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For many people, this holiday season might look similar to last year. For some of us, we might not be able to visit friends and family who live in different states or we might simply want to avoid going out to stores to protect ourselves and those around us. Fortunately, you can still shop for and send gifts to the people you love without leaving your house.
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Our experts at Reviewed have rounded up 25 of the top gifts to send the people on your list who you won't be able to visit in person. Among our favorite picks include the very popular Disney+, a cozy weighted blanket, and the boozy wine delivery service everyone is obsessed with.
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1. For the home chef: Freshly
Meal kits are popular for a reason. These super convenient subscription boxes deliver recipes, ingredients, and dishes straight to your door, making it easier to prepare gourmet meals that might otherwise feel inaccessible. Anyone who’s stuck at home has probably been doing a lot of additional home cooking lately, and these boxes are a great way to avoid getting in a rut with the same boring meals over and over again.
Even better? A meal kit that delivers pre-made dishes to the door. We tried the most popular pre-made meal kits and found that Freshly was the best. The dishes tasted like home-cooked meals (even though they were microwaved) and were large enough to provide our tester with the perfect portion size.
2. For the one with a green thumb: A live plant from The Sill
Plant parents rejoice! If your giftee is obsessed with houseplants, succulents, tropical plants, or all of the above, they'll definitely appreciate a subscription to The Sill. We recommend the plant delivery service because it has such a large variety of plants to choose from (like monsteras, ferns, and even pine trees) and will deliver them safely and healthily to your giftee's home each month.
3. For the movie buff: Disney+
Forget Netflix—2021 has been the year of Disney+. The recently released streaming service makes a great gift for anyone who loves Disney or for anyone who's watched (and rewatched) all of their favorite shows on Netflix and are ready for something new. It has a vast library of entirely family-friendly entertainment, including animated Walt Disney classics, Pixar films, Star Wars, and Marvel movies. And you can actually get your loved one a Disney+ gift subscription, so it's easier than ever to gift one.
4. For the person who wants to learn something new: MasterClass
MasterClass is a great gift for people of all interests and all ages. Whether someone wants to learn cooking skills from Gordon Ramsey, photography from Annie Leibowitz, or basketball from Steph Curry, they can take as many classes as they want with the All Access Pass. Our editor-in-chief tried it for himself and liked how inspiring the courses were.
5. For the one who likes history: Ancestry DNA kit
If you know someone who has been building their family tree for years, an Ancestry DNA kit might help them fill in a few blanks. For $99, you can get a full overview of your ethnicity estimate percentages, where your ancestors lived and how they moved around the world throughout time, and possibly even find relatives you never knew existed!
Ancestry is also offering a special deal for new subscribers. For $100, you get the base-level DNA kit plus three free months of Ancestry's World Explorer Membership. The World Explorer Membership grants access to Ancestry's international database of birth, marriage, census, and many other records.
6. For the meat lover: Crowd Cow
Burgers, steak, wings—if it's meat, they'll eat it. Make them the happiest carnivore this holiday with a subscription to a meat delivery service like Crowd Cow. I've used Crowd Cow myself and am obsessed with how convenient it is and how delicious and high-quality all of the meat is. One of the best parts is that Crowd Cow only sources its products from independent ranchers and farmers who raise their livestock in a sustainable and ethical way without any added hormones or unnecessary antibiotics.
7. For the person who's always cold: Barefoot Dreams Throw Blanket
Chrissy Teigen loves it. The Kardashians love it. Kate Hudson loves it. What is it? The cult-favorite Barefoot Dreams throw blanket. As someone who loves all things cozy, I tested it out myself and can attest that it is the softest, most comfortable throw I own. Bonus: Nordstrom offers free gift wrapping so you can have it sent to your giftee in perfectly wrapped style.
8. For the bookworm: Kindle Paperwhite
Lately, I’ve been thankful for my Kindle Paperwhite literally every day. Under normal circumstances, I’m in the library all the time, but that’s obviously not an option if local libraries are closed, or if you can’t leave your home. The solution? It’s time to fully embrace e-books.
