Why are men so darn difficult to buy gifts for? I know it must not be universally true – no stereotype ever is – but holy cannoli, guys. Out of all the people I buy gifts for, my husband, father-in-law, brother-in-law, and brother are all among the most challenging! Finding the best gift ideas for dads can be elusive.
At this point in my life I think I’ve finally arrived at a place where I have a few home runs under my belt in the gift-giving department, plus a few more ideas tucked away that I feel super confident about. I actually realized recently that – dare I say – I’ve gotten pretty good at figuring out gift ideas for the men in my life, especially my dear husband. (And it “only” took 16 years of marriage to get there.)
In many ways, Chris is a typical guy, and in many ways he’s not. (What’s a “typical guy”, anyway?? I don’t think that’s actually definable!) The one defining feature about him is that he’s a pretty intentional person.
He’s health-conscious in a holistic sense: he cares deeply about his family life, his relationships, his work and passions, and his physical health.
Side note: a guy who cares about his health is so darn sexy, right?! I’m sure it’s some biological instinct for desiring a partner with longevity, etc. 😉
My list of best gift ideas for dads is inspired by my husband, who considers himself fairly health-conscious (though he’d certainly be the first to tell you that he’s a work in progress), and alternative-minded. The gift suggestions are not all specifically health-related items, but they’re all in categories that I know Chris (and many like him) would enjoy, such as:
- Healthy lifestyle hacks
- Healthy diet treats
- Minimalist, clutter-free
- High-quality for longevity
- Experiences instead of stuff
Best Gift Ideas for Dads: It’s Not Really About the Kids 😉
Thus far in my motherhood, I’ve done the heavy lifting when it comes to gifts for Chris on Father’s Day, his birthday, and Christmas.
When you have young kids, keeping track of holidays and leading the charge on celebrations is just par for the course. No 5-year-old is going out to the mall (unless you or Dad drives them) to buy you a gift with their own money (unless they earned it from you).
Maybe when they’re much older they’ll clean the house, cook for us, and serve us iced coffee as we chill in the hammock out back.
One can dream, right?
Obviously, many of us in the trenches of parenthood with young children don’t exactly have a ton of free time to spend on elaborate and crafty DIY Pinterest ideas. We’re also often exhausted from life with small children. And, if you’re anything like me, you don’t want a flood of clutter in your house every time a holiday comes and goes.
Therefore, when it comes to making Father’s Day or other holidays special for my dear honey (yes, the “honey” of Red & Honey), the irreplaceable father of my children, my criteria is simple: it must be something he’ll actually appreciate, and it cannot be gimmicky or clutter-bait.
The Best Gift Ideas for Dads Can be Practical, Meaningful, or Indulgent (Depending on His Personality Type)
Black socks might be a classic Dad-gift joke, but in my growing up years, practical gifts were the most appreciated. I think there’s a definite place for the practical gifts that a person would really love to have, but hasn’t bought for themselves.
In addition – for all of the adorable kid crafts, new BBQ utensils, tools, and homemade cards in the world, it’s still a nice idea to treat him to something indulgent, especially during these little years, with kids too young to do a lot.
Of course, the practical and indulgent should always circle back to making sure the gift is meaningful. That can look really different depending personality types, so consider that too.
For example: Chris is an ESTJ on the MBTI personality typing system, and a Type 1 enneagram. In other words: he’s super Type-A, driven, and practical. He appreciates practical gifts but only if they don’t lead to him adding to his to-do list, since he drives himself hard, and appreciates “permission” to let loose and chill sometimes.
He also appreciates gifts that combine practicality with indulgence – like a top-of-the-line tool that he’s been eyeing, but can’t justify spending the money on, or a new high-quality leather wallet. He also would deeply appreciate the gift of time where he can go and catch a movie or spend a few hours at a coffeeshop without feeling guilty about his lack of productivity.
To pull off the perfect gift, consider these suggestions that are perfect for the intentional, health-conscious guy. With a little bit of thoughtfulness, you can make sure he feels loved, appreciated, and celebrated!
On to the List!
Now that I’ve given you an excellent example of my superb overthinking skills (kidding – mostly, ha!) I want to share my list of super-duper best gift ideas for dads.
No two dads are the same, but I’m pretty confident this list will have something for everyone! Happy celebrating! <3
Best Gift Ideas for Dads: 30+ Health-Conscious Gifts He’ll Love
1. Old-Fashioned Wet Shaving Kit
Something like this one with a safety razor, or if he’s adventurous: this one with a straight blade. (Don’t forget to include some shaving cream with ingredients you trust, like this brand, or this one.)
2. Appointment for a Wet Shave Experience
There are some trendy places in my city that cater to this type of experience. Google “wet shave” + your nearest city to see what’s nearby. (Shh! My honey is getting this as part of his Father’s Day gift this year.)
3. Air Fryer
Anyone who loves the taste of deep-fried foods without wanting to use a ton of expensive oil (healthy oils aren’t cheap, y’all) will love an air fryer. It leaves a crispy finish that’s to die for on homemade fries, a roast chicken, or anything else you want to try. We use avocado oil (this brand, but we buy ours at Costco) the most in our house because of its high smoke point (important for avoiding free radicals.)
