Getting excited about birthday presents is not just for kids. You can be a grown-ass adult and still lose your shit when you open up the gift that topped your wish list. But as you get older, it does become a little more difficult to come up with a list of birthday gift ideas. You can’t just ask for all the coolest new toys anymore. Well, you can if you want — we’re not going to stop you.
If your birthday is coming up and you’re struggling to think of what you want, don’t sweat it. We compiled the ultimate birthday wish list for you, with gifts ranging from tech, to spa trips, to home goods. Read on for some birthday inspo to casually drop hints about to your friends. And hey, happy birthday!
A Bluetooth record player(Opens in a new tab)
Are your Spotify playlists just not cutting it anymore? Switch it up and go retro with a vinyl music collection. This turntable connects to Bluetooth speakers and headphones if you want to listen that way or you can hook it up to a sound system using cords — it costs $248(Opens in a new tab).
A smart speaker(Opens in a new tab)
If you don’t have a smart speaker by now, it’s time to make a change. The Echo Dot is an affordable voice-controlled companion that’ll keep you in the loop on the weather, current events, and keep track of your most important reminders. Also, they’re great for playing music. Get one for $49.99(Opens in a new tab).
AirPods Pro(Opens in a new tab)
Credit: Stan Schroeder / Mashable
Apple stepped up its audio game with the AirPods Pro, which feature active noise cancellation. If you want the latest and greatest from Apple but don’t want to pay latest and greatest prices (AirPods Pro cost $249(Opens in a new tab)) yourself, put these babies on your bday wishlist.
A massage gun(Opens in a new tab)
Whether you’re working at a desk all day, running around, or just inexplicably tense, a massage gun will get you limber and relaxed again. What better gift than the gift of painless movement? Our best recommendation? Go for the TheraGun. Their Prime model costs $299(Opens in a new tab).
A cool drone with a 4K camera(Opens in a new tab)
This drone is small and super lightweight, but it takes stunning photos and video. It’s great for traveling or for using at home. DJI is one of the top names in drones and the Mini 2 costs $629 with accessories(Opens in a new tab).
A personal blender for smoothies(Opens in a new tab)
Make smoothies in your own kitchen with a NutriBullet personal blender — it’s fast and easy. The NutriBullet Nutrient Extractor comes with the 600W motor base, blender blade, 24-ounce blending cup, travel lid, and lip ring, plus a recipe book if you’re sick of the same old smoothies. It costs $59.99 but is currently on sale for $69.99(Opens in a new tab).
A new phone(Opens in a new tab)
The iPhone 13 Pro comes in 4 colors. Credit: Apple
Still living that single-camera iPhone 8 life? Don’t spend your own money on an expensive phone — have someone who loves you spend their money! The latest iPhones start at $999(Opens in a new tab). (Group gift, anyone?)
An artsy watch(Opens in a new tab)
From astronomy to animals and more. Credit: red juan shop
You like watches and art, so why not combine them? This Etsy shop has a huge selection of artwork watch faces, and you can even upload your own image. The watches are $15.93(Opens in a new tab).
A fun card game(Opens in a new tab)
Credit: what do you meme?
Be the king or queen of your next game night by asking for What Do You Meme? — a Cards Against Humanity-style game, but with memes. You’re not guaranteed to win, but you will have some good laughs for sure. The game goes for $29.99(Opens in a new tab).
A very personal card game(Opens in a new tab)
Credit: We’re not really strangers
Yes, that’s two card games on a single birthday list, but hear us out: there’s a time for memes, and a time for soul-searching and human connection. This “game” (it’s really more of an activity) is the latter. Get uncomfortably personal with family or break the ice on first dates — either way, these red cards will add new dimensions to your relationships (see their popular Instagram(Opens in a new tab) page for proof). The basic set is $25(Opens in a new tab), with expansion packs available.
Apparel for your favorite team(Opens in a new tab)
Show your team some love with a new shirt, jersey, or whatever else you want to flex their logo on. Fanatics has apparel for almost every die-hard sports fan (we’re looking at you, Buckeyes), with gear for the NFL, NCAA, MLB, NBA, NHL, and more. Prices vary(Opens in a new tab).
A nice camera(Opens in a new tab)
Whether you’re a professional or just picked it up as a hobby, photography nerds know that the Sony a7R II is an incredible piece of equipment. The full-frame, mirrorless camera takes stunning pictures worthy not just of your Insta feed, but the pages of National Geographic. The camera costs $1,189.99(Opens in a new tab) (not including the lens).