I love my Kindle Paperwhite for its simplicity and convenience. It’s not covered in distracting features, but there are a few things about it (the light-up screen! The storage!) that make me really appreciate the benefits of e-books. The newest version, the Paperwhite, is our favorite Kindle on the market, with increased storage and—get this—a waterproof body. It also has the ability to play audiobooks from Audible, so you can give it to any kind of reader with a virtual guarantee it will be appreciated.
9. For the wino: Firstleaf
Whether it's red, white, or rose, if it can be poured into a wine glass, chances are your giftee likes it. So what will they like even more than a bottle under the tree? Multiple bottles delivered every month. That's what they'll get with Firstleaf, our favorite wine subscription service. It offers a wide variety of wines for them to try along with educational cards in each box so they can learn while they sip.
10. For the homebody: Homesick candles
Candles might seem like a cliche gift but if you get the right ones, your friends and family will definitely thank you. Homesick candles are incredibly popular right now because they're made with nostalgic scents from different states, cities, and even memories. If you're sending one to a giftee who's far away, you can send them a fragrance from your home state or theirs, for instance.
11. For the stylish woman: FabFitFun
What do you get the woman who already has everything? A subscription to FabFitFun, of course. One of our staff members tried out the subscription box that's all over social media and says that it gave her a chance to try out new products that she otherwise might not and that it was a really fun and unique experience. Some of the things she got in her boxes, for instance, were a Kate Spade lunch tote, a deep relax roller ball, a hair repair cream, and even exfoliating sugar cubes.
12. For the one who likes to sleep in: Gravity Weighted Blanket
Here at Reviewed, we kind of have a thing for weighted blankets. Can you blame us? Being gently hugged by a massive blanket is the exact kind of comfort we all need right now. If you have a friend or family member who’s getting a little anxious under quarantine—or if they just want to take their TV-watching setup to the next level—this would make a great gift.
The Gravity Blanket is our favorite weighted blanket of the year, and some of its best qualities make it quarantine-perfect. Glass beads give this blanket its extra weight, and while it exerts a nice amount of pressure, it's definitely not overwhelming. While it’s definitely cozy, it’s not terribly hot, so it can provide comfort even if the person using it is feeling too flu-ish for additional layers. Best of all, the Gravity Blanket’s removable exterior is machine-washable, so there’s no need to worry about it being used by someone who’s sick.
13. For anyone who doesn't yet have a smart speaker: Amazon Echo Dot
Anyone else getting video call exhaustion? My eyes have been strained for about three weeks straight. It’s tough to pull away from the constant onslaught of Zoom calls when you want so badly to feel connected with friends and family. But maybe that’s a good reason to pivot back to phone calls. Calling your loved ones doesn’t have to mean being glued to your phone all day. When you’re alone all day the likelihood you’ll spend that time looking at a screen definitely increases. Know someone in this situation? Help ease it for them by giving them a smart speaker.
At Reviewed, we love voice-controlled smart speakers like the Amazon Echo, but the diminutive (and affordable) Echo Dot is a perfect way to bring that functionality to other rooms in your giftee's house. It's our top pick for a beginner looking for an entry-level Echo. I use mine in the kitchen, where it’s perfect for streaming music while I cook, setting timers, or entertaining my kids.
14. For the takeout addict: DoorDash or GrubHub gift cards
Mexican, Italian, Chinese—it doesn't matter what the cuisine is. If your giftee doesn't have to cook it, they'll take it. Help them save money on their takeout addiction with a gift card to a food delivery service like GrubHub or DoorDash. They'll be able to choose whatever their heart—or rather, their stomach—desires come Friday night.
15. For the gourmet foodie: Harry & David
What’s better than a present you can eat? Whether this couple prefers fruit or chocolate or assorted cheeses, you can find nearly every type of edible goody from Harry & David. We tried Harry & David and found that its gift baskets were chock-full of delicious foods that would make any person smile. We were partial to the Moose Munch and chocolate-covered pretzels, but if they love fresh fruit, you can’t get better than the classic Harry & David pears.
