One of my Christmas chores each year is to fill the stockings. Sure, Santa could do it, but I like to help him out. I spend an inordinate amount of time trying what to include in their stockings. After all, I want to be sure it is something they would enjoy. Once again, I’ve searched for unique and useful products for everyone on my list. These are some of my favorite Stocking Stuffers and Unique Gifts for 2017.
Samples were received but all opinions are my own.
Stocking Stuffers For HER:
1. Andis High Heat Styling Brush– It’s time for holiday hairstyles. But when the weather outside is frightful, it can take a toll on hair. Living in the South, my naturally curly hair takes a beating year round. In the summer, the humidity causes frizz. In the winter, the dry heat causes frizz. I can’t win! The Andis High Heat Styling Brush promises to be gentler and safer while “creating frizz-free volume without flattening hair.” The two heat settings, low and high, allow the brush to heat up to 425 degrees. But some of my favorite features are the extras. It’s only slightly larger than my hairbrush so it’s easy to fit in a suitcase when traveling. As a person who hates to deal with short, tangled cords, I appreciate the tangle-free 360-degree swivel cord. Plus, I’m always worried if I accidentally left something on at my house. With the auto shutoff feature which automatically turns the brush off after 30 minutes, this is one less thing to worry about.
The Andis High Heat Styling Brush retails for $25.
2. Kithbee Bath Bombs– Who doesn’t enjoy a relaxing bath? Kithbee Bath Bombs can take bathtime to a whole new level. These golf ball sized bath bombs are made by hand from start to finish using all natural ingredients like cocoa butter and shea butter. Available in six scents-vanilla, coffee, chocolate, strawberry, peony, and rose-each bath bomb is individually wrapped and ready to use. I received the rose scented bath bombs and not only do they have a light floral fragrance, they’re pretty. The bath bombs left my skin feeling silky and smooth. The six-pack of bath bombs is packaged in a black box decorated with pink ribbon, making it stocking ready. This is the perfect gift to help someone unwind after a stressful day.
A package of six Kithbee Bath Bombs retails for $21.99
3. Socktights Carly Cable Knit Tights– I am not a fan of cold weather since I am extremely cold natured. To combat this problem, I wear tights. But we all know tights have some problems. They snag. The seam on the toes can be uncomfortable. Shelby Mason was determined to create a version of tights that women would enjoy wearing. Socktights are different because each pair of premium tights has a pair of socks handsewn onto the bottom. These socks contain moisture wicking materials so feet stay dry and a floating toe seam for comfort. The attached socks help prevent runs and holes so the tights last longer. Because we’ve all had that pair of tights we were only able to wear a couple of times before they had a huge run and usually at the worst possible time. From my experience, Socktights feel smooth, silky, and look good. Prefer socks? Socktights makes a variety of anklets, invisi-liners, knee highs, and over the knee socks. Use the coupon code JWL20 to receive a 20% discount on your first order.
The Carly Cable Knit Tights retail for $28.
4. Bombas Women’s Merino Wool Socks– Socks are one of my favorite items to find in my stocking. There’s nothing like a warm pair of socks on a cold winter day. But I am hard on socks. I constantly wear holes in the toes and ankles. This year I found Bombas. They spent two years on research and development to improve their socks and are constantly innovating. That annoying toe stitch? They’ve hand linked it to be comfortable. These socks are made from high-quality natural fibers from some of the world’s leading cotton and merino wool. They’re comfy, warm, and super soft. Our Merino Wool Calf Socks also have “Stay Up Technology.” Because who doesn’t hate when socks fall down into your shoes? The socks stay in place without being too tight on my leg. They also have natural moisture-wicking properties to keep my feet dry and warm. If you love socks as much I do, join their refer-a-friend program. For each friend who purchases Bombas, you will receive two free pairs of socks and they receive a 25% discount off their first order. You can also feel good knowing for each pair of socks you purchase, Bombas donates a pair of socks to someone in need through their 650 partners of shelters, community organizations, and large partners like The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and The Special Olympics throughout the US.
The Women’s Merino Wool Socks retail for $18 per pair.
5. Sea Bags Maine Paw Print Tote – Ever wonder what happens to old sails when they are no longer able to be used on ships? Ok, I admit, I had never thought about it either. But it turns out most of them head for the landfill. Sea Bags determined to change this by turning old sails into adorable products. They have everything from handbags, totes, and clutches made from old sails to Lobster Rope doormats. Since the company was founded, they have saved over 500 tons of sails from landfills. We received the Paw Print Tote Bag from their Pet Collection. What I love about this tote is that it’s roomy and stylish, but since it is made from a sail, it’s waterproof and resistant to spills. We can carry all the baby supplies we need and wipe it clean with a damp cloth and some soap. (It is spot clean only.) The tote is well made with hand spliced black rope handles and their signature zig-zag stitches. Besides their variety of collections, Sea Bags also offers customized bags.
