Buying gifts for parents can be super stressful. There’s so much pressure! How do you buy a gift for the person who literally brought you into the world?
What if they don’t like it? What if it’s totally not their style? Do your parents even have hobbies, likes, dislikes and interests? And what if it seems like they already have everything — what do you buy then?
For those kids who just don’t know what to buy Mom or Dad — for birthdays, holiday & Christmas gifts, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day or any occasion — here’s the ultimate list of the 27 best gifts for parents.
The Best Sentimental Gifts for Parents
Give them a gift that shows you really do care.
If your family treasures recipes passed down from family member to family member the My Family Cookbook from Uncommon Goods is an excellent option. Maybe no one quite has those recipes written down anywhere, or maybe they’re scrawled on a ripped piece of notebook paper or a stained index card, ensure those family recipes are recorded for good and create a family heirloom in the process.
This cookbook is easily laid out to handwrite all the information you need for any recipe, with special places to record just who in the family came up with that prize-winning pie.
Another gift that’s a great choice for a parent who doesn’t mind (or even enjoys) a bit of writing or recording, My Life Story So Far gives your parent a perfect place to start writing that memoir they keep talking about. Easy prompts ensure the words flow. This book will be a keepsake for generations to come.
What’s more personal than letting your parent get a glimpse into their own DNA? (And a bonus: it’ll let you learn a thing or two about your own ancestry as well.)
The whole family will benefit when you buy your parent or parents an AncestryDNA kit, which will reveal the areas in the world your bloodline hails from, and the heritage connected to your roots.
Make sure to schedule some quality time to discuss the DNA results after they come in!
Thanks to Etsy, it’s easier than ever for you to commission a piece of customized art for your family. Whether it’s a cartoon sketch of your entire clan, or a lovingly painted portrait of the house you grew up in, or even a funny painting of your parents’ pets, if you can think it up, you can turn it into a piece of art that your parents will treasure forever. You can even have your crew or family pet’s likeness printed on a custom throw blanket.
Just keep in mind that many pieces of artwork you purchase on Etsy don’t come with a frame, so that’ll be an added cost, and often require a lengthy amount of time to create and then ship, so you won’t want to buy this gift if you’re shopping for a last-minute gift.
While some may think it’s a bit cringeworthy to give someone a photo of yourself, when you turn those photos into a useful calendar, it becomes much more acceptable. Ensure your parents never forget your smiling face, with a personalized calendar that features shots from all of their favorite memories.
If your parents are big fans of hosting dinner parties, whether for their friends or just the family, allow them to relieve some of their favorite meals with this journal-style book from Jacques Pepin.
If you and your siblings still live at home (or just are over all the time), this family mug set might be the thing to make your parents smile.
Each family member gets a mug with their own cartoon portrait and name along the front, and you can order sets with as many mugs as you need, for even the largest families.
Great Practical Gifts for Parents
Give them a gift that they’ll use every day (and think of you when they do!).
You’ve probably heard Quip advertised on your favorite podcast. This toothbrush that’s growing in popularity is so much more than your average old electric toothbrush, though.
Quip is a minimalist brush that mounts onto a bathroom wall, is very quiet and comes with tech features that tells you the best ways to brush. Plus, this is the gift that keeps on giving, as Quip is offered as a subscription, so your parents receive new brush heads every quarter, ensuring their smile sticks around for the long haul.
Does your parent continuously complain about back problems or discomfort, whether it’s from their office chair or the couch? Get them a thoughtful gift that will relieve some of the pressure and pain.
A memory foam cushion is an affordable, practical and easy way to show that you really are listening to them whenever they call you to complain about their various ailments.
Peruse the many options available on Amazon to find the perfect pick for your parent, whether they need something stylish to fit the rest of their travel gear or something rugged and outdoorsy, that’ll stand up to all of their adventures.
Does your mom or dad frequently forget their mug of coffee or tea around the house, only to come back hours later and find a sad, cold beverage awaiting them? Make sure their drink is always just the right temperature, with a smart mug that keeps every drink at their desired heat level.
(And, if you find the smart mugs are too pricey for your budget, you can also find mug warmers that offer a limited version of the same functions.)
One of your parents always complaining about cold hands while working from home? Gift them this USB-heated mouse pad that can plug right up into their desktop. They’ll be able to complete all their work with ease while keeping their fingers nice and toasty.
Gifts for New Parents
Did your parents recently pop out a little sibling, or are you, in fact, not shopping for your own parents, but for another relative that recently became a mom or dad? Then check out our handy gift guide for new parents.
New parents have a lot to juggle, but this handy gadget makes staying connected through it all easier than ever.
For parents still using a stroller, the hook just clasps around the stroller handle. From there, it’s not only a sturdy place to hang up to 25 pounds of whatever (from diaper bags to oversized purses to grocery bags), but also a convenient charging port for your phone, with enough juice for two full charges.
