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Fun 50th Birthday Gift Ideas for Men—Things Guys Actually Like

Updated on January 6, 2015
Chris Telden profile image

For Chris, choosing gifts is like writing a story: By matching the character to the gift, you learn more about people and what they value.

Great Gifts for a 50-Year-Old Man
Great Gifts for a 50-Year-Old Man

You might think the man in your life who's reaching his half-century milestone already has everything he could want or need, but fear not! Here are some cool, affordable gift ideas I've compiled just for men celebrating their 50th birthday. From husbands to coworkers, there should be a thoughtful, personal gift here that will satisfy him and be gentle on your budget.

Humor Always Works

Gag Gifts for a Laugh

What would a half-century birthday be without a wisecracking gag gift?

From mugs to puns to slogans to give him an "over the hill" jab in the ribs, every soon-to-be-50-year-old man knows it's coming.

And then there's the book, Fifty Things to Do When You Turn Fifty, where renowned authors recount their strategies for making it to this milestone year with humor, wisdom, and frankness.

Humorous gifts break the ice at parties. But do him a favor and don't just gag-gift him. He deserves a serious gift, too. The man is leaving his fiftieth decade and entering his sixtieth, a true milestone to honor.

Gag gifts and books for the man turning 50.
Gag gifts and books for the man turning 50.
Woodstock Candy 50th Birthday Candy Box - Peace, Love and Happiness - Retro Nostalgic Childhood Memories for a 50 Year Old Jr
Woodstock Candy 50th Birthday Candy Box - Peace, Love and Happiness - Retro Nostalgic Childhood Memories for a 50 Year Old Jr
This box contains thirty kinds of retro nostalgic candy, including some items he may not have seen since he was a kid. Retro candy makes a fun and unique 50th birthday gift!
 
Quick, Answer Me Before I Forget the Question: Everything You Need to Know About Turning 50
Quick, Answer Me Before I Forget the Question: Everything You Need to Know About Turning 50
This book addresses many common questions about midlife in a Q & A format that gives readers essential answers about topics like baldness, plastic surgery, health, and memory loss.
 
Great Sex After 50!: And Other Outlandish Lies about Getting Older
Great Sex After 50!: And Other Outlandish Lies about Getting Older
"Where there is stress, or receding hairlines and liver spots, there is humor."—John McPherson
 
Never Too Old to Rock & Roll: Life After 50-The Best Years Yet
Never Too Old to Rock & Roll: Life After 50-The Best Years Yet
This very well-reviewed book is by a financial planner but it does much more than suggest methods for increasing your wealth. This is a life-affirming book that encourages readers to plan not only for their financial futures, but also for bright emotional, spiritual, and physical futures.
 
50 Ways to Leave Your 40s: Living It Up in Life's Second Half
50 Ways to Leave Your 40s: Living It Up in Life's Second Half
Full of hilarious wisdom, this book serves as a reminder that turning 50 could be the best thing yet. This is the perfect gift for those approaching their 50th without enthusiasm.
 

Gift Suggestions for Tool Lovers

Here's a cool gift idea if the man in question likes tools. If he is at all handy, then he can always use another tool. The problem is, if you get him the wrong tool—a 6mm paring chisel instead of an 8mm timber chisel, for example—look out!

One great idea for a serious tool hound is an old vintage Stanley Tools Catalogue. These small catalogs from the first half of the 20th century used the spelling “catalogue,” and they're sold wherever collectibles are sold. If he's a tool hound, he'll love it—he'll spend hours poring over the tools illustrations and the text.

Unusual birthday present for the man turning fifty: Meat!
Unusual birthday present for the man turning fifty: Meat!

Unusual Idea: Meat for His 50th

Grass-Fed Beef for a meat-lovin' man

If you haven't already heard, 100% grass-fed beef is reputed to be healthier for your heart and cholesterol level than even organic grain-fed beef, due to the high ratio of omega-3 fatty acids to omega-6 fatty acids.

