Today’s gift guide is all about holiday gift ideas for teens. Honestly they’re one of the easier groups to shop for – it’s quite simple to head to the mall and pick up a cuddly hoodie or some fun accessories or a video game and call it a day. But if you’re still looking for some extra guidance when hunting down a Christmas gift for teens, here are 10 great picks to help you out.
Ceramic Glaze Holiday 2015 Collection – $9.99 each @ Shoppers Drug Mart + Pharmaprix
Every teen loves polishing up her nails – and Ceramic Glaze is a good brand to introduce them to for a few reasons. First, they’re a mid-range price point polish, meaning it brushes on beautifully with highly pigmented shades, and it won’t chip off the second she dips into her backpack. Second, they’re always releasing amazing colour stories, like this winter’s dreamy, festive collection of eight shades that range from an iridescent grey to an ultra glossy plum to a brilliant sparkly red. Finally, they’re also in tune with nail trends – like this season’s layering trend, where you apply a lighter-coloured top coat (like their glittery Snow Queen or Diamond Dust) on top of a bold shade. Gift your teen with the entire set and let her have a fun mani / pedi party with her friends!
Boone Collection Apple Lightning Cables – $19.95 – $23.95
This is another one of those products that seems so simple but is seriously one of my fave gift ideas of the season. Based in Canada, this brand has taken your Apple lightning cable (aka your power charging cable) and given it a makeover, by adding a nylon sleeve. Why is this cool? For one thing, it means NO more tangles! If you’ve suffered the plight of endless cable tangles (especially when tossing your lightning cable in your purse or backpack) then you’ll appreciate this manyfold – but beyond that, those tangles can actually cause wear and tear on your cable that eventually makes it stop working. Boone’s cables are extra protected, plus they look great too; it’s easy to spot one in the depths of your backpack or locker and it’s always a good idea to have an extra charging cable handy, especially for super connected teens.
BONUS: Nab 20% off your cable purchase using the coupon code CGGBoone!
e.l.f. Eye Palettes – $10 USD each
Makeup trends come and go – so skip splurging on super expensive cosmetics sets for your teen (especially if they’re just getting into makeup) and go for pretty palettes at purse-friendly prices. e.l.f. has four amazing eyeshadow palettes available at the bargain price of $10 a pop this season, each with its own theme. Three of the palettes – Mad for Matte, Need it Nude, and Everyday Smokey – actually have quite similar hues to Urban Decay’s famed Naked collection, yet you can snap up all four (Day to Night offers some more vibrant party-ready shades) for less than the cost of a single UD palette. With a mix of lights and darks, glitters and mattes, these awesome palettes are easy to blend and will totally win over the teens on your shopping list. They’re also great if you’re shopping for multiple teens and want to gift them each something a little different.
Giant Gummi Cola Bottle – $18.99 @ Gummi Boutique
When in doubt – go for something sweet, with a fun twist! Gummi Boutique has plenty of quirky candy gift ideas, including oversized versions of your teen’s favourite childhood sweets. Case in point? This epic giant gummi cola bottle, that looks and tastes like their soda-flavoured gummis of yesteryear, but easily outweighs and outsizes an actual bottle of cola. Weighing in at a whopping 3 lbs, you can actually nab this fizzy-flavoured gummi in a variety of flavours beyond classic cola, like vanilla Coke or root beer. I’d recommend giving them a shout to ensure you get the flavour you love – and just wait for that sugar rush to hit your teen come Christmas morning!
The Body Shop Strawberry Festive Cracker – $10
Kudos to The Body Shop for having an entire section of their site dedicated to affordable, festive, and fun gift ideas for teens. One of my faves of the bunch? This sweet, strawberry-infused Christmas cracker. Pop it open and you’ll receive a super soothing strawberry-scented hand lotion, as well as an adorable heart-shaped soap. It’s a cute party guest idea if you’re hosting a few teens this holiday season – set one at their places at dinnertime and they’ll be exceptionally grateful not only for the gift, but for the chance to skip wearing a silly paper crown. Despite its low price tag, this gift idea is also part of The Body Shop’s charitable initiatives with WaterAid; buying it guarantees one day of safe water for a family in Ethiopia.
Icon Snowskates – From $149 USD
I was recently interviewed by CBC Radio about gift ideas for tough to buy for folks, and I actually named Icon Snowskates as one of the *best* ideas I’d seen in a long time for teenage skater boys (and girls!) in particular. Over the past couple of years I’ve seen more and more teens and tweens pick up boarding, but the winter weather naturally puts a damper on rolling around town. Instead of hitting your indoor skate park, Icon Snowskates sees the world differently: with just an inch of snow, the world can become your skate park. Made in the USA, they handcraft custom skateboards designed specifically for winter weather – think miniature snowboard in some ways. As to why I love it so much? For one, I’m a HUGE proponent of ‘get active’ gifts for kids and teens – and this will definitely get them off the couch. For another, they can keep up their skateboarding in the winter. And if they’re interested in boarding but you’re not ready to take the plunge on spending hundreds on equipment (or you don’t have a hill near by you), it’s a happy medium that requires no gear – just a certain sense of fearlessness.
Conair Quick Twist – $39.99 (click here for retailers)
I’m a big fan of cool hair tools that can give you a magazine-worthy style in minutes, and Conair’s latest offering stood out to me this season as something new that I hadn’t seen before. It’s oh so simple to use – you hook two pieces of hair into the tool, push a button, and it twists it into ropes. Those ropes can then be used to create a huge array of Pinterest-esque hairstyles that will have all of your teen’s friends asking ‘How did you do that??’ It’s also super affordable too, so even if she has a few other gadgets in her hair care collection, this one is a perfectly priced addition to the bunch. Bonus – it also comes with fun accessories to liven up her look, and the Quick Twist website has loads of easy tutorials to perfect her mane (I adore the Waterfall Braid one!)