New parents need time more than anything, so relieve them from some of their cleaning duties, with the iRobot Braaca Robot Mop. Not just a mop, this little guy replaces your robot vacuum and can sweep and mop hardwood and tile floors. Just set it up in the kitchen or anywhere else in your home and let him go.
Let’s face it — Everyone could use an Amazon Prime membership, but new parents could possibly benefit the most. After all, what’s better than having easy access to order all the baby supplies they need, whenever they need it, as well as access to tons of music, movies and books, to keep them entertained during long, late-night feeding sessions?
According to Hindi Zeidman, Infant Mental Health Clinician and the founder of The Ollie World, “Coffee or tea can be a parent’s lifeline at times, especially when trying to function on no sleep.” Hook those new parents up with a coffee or tea subscription and help them get that precious caffeine supply delivered without any muss or fuss.
Tech Gifts for Parents
Do you have a parent who thinks of themself as tech-savvy (whether or not they actually are)? Consider buying them one of these pieces of tech for their next special occasion.
The Ring video doorbell has been around for a while, but if your parents have yet to consider installing one on their front door, now is a good time. They’ll easily be able to see who’s on the stoop, or when the delivery guy comes with their pizza or packages.
And, if your parents already have Alexa products, they’ll be able to connect the devices seamlessly.
Friendship lamps are a fun tech gift that require very little tech knowledge to use. Really, you just need to be able to connect them to your WiFi, and you’re good to go.
Friendship lamps are a really touching, personal way to show your parent you’re thinking of them on a regular basis. They work by glowing one color when untouched, but as soon as you touch one, both lamps glow — no matter how far away the two lamps are. Many users buy them when they live far away from their loved ones, as it’s a special way to feel close, with little effort required.
You can pair the lamps with the Friendship picture frames for a personalized long-distance experience.
If your dad is extremely specific about the thermostat, in typical dad fashion, give him a gift that will set his energy-saving (and cost-saving) heart aflutter.
So you’ll have to buy two (to keep mom and dad from squabbling over who gets to use such a great gift), but if it means both your parents are healthier, isn’t it worth the price?
Matching Fitbits can help your parents keep track of their heart rate, workouts, calorie consumption, cardiovascular health, fitness levels, floors climbed, active minutes, steps and more. And they only need to remember to charge them once or twice per week.
If your parents spend plenty of time on or near the water, whether camping, in the backyard pool or on their boat, make sure they can take their tunes along with them, with this portable Bose speaker. It offers the top-tier sound quality that you expect from Bose but can be taken just about anywhere, with no wires and no worries.
Similar to the Friendship Lamps, this little device will show your parent that you’re thinking of them without you even needing to give them a call. Just use the device’s app to send them a small message, and the heart on the outside of the box will spin. The message will appear on the box’s screen when they open the lid.
Luxury Gifts for Parents
Gifts for parents who truly do have everything they could ever need. Or maybe a way to score points with your in-laws!
Does your family take game night super seriously? Then give a nod to your parent’s favorite board game with a luxury edition of that game.
Who doesn’t want to feel more luxurious every time they get into bed? If your parents aren’t the type to invest in non-necessities, no matter how good those non-necessities might make them feel, do it for them. Give them the gift of better sleep, with luxury bedding — whether it’s a full duvet set, sheets, pillows or all of the above.
If your parents love a good cuppa joe but have never really moved on from their old drip coffee pot that they’ve had since your conception, give them a gift of better coffee on the daily.
An espresso maker is a one-time investment that’s sure to please for years to come.
If your parents can drink you under the table, but they’re finding that they can’t hit up their favorite pubs like they used to these days, then you might want to consider gifting them the Bartesian At-Home Cocktail Maker.
The tech-savvy machine is like a coffee maker — but for cocktails. Get restaurant-quality martinis, mixed drinks and more, without ever lifting a finger, measuring out ingredients or making a mess in the kitchen or at the bar cart.
This gift could be the solution to some awkward family gatherings coming this holiday season. Cheers!
But the Best Gifts for Parents…
The best gifts for parents, however, are always going to be your time and attention. No amount of money or fancy present can replace that, so if you’re struggling to find just the perfect gift, or you’re worried they won’t like what you picked, remember — at the end of the day, you’re all they need.
You may also be interested in: 3 Things You Didn’t Know About Paying For Nursing Home Care
27 Gift Ideas for Parents:
- My Family Cookbook
- My Life Story So Far
- Custom Art
- Custom throw blanket
- Personalized Calendar
- The Menus Book of Meals & Memories
- Family Mug Set
- A Memory Foam Cushion
- A Travel Bag
- A Smart Mug
- USB Heated Mousepad
- Stroller Hook Charger
- iRobot Braaca Robot Mop
- Amazon Prime Membership
- Coffee Subscription
- Ring Video Doorbell
- Friendship Lamps & Frames
- Nest Thermostat
- Bose Revolve Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker
- Lovebox Spinning Heart Messenger Box
- A Luxury Edition of Their Favorite Game
- Luxury Bedding
- An Espresso Maker
- Bartesian At-Home Cocktail Maker