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All of us try to be thoughtful, even inspired about our gift giving (well, almost all of us — we've all got that one friend or relative who phones it in year after year). But it's a tricky proposition: No one wants to shell out a hundred bucks on a present that's delightfully off-the-beaten-track but winds up eliciting nothing but befuddlement, eye-rolling, even disappointment.
Ah, but that's the beauty of stocking stuffers. They're our opportunity to be creative about our gifting. Creative as in: snarky, insinuating, goofy, even maddeningly vague, but also in coming up with simple, useful items that your gift-giving competition (and make no mistake; it is a competition) have overlooked.
As we race to the Christmas shopping finish line, Amazon's the place to round out your shopping list with the nice, naughty, nuts and just plain necessary. Here's a grab-bag of, well, stuff that'll make you a hit when it comes time to pull those stockings down off the mantel and impress, nearly all of which can be in your hands in time for the big day.
You've probably noticed that we go on quite a bit about this particular product. Well, that's because Satina leggings sit right in that sweet spot of durability, variety, stylishness and economy. Their peachskin fabric will flatter your lucky gift recipient in all the right places; they're available in full-length and capri varieties, with or without pockets and over 40 different colors. And oh yeah: Right now they're on sale for $14. A no-brainer.
First of all, this will spark a great family-time conversation when someone pulls this out of their stocking and says, "What the #@&%* is 'The Pink Stuff?'" Here's what: This miracle paste has been around since 1938 and it'll make quick work of just about any dang surface mess you're likely to confront — walls, countertops, bathroom tile, outdoor furniture. If it's gotten all schmutzy, this no-nonsense, non-toxic, environmentally friendly cleaner will will make it nice again.
We'll confess that a product that contains both the word foot and mask in its description is subtly, oddly unsettling, but we won't let that distract us from the therapeutic wonder that these things work. They're basically medicated plastic booties that you put on your tootsies. An hour later, and your loved one's cracked, dry, callused dogs will be as soft and supple as the day they came out of the womb. And they'll have you to thank for it.
Speaking of feet (now, that's a sentence we don't find ourselves saying very often): Let's go from the sublime to the ridiculous with this laugh riot of a stuffer. They're socks that make you look like you're committing the ultimate footwear faux pas — wearing sandals with socks. Great for a laugh at gift-giving time and endless double-takes all year round.
Like the aforementioned foot peel, here's a gift that contains the hint of an unsavory suggestion. Your lucky(?) recipient may see it and think, "Are my teeth an unsightly yellowy-brown disaster area?" Maybe, maybe not — let 'em fret a little. You're entitled to a little mischievous fun during the holidays! Seriously, though, these things rule: Just "write" the whitening gel across your smile twice a day, and before you know it you're looking at choppers that are four to eight times brighter. Talk about a "white Christmas"!
Do we really need to say anything about this wildly inspired product? It's awesomeness seems to speak for itself. Great for the fashionista or kitsch addict in your life, for sure, but really: Whose work station wouldn't be immeasurably zhushed up with this stapler-masquerading-as-a-black-patent-leather-pump sitting atop it? And this is no shoddy novelty product — it's from Swingline, the name is quality stapler for as long as any of us have been alive.
You might think, Who needs this product now? Barbecue season's half a year away. But here's the good news: You can get sick, even die, from eating undercooked meat any time of year! Um, we'll clarify: This Kizen meat thermometer ensures properly cooked roasts, but also will make sure wintertime baked treats don't come out of the oven too early, and that fried chicken is as done on the inside as its crunchy battered exterior suggests. Just stick it in, wait three seconds, and you'll know whether to say "Dig in!" or "Hold on!"
We're suckers for novelty gifts that bring a timeless joke to physical, literal life. Got a whiner if your life — or, maybe, more aptly, someone in your life who's got a whiner in their life? From here on in, when the grousing begins they'll be able to just whip out this three-inch-long, beautifully, hilariously detailed replica (with case!) and be able to literally play the world's smallest violin.
For the naughty one in your life, you might try these Quiseen chilling stones as an alternate to the old coal-in-the-stocking gag. This set of nine beverage stones will keep their drink nice and cold without watering it down or mucking up the taste. They are made of soapstone and come in their own sweet little velvet pouch! Here's to getting your shopping done early.