16. For the one who's always stressed out: Headspace
Self-care is important every day—but it's especially important right now. And one way to help your friends and family relax is with a meditation app like Headspace, which has over 630,000 rave reviews. It has hundreds of calming guided meditations to choose from (some as short as two minutes!) along with a new "Move Mode" to help your giftee exercise more mindfully, too.
17. For the gamer: Nintendo Switch Lite
If you’ve been online at all in the past month, you know that people have gone nuts for the new Nintendo Switch. Designed for handheld play, it's perfect for someone who is being forced to spend a lot of boring time inside on the couch. With games like Animal Crossing, you can even pay your friends virtual visits, making isolation just a little less isolated. This is also a great option for people quarantined along with kids. We’ve compiled some of our favorite Switch games for kids, so families can share the fun.
18. For the beauty guru: A set of L'Occitane hand cream from Sephora
It’s true what they say: after soap, the number one coronavirus essential is some decent lotion. No one wants to come out of quarantine with painfully chapped hands, but as someone with sensitive skin myself, I know it’s bound to happen. That is unless you have access to some truly great lotion.
I am 100% onboard with the L’Occitane cult following. This is some of the best hand lotion I’ve tried in my life. Reviewer Nellamella agrees with me, writing, "I have eczema-prone skin and the frequent hand washing caused my eczema to flare up. This little miracle set was able to soothe my eczema and provide lasting hydration.” Regardless of whether the quarantined person in your life has sensitive skin, this is great stuff, and will definitely make them feel loved and pampered. P.S. You can get free gift wrapping at Sephora.
19. For the one with a celebrity crush: Cameo
You might not be able to secure them a date with their favorite celebrity but you can give them the next best thing: a personalized voice message. With Cameo, you simply pick the celeb of your choice (from actors to athletes to YouTube stars), send them your custom message, then wait for your own special recording. Your giftee will be over the moon when they hear Mandy Moore or Brett Favre wishing them a Merry Christmas.
20. For the one who prefers audiobooks: Audible
Audiobooks are a great gift for a lot of reasons: Your giftee can listen to them while they're driving, while they're working out, while they're cooking dinner—the list goes on. That's why Audible, the largest provider of audiobooks, is so highly recommended, especially now. Not only can they choose any book from biographies to best-selling fiction, but they can listen on almost every device imaginable.
21. For the one who needs some self-care: TheraBox
We all know that one person who's always stressed out. A.k.a. they could definitely use a subscription to TheraBox. I've used TheraBox and love the variety of self-care, beauty, and wellness goodies you get in every box, from bath soaks to face masks to essential oils. They'll feel way more relaxed in no time.
22. For the kiddos: Little Passports
Whether you have parents or little ones on your list, they'll be entertained for hours thanks to a subscription to Little Passports. The kids' subscription box service delivers a box of fun and educational toys and activities every month, which are customized based on the child's age and interests. For instance, there's a STEM-themed box for the young scientist and a "world explorer" box for the future traveler to learn about geography and culture.
24. For the one who loves their pet: Paint Your Pet Portrait Class & Kit
So many of us have been riding out the pandemic with our favorite furry (or winged) creatures: our pets. We take pictures of them all the time, so why not capture their delightful essence and learn how to paint at the same time!
Uncommon Goods is offering a $50 watercolor painting class that lasts a full 90 minutes. The art lesson is completely online, and the fee includes both a watercolor painting kit and a painting pad. You'll learn a few basic watercolor techniques before diving into painting your pet, but at the end of the session, you'll have a beautiful photo of your pet that you can frame or stick on your fridge.
5. For the sentimental person: A pretty card from Etsy
You don't have to spend tons on a gift—in fact, you don't even have to send a gift at all. For some people on your list, you might want to send a pretty handmade greeting card instead. There are hundreds to choose from on Etsy from the sentimental to the hilarious. Some of shoppers' top picks? This snarky Tiger King card, this custom family photo card, and this set of chic stamped Christmas cards.
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.
This article originally appeared on Reviewed: Gifts to send: Best gifts when you can't be there in person