Ringly Smart Rings – From $195 USD
As per some of the other gift ideas in this guide, your teen may be addicted to their phone, but that doesn’t always mean it’s appropriate (or even allowed) to be out. Ringly offers an elegant solution in their form of their trendsetting smart rings that look like any other piece of jewelry but have a much broader function. Your ring can be set to alert you when certain things are happening on your phone, using Bluetooth technology. With four different vibration settings and lights to choose from, you can custom set what each notification means – the Ringly app syncs up with everything from incoming phone calls and texts to social notifications. So for example, if your teen wants to know when you’re trying to get a hold of them, the ring can be set to pulse a blue light. Or if they want to make sure they never miss a Facebook post from a close friend, the ring can flash red. Available in a range of semi-precious stones with an 18K gold finish, it’s a pretty piece of jewelry that delivers a whole lot more than style.
Olivier Sage & Clay Soap – $7.95 + Acne Cream – $29.95
The teenage years are often associated with less than stellar skin. But brands like Olivier Soaps are offering up soothing skin solutions that rely on harsh astringents to rid your skin of zits. Their Sage & Clay Soap uses rich olive oil and soothing cocoa butter with a number of purifying ingredients that can relieve irritated or spotty skin – like sage, cornmeal and clay. After washing up, your teen can use the brand’s luxurious Acne Cream to penetrate their zits and relieve their skin of redness. Crafted from essential oils from the Bay West Indies, this soothing cream is a gentler, more natural approach to treating acne that is certainly just as effective as commercial brands. The combination of the two products is a great gift that helps boost self-confidence, even if your teen (boy or girl) would never think to ask for it.
BONUS: Nab 10% off your order with the coupon code CGG2015 (not applicable on holiday packages + cannot be combined with any other offer). Olivier offers free shipping on orders over $75 and there’s still time to order before the holidays! They also have a great giveaway on their FB page to win a $500 Olivier shopping spree!
Game of Phones – $26.70 @ Breaking Games
It’s no secret that teens are glued to their smartphones. While they may be curious about adult-flavoured card games like Cards Against Humanity, preserve their innocence for another year and instead hand over this fun game that taps into their smartphone browsing prowess. The gist of the game is pretty simple and actually similar to CAH. You draw a card from the deck that offers up a prompt, like ‘Find the best #selfie’ or ‘Find a weird food photo’ and the players around the table bust out their phones to track down the best or weirdest thing. The judge for that round picks their favourite and that person nabs a point. First to ten wins! With the wild world of the internet as your muse, plenty of hilarity is bound to ensue – and it’s easy to build on the game by shaking up the rules, like only letting people search on a particular social platform, slicing down the time you have each round, or adding in new prompts. It’s a cool new way to ‘get social’ with your friends and family.
Once again I have a fabulous prize package for a lucky reader to nab, valued at over $450! If you win, you’ll receive:
- Ceramic Glaze’s Holiday 2015 Collection
- 2x Boone Collection Cables
- 4x e.l.f. Eye Palettes
- The Body Shop Strawberry Festive Cracker
- Icon Snowskates Team Collection Snowskate
- Conair Quick Twist
- Olivier Sage & Clary Soap and Acne Cream
Here’s how to enter my lovelies!
1) SUPER important note: You must be a subscriber to the Canadian Gift Guide to enter this giveaway. It’s as simple as finding ‘The Gift of Gab’ box in the righthand column and dropping in your email or clicking follow. Then leave me a comment below by December 17, 2015 telling me your top gift ideas from this list that you’d love to gift or receive!
2) Entries are limited to one per person / per email address / per household (or more if you score bonus entries). A random draw will be conducted on or around December 18, 2015 to select the winner, who will have 48 hours to respond before another winner is chosen in their place.
3) Entries are limited to Canadians that have reached the age of majority in their province. Quebec is not eligible for this promotion.
4) Bonus Entries: Do as many or as few of the following as you’d like. For every bonus entry you rack up, be sure to leave a separate comment with proof (i.e. a link) or your bonus entries won’t count! For example, leave one comment to start, as per step 1 above. Then, if you decide to like one of the brands on Facebook and leave a wall post, leave a link back to your wall post in a separate comment below. And so on! Google is a helpful resource for learning how to link back to social posts online.
Ceramic Glaze – Follow the brand on Instagram and either Regram one of their photos or share the photo from this post of their polishes onto your feed (try a screenshot). Be sure to tag Ceramic Glaze in your Instagram post!
Boone Collection – Like the brand on Facebook and leave a wall post about which cable of theirs you’d most love to try. You have no obligation to mention the CGG.
e.l.f. Cosmetics – Follow the brand on Instagram and either Regram one of their photos or share the photo from this post of their polishes onto your feed (try a screenshot). Be sure to tag e.l.f. in your Instagram post!
The Body Shop – Follow the brand on Instagram and either Regram one of their photos or share the photo from this post of their polishes onto your feed (try a screenshot). Be sure to tag e.l.f. in your Instagram post!
Icon Snowskates – Like the brand on Facebook and leave a wall post about who in your family / circle of friends needs an Icon Snowskate in their life. You have no obligation to mention the CGG.
Conair – Follow the brand on Twitter and send out a tweet that tags them + me (@cdngiftguide), links back to this post, and uses the hashtag #twistandshare
Olivier – Like the brand on Facebook and leave a wall post about which Olivier product you’re most interested in trying out. You have no obligation to mention the CGG.