17 No-Fail Gifts for the Special Guy(s) in Your Life

Published on: Jul 29, 2021fb-roundtwitter-roundemail-round
no-fail gifts for the guys in your lifeDesign: Lindsay Lange, Credit: Amazon, Allbirds

Shopping for the men in your life can be notoriously hard. Finding a birthday gift for the dad who has everything? A head-scratcher. Looking to wow your partner who claims he doesn’t need anything? Hello, nervous butterflies.

We’re here to do the heavy lifting for you. We rounded up reliable, foolproof gifts that’ll make your dad, brother, boyfriend, husband, uncle, and third cousin twice-removed actually happy — no matter the occasion. A sigh of relief for you and a smile on his face? Win-win.


allbirds everyday sneakers for men
Allbirds sneakers made from renewable materials…

Like eucalyptus tree fiber. They also happen to be machine washable and very lightweight. The knit is breathable, so steamy temps on a summer day won’t be a bother. Did we mention the midsole is made from Brazilian sugarcane? It’s bouncy, contoured, and yet another feature that makes this sneaker carbon neutral. ($95, Allbirds)

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korean skincare set with basics like gel cleanser and moisturizer
A Korean essentials skincare set so he can stop using a bar of soap…

He’ll get a gel cleanser, a moisturizer mist, and a cream to keep his skin feeling soft and smooth. Ingredients are antioxidant-packed, and include tea tree, lotus, lavender, camellia, and peony. Everything is vegan, cruelty-free, and clinically tested. Him = glowing. ($19.99, SeSpring)

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green everyday backpack
A backpack that he’ll use every day come a return to office…

Maybe he’s already commuting again, or maybe he’s prepping for his first day back. Either way, this backpack with tons of storage space will become his travel best friend. It can hold a 16-inch laptop, clothes, a wallet, a notebook, charging cables, a water bottle, and more. His laptop can slide into the separate back pocket, while everything else can be stored in the main compartment. There’s even a secure passport pocket, a hidden place for valuables, and a luggage sleeve for on-the-go use. Off he goes. ($95, Brevite)

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whiskey glasses etched with city maps
Whiskey glasses etched with his favorite city…

Make his next happy hour a bit more sentimental. These glasses showcase the metropolis of his choice — whether it’s where he grew up, the city where he went to college, or where he lives now. The etching is intricate and even includes street names. Get cozy, though: Each sip may inspire a new story. ($18, Uncommon Goods)

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curved leather wallet to fit in front pocket
A leather wallet that’s shaped to fit in his front pocket…

Carrying a wallet in the front is way safer, but traditional square options can be bulky and uncomfortable to walk around with. Since this one is curved, it fits seamlessly into his pocket. It can hold up to six cards plus full-sized bills, and has an ID pocket. No more awkward bulge in the back. He’ll be able to take a seat without having to first remove his wallet. ($55, Grommet)

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baseball cap with 'dog dad' saying
A ‘dog dad’ hat so he can show off his love for his fur baby…

Sports logos = out. Showing how much he adores his pup = in. This one’s pre-washed, 100% cotton, and has an adjustable strap in the back. All he needs now is a stroll through the neighborhood so he can rock his new accessory. ($16.99+ HatphileMade on Etsy)

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barbecue wooden smoking chips for meat and fish
A set of smoking chips for the ultimate barbecue experience...

Each piece of wood provides a unique flavor. He can pair cedar with salmon and hickory with beef. In total, he’ll get five planks and two packs of smoking chips. It’ll be like a whole new world of grilling spices. Dinner is served. ($25, Food52)

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men's relaxed fit lounge pants with a drawstring waist
Lounge pants that he’ll never wanna take off…

If he’s been married to the same pair of old gray sweatpants, it’s time for a breakup. These stylish pants bring top-quality comfort, so whether he’s on the couch or running errands, he won’t ever regret putting them on. Customers say they wash well with no pilling. Aka a dream. ($84, Nordstrom)

