20 Last-Minute Gift Ideas for Every Holiday Occasion

·8-min read

The only thing worse than showing up to a party empty handed? Arriving with a gift that screams I bought this at the gas station on the way over. Even if you forgot to pick up a thoughtful memento prior to your holiday party or family gift exchange, we schemed up 20 great last-minute gift ideas to salvage your reputation as the most generous guest in your friend circle, including artisanal food, elegant home decor and even a special something for four-legged friends. And when things are really cutting it close? Remember, an Amazon gift card is always useful and appreciated.

RELATED: The 77 Best Subscription Boxes to Gift for Every Interest

1. Brightland The Duo Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Headed to a dinner party? Bring these oils, which are harvested from handpicked heirloom olives in California. These aren't just ordinary olive oils—they're harvested early and processed in a certified-organic mill to yield their two distinct tastes: Alive complements everything from salads to hummus to baked goods—and even chocolate, while Awake is perfect for pastas, roasted veggies and stews. The artsy glass bottle is UV powder-coated to protect the contents from light, and it doesn’t hurt that it looks pretty on the counter. Plus, you can even use it on skin and hair for a major glow.

Buy It ($74)

2. ‘I’ll Be There For You: Life according to Friends’ Rachel, Phoebe, Joey, Chandler, Ross & Monica’

Ever wondered which Friends character you are? Or what kind of dating advice Joey would give you? This book includes all that, along with tips for mastering the art of the comeback with Chandler, recipes from Monica and in-depth profiles on each of the characters. It’s kind of like all six of the Friends are sitting in your living room with you and we couldn’t think of a better gift for a fan. (Buy a backup for yourself and thank us later.)

Buy It ($14)

3. Floral Street Perfume Discovery Set

This contemporary British fragrance brand uses 20 percent perfume oil in all its formulas so one spritz is all you need to smell fresh all day long. You can switch up your fragrance depending on your mood thanks to these eight London-inspired scents. Into green beauty? This set is completely vegan and sustainably sourced, all presented in recyclable packaging.

Buy It ($19)

4. Dylan’s Candy Bar Mini Party In a Bucket Candy Assortment

Almost everyone will show up with a bottle of wine or some sort of dip (no judgment—we’ll be consuming both). While you may not have time to whip up your famous seven layer bars, you can hit up the fête with an assortment of candy that everyone is sure to go nuts for.

Buy It ($50)

5. Aramox Cat Coins Moneybox

Cat people have to stick together. And this piggy bank says thank you from one cat person to another. Just make them promise that when they fill up the box with change, they’ll spend it on something good, like catnip obviously.

Buy It ($13)

6. JO MALONE LONDON Pine & Eucalyptus Room Spray

Your friends may not spend money on a fancy room spray for themselves, but getting it as a gift is always appreciated—especially when it’s this uplifting mixture of pine and eucalyptus. Think of it as glorified Febreze that smells more like an essential oil diffuser than overpowering laundry detergent.

Buy It ($74)

7. W&P Design Peak Sphere Ice Tray 2.0

Whether you put ice in your rosé (we aren’t ashamed to admit it) or prefer a whiskey on the rocks, this food-safe silicone ice tray will create four perfectly spherical cubes, which not only look fancy, but also actually melt slower. That means your drink won’t get diluted, score! And since these molds are soft, it’s also a breeze to pop them out in mint condition.

Buy It ($17)

8. Strawberry Starburst Fruit Chews (2 lbs)

Everyone knows pink Starbursts are the best Starbursts, so why not go all in with a whole two-pound bag of the good stuff? Put them in a cute box or bag and pretend you sorted them out by hand for bonus points.

Buy It ($24; $15)

9. Williams Sonoma Italian Pantry Gift Crate

From aged Modena balsamic to a wedge of salty Pecorino Romano, this box set is the perfect all-in-one housewarming or “thanks for the invite!” kit. Can’t physically make it to the party? Send it directly to the hosts so it almost feels like you’re there.

