It’s already fall, which means the holidays are not as far away as you might think. The holidays notwithstanding, our calendars are filled with special days such as Mother’s Day, birthdays, and baby showers, which mean that you are expected to bring a gift.
We aren’t knocking gift giving but let’s be honest, it can get downright expensive! No one wants to show up with a $10 gift card and look like a cheap skate.
We want to show you some gift ideas that are cool enough to make you look good but only cost you about $10! The trick with gifts is to be creative and think outside the perfume or electronic aisle.
Who doesn’t love movies? If possible, find out your recipient’s favorite movie and buy the DVD or just pick up an oldie but goodie (The God Father or Gone with the Wind) for $5. Get a few $1 boxes of candy, tie it all up with a big bow and you are set!
A Beauty Bag
If your recipient is into makeup or similar items, Ulta Beauty has a 5 for $5 bin. Pick 5 items, add a scented lotion for $3 and put it all in a pretty basket or bag from the dollar store. This also works with scented soaps, bath salts or bath bubbles, or pedicure/manicure items.
This is one of our favorites. Beats a gift card any day! Pick up a half dozen $1 scratchers or 5 one dollar and 1 $5 scratcher or any combination you like. Put it in a pretty envelope or card from the dollar store and seal it with a dime or a penny as an extra “good luck” item.
If you have a Five Below store near you, they have tons of items that cost less than $5. Go there every few months and pick up one or two items that look awesome and save them for gifts later.
No, don’t try to pass off a $2 cubic zirconia as a real diamond ring, but many stores, such as Claire’s, offer discounts on slow-moving merchandise that are perfect for the pre-teen set. Claire’s not only has some cute costume jewelry, but hair bands, purses, backpacks, and more. After the holidays, set yourself up with birthday presents for the following year with their Buy Two get One Free sales.
Almost everyone wears socks and the right pair can be a nice gift. Burlington Coat Factory often has luxurious, aloe infused spa socks for $8 and sometimes a three pack for $10. You can also find cute little wool socks for $1 on Wish.com or pick up cute puppy/kitten/owl socks at Target for $2.
For the writer or artist, all craft stores have bargain bins which have pretty notepads, pens, and gift sets.
No one needs to know you picked up items from the dollar store unless you tell them! Look for gift items that everyone loves, such as incense packaged in pretty tin containers with a cute dragon incense holder, put scented candles in a bag with a paperback and bubble bath, or make a box filled with cute and silly items, all in purple (or whatever color is their favorite) for a good laugh. You are limited only by your imagination.
For the Wine Enthusiast
Don’t buy a cheap bottle of wine, instead, buy a cute wine stopper (Amazon has hundreds of ideas from kitty cats to lighthouses) and put it in a pretty box. Amazon also has glass markers, so your friend won’t get their wine glass mixed up with others. There are lots of cute or funny designs and most are less than $10.
After Christmas/Mother’s Day/Holiday Sales
This is one of our favorite tricks. After any holiday, tons of items go on sale for anywhere between 25-90% off. You can buy a much more expensive item, simply because you purchased it after the holiday. Be sure that the item isn’t marked with the holiday, for example, Charlie perfume can be removed from a box that has poinsettias on them and put in a pretty bag but scented soaps with Santa stamped into them cannot be removed! Set aside a cabinet or shelf and store these items for birthdays or other gift giving occasions.