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vanilla birthday cake with buttercream icing and sprinkles
A delicious confetti cake from Magnolia Bakery…

It’s party time. This 6-inch cake is chock-full of ​​pink and green vanilla buttercream with confetti sprinkles. You can personalize it too, with the inscription of your choice. It serves up to 10 people, so it’s perfect for a lil’ get-together to celebrate a special occasion. (Psst...you can also add candles to your order if you need ‘em.) ($65, Goldbelly)

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beer growler with a set of four cups
A growler set for camping trips and tailgates…

Flat, warm beer is a no-go when all he wants is a refreshing beverage. This vacuum-insulated growler can keep drinks cold for a full day and hot for up to 18 hours. He’ll also get four tumblers, which he can share with friends. So while he’s setting up a tent or flipping burgers, he’ll always have a cold, foamy brew by his side. ($80, Amazon)

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padded camera strap for DSLR cameras
A padded camera strap for the aspiring photographer in your life…

It’s adjustable and can fasten onto any DSLR camera. Even better: Every purchase does a bit of good. Fifty percent of profits from the first-edition straps go to NYC Salt, a nonprofit org that creates opportunities in the visual arts for underserved NYC youth. Cheers to that. ($79, Haerfest)

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experience gifts for him
An experience that’ll get him up and moving…

Sometimes the best things in life can’t be unwrapped. Introducing: a great way to show some love. The best thing about Tinggly is that he’ll get to decide where and when he wants his adventure to happen. You’ll select which ‘collection’ he gets to choose from, and then he’ll have over 600 options to browse. He can zipline in the Rocky Mountains or take a pizza tour in Chicago. Once his mind is made, he can book his trip and select a date. Just be sure he wears some comfortable sneakers. ($129, Tinggly)

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gadget that can clean golf clubs
A golf club cleaner so he’s always ready for his next shot…

It can remove built-up dirt and grass, and houses a scrub pad, towel, brass groove cleaners, spray bottle, and more. It’s also pretty compact so he can carry it in his bag while he’s out for the day. Shiny clean clubs, coming right up. ($29.95, Grommet)

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percussive therapy massage gun with six interchangeable heads
A handheld massage gun to help relieve all those muscle aches…

If working from home has meant working hunched over on his couch, his back is probably feeling it. This massage gun works via percussive therapy. So it repeatedly massages muscles to release tension and stimulate blood flow. It can reduce lactic acid buildup, meaning a faster recovery for aches and pains. Along with the massage gun, this set includes six heads so he can reach every muscle. Sweet relief. ($129.99, Amazon)

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fondue maker with forks for dipping
A fondue maker that will become a quick hit…

Tasty treats dipped in hot chocolate or cheese? No one can resist that. This fondue maker is the ultimate kitchen gadget and party must-have. The 3-quart bowl is removable, which makes it easy to wash. It also comes with eight color-coded forks, a fork holder to reduce drips, and six cups to hold his dipping ingredients. The only thing he’ll have to complain about is being too full. ($49.99, Amazon)

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craft beer club monthly subscription gift
A craft beer club that’ll ship him beers from small, independent brewers…

You can select either 12 or 24 beers a month. In the shipment of 12, he’ll get brews from two different regions in the US, with four different beer styles. Selections include each brewer’s most popular option, along with award-winning beers. It’s a great way to expand his flavor palate. ($44.75/12 beers, Craft Beer Club)

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kindle paperwhite reading device
A Kindle Paperwhite that’s waterproof with a glare-free screen…

So he can read anything, anywhere. A single charge can last up to weeks, and with twice the storage, he can download more magazines, audiobooks, and reads. It also includes Audible, so he can pair the Kindle with his headphones via Bluetooth. The screen brightness is adjustable, aka it’s easy to read comfortably at night and outdoors. He can also adjust text size and boldness. And thanks to the massive selection of new and old releases, he’ll never be bored. ($129+, Amazon)

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Skimm'd by Alexandra Napoli, Emmy Favilla