 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

    Your writing is smooth and easy to follow and these are terrific gift suggestions. I love how you categorized them and this definitely helps me think outside the proverbial box. Makes me want to shopping right now; I already have gift ideas in mind for several people. :) Sharing.

  • poshcoffeeco profile image

    Steve Mitchell 6 years ago from Cambridgeshire

    I like your style of writing and it is so easy to follow and understand.

  • geoffclarke profile image

    geoffclarke 6 years ago from Canada

    Great ideas - especially the cleaning service! I'm new to the Hub and just published my first post. By coincidence, it has almost the same title as yours - I guess great minds think alike!

  • MissFrost profile image

    MissFrost 6 years ago from 50% Island Girl, 25% East Coast Girl, 25% Country Girl

    Thanks for sharing...I always have a hard time shopping for my husband. He always buys what he wants, when he wants it...I like the idea of purchasing a lesson as a gift.

  • SilkThimble profile image

    SilkThimble 6 years ago from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

    Thank you!

  • Stacie L profile image

    Stacie L 6 years ago

    You have a great ideas for the person who has everything!

  • randomcreative profile image

    Rose Clearfield 6 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

    Great ideas! I love to give gifts that people can use up.

  • SilkThimble profile image

    SilkThimble 6 years ago from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

    Thanks! Glad it was helpful.

  • alocsin profile image

    alocsin 6 years ago from Orange County, CA

    Excellent suggestions just in time for Christmas. Voting this Up and Useful.


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