Fact: The best-kept secret of adulthood is that the majority of your life will be spent with your colleagues. As we adjust to going back to the office, and ultimately spending more time with coworkers, it's important to show our appreciation for the small crew that we love and trust. (I mean, how else would we get through those meetings that should be an email without messaging them about it every 10 seconds?) But how do you select the best gift for your coworkers without overdoing it?
"When selecting a gift for your coworker, it’s important to consider their individual taste and interests," says Etsy Trend Expert Dayna Isom Johnson (opens in new tab). "If you happen to know what their hobbies are, look for something that speaks to that—like a wooden cutting board for the aspiring at-home chef or a personalized bookmark for the reading enthusiast. For a coworker you don’t know very well, opt for a gift that can help make their work day a little brighter, whether that’s a planter for their desk or a handmade mug for their morning coffee."
The solution: Order your coworkers any one of the below gifts, perfect for their home and beyond. (And if you're wondering what to gift your boss or Secret Santa recipient, we've got a guide for that too.)
Best Gift For Artsy Coworkers
2023 is fast approaching, which means it’s time for a new notebook and planner. This pick from Papier is a work of art—literally—and will help inspire her with its gorgeous illustrations throughout. Help keep her organized so she can jot down important notes and all of those ambitious middle-of-the-night ideas. (And if you're looking for more 2023 planners, we've gathered our favorites.)
Best Gift for The Accessories-Obsessed Coworker
This puzzle from Mejuri and Piecework Puzzles is great for the coworker who never leaves the house without their favorite pair of hoop earrings or that one chain bracelet that they never take off. At just $38, this 1,000-piece puzzle is just as fun to put together as it is to hang up on the wall once they've completed it. Plus, the pieces are made from 100% recycled paper,.
Best Gift For Fancy Coworkers
Sure, you're not supposed to light up candles in the office, but working from home is a game changer. Harlem Candle Co.'s "Langston" nightclub map candle is a delicious mix of jasmine and sandalwood, not to mention aesthetically pleasing.
Best Gift For Skincare Enthusiasts
Laneige's top-rated lip sleeping mask, known for its skin-smoothening and moisturizing powers, is exactly what she needs after a long day of answering emails or hosting Zoom meetings. We love that it’s made of natural murumuru seed and shea butter to deliver intense moisture and antioxidants.
Best Gift For Your Boss
Remind her how amazing she is by gifting her this "Phenomenal Woman" unisex tee created by Meena Harris's (yes, Kamala Harris's niece!) brand, Phenomenal Woman Action Campaign. It’s inspired by Maya Angelou’s poem Phenomenal Woman and is perfect for any woman who needs a quick reminder of how powerful she is.
Best Gift For Changemakers
If she's looking to make a difference outside of work, send her Alicia Garza's The Purpose of Power. The page-turner is the story of how the Black Lives Matter co-founder responded to the persistent message that Black lives are of less value. In it, Garza shares her personal story and the story behind #BlackLivesMatter. Garza says she wishes she had this guide when she first started organizing what eventually turned into a global movement—but, more than that, she examines how together we can build movements to create a just and equal world.
Best Gift for the CEO
Okay, so this one is a little pricey, so you may want to pair with your coworkers and collectively give this to your manager. She’ll love it because she’ll use less heat and in turn have less damage. The flexing plates on this hair straightener gather hair for more control, so she can achieve the same style with less heat and 50 percent less breakage. Best of all, she’ll enjoy up to 30 minutes of cord-free styling and a 90 percent battery charge in just 40 minutes.
Best Gift for the Disorganized Coworker
Desk clutter is real. Having one or two items scattered around your work area is fine, but it quickly becomes messy when multiple items are out of place. Bottom line: Everyone can use a pretty ring dish to place scrunchies, loose hair ties and mini paper clip holders on. This black and gold dish, crafted from great quality porcelain, features pretty florals, plus a metallic gold rim for extra oomph.
Best Gift For Book Lovers
Charlie Warzel and Anne Helen Petersen's Out of Office explores the future of work, including how our society's relationship to the office has evolved over the past two years and what work-life balance can truly look like when we change our relationship to work. One reviewer says, "It’s a book that helps us imagine a future where our lives—at the office and home—are happier, more productive, and genuinely meaningful." Well said.
Best Gift for Germaphobes
Your coworker will get a ton of use out of this hand sanitizer set that’s great for important in-person office meetings and any travel assignments they may be taking on. And unlike most hand sanitizers, these aren’t super drying. They’re loaded with aloe vera, lemon and lime essential oils, and radish root ferment that hydrates your hands. Our favorite scent is vanilla blossom, but they’re sure to love pure lavender for its instant calming effects.
Best Gift for the Office Napper
Instead of running around the corner to Starbucks every few hours, encourage the coffee lover in your life to brew a cup of BLK & Bold's "Rise & GRND" medium roast blend. The Black-owned company provides delicious coffee while pledging five percent of its profits to "initiatives aligned to sustaining youth programming, enhancing workforce development, and eradicating youth homelessness."
Best Gift for the Office Lip Gloss Hoarder
Did someone say perfect pair? Burt’s Bees x Cleo Wade is a new holiday gift collection in collaboration with renowned poet, author and artist, Cleo Wade. Born out of a mutual appreciation for people and our planet, the collaboration combines Burt’s Bees super-hydrating lip gloss with Cleo’s iconic words and artistic form. "I don’t usually collaborate with brands and products that I wouldn’t actively use or even try myself," says Wade. "I have been such a long-time fan of the brand and have been using this lip balm for almost 20 years so to be able to collaborate with Burt’s Bees is a gift itself."
Best Gift for the Disorderly Coworker
Do you have a disorganized coworker who can't seem to keep things organized? Grab this pouch set to keep her cosmetics and phone protected and organized while in her messy purse.
For The Coworker Who's Always Cold
If she's into warm scarfs, gift her this bright orange one that's sure to brighten her cold, wintry days—in and out of the office.
For The Coworker Inspired By The Stars
If the stars are aligned for you to gift your coworker a gift, try this sparkled set that will glow long after the holiday season. They'll love the winter scents faceted with new and singular tones.
Deena Campbell is the Beauty Director of Deena Campbell is the Beauty Director of Marie Claire where she oversees all beauty and health content on all platforms. Deena joined Marie Claire after a decade-long career as an editor in print and digital media. Before joining the brand, she managed editorial content for L’Oréal owned Makeup.com and Skincare.com. In 2015, she launched Essence.com’s hair channel where she received Time Inc.'s Henry R. Luce Award, shortly before joining Allure.com’s staff as Senior Beauty Editor. Along with her editorial positions, she also consulted on content and marketing strategies for beauty companies including DevaCurl and Dove, and has appeared at various speaking events and live television segments.
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