Let’s be honest, teens and tweens may be almost the worst on your gift list to shop for this year. BUT (!) don’t let that discourage you. After all, you’re not like a regular mom, you’re a cool mom. If it’s one thing we know, it’s that you’ll never give them everything they want – and their “friends” will probably always one-up them, so why not buy them something with a bit of a “cool” factor. The fact that we put “cool” in quotes, means we are not. This demographic can definitely be tough to buy for, especially if you’ve got a teen boy on your shopping list.
There really are so many gift ideas out there that it can be pretty overwhelming. We’ve done all our teen research from a variety of sources, asked our own teenagers (and their pesky friends), and have truly come up with the ultimate guide no matter if you’re looking for the perfect present for their birthday, the Christmas season, the fact that they’ve “completed” learn from home, or just because you’re feeling nice.
To help you get through your gift-giving list, we’re including a well-rounded list of inspiration and ideas like:
→ LED Strip lights that change colors for total vibes
→ A cold case murder mystery game for family game night with teens
→ A portable charger so they can’t use the old “my phone died” excuse
→ A portable waterproof bluetooth speaker so they can take their tunes anywhere
Check out the official list of some of the best gifts for your teens (and your tweens) in 2021. Teenagers. Am I right?
hand picked favorite for the jewelry maker
$12.99 (prices vary)
Perfect for the kid who loves making bracelets. This one makes a great gift when you put a whole starter kit together for them. Choose your beads, then add stretchy string, jump rings, clasps and crimps, a clasp closer and a case for them to fill with a variety of beads you can sort by color. Pick it up here.
LED Strip Lights with Remote Control
hand picked favorite for the kid who loves to step up their room decor game
Available in 16.4 feet, or 32.8 feet, these LED lights instantly change the whole vibe in their space. And as we all know, vibes are everything. Choose the primary red, green, blue (RGB) and white, 16 multicolored options, 6 DIY colors, and adjustable brightness. Adheres with sticky tape and is cuttable between every 3 LEDs. Pick it up here.
Mirror Digital Alarm Clock
hand picked favorite for the over-sleeper
This even looks cool. We find this one to be a great pick, especially if you have a “no phones in the bedroom at night” rule. It eliminates the excuse of keeping the phone by bed for the alarm clock. Features an LED display – with snooze, (because who doesn’t hit snooze!?), dual USB charging ports and adjustable brightness. Pick it up here.
Unsolved Case Files
hand picked favorite for the crime solving teen
$26.97 (10% Off!)
This murder mystery game is great for a non-lame game night, with families who have teens and older kids. Figure out who the best detective in the family is (mom). In order to solve this cold case murder, players need to find 3 separate clues that crack open the case. First prove why the convicted man must be innocent. Then disprove a key suspect’s alibi, and finally identify the clue that will put the real killer behind bars. Includes over 50 investigation documents and photos, and online answer keys. Available in other cases to solve as well. Recommended ages 13+. Pick it up here.
Nike Air Force 1
hand picked favorite for the sneaker fan
These are still popular and are available in both, black and white, along with option to fully customize your pair on the Nike site – especially if they’re the type that likes to stand out and be a little different than the rest! Pick it up here.
Make Your Own Churros Kit
hand picked favorite for the kid who loves baking
Let them have a turn making a little something and you can enjoy it. Or make them together, bonding and such (we prefer the former whilst sipping wine, but we digress). This fab kit includes pre-made batter mix, cinnamon sugar topping, and chocolate for dipping – along with the reusable piping set and deep-fry thermometer. It’s enough to make 40 little desserts right out of the gate.
The NFL Pullover Hoodie
hand picked favorite for the sports fan
Root for the home team in (comfortable) style with this popular NFL hoodie. Oh, and you can never go wrong with a hoodie these days. Various styles available for men, women and kids as well. Pick it up here.
Kitsch Oversized Claw Clips
hand picked favorite for on-trend hair accessories
These are one of the must-have hair accessories lately, from simple and matte to more ornate versions donned with pearls and stones. This one is eco-friendly and according to our sources, matte is the way to go! Pick it up here.
For the Football Fan: GlowCity Light Up Football
hand picked favorite for the football after dark fan
A little Friday night lights? Features 2 LED lights that automatically shut off when not in use. And the batteries are actually included! Also available in basketballs, soccer balls, volleyballs. Now get outside kids! Pick it up here.
Lego Ideas Friends Central Perk
hand picked favorite for the Lego lover
I KNOW! This super cute buildable Central Perk café studio set, includes Ross Geller, Rachel Green, Chandler Bing, Monica Geller, Joey Tribbiani, Phoebe Buffay and Gunther minifigures with cool accessories. Thinking of hanging out at Central Perk after dark? Pick it up here. And for a little extra extra, Snag this lighting kit here.
‘Elwood the Unicorn’ Cereal Bowl
hand picked favorite for the cereal loving ‘tween
Because what’s better than having a bit to eat with a mystical creature? We’ll wait… Pick it up here.
Nike Elite Pro Basketball Backpack
hand picked favorite for the baller
Available in several colors (be forewarned, white get dirty!), this bag features a duffel-like opening – so contents are accessible when you lay it flat. Pick it up here.
Amazon Echo Dot Smart Speaker with Clock
hand picked favorite for Alexa
If they love the latest tech picks, they’ll love this one! Ideal for a nightstand, they can tap the top to snooze an alarm. Listen to music, answer questions, play the news, check the weather, set alarms, and more. Again, better they ask Alexa their endless questions than you! Pick it up here.
The Popular 32oz Hydro Flask
hand picked favorite for the one who always needs their (cold!) water on the go
Perfect to have on their desk at school throughout the day – they really do keep cold water, cold. Several colors available, as well as other sizes. Pick it up here.
Olive & June Mani System
hand picked favorite for the manicure obsessed
They can take their manicure into the own hands. Literally. The manicure system includes a clean up brush, nail polish remover pot, nail clipper, nail file, nail buffer, the poppy (a patented bottle handle), glossy top coat, cuticle serum (award winning!), and of course a polish of your choice. You can also choose kits with multiple polishes, as well as pedicure kits. Pick it up here.
The Totally Over It Teen: I ‘Donut’ Care Tee
hand picked favorite for the totally over it teens and ‘tweens
Because, yes, they totally donut care. About everything! Pick it up here.
For The Singing Tween: Wireless Bluetooth Karaoke Microphone
hand picked favorite for the singing ‘tween
$29.99 (25% Off!)
Because they already think they’re a star. Available in several colors, and yes you can absolutely borrow it. Pick it up here.
4 Pack of Diamond Paint by Numbers Art
hand picked favorite for the arts and crafts type
Diamond painting has become increasingly popular and is a great way to destress. This includes 4 sets of 5D full drill diamond art painting kits by number, 4 waterproof painting canvas, round resin stereoscopic diamonds, 4 diamond sticky pens, adhesive clay, and 4 diamond plates. Pick it up here.
JBL Clip-On Wireless Bluetooth Waterproof Speaker
hand picked favorite for music on the go
Music on the go. Sweet. This little bluetooth speaker comes in several colors, is wireless, waterproof and has 10 hours of play time. Pick it up here.
Apple AirPods Pro
hand picked favorite for the Apple lover
$197.00 (21% Off!)
They can tune in, and tune out. Without wires. These are sweat and water resistant, noise cancelling and includes three sizes of soft, tapered silicone tips for a customizable fit! Pick it up here. If they’re out of stock you can also find them here, here, and here.
Foreo Luna Mini 3 Compact Facial Cleansing Device
hand picked favorite for the clean skin fan
A 100% waterproof, silicone facial-cleansing brush that deep cleans and removes 89.5% of dirt, oil, and makeup. It’s the perfect pick for the beauty gift lover who can’t seem to get enough! Pick it up here.
Clip-on Rechargeable LED Ring Light
hand picked favorite for the selfie taker
$13.99 (30% Off!)
But first….You know the rest. Whether it’s a TikTok, or a selfie, they’ll never experience poor lighting again with this rechargeable LED ring light. Pick it up here.
Rainbow ‘Jenga-Like’ Wooden Blocks Game
hand picked favorite for the game loving ‘tween
Like Jenga, with a plot twist. Roll the dice and pull the color you land on. The stress! Pick it up here.
Trapped in a Video Game (The Complete Series)
hand picked favorite for the avid reader
$30.29 (38% Off!)
A book series about a 12 year old boy and his epic adventures inside a video game. Recommended for ages 8-12. Pick it up here.
For the Personalized: Casetify iPhone Mirror Case
hand picked favorite for personalized phone case
Anker PowerCore 10000 Portable Charger
hand picked favorite for the one who’s always on a low battery
A charger on the go means they can’t tell you their phone was dead. Nice try kids. Slim and portable, this charger gives you enough power to charge an iPhone 12 twice, a Samsung S20 over one and a half times and an iPad mini 5 once. Pick it up here.
hand picked favorite for the techie
$45.20 (10% Off!)
STEM kids for the win. This kit helps them transform almost anything into a simple, working computer keyboard. It’s easy to set up and allows them to create tons of cool things, like game controllers, musical instruments and more! Pick it up here.
Fenty Beauty by Rihanna Gloss Bomb Universal Lip Luminizer
hand picked favorite for the makeup lover
Herschel Supply Company Backpack
hand picked favorite for function meets cool
Perfect for stashing all their necessities. This is always a highly rated option and comes in several different colors and patterns. Not only is it roomy enough for clothes or books, it also features a fully padded and fleece-lined sleeve pocket – which fits up to a 13 inch laptop. Pick it up here.
Not Parent Approved: A Card Game
hand picked favorite for family fun
Women’s Patagonia Los Gatos Fleece 1/4-Zip
hand picked favorite for a comfy pullover
Soft and cute and warm to boot! While there’s definitely an entire population of tweens that refuse to ever wear a coat, we found they’ll actually reach for this one. If it’s cold enough. And you threaten to change the WiFi password. Seven other colors available, also sold in girls’ sizes at a lower price. Pick it up here.
iPod Touch Case
hand picked favorite for an iPod touch case
A protective case available in tons of color combinations. Because they drop iPods, too – and let’s face it, they’re pricey! Just be sure to double check the size and version of your iPod. Pick it up here.
For the Money Saver: The ATM Bank
hand picked favorite for the money saver
$25.99 (28% Off!)
It’s password protected, so good luck siblings! “Can’t you just go to the ATM?” takes on a whole new meaning. Available in several color options – including rose gold. Fancy. Pick it up here.
Wits and Wager
hand picked favorite for a group or party game
$11.18 (44% Off!)
Vegas baby! Someone reads the question to the group and everyone writes down their best guess – with the point being that nobody will know the actual answer, you’re just shooting in the dark. Then place your bets. Whoever guesses closest to the correct answer gets to collect their winnings – Vegas style. And you may even end up remembering random stats. It’s a win-win. Pick it up here.
Amazon Gift Card
hand picked favorite for last minute gift idea
Not sure what to get? Amazon has a thing or millions. Pick it up here.
Pizza Fridays T-Shirt
hand picked favorite for the kid who loves Fridays. And pizza.
Because it really is the best day of the school week. Other colors available. Pick it up here.
For the Book Series Tween: Land of Stories Box Set
hand picked favorite for the ‘tween who needs a new book series
$59.99 (37% Off!)
Written by Chris Colfer, this series features Alex and Conner…and follows their adventures in a land full of magic and enchantment. They come face-to-face with the fairy tale characters they grew up reading about. Recommended ages 8-12. Pick it up here.
Pura Vida Bracelets
hand picked favorite for surfer vibes
Handmade in Costa Rica, Pura Vida bracelets always look cool – whether they wear them alone, or mix and match. They have tons of bracelet options, as well as rings, earrings and necklaces. Pick it up here.
Color Changing Cinema Lightbox
hand picked favorite for their name in lights
For anyone who’s always wanted to see their name in lights. And we think it’s a great idea to slide your own message in before you gift it….something eye-roll worthy like, #MOM RULES? A smaller version is available as well. Pick it up here.
HoopSwagg Neuron Magic Custom Nike Elite Socks
hand picked favorite for the sock obsessed
Because cool basketball socks are a thing. Available is several sizes, as well as other colors and patterns. Pick it up here.
Mint Green ‘You Got This’ Journal/Notebook
hand picked favorite for the inspired teen
Because getting it all out in writing is therapeutic. Pick it up here.
NHL 21 (PlayStation 4)
hand picked favorite for the gamer
$7.51 (53% Off!)
The Messless Chocolate Milk Mixing Mug
hand picked favorite for chocolate milk obsessed
Add milk and chocolate syrup (or powder) to the tumbler, then press the button. Perfect consistency! Works with hot chocolate as well. Pick it up here.
For the Outdoor Sporty One: Kan Jam Game Set
hand picked favorite for the outdoor sports type
This one is fun for the whole family. Pick your team and get a game going anywhere outdoors. Perfect for the beach, family BBQ, camp, etc. Pick it up here.
Nike Kawa Slide
hand picked favorite for comfy slides
Comfortable and convenient as they bolt from practice to just about anywhere. Available in other colors, as well as little kid, big kid and adult sizes. Pick it up here.
For the Pampered: DIY Bath Bomb Kit
hand picked favorite for spa loving teens and ‘tweens
$39.95 (20% Off!)
Includes pre-measured baking soda, corn starch, citric acid and epson salts, along with gloves, a spray bottle, and a dozen cupcake mold liners. You can add the Perfect for girls night in. #Goals. Pick it up here.
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