Top Gift Ideas for Men (for Father’s Day, Birthday, Etc)

Top gift ideas for men who are impossible to find gifts for

What do you do for gifts when the man in your life is hard to shop for? I’ve been trying to answer that question for years, as it always seems tougher to find good gift ideas for men than it does for women.

My husband is a perfectionist who insists that anything he buys is of the utmost quality. He doesn’t like things that sit around or take up space without a purpose, so strictly sentimental gifts are out. Though I did think of one sentimental gift that was also useful so he loved it… see below. He also hates being surprised, so keeping the gift a secret without him finding it is another challenge!

This post includes some of the best gifts I’ve found for my husband over the years. It also includes gifts that my many brothers-in-law have enjoyed and items on all of their wish-lists.

Focus on Experiences

I firmly believe that often the best gifts are not something you can wrap. In our house, experiences always beat material gifts and we choose these whenever possible. Recent reports indicate that most Americans have over 300,000 items in their homes, and storage units are the fastest growing real estate segment.

On top of that, we have:

  • an average of 30 outfits each while our grandparents only had 7-9
  • 200 toys *per child* (while they only play with an average of 12)

And over half of us claim to be overwhelmed with the amount of clutter surrounding us. If this sounds like your family, I’d recommend the book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up. Maybe that would even be a good gift for the man in your life if you are trying to get him on board the minimalist trend!

If you already have the clutter under control, I’d still recommend an experience instead of a gift.

I share all of our favorite experience-based gift ideas here if you’re looking for some ideas. If you want to give a physical gift, just make sure it is practical, useful and long-lasting so it doesn’t end up in the back of the closet or a landfill.

Here are some of my favorite ideas for men that I have given or my husband has mentioned he loves.

Practical Gifts Ideas for Men

Your dad, husband, uncle, etc. probably doesn’t need a paperweight or another tie. If you’re looking for a gift he will use and love, here are some great options:

Blue Light Blocking Glasses

My husband and I have been wearing Blue Blocking Glasses for years. These glasses help reduce eye fatigue from computers and reduce blue light for better sleep. We put them on after the sun goes down each night to block the blue light from computer screens, television, and phones. My husband loves this style of blue light blocking glasses and I like that they are metal instead of plastic.

A Good Knife

A quality folding knife- classic gift for a guyI didn’t buy this for my husband, but his folding knife is an item that he uses daily. He has carried a knife since I met him and he uses it for “anything and everything.” I actually find myself asking him to borrow it pretty often when I need to open boxes, cut a thread off of a sweater in the car, etc… A folding knife (or any knife really)  is a classic guy gift and a pretty safe bet.

Good Wine + An Aerator

If your man is a wine drinker, wine is always a great gift option. It is consumable and typically lends itself to spending quality time together. Some of our favorite date nights have been just sitting on the back patio after the kids go to bed and drinking wine.

Just try to choose a high quality organic wine. We always stick to natural wines whenever possible, which are grown organically and lab tested to have no mold and mycotoxins or additives. He also loves our Wine Aerator which improves the flavor of wine and removes sediment as you pour it.

The Last Wallet He’ll Ever Need

Natural Leather Wallet- with 100 year warranty- the last one he will ever need- gift for this ChristmasMen are tough on wallets! My dad used to go through one every year or two and that was almost always what we knew we could get him for Christmas each year. I mentioned my husband likes the best of things, and I found a wallet that meets his expectations.

It has a 100 year warranty (so his grandkids can use it one day)! They also have a bigger wallet if he likes that kind (I have this one and love it). Saddleback Leather also makes briefcases and bags (which have been on his wish list forever) and they even recently started making a purse for women (all are covered by the 100 year warranty). They are more pricey up front, but considering they will never need to buy another one, they are a great gift for someone who values quality.

A Notebook or Journal

Every man needs a good notebook or journal to jot down thoughts, ideas, take notes, set goals, and keep track of his schedule. This Dot Matrix Bullet Journal is a very popular option (that I stole from my husband!) because it’s so nice, easy to use, and serves as both a journal, calendar, and notebook all in one. And at under $10 it’s a great value too!