Whether or not that's true, cows were raised on grass for centuries before agribusiness started using grain to fatten them up. Given that man ate cattle that roamed the range and didn't have access to oats and other grains for centuries, there's a good chance that the human body is best adapted to 100% range-fed beef.

Health claims aside, grass-fed beef is utterly delicious, with a distinct taste that will help a man remember his 50th birthday as the tastiest ever. Leaner than grain-fed beef, you cook it for a shorter time and at a lower temperature so it doesn't get too tough.

Give him a stock of a 100% grass-fed beef for his freezer so he can enjoy this delicious beef for ages.

Organic Grass Fed NY Strip Steak ONE (12 oz. Steak)
Organic Grass Fed NY Strip Steak ONE (12 oz. Steak)
Certified 100% organic grass-fed and grass-finished beef; no hormones, steroids, or antibiotics. These cows are given unrestricted freedom to roam, receive humane treatment, and are never sent to a feedlot. Dry aged 14 to 21 days.
 

Comfort and 50 Go Together Like Cake and Icing...

As I said above, chances are good that he has a lot of what he wants. But by fifty, he's also probably begun to notice the wear in certain body parts, even if he doesn't want to admit it. So if you're looking for luxury items that are also practical, then think ergonomics for his birthday.

Think slippers that are unlike any he's ever slid his feet into or the classic electric shaver. Think the simple but ingenious Body Back Buddy, an ergonomic chair, or an aromatherapy wake-up clock. Think sports massage gift certificate. Think a new pair of shoes that doesn't have the arch support worn down.

Give him the birthday gift of comfort, just at this crucial time when he's becoming acutely aware that he's no longer thirty and his bones are beginning to creak... you get the idea. Make him feel better.

Minnetonka Men's 3831 Twin Gore Sheepskin Slipper,Tan,7 M US
Minnetonka Men's 3831 Twin Gore Sheepskin Slipper,Tan,7 M US
Minnetonka sheepskin slippers. Minnetonka is a trusted brand for well-made sheepskin moccasins and slippers.
 
Body Back Buddy Classic - Trigger Point Back Massager, Full Body Muscle Pain Relief, Handheld Massage Stick, Massage Cane, Instructions Included (Blue Marbled)
Body Back Buddy Classic - Trigger Point Back Massager, Full Body Muscle Pain Relief, Handheld Massage Stick, Massage Cane, Instructions Included (Blue Marbled)
Okay, I'm not a man, but I own the Body Back Buddy and if he has any interest at all in therapeutic massage, he'll appreciate this tool for reaching tight points on his trapezius muscle (upper back).
 

Practical 50th Birthday Gift Ideas

Help Him Stock Up

Most guys don't want much that's fancy. But a good, plain gift can be hard to find.

Your birthday boy has probably got a full closet of ties, sweaters, socks, and other easy-to-get clothing. What he wants is something practical, something he can use but that he doesn't yet know he needs. Will he turn up his nose at a five-year's supply of motor oil or antifreeze? Doubtful.

But be careful—no 50-year-old man wants a birthday gift that means he has to do something he doesn't like to do. So forget about the auto supplies if he doesn't like to tinker with the car. And only get him a new lawn mower blade if he's really okay with mowing the lawn.

Or get him a big ol' bag of whatever everyday supplies he's running out of. Trust me, in these challenging economic times, it will only get a laugh, especially if you include a birthday card with a tongue-in-cheek quote, like "Here are 100 packs of disposable razors—look for 100 more in another half century."

For some more ideas about less common gifts for guys, read Unusual Gifts for Men.

Gadgets and Gizmos

Many guys who go crazy for gadgets don't go to the trouble of getting one for themselves. So get him a fancy flashlight, one he's probably heard of but not bothered to upgrade to. Coast LED flashlights truly are in a class of their own and are favored by professionals.

As the author of this article, I may receive commissions for sales generated. See my disclosure statement about compensation for this article.

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