An Apple Watch(Opens in a new tab)
An Apple Watch lets you access smartphone features conveniently on your wrist. You can control your music, send and receive texts, monitor your health, and tons more. The Apple Watch Series 6 in red is currently $369(Opens in a new tab).
A media streaming stick(Opens in a new tab)
If you don’t already have a smart TV but you want to access Netflix, Hulu, HBO, Disney+(Opens in a new tab), and all the other streaming services directly from your TV, ask for a Fire TV Stick for your bday. The 4K version normally goes for $49.99(Opens in a new tab).
Money!!!(Opens in a new tab)
You really can’t beat the gift of cold, hard cash — or a gift card. This Visa card is a perfect gift because you can spend it on literally whatever you want; buy yourself something fun or get some help with groceries this month. The gift card starts at $10 and comes in $5 increments(Opens in a new tab).
A delicious-smelling candle(Opens in a new tab)
Credit: yankee candle
Candles are a timeless gift that you can ask for at every single gift-giving opportunity (and will likely receive anyways if you don’t specify what you actually want). We are firm believers that you can never have too many candles. Add some nice Yankee Candle(Opens in a new tab) scents to your bday wish list this year and every year.
A cast iron skillet(Opens in a new tab)
A cast-iron skillet is like the most ~adult~ thing you could ask for. It’s something you probably want, but don’t particularly want to spend the money on. Lodge has different sizes depending on what you’re wanting to cook. A 10.25-inch skillet costs $37.35(Opens in a new tab).
A multipurpose pressure cooker(Opens in a new tab)
Credit: instant pot
A little less adult, a little more useful: a pressure cooker that can air fry, roast, bake, dehydrate, slow cook, prepare rice, steam, sauté and more. Impress guests with your culinary skills (that are in fact just throwing all the ingredients listed in the recipe into this thing and then waiting a couple hours). The Instant Pot 11-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker will cost your gift-giver $199(Opens in a new tab), but they can reap the rewards when you cook for them with it.
A cool essential oil diffuser(Opens in a new tab)
Credit: heung hoi
Essential oil diffusers are on damn near every gift guide, but there’s a reason for that. They rock. You can create your own concoctions of scents to help boost your mood or let you relax. Plus, this one has super cool lights that will make your room look awesome. This diffuser costs $29.99(Opens in a new tab).
A relaxing spa day(Opens in a new tab)
A spa day is the ultimate treat yo’ self gift (just ask the Parks and Rec gang). Spafinder works with a network of spas and wellness centers, so you can use this gift card(Opens in a new tab) at your choice of location for a relaxing massage or rejuvenating facial.
A pack of disposable cameras(Opens in a new tab)
While on the topic of going retro, snap some throwback pics with a disposable camera. You’ll capture some fun, in-the-moment memories with no do-overs. A three-pack of disposable cameras costs $79.99(Opens in a new tab) (this shit has gotten kind of expensive since the invention of digital/phone cameras).
A new type of alcohol(Opens in a new tab)
Have a favorite type of wine that you can’t seem to find in any store? Or looking to try a new type of whiskey? Drizly(Opens in a new tab) offers delivery on beer, wine, and liquor and has thousands of options. Cheers!
A semi-permanent tattoo(Opens in a new tab)
If you like the idea of tattoos but don’t love commitment, Inkbox is an awesome gift. Pick from a huge selection of designs or create your own custom tat. The ink lasts on your skin for about two weeks, and the semi-permanent tattoos range from $5 on sale to $149 for full sets of 13.(Opens in a new tab)
A custom pet portrait(Opens in a new tab)
Credit: leflore studio
If you’re obsessed with your pet, these custom pet portraits need to be on your birthday list. There are many different styles to choose from, each one super freakin’ adorable. Prices vary depending on size(Opens in a new tab).
Color-changing smart light bulbs(Opens in a new tab)
Turn your bedroom into a party with these color-changing smart light bulbs. You can control the lights from your phone and set whatever mood you’re feeling. This kit includes two Bluetooth bulbs for $79.99(Opens in a new tab).