A Great Flashlight

My husband loves his Surefire Flashlight and it goes almost everywhere with him. This flashlight is super bright and small enough to fit in a pocket.

Better Shaving Tools

Natural Shaving Options for Men-old fashioned shaving sets are a great gift ideaFor men who have sensitive skin or really thick facial hair (like my husband), natural shaving options are a great gift. I was proud that this was one I actually thought of on my own, and he is really glad he switched!

His face used to get irritated from conventional disposable razors (even the good ones) and I didn’t like the chemicals in regular shaving cream, so the old-fashioned style seemed to be the best choice.

He now uses a double-sided safety razor which he got with a brush, mug, and razor stainless steel set (he loves it!). he used to hate shaving and actually enjoys it now. I make homemade shaving soap for him to go in the mug (recipe here) but there are also some good ones available if you don’t want to make it.

If you aren’t sure your guy will go for the old-school shaving, there are cheaper sets available and he can always upgrade to the nicer version if he likes it.

If your man doesn’t shave, consider this awesome Beard Oil! My hubby grew out his beard last year and loved that oil.

Rumble Roller

Rumble Roller- great gift idea for men- deep tissue massage at homeThe rumble roller is one of my favorite gifts of all time too. Basically, it is a deep tissue massage at home. It is a lot cheaper than regular massages in the long run! The big spikes make it great for athletes (my hubby and a lot of men) and people who get stressed out/tense easily (me). My husband also doesn’t like taking the time to get a massage, especially since the sitting-still-and-doing-nothing for an hour really annoys him. This is the solution!

It doesn’t take up much room and it is wonderful for sore muscles! I use this regularly and it has made a big difference in my muscle tension. Plus, it looks manly and tough, so men don’t mind using it. Here is the Rumble Roller I got and there are two different sizes and firmness levels.

Camping Gear

These gifts are great because they combine a physical gift and lead to an experience of camping as well. Camping is a great family activity with some major health benefits. In fact, a recent study found that a week of camping without artificial light drastically improved circadian rhythm and sleep. If your guy likes camping, here are a few great gear options:

Protective Laptop Board

If your guy works on a computer as much as mine does, a protective laptop board is a great gift. This board makes it easier to work with a laptop in your lap. It also protects the legs and stomach from the heat and radiation from a laptop. We use the Defender Pad and love it.

DIY Fleece Quilt (Easy Way!)

Easy t-shirt quilt pattern design with fleece back diyMy husband had a ton of t-shirts from college, and he didn’t want to get rid of any of them, since they had sentimental value. I wasn’t thrilled with the idea of them sitting in the closet forever, so I decided to make them into a quilt.

All of the patterns I found required layers of batting, interfacing, and backing and would cost a lot more than I was willing to spend. After being told by the lady at the fabric store that I couldn’t do it, I decided to use fleece as a backing (a challenge?) and couldn’t be happier with the results. This quilt has lasted for years with very little wear and he actually uses it!

Bonus: It only took me a few hours to sew, all on the machine! This would actually be a great gift for a child or other relative as well! Click Here for the easy tutorial and instructions (it really is easy to make!).

Chef’s Knife (for the Man Who Likes to Cook)

If your man enjoys grilling out or cooking up a feast in the kitchen, a good chef’s knife can’t be beat. There are dozens (if not hundreds) of options available, but I love this professional grade Damascus Steel knife because it’s excellent quality, beautiful to look at, and my husband enjoys using it when he helps out in the kitchen (and kids can use it too!).

“I Love You Because” Calendar

I love you because DIY Calendar ideaFor our first Christmas, money was pretty tight and I wanted to find a gift that would be budget friendly and also sentimental. I got a scrapbook type calendar like this one and added photos from our dating, engagement, and wedding to make the picture for each month. Then, I wrote on every day of the year a reason that I love and admire my husband. Reasons ranged from really heartfelt/romantic “You still make my heart skip a beat,” to the silly “Your crooked toe from when you broke it,” to others that aren’t appropriate for the blogosphere. 🙂

He actually used the calendar and looked forward to reading the reason I loved him each day. I think it is one of the few sentimental gifts that he still has to this day. This was also one of my favorite gifts to give!