We have this air fryer and love it – it can even fit a whole chicken in there for the to-die-for golden, crispy skin after I cook my whole chickens in the instant pot. (P.S. How to Cook a a Frozen Whole Chicken in the Instant Pot.)
4. Quality Item for his Wardrobe
This is one of those items that can heavily depend on the person. My husband totally loves it when I surprise him with some new golf shirts or t-shirts, or a new sweater, but he cares more about looking decent, and not about being trendy or fashionable. At the same time, he always puts his clothing needs behind the kids’ and mine.
Something like this shirt would go over super well here. Even better if I order it in two or three different colors.
5. Quality Footwear
Exact same deal as above, only with good-quality footwear. My husband is super hard on his shoes, but won’t complain until there are literally inch-wide holes in them. You decide what he’d most appreciate: sandals? loafers? a fancy new hiking boot for hours of family activities?
Chris has worn out a pair of these every few years like clockwork since we both started wearing them in 2006, and he LOVES them.
6. Healthy BBQ Sauce or Seasonings
I also highly recommend these delicious seasoning salts from Real Salt. (Use my code REDHONEY for 15% off your entire order!)
7. Blue-Light Blocker Glasses
For years now, Chris has experienced sleep difficulties (both falling asleep, and staying asleep). There are many factors at play for him, and we’ve tried lots of things over the years, but this is one that we haven’t yet tried that I want to!
These dorky-looking glasses filter out the blue, artificial light when you wear them in the evening hours. According to Harvard Health, artificial blue light can seriously mess with melatonin production and circadian rhythms. Avoiding it in the evening can directly help you sleep better!
8. Sleep Better Kit
I mentioned that we’ve tried a lot of things to help Chris get more quality sleep at night. If your guy struggles with the same thing, a thoughtful little basket with some sleep-related items could be deeply appreciated. Make sure to include a note about how much he deserves his rest.
Things you might include: this eye mask (it’s Chris’s favorite), ear plugs, a box of night-time tea (this one with valerian is potent!), a white noise machine (note: if you have a way to play them in your bedroom, you can find free white noise channels on YouTube), and maybe even an organic pillow or blackout curtains. (See my DIY tutorial for No-Sew Light-Blocking Curtains here.)
9. Time for Self-Care
This one’s obvious, and bonus: it can be the cheapest option on the list if you’re on a tight budget!
There are many ways to do this, but one idea is to have the kids help you make a coupon book for 10 hours of “Me Time” that Dad can use however he wishes: going out for coffee, sitting in bed on a Saturday afternoon solo with an iced coffee and a good book, or going to the movie theatre to decompress.
P.S. If you are on a tight budget, check out this great list of fun and frugal ideas for Dads from Simply Rebekah.
10. Quality Alcoholic Beverages
Chris has recently developed a great appreciation for a good gin and tonic, but a bottle of high-quality gin isn’t cheap. This is an easy win as a gift for him!
If your guy is more into wine than liquor, try asking your local retailer for a bottle of organic wine in order to avoid added sugars and additives.
For beer, try a new local beer from a micro-brewery, or a gluten-free variety if he avoids gluten.
11. Special Glasses for Favourite Drink
12. Fitness Tracker
If your guy is super in to details and maximizing his efforts, a fitness tracker can help with that. Chris has a FitBit that he likes, but there are a few other brands out there as well. (He got this one, and bought a leather strap to customize it.)
13. Restaurant Gift Card
As a food-lover, one of Chris’s favorite things to do is go out to eat, but our normal budget (we just recently got out of debt, so our budget has been strict for a long time!) really only allows for maybe a quick stop at Five Guys for the family on an errand-running day.
A slow meal at a sit-down restaurant (where the food is better in both quality and taste) feels like a total indulgence to him, so he’d love this.
14. Audible Subscription
I’ve been trying to get this husband of mine into reading for – oh, 19 years now(!!) – and we finally found the trick. He has fallen HARD for audio books, much to my shock and delight, so now we have an Audible subscription worked in to our monthly budget. He loves listening to audio books in the car, especially since we moved out to the country and are further from the city.
If you’re new to Audible, you can get a free trial with one free book!
15. Stainless Steel or Glass Water Bottle
This brand, this brand, this brand, and this brand are all ones that I’ve seen get consistently excellent reviews both on amazon and around the web. As someone who owns a knock-off version of one of these, and is disappointed with it, I now think the price tag is actually worth it.
16. Magazine Subscription
There are magazines out there on literally every topic. Okay maybe not literally, but just about. Being a pilot and aviation-lover, Chris subscribes to a couple of aviation-related magazines and has enjoyed them for years.
17. Movie Theatre Gift Card
For obvious reasons, any movie-lover will enjoy this gift, but it also doubles as “me time” to treat the Dad who constantly puts others before himself. This is one of Chris’s all-time fave ways to treat himself.
