Wracking your brain over your gift list this year? Make it easy and choose one of these practical gift ideas for adults. I used to wrack my brain trying to come up with Christmas gift ideas for adults. My kids are always a breeze. Even if they don’t specifically ask for anything I know what will make them happy. But buying for adults? Ugh. Not fun.

As a natural born people pleaser I always want to get gifts that the recipient will enjoy. But what do you buy the full-grown person who can go out and purchase whatever their heart desires? My answer: practical gifts.

Why Practical Gifts?

As someone who buys what she needs/wants when she needs or wants it I’ve come to appreciate the practical gifts the most. For example, a few years ago my Mom bought me a really nice pot and pan set. Since I already had pots and pans this wasn’t something I’d go out and buy for myself but was a gift that I absolutely loved and still use on a daily basis.

Last year for Christmas my Dad got me a pair of Carhartt Insulated Bib Overalls. Before he did this I would layer on two pairs of pants to go out and feed the animals in the snow.  After I got the overalls and experienced their convenience and warmth I was SO grateful for his gift.

As adults we (mostly) have the ability to purchase what we want but that doesn’t mean we’re always buying ourselves the practical items that make our lives just a little bit easier. This is why practical gifts are the best gifts.

If you have adults on your list to buy for here are some ideas.

Kitchen Items

Eating is something that every single person in this world has to do in order to stay alive. That makes kitchen items some of the most practical to give during the holiday season.

It’s very helpful to know 1) what your gift recipient needs or 2) what they like. If you don’t want to give it away that you’re planning to purchase kitchen items see if you can schedule a baking day at their home and you can sneakily figure out what to purchase.

Here are some general ideas:

  • Pots/Pans
  • Coffee Maker
  • Knives
  • Tupper Ware/ Glass Containers
  • Blender
  • Cutting Board

Items for the Home

Everybody eats and everybody lives somewhere. If you know that your gift recipient is need of something home related put it one the gift list.

Here are some ideas:

  • Bed Sheets in a Neutral Color (I love getting these!)
  • Cleaning Equipment (Vacuum, Swiffer Mop, Etc.)
  • Towels in a Neutral Color

I try to avoid decorative items unless I know of something specific.

Beauty Products

If you have women on your list beauty products could be a good option. In the past I have gifted really nice razor sets, high-end shampoo and conditioner and perfume.

Hobby Items

All the men in my life are avid hunters. This means I can usually get away with purchasing a couple camouflage t-shirts for them and be done. They’re happy and my shopping is easy. While buying for a hobby isn’t so easy for everyone it is something to consider.

If your gift recipient has a hobby they are really into you can find out what they use/want the most.

Amazon Gift Cards

It’s pretty rare to find someone who doesn’t shop on Amazon. If you absolutely cannot think of another idea (or just don’t want to) Amazon gift cards are a good way to go.

In fact, I enjoy getting Amazon gift cards as gifts because I feel like I can spend them guilt-free on whatever my heart desires.

And One for Fun…

I didn’t want to put this one in bold but one thing my family likes to do during the holiday season is gift lottery tickets. It started with my Grandma who was almost impossible to buy for but LOVED scratch off tickets. This tradition has spread to other family members who love them just the same.

Nobody in my family is regular scratch off lottery ticket buyer but once a year as a Christmas gift the scratch off tickets are pretty fun!

Do you buy practical gifts for the adults on your list?

Related: Financial Gift Ideas for Kids

About Alexa Mason

Alexa Mason has written 192 articles on this site..

Alexa Mason is a freelance writer and wanna be internet entrepreneur. She is also a newly single mom to two beautiful little girls. She chronicles her journey as a single mom trying to make it big at www.singlemomsincome.com.