To be really budget friendly, you could even just make or print the calendar on your computer and write the reasons in…

Is your man hard to shop for? What is the best gift you’ve ever gotten him? Would any of these be a good fit? Share below!

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Reader Comments

  1. Great list! I’ll keep these in mind for the hubby. I’ve never heard of the “Earthing Mat” before and I enjoyed reading up about it on your previous post. Thanks for sharing, I’m excited to learn more about it and eventually buy one! ( :

  2. i LOVE my wake up light. i used to have so much trouble waking up and now i dont!

  3. I bought my husband a universal remote one year and he says it’s the best present he’s ever gotten. He loves it, and, like you said it’s nice and practical.

  4. This is a great list! I was skeptical when the first thing I glanced at was the fingered shoes, but I also admit that I probably noticed those first because my fiance just bought a pair, and is enjoying them. 😛 (I just can’t get over how weird they look!)
    Bookmarking this, and very much considering both the wake up light and the rumble roller…. though the wallet would also be great… and a shaving kit is something I’ve been looking at….

  5. This is actually a really, really helpful list! I’m considering the shaving set option and also the wallet. Thanks!

  6. Great list! My hubby is forever looking for his ideal wallet. Now I’m going to investigate the Saddleback Leather wallet. Some of the best gifts I’ve found for him were: wooden lap desk (Leverington), atlas (he loves maps), Tennessee toothpick (beautiful mini jackknife), good pens (Pentel Energel .7). Fun post and helpful. Thanks.

  7. The only problem with this list is there are too many good ideas!!
    Earthing mat just ordered. Hope you get some kick back from them!!

  8. My hubby is tough to buy for and he already has about 4 of these things! But you gave me some really good ideas!

  9. This is a great list, thanks Katie! Here are some of the well-appreciated gifts I’ve given my guy: a really good chef’s knife with a honer and good quality cutting board; a handmade leather satchel for carrying books; a nice fountain pen; and a manly black martini glass. 🙂

  10. Ooh great list. My husband has so many eclectic hobbies that it’s easy to get him something he likes but so hard to find something he really loves. He absolutely hates shaving and has super sensitive skin so I think this may be the perfect time to make the swith to a more natural product. His all time favorite gift I’ve gotten him is a drawing table. He’s been working on a year long project that involves him drawing every day so it’s been well used. He was like a kid at Christmas when he first saw it, I love making him smile like that.

  11. My fiancé is the pickiest EVER to shop for! It’s been a few years already that we just ask him to give us a list of things he likes or things he wants. What I really always want is to surprise him. Last year was the year of all years… the gift I got him for Christmas totally knocked his socks right off! My fiancé loves to cook and his favorite foods are usually grilled. His hobby is cooking/grilling and perfecting recipes. I sure am blessed and support his hobby! The whole family does! Hehe. However, he’s the type of guy you see outside grilling EVERY day… even in the freezing temps! (if you are a Minnesotan or know one, you more than likely know deal) Once, it was so cold out that he grilled in the garage! With the door cracked open a bit! I felt so bad when he came inside with red, puffy eyes from all the smoke. I’m the kind of person that likes to take care of situations, find solutions, make things better, etc. I had to fix this! I had to find some kind of meat thermometer he could use that would alarm him when his food was ready. If not I would have to invent one. I did a little search and that’s when I ran into the iGrill. I couldn’t believe I hadn’t thought of that before! But better late than never, ehy! So finally when he opened his gift and saw it for the very first time, the expression on his face was priceless! Woohoo! Mission accomplished for Christmas 2014! ?

  12. Could you post the link to the rumble roller again. When I clicked on the link in your post it brought me to Amazon, but not any specific items. Thank so much!

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