Last Minute Christmas Gift Ideas

by Jeannieinabottle

Christmas is nearly here and you haven't put much thought into gifts. It is not the time to panic! Now it is time to get out there and get some great last minute presents.

Some people start shopping months before Christmas, or even plan for Christmas all year long. If you are reading this article, I am willing to bet you are not one of those people. You are a last minute shopper, aren't you? Don't feel too bad! Plenty of people are very last minute with their Christmas shopping.

If you've waited a while because you don't have good ideas, don't worry... I am happy to help you with some basic Christmas gift ideas. If you've waited all this time for the best sales, good for you! Some of the best bargains occur right before Christmas. If you've waited all this time to begin Christmas shopping because you hate it, no worries. I will include some links so you can merrily click and check out without leaving your home. See... this whole Christmas shopping thing isn't so bad after all.

Wrapped Christmas Gifts
Wrapped Christmas Gifts

Bath and Body Gift Sets

Are you confused about a good Christmas present for your Grandma, girlfriend, or co-worker?  A good standard Christmas gift is a nice bath set.  Right now, Bath and Body Works still has some pretty and inexpensive gift sets available.  They also have a ton of coupons they are happy to email to you if you sign up for their coupons online. 

When purchasing a bath and body gift set for someone, make sure to try to personalize it in some way.  If Grandma loves the smell of sugar cookies, get her a nice vanilla scented set.  If you are a Bath and Body Works holiday itemsguy and you are playing Secret Santa for the co-worker you hardly know at work, look around in her cubicle and see what type of lotion she may have on her desk.  Ask her other co-worker buddies what scent she may prefer.  Then buy her something nice, but of course, not too sexy.  That would be super creepy!  A gift set with a candle, shower gel, socks, lipgloss, and other generic stuff like that would be perfect!

Even if you would rather not travel to the mall to shop at Bath and Body Works, I assure you, most stores have bath gift sets.  I'll bet you can even find them at the grocery store.  If you are shopping at the last minute, you should still be able to find plenty of gift sets with shower gels, soaps, bubble bath, bath salts, lotions, body butter, and more for the ladies in your life.

Shaving Gift Sets

Maybe you are not so worried about the women in your life; perhaps your major Christmas shopping issue involves the dudes in your life.  Well, not to worry!  Guys need bathroom supplies, too. 

Most guys are not going to be too excited to see a basket full of soaps, lotions, shower gels, etc.  Instead, many men would prefer a more manly look to their gift set.  Many gift sets for men have shaving gels, razors, perhaps some cologne, and maybe even some "manly" scented showel gels. 

For a man that really cares about smelling nice and looking tidy, he will be pretty excited to get this type of gift set.  On the other hand, men that really don't like shopping for personal grooming items will be happy that you made that effort for them.  Perhaps they won't even have to shop for shaving cream or soap until next Christmas depending on how much you get them.  Hooray!


Some people will tell you candles as a Christmas gift is boring or out of style.  Well, those people are just party poopers!  We, on the other hand, are going to celebrate the awesomeness of giving candles as a gift for Christmas.

Yes, they can be a generic gift, but they don't have to be.  Yankee Candle, as well as a number of Bath and Body Works candlesother retail stores, have wonderful gift sets available.  You can buy scented candle gift sets that come with candle holders, car air fresheners, decorations, etc.  Candles are only boring if you walk into a store, buy the first jar candle you see, and then plop it into a gift bag.

If you have the free time, you can even customize the gift set yourself.  Make sure to get a scented candle you believe the recipient will appreciate.  You can add candy, socks, lip gloss, and plenty of other fun items to the gift basket or gift bag.  Many women just love that type of thing!  Also, some men even love a scented candle, too.  Not all of them will admit it, but the word on the street is that dudes love the Pineapple Cilantro scent from Yankee Candle. 

Dollar Store Stocking Stuffers

I know this is where I am going to lose some of you, but this needs to be said: the dollar store has some great Christmas items!  If you've waited the last minute to go Christmas shopping because you are low on cash, the dollar store is going to be a life saver to you this holiday season. 