Shop it: Grey Beverage Chilling Stones, set of 9, $7 with on-page coupon (was $10), amazon.com
These Pink Flamingo Loofahs are sure to get some giggles, and plenty of use! Soft and fast-drying, they help lather up fast and help bathers get more out of their soap. They come in a three-pack, so go ahead and split these cuties up!
Shop it: Pink Flamingo Loofah Bath Sponge, set of 3, $10, amazon.com
Who'd have thunk it?: A screaming goat is an Amazon No. 1 bestseller (in three categories!) with over 17,700 five-star ratings! And it'll fit great in a stocking! The three-inch internet sensation stands atop a stump and screams when you press gently. The accompanying 32-page illustrated guide is a fun and informative read about this fascinating farm animal.
Shop it: The Screaming Goat, $8, amazon.com
Talk about a growing trend, the Skyrocket Blume Doll literally grows as they water it. Yet another blind-box wonder that kids are wild for. This toy already has 8,000 five-star ratings on Amazon, and growing... For ages three and up.
Shop it: The Skyrocket Blume Doll, $10, amazon.com
Surprise the tea lover in your life with something more than just regular ol' tea this year. Pop these adorable tea-scented erasers from Kikkerland into their stocking. The set of five scented erasers includes fragrant, floral chamomile and perky peppermint. (Don't miss these sweet milk and juice cartons too!)
Shop it: Kikkerland Tea Scented Erasers, set of 5, $6.50, amazon.com
This one's a two-fer. A ridiculously awesome stocking stuffer for both a loved one — and the neighborhood squirrels. This feeder that turns squirrels into unicorns has earned some 1,000 five-star human ratings. The squirrels are apparently nuts for it too. Would be a great gift for a White Elephant party too!
Shop it: Accoutrements Squirrel Feeder Unicorn, $18, amazon.com
Chew, chase, fetch! Doggies and their humans will be thrilled to receive the Kong Classic Dog Toy! Physical play is so important for the health of both species. To make it extra-interesting, this natural rubber wonder can be filled with peanut butter, kibble and other canine faves — we've even heard of folks freezing pumpkin inside to their dog's delight. It's durable, machine washable and loved by 13,700-plus five-star fans on Amazon.
Shop it: Kong Classic Dog Toy, $11 (was $13), amazon.com
If you want to be quirky and practical, you could fill an awesome wallet, perhaps this No. 1 bestselling Travelambo Women's RFID-Blocking Wallet, with play money and chocolate coins? The all-leather, RFID-blocking bi-fold can hold 16 cards (one window slot) and has zippered pockets. It comes in 31 lovely colors.
Shop it: Travelambo Women's Wallet, $15, amazon.com
TruSkin Vitamin C Serum for Face, Anti Aging Serum with Hyaluronic Acid
No one expects to find the gift of youth hiding inside their stocking. TruSkin Vitamic C Facial Serum, a No. 1 bestseller, has over 59,100 devotees on Amazon. The vitamin C works together with vitamin E, hyaluronic acid, witch hazel and jojoba oil to brighten up that Scrooge we call Aging. Turn those frown lines upside down!
Shop it: TruSkin Vitamin C Serum for Face, $19 ($30), amazon.com
We thought we'd conclude this roundup on a classy, considerate, grown-up note. After all, elegance and stylishness are guaranteed winners come gift-giving time. Also, c'mon, we're not monsters..... These Anne Klein earrings will class up any work, date or partygoing ensemble. Drop these into the stocking first; they'll be a touching, heart-warming surprise after the yuks and OMGs.
The reviews quoted above reflect the most recent versions at the time of publication.
Looking for more great Amazon deals? Check these out:
Headphones and earbud deals:
Smartphone and tablet deals:
Fire HD 10 tablet, $100 (was $150), amazon.com
Samsung Tab A7, $119 (was $160), amazon.com
Video game deals:
Smart home deals:
Sengled Smart Light Bulb, $20 (was $30), amazon.com
Kasa Smart Wi-Fi LED Bulb, $10 (was $17), amazon.com
Crock-Pot Slow Cooker, $96 (was $160), amazon.com
Organic Vitamin E Oil Bundle, $45 (was $65), amazon.com
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