A portable projector(Opens in a new tab)
The portable projector fits in the palm of your hands. Credit: anker
All of your friends will start calling your home the “cool house” if movie nights involve this mini portable projector. Use it to play movies, shows, or games outside on a screen or indoors on a blank wall. The Anker Nebula Capsule in black costs $299.99(Opens in a new tab).
A cool new bike(Opens in a new tab)
Head outdoors with this hybrid bike designed for both leisure and more adventurous rides. It comes in different colors and a couple different styles for men and women. The 18-inch Schwinn GTX bike normally goes for $499.99 but is currently 10% off for $449.99(Opens in a new tab).
A craft beer kit to make your own brew(Opens in a new tab)
Credit: mr. beer
If you’re a craft beer connoisseur, it’s time you start brewing your own ales. This kit comes with everything you need to make two gallons of Mr. Beer’s Golden Ale and it costs $49.99(Opens in a new tab).
A nice Apple laptop(Opens in a new tab)
MacBook Airs are super nice computers, but they can definitely be a bit pricey… which is what makes them such a great addition to a birthday wish list. Someone who loves you can drop the big bucks for you! A 13-inch MacBook Air with 8GB RAM and 256GB SSD goes for $999(Opens in a new tab).
A robot vacuum that does the cleaning for you(Opens in a new tab)
Stop manually vacuuming your house every day and let a robot vacuum clean your floors for you. The Roomba 981 has WiFi connectivity for mobile and voice controls and it’s tough on pet hair. This robot vacuum costs $248.99.(Opens in a new tab)
A weighted blanket(Opens in a new tab)
For what seems like an extraneous expense, an extra-heavy blanket can be a total game-changer. Besides providing all the comfort of a partner without the snoring, a weighted blanket can reduce tossing and turning and keep you extra warm. This one on Amazon comes in a bunch of colors, sizes, and weights, but the 60″x80″ 15 lbs blanket (a good place to start) costs $109.99(Opens in a new tab).
A nice pair of sunglasses(Opens in a new tab)
Like, a nice pair of sunglasses. From beach days in the summer to warding off snow glare when driving in the colder months, sunglasses come in handy throughout the year (even just to have on your head as a lowkey flex). This unisex pair of Ray-Bans costs $213(Opens in a new tab).
A Kindle(Opens in a new tab)
Instead of asking for a book, ask for a Kindle for your birthday and save yourself money and space. Yes, it doesn’t smell the same, but now you’ll have no excuses for not keeping up with your yearly reading resolutions. The newest Kindle with 32GB storage is $189.99(Opens in a new tab).
Something to make your life a little more eco-friendly(Opens in a new tab)
Whether you’re packing your lunch or storing leftovers, using plastic bags should be your last resort. Heck, you should be trying to stay away from all single-use plastics if you’re able to. But, if you want to start small, these Stasher bags are a great option to make your daily life more eco-friendly. These silicone bags are secure, and completely reusable — either wash them by hand, or stuff them in the dishwasher. Grab a starter pack for $92.99(Opens in a new tab).
A new comforter(Opens in a new tab)
Comforters, like a mattress, shouldn’t be an item you cheap out on. They’re supposed to last you a while, so why not have something a little more luxurious? The Buffy Cloud comforter is a sustainable comforter made from recycled fiber and eucalyptus. Mashable Shopping Reporter Leah Stodart reviewed it here, calling it “the first piece of bedding I’ve used that actually feels kind of dreamy.” Snag one for $129(Opens in a new tab).
A trusty pet camera(Opens in a new tab)
If you’re anything like us, you view your pet like it’s your actual child. We support that. Now, you can up your pet parent game by picking up a Furbo pet camera. Not only does it livestream what your pet is up to while you aren’t home straight to your phone, but it also has the ability to toss treats and produce two-way audio for quick check-ins. Get one for $169(Opens in a new tab).
A reusable water bottle(Opens in a new tab)
It’s starting to get warmer out, which means it’s time to get even more serious about hydration. A HydroFlask is a perfect way to make sure you always have a cool (or hot) beverage on-hand, and they’re super durable during outdoorsy activities. Grab one for $49.95(Opens in a new tab).
A Game Pass membership(Opens in a new tab)
Basically the Netflix of video games, Xbox Game Pass gets you immediate access to a library of hundreds of titles to download at your leisure, from classics to day-one releases. Upgrade to the Ultimate version, and also gain access to the Game Pass for PC library. Need we say more? Snag a membership for $14.99 per month(Opens in a new tab).