18. Healthy Treat Gift Basket
This would be super fun to put together, especially for a guy who loves his treats, but is making an effort to get healthier.
These are Chris’s fave candy (they’re Keto-friendly), and these peanut butter cups are incredible. You could also put together some homemade treats, too, like my own peanut butter cup recipe (SO GOOD), or these chocolate coconut macaroons. I’m sure these chocolate-covered ice cream bon bons would be a hit, and well worth the effort.
If salty snacks are more his thing (or for the non-discriminators who love both, like us), these avocado oil potato chips are the bomb dot com. Don’t rely on them for the majority of the nutrients in your diet, but
19. Appointment for a Massage
This one scores major points in all three of my criteria: it’s practical (there are study-backed legit health benefits!), it’s indulgent, and it’s meaningful.
20. Home Massage Tools
Home body work tools can be a great way to unwind after a long day. Or after any day, really. 🙂 We’d love to try a foam roller, a hand massager (this one has crazy amazing reviews on amazon), or a Shiatsu massage pillow like this.
21. Yeti Mug
This brand has plenty of raving fans, but I hadn’t tried them myself until recently when I was given a Yeti mug. I love it for my afternoon cup of tea because it’s insulated, so it stays warmer way longer than a regular mug. Perfect for those who like to nurse their warm beverage over the course of an hour or two, and are constantly having to reheat it.
22. Organic, Fair-Trade Coffee
A good cup of quality coffee is the highlight of many people’s day, and if your guy is health conscious and concerned about humanitarian issues, then a bag of organic, fair-trade beans is an easy win.
Fair-trade and organic coffee is (thankfully) becoming super easy to find – most grocery stores carry at least one option, as does amazon. Chris and I both love this brand as a repeat favorite, but we also love trying new ones from smaller companies too – like this small-batch artisanal coffee company called Who’s Your Coffee? recently started by my friend Mindy and her husband.
23. A Coffee-Maker Upgrade
If he appreciates a higher quality coffee, then he’ll probably also enjoy the subtle differences in taste from a variety of coffee makers. We’ve used and loved a Chemex (it needs special filters that you can get on amazon, but FYI you can also buy an organic hemp cloth filter that’s reusable, and works like a charm!)
Another super popular option among coffee lovers is the French Press (if you think a glass one would get broken in your house – like it did in mine – then consider a stainless steel version (insulated – bonus!), or this gorgeous ceramic one which comes in some great colors.
If your guy wears his coffee snob label proudly, then definitely also consider the Aeropress. From the makers of Chemex, it presses the coffee (like a French press) but it’s micro-filtered to avoid the typical French press “sludge” and bitterness. It’s on our wishlist!
24. Google Home or Alexa
Chris enjoys geeking out with fun tech toys, and home automations are right up there. He hard-core loves his google home mini, and he has a bunch of WeMo products around the house like smart light switches, etc.
One of the simplest, no-brainer superfood supplements to consume is collagen, and the health benefits are wide-ranging. It dissolves in hot or cold drinks (we take our daily scoop in our morning coffee) and is tasteless and odorless. Plus – it has 11 grams of protein per scoop, which means it’s pretty much the most badass protein powder out there.
There are a couple of brands that I trust, but this company has the best price without sacrificing quality – by a long shot. (Use my code REDHONEY10 to get an extra 10% off.)
26. A Set of Hand Weights
If your guy works out at home (because hello – not many young parents find the time to hit the gym a few times a week – amiright?!) then a set of basic hand weights makes a great addition to his routine. A kettlebell is a great choice too.
27. Himalayan Salt Lamp
Salt lamps have surged in popularity recently. There are some purported health benefits that are legit, but some claims are probably overstated. Either way – they’re an excellent source of soft, red/orange light in the evening when you’re trying to avoid artificial light, and they have a super cozy vibe.
28. Organic, Non-Toxic Skincare
Like a lot of guys, Chris is pretty low-maintenance when it comes to skincare. Nonetheless – he appreciates having quality for the things he does use. This charcoal/salt face scrub looks great and I bet he’d enjoy using it in the shower, and this body wash has an excellent rating in the Skin Deep Database (or find my DIY body wash tutorial here).
An unscented body oil to moisturize is also a good option. I love my Wilder oils (my review of the argan oil here). Make sure you also cover his shavings needs. (Some good options linked above in the shaving kit suggestion.)
A perennial favorite around here since I scored with this gift five years ago. He loves making sparkling water at home for pennies with our Sodastream – it was a great investment. Check out the different Sodastream models here.
30. Sonos Speaker
If your guy enjoys high-quality sound at home for music, TV, and movies, then a Sonos speaker is the perfect gift. It’s bluetooth enabled, and we seriously love using the app on our phone to play and control music any time we want. We use Apple Music, but it works with Spotify too. We have two speakers, and eventually he wants one in every room!
Side note: Chris was an audio-visual professional before becoming a pilot, and he totally geeks out at the sound quality on Sonos, so it must be good.
What are your suggestions for the best gift ideas for dads? Share in the comments below!
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