Buy It ($100)

10. Anthropologie Brynne Pitcher

OK, so you really don’t have time to stop anywhere but the convenience store around the corner? Buy a few of these cute vases for times of crisis—unwrap your just-bought flowers, add them to the vase and voilà, it's a beautiful centerpiece that they get to keep after the party’s over. Just don’t forget to grab a bottle of water in the convenience store to fill up the vase before presenting it to the hosts.

Buy It ($38)

11. Wild One Triangle Tug Dog Toy

True dog people are more obsessed with buying things for their pooch than themselves. So, needless to say, they’ll double appreciate this gift. Made with tough natural rubber (that even aggressive chewers won’t be able to tamper with) and rope, it’s the perfect dual-textured toy for endless hours of tug-of-war. Plus it’s so chic it won’t look totally out of place on their pricey living room rug.

Buy It ($24)

12. ‘The Mini Bar: 100 Essential Cocktail Recipes’

This is the perfect present for people who are always manning the bar. All eight of these small books are organized by base ingredient (whisky, rum, gin, vodka, tequila, champagne, sherry and amaro), so every cocktail possible can be shaken up—or stirred.

$17 at Amazon

13. Nest New York Festive Scented Votive Candle Set

“I don’t need another candle,” said no one, ever. The truth is, you can never have too many of these bad boys lying around—especially when they smell as good as this trio.

Buy It ($48)

14. Anthropologie Appoline Pie Dish

If you plate a pie before bringing it to a party, it’s assumed that it’s homemade. So go ahead, slide that store-bought cobbler onto this stoneware dish (that the host can keep) and just don’t mention it. Your secret’s safe with us.

Buy It ($38)

15. Art of Tea Ceremonial Matcha Gift Set

Matcha isn’t just a drink; it’s a lifestyle. And this gift set gets that. From the double-walled glass mixing bowl to the cute tin of ceremonial grade Japanese matcha to the bamboo whisk, it's the type of present that will elicit immediate hugs and “thank you” shrieks.

Buy It ($72)

16. La Mer Mini Miracles Set

We don’t know a single person who wouldn’t get all heart-eyed over La Mer. As one of the most luxurious beauty brands on the market, using it is a treat—and receiving it as a gift is even better. This set includes two brand favorites (Creme De La Mer and The Lip Balm) to replenish moisture and restore a youthful glow while making them feel like a total queen in the process.

Buy It ($120)

17. Polaroid Pop Instant Digital Camera

Limiting screen time is tough when our phones also function as our camera. Instead, bring one of these instant digital cameras to your next soiree and watch guests have a blast taking photos the “old-fashioned” way. Everyone will go home with a memento of a fun night and the host can hold onto the camera for next time.

$200 at Amazon

18. Fringe Studio Floral Monogram Mug

The easiest way to appear like you put a ton of time and thought into a gift: monogram it. But that doesn’t have to mean going to Things Remembered six weeks in advance and ordering custom engraving. Nordstrom is always a gold mine for monogram mugs, so if you don’t have time to wait for shipping, just pop into a store. Don’t want to waste time rummaging around? Order it on Nordstrom.com and select the “Buy and Pick Up” option to run in and grab it on the way to the party.

Buy It ($18)

19. Sagely Naturals CBD Cream Relief and Recovery

What do you get your super active friend who’s always dragging you to a new workout class? This! It’s a recovery moisturizer packed with pain-relieving CBD, essential oils and cooling menthol to relieve sore muscles. You might want to pick up another for yourself, since it probably means those fitness classes aren’t going to slow down any time soon.

Buy It ($36)

20. Amazon Gift Card

All we can say is thank goodness for Amazon. Yes, free two-day shipping is a lifesaver (shout out to Prime!). But sometimes we don’t even have two days to wait for shipping. Enter: the best gift card of all time. The mega retailer sells literally everything under the sun, so everyone will be grateful for an excuse to ship a bunch of stuff to their house in record time.

Buy It ($25+)

RELATED: 10 of the Best Bath Bombs for Your Most Relaxing In Yet, Plus 5 Kids Will Love

PureWow may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was created independently from PureWow's editorial and sales departments.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting