We’ve been asked a lot recently about minimalist gift ideas. Mainly, because we are minimalists. We both had birthdays where people asked what minimalist gifts were best and of course, with the holiday season around the corner, we want to share the details.
Whether you are a minimalist friend, or looking for the best gift to give a family member, colleague, or someone in your life who lives a minimalist life, we’ve got you! It’s really the little things. You’re on the right path if you are thinking along the lines of clutter-free gift ideas. We’re sharing with you great minimalist gift ideas that will make any simple living person happy to receive.
Minimalist Gift Ideas
Gift-giving can be difficult, especially when you’re trying to avoid cluttering up your loved ones’ lives with unnecessary items. People with small spaces don’t want more stuff to fill their space. Minimalist gift-giving doesn’t have to be as hard as you think.
By focusing on quality over quantity and practicality over frivolity, you can show your loved ones just how much you care. No one wants to give things as a gift that will just cause clutter, right? If disagree with that, know that no minimalist wants a gift just to have a gift. No one wants a lot of clutter, right?
Fun fact: (not really, though. Nothing funny about this fact.) The average American has at least 300,000 items in their home. Everyone thinks that they give good gifts. Really, most people are just giving more things that will accumulate or end up in a landfill.
Everyone could learn a little from this gift guide. No one needs a physical item to feel as though they are cared for. Minimalism is not about going without. It is about being able to experience life. Really, even the gifts we receive as minimalists can be something special, when it is the right gift. Well go ahead and get into our minimalist gift guide to make you the best friend of any minimalist- well, if that is what you want.
Top Minimalist Gift Ideas
E-learning is just the best, especially for someone who is always yearning to learn more. Let’s say your gift recipient has been a long time writer and is always saying they want to write a book. Give the gift of an online course that walks them through the process.
Similarly, you can gift a digital course that is along the lines of learning, or self-improvement. Just be careful and don’t gift something that you think they should improve upon. Make sure it is something they verbalized interest in already.
Masterclass is a great platform for online classes. The average person can certainly find someone on Masterclass that they can learn from and love listening to. Once he/she receives the gift, they have unlimited access to the masterclasses. It’s not a lot of money for the return of knowledge. There are plenty of online platforms that offer courses. You can find just about anything.
Reusable Water Bottles
Cut down on plastic waste and help your loved ones stay hydrated on the go with a stylish and practical reusable water bottle. These are great gifts for minimalists for many reasons. First, minimalists usually don’t want a lot of drinking vessels.
Second, a minimalist lifestyle usually consists of sustainability. This type of gift is versatile and helps to save the environment. They come in an array of colors, styles, and materials.
You can purchase big bottles, small bottles, and even bottles to keep the item cold or hot. They also have various price ranges depending on the type you want.
This is a pretty big topic but it is not limited to a gift certificate or a gift card to a restaurant. This can be meal-prep companies where the recipient can pick their meals and have them in the freezer for dinner.
Time is valuable, so if you save a minimalist some time, your gift will be a winner! It’s the most perfect gift for anyone who wants to avoid dining out all the time and start the new year on a healthier foot. Food is the love language of a lot of people. You can rarely go wrong here.
It’s a great clutter-free gift because it also reduces the paper notes people have. Scattered handwritten notes have a new home. They are written in the Rocketbook and with the scan of a tiny QR code on the page, the notes are to a digital platform of the person’s choice.
For example, I (shannon) write notes all the time. I scan the QR code and they go to a designated folder of my choice on my Google Drive. At the end of the week, I wipe all the notes away and start fresh without losing a single thought. It is hands down one of the best digital gifts without seeming so.
Experiences and Adventures
Instead of physical gifts, gift your loved ones with a cooking class, concert tickets, a live performance like a play, or a spa treatment. These memories will last longer than any physical gift and won’t take up space in their homes. Some of the best gifts we have received are a sunset sail, horseback riding on the beach, or even a weekend at a Bed and Breakfast.
Experience gifts are great for kids, too. Think- a membership to a museum, or jumping park: both are a great way for a kid to spend quality time having fun or a learning experience. Before you get someone a skydiving or rock climbing experience though, be sure it is a great fit.
For the wine lover, a wine-tasting experience is a good idea. A weekend trip to a retreat or a little bit of time somewhere other than where they usually spend their time is nice. It’s the simple things. It can also be an exciting adventure! You really cannot go wrong when you gift experiences.
If you’re feeling stuck, try Get Your Guide for a wide variety of adventures and experiences!
Everyone needs good sleep. Part of having a great night’s sleep is the perfect bedding. We began using Cozy Earth Bamboo Sheets a couple of years ago and have never gone back. Wedding gifts, housewarming gifts, heck, even people who are down for the best self-care, get Cozy Earth Sheets. Not only are they amazingly cozy, comfortable, ethically made, and sustainable, but they have temperature-regulating material so a night of sleep any time of year in these sheets is amazing.
We have had the white because of the simplistic look but recently switched out to their new Clay Bamboo Sheet Set for the cozy season and we adore them. Be sure to use code: ARNERADVENTURES40 to save 40% off.
There is a reason why these sheets are Oprah’s favorite! Trust us, this is a gift that serves a purpose and is needed by everyone since everyone deserves great sleep.
Handmade Soaps or Cleaners
Help your loved ones pamper themselves with a bar of handmade soap. They come in a variety of scents and are usually made with natural ingredients that are good for their skin. One of the best gifts we ever gave was handmade detergent in a jar with the ingredients of how to make it on the outside. Each time we gave that gift, the person loved it and then began making it themselves.
Personal care products that are all-natural are also a great idea. This is a good place to start if you are looking for items such as this. People love trying new things, and even better when it comes from someone they love or care for.
Consumables are always a winner! We love Sugarwish because anytime we need to give a gift to someone, we can choose between sweet treats, savory snacks, wine, and so much more!
Gone are the days of consumable items only being from Hickory Farms. Can we talk about the shelf life of those things? Eeek!
Go with Sugarwish and let the recipient choose exactly what they want. They can even choose dog treats for the furbaby. You wanna win the way to our hearts? Give a gift to Betty White! Coffee drinkers? Sugarwish can be that person’s gift, too.
Canvas Tote Bag
Practical and stylish, a canvas tote bag makes an excellent gift for anyone on the go. They can use it for grocery shopping, trips to the beach, or as a catch-all for their everyday essentials. Make the bag meaningful though. They will use it for practical purposes, but you want them to love it and think of you every time you use it.
One of our favorite gifts is a canvas tote from Eataly in NYC. It’s one of our favorite places and even though we use it for groceries, it is fun to use and reminds us of NYC, Eataly, and the person who gave it to us.
These low-maintenance plants are succulents, so these are great gift ideas. Succulents are perfect for those who don’t have a green thumb. They require minimal watering and can add a touch of greenery to any space without taking up too much space themselves.
House plants are also a fabulous idea, but want to get even more fabulous? The best gift ideas are the ones that come from the heart. Try propagating your favorite plant and when it roots, give it to the gift recipient letting them know that it came from your favorite plant. That idea is always a winner for us! Plants have a plethora of benefits for the home.
We LOVE candles! We don’t just love any candle though. We love a handmade 100% soy candle Southern Oak Artisan is our favorite. We constantly have them lit around the house and they are safe to breathe, unlike other paraffin candles, or even soy blends.
Guess what? We have a discount code for you for these, too! Use code ADVENTURE and save 10% off of your order.
Time at a Coffee Shop
A lot of people have a favorite coffee shop, right? Practical gifts are coffee gift cards, but want to take that a step further? Offer time at their favorite coffee shop.
Meaning, you book an appointment on the calendar to have coffee with your friend or loved one and just spend time. Ask the recipient if they need some alone time. If they crave alone time but don’t ever get it, well, you have allowed them that time because you booked a calendar slot with them. You just don’t go and tell them it is their time.
If there is a gamer in your life who is also a minimalist, this is a no-brainer.
Instead of a traditional gift, consider making a donation to a charitable organization in your loved one’s name. Not only will it make them feel good, but it will also make a difference in the world. Last year we received a few gifts that were donations to local animal activist groups and it was the best gift we have ever received.
Unpopular Opinions for the Best Minimalist Gifts
These next few items appear on almost every minimalist gift list you can find. Trust us when they are not the best gifts. We know we may have an unpopular opinion here, but stay away from these and you won’t have to worry about it.
First, as minimalists don’t want to be tied down to remember when something needs to be renewed. If it is tied to our credit card, that is really not a cool gift. If you tie it to your credit card, and let’s say it is a digital subscription, and then we love it, we feel like we then have to opt in. These include monthly subscription boxes and digital subscriptions that have to be renewed from an online platform. Do minimalists a favor and stay away from these.
Why does everyone think that everyone wants a coffee mug? Minimalists usually have one that they adore and really don’t need or want more. Skip it. Try giving coffee to a coffee drinker instead. They will love that!
Here’s the thing…we know there is a lot of love behind these, but most people feel guilty cashing them in. If you want to do something for someone, just do it. You think you are giving a thoughtful gift using this route, but it just creates weird feelings.
Don’t make someone feel obligated to use a handmade coupon. If someone needs a little help cleaning, or maybe doesn’t have a lot of time, offer to help them clean a garage or with house projects. Do they have home projects that have been on the to-do list for a lifetime?
Offer our assistance or hire help for them to finish it. You can also offer babysitting for the minimalist mom. Lots of better options than the homemade coupon.
They are going to die. If we want fresh flowers, we’ll get them ourselves. Stick with a plant. Do you know who gives fresh flowers? Cheaters and mourners. Prove us wrong.
If you give someone a digital book, make sure they have an ebook reader of some sort. We love digital books to read on our phone when we are on planes but we don’t own a digital book reader. Some people don’t want to read books on their phones. Just steer clear of this unless they have mentioned that they want an e-book.
Unless someone has told you explicitly that they want a membership to their local gym, don’t do it. It can give the wrong message and you can be cut out of their circle quickly.
There are fewer things that are just crass than giving an item in the health arena when someone hasn’t mentioned anything about getting healthy or losing weight. Don’t be that person.
Minimalist Gift Giving
Giving is not only a great way to save money and avoid clutter, but it’s also a thoughtful way to show your loved ones how much you care. This gift guide works any time of year. By focusing on quality over quantity and practicality over frivolity, you can give gifts that are meaningful and useful.
Even better, acts of service don’t have to break the bank and you will also feel good about your gift so it’s a win-win! So the next time you’re struggling to find the perfect gift, remember these minimalist gift ideas and simplify your gift-giving process. Useful items and thoughtful gifts are always better than buying and giving just to buy and give.
FAQs | Frequently Asked Questions
No. In fact, as minimalists, we would just rather have someone acknowledge the special day with a message, conversation, or even time spent. These are really experiences and those are always welcomed.
Most people would say yes. In the age of post-pandemic, a lot of people are nervous about germs. Unless he/she has expressed how they just love your chocolate chip cookies, then be careful. As a tree nut allergy sufferer, I (shannon) rarely trust baked goods gifts unless the gift giver knows me well enough to ask about it.
Is the minimalist a gardener or are you thinking they should be? If you want to give gardening gifts, give seeds, seedlings, or plants for their garden. That type of gift will be treasured if they are a gardener.