I personally recommend visiting the Dollar Tree if you have one in your area.  The Dollar Tree is a true dollar store since pretty much everything is a dollar.  If it isn't a dollar, it is probably even less than a dollar.  Some of the amazing items you can get for a dollar are:

  • Small stuffed animals
  • Coloring books
  • Crayons
  • Toy trucks and cars
  • Dolls
  • Puzzle books
  • Lotion
  • Lip gloss
  • Boxes of candy
  • Earbuds for iPod / MP3 player
  • Nail polish
  • Hair accessories
  • Small cookie jars
  • Cookies
  • Gloves
  • Socks
  • Scarves
  • Calendars
  • Gift bags
  • Mini Christmas tree
  • Wrapping papers
  • Bows
  • Ribbons
  • Christmas stocking
  • Holiday decorations
  • So much more!

Maybe you won't be able to make any major purchases in the dollar store (you sure can't find a TV in there), but you can purchase a Christmas stocking for a dollar and then fill it up with fun low-priced items.  This is a great gift idea, especially for a Secret Santa present!

Christmas Trees and Plants

Mini-pine treeThis year, you can give a live gift to someone for Christmas.  No, I don't mean you should buy someone a puppy... that is a fairly awkward last minute Christmas present.  I mean, you can purchase a plant or mini-tree for someone that enjoys houseplants.

The most popular plants available to give as a Christmas gift are Poinsettias.  They are the beautiful red plants you see each year at stores.  They make lovely Christmas gifts, although they are really hard to keep alive.  If you are unsure whether the gift recipient has a green thumb, you may want to play it safe and purchase a mini-tree instead.

Many little pine trees are sold in stores as Christmas trees this time of year.  Some are just plain, but others are pre-decorated with little ornaments.  This year, I found a lovely tree that had a natural look with a little glitter sprinkled on it.  It was subtle, yet pretty.  Mini-pine trees make excellent Christmas presents for those that love houseplants.

On a side note, if you are going to be a houseguest at anyone's home this holiday season, a small houseplant is always a thoughtful thank you gift!

Trees and Plants for Christmas

National Tree 60 Inch Arborvitae Tree in Dark Green Round Plastic Pot (LMC4-700-60-1)

The 60-inch arborvitae tree comes in a dark green pot. Can be used for indoor or outdoor display. No dirt, water, sunlight or pruning required.

View on Amazon

Kurt Adler 18-Inch Mini Pine Tree

This 18-Inch mini pine tree from Kurt Adler is a beautiful addition to any holiday decor. Perfect for decorating smaller spaces, this 18-Inch unlit tree has 215 green tips and s...

View on Amazon

National Tree 24 Inch Majestic Fir Tree in Red Cloth Bag (MJ3-24RD-1)

National Tree Company is a leading manufacturer and wholesale supplier of artificial Christmas trees, wreaths and garlands as well as holiday decorations and fiber optics. Our t...

View on Amazon

Car Care Gift Set

If you are still having a hard time finding the right gift for a guy, I would suggest a car care gift set for the man that loves his car.  One car care gift set you should consider is a set that includes cleaning supplies such as car wax, a glass spray, cleaning wipes, and tire foam.  If the man you love happens to have a clunker and he won't be too sensitive about it, a nice car emergency kit is perfect.  It includes items like flares, a help sign, jumper cables, and more. 

Don't forget... there are plenty of ladies that love their car or care about car safety, too!  If a woman in your life absolutely adores her car or just bought a new car, a car care gift set could be a wonderful Christmas gift for her. 

There are a number of other items you can also consider for anyone that loves their car, such as seat covers, air fresheners, and more.  This is the perfect way to customize your gift.  You can find anything from zebra print seat covers to Hello Kitty seat covers.  There is something for everyone!

Gift Cards

Oh yes, I went there... gift cards!  Some people will say this is a lazy or impersonal gift, but I say it is a practical one.  If you know someone that is running low on money, perhaps a nice Walmart, Target, or grocery store gift card would be appreciated.  If you can't figure out what to get your 13 year old niece, find out what stores she loves the most at the mall and get her a gift card or two for her favorite places.  Gift cards are not impersonal if you go through the effort to give a card for a store that a person really likes.

I would also like to give a little advice for giving a gift card for Christmas: presentation goes a long way.  If you just hand someone a Visa gift card, it won't seem like you put any thought into it at all.  However, if you give a book lover a Barnes & Noble gift card with some flowers or a box of chocolates, you will look like a winner.  Take a little time to personalize the gift and it will be appreciated.

For that matter, taking the time to personalize any gift at all will make it look like you did not wait the last minute to purchase your Christmas presents this year.  Giving each gift a little thought will go a long way.  Good luck and merry Christmas!


Copyright ©2012 Jeannieinabottle

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Updated: 12/15/2012, Jeannieinabottle
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