The Sea Bags Maine Paw Print Tote retails for $140.
6 Number 4 High-Performance Hair Care Mindful Wellness Gift Pack- The winter weather in our area does not help my hair. I’m never happy to see my hair is a dry, frizzy mess. That’s why I am glad to know Number 4 High-Performance Hair Care will be in my stocking this year. Free from chemicals such as Sulfate, Sodium Chloride, and Paraben, all of their products are 100% Vegan and Gluten Free. Their four innovative, lightweight collections have a unique source of inspiration; a special moment in Paris. The MIndfull Wellness Gift Pack is designed for “the Vitamin-Loving, the Green Conscious, and the Eternal Youth Obsessed” and contains Hydrating Shampoo, a Reconstructing Mask, and a Super Comb Prep and Protect. It’s a wonderful way to get your hair holiday ready!
The Number 4 High-Performance Hair Care Mindful Wellness Gift Pack retails for $25.
7. Bright Endeavors Holiday Retreat Tin Gift Set – Love candles and want to help others? Bright Endeavors has made it possible. Their soy wax and phthalate-free fragrance candles are designed to burn longer than paraffin candles and smell great. I love the Bright Endeavors motto “Light a Candle. Transform a Life.” The company’s mission is to help young mothers facing poverty and homelessness transform their lives. Their paid job training program helps teach these young women the guidance and job skills they need for professional success. All of the proceeds from the candle sales are reinvested into the program. The Holiday Retreat Tin Gift Set includes four (8-ounces each) candles in scents perfect for the holidays; Whitebark Pine, Holiday Citrus, Pumpkin Chai, and Almond Berry Galette. Free shipping is available on orders of $75 or more.
The Holiday Retreat Tin Gift Set retails for $44.99
8. EO Ageless Skin Care and Everyone Essential Oils-I have used Everyone Essential Oils for several years, but didn’t realize they make a the EO collection, a variety of products for bath, body, hands, hair, and face. We tried the Hydrating Face Moisturizer, a lightly scented cream that leaves skin feeling silky smooth and the Coconut Cleansing Milk, which makes a gentle lather and rinses away easily. Their Natural Hand Sanitzer Spray not only smells good, it’s the perfect size to fit in my purse during cold and flu season. EO founders Brad and Susan have a simple mission; Love Life, Live Clean. They promote that philosophy in all of their products choosing to use USDA Organic, Non-GMO, and synthetic fragrance-free ingredients, along with sustainable marketing and cruelty free practices. Because the products are gluten-free, they can be used by people with gluten intolerance or Celiac disease. They also offer free shipping on all orders of $50 or over.
Everyone Essential Oil blends retail for $10.99-$11.99. EO Ageless Hydrating Face Moisturizer retails for $34.99, Coconut Cleansing Milk retails for $19.99, and Everyone Natural Hand Sanitizer Spray retails for $17.99 for a six-pack.
Stocking Stuffers for HIM:
9. Snooz–Whether you are a frequent traveler or not, nighttime noise can be a problem. How many of us have kept the fan on in a hotel room or at home to block out noise? The Snooz Ultra-Portable White Noise Machine solves this problem. Designed to sound like a fan, it is portable and doesn’t blow out the unwanted cold air in the winter! The sound can be adjusted from a low level (like that of a portable fan on low speed) to high (like the sound you would experience in an airplane cabin.) Because of its design, it uses 98% less energy than a fan and doesn’t need to be cleaned. Snooz has a companion app that allows the machine to be automatically shut off at a time of your choice. This fan blocks sound so well I often use it when I am working to block out background noise. With a 100-night happiness guarantee, you’ll be enjoying a restful sleep in no time!
The Snooz White Noise Machine retails for $79.99 and includes free shipping.
10. Yubico Yubikey – If you travel or have ever had an account hacked you know the “joys” of unsecured wi-fi. The Yubikey is the answer to this problem. It’s a small, lightweight, portable device that can be easily attached to a keychain, but provides big benefits. While there are lots of technical words that describe how it works with FIDO U2F protocol, here’s the lowdown for the rest of us. It provides “high-security, public-key cryptography” that generates stronger authentication and more protection. Plus, it’s easy to use. Just log in with your usual name and password to sites such as Google, Dropbox, Dashlane, Keeper Security, YouTube or Facebook. Then, insert the key with the gold side up into your computer’s USB port and press the button. That’s it! You’re done. Since the Yubico is waterproof, crush resistant, and “practically indestructible during normal use,” it’s perfect for travelers or moms with kids.
The Yubico YubiKey retails for $18.
11. Sir Hare Man Soap– A small family business started only three years ago, Sir Hare has grown from one product into a full men’s grooming business. You can find everything from After Shave to Shaving Soap, including traditional shaving products like the Classic Bay Rum shaving soap. Their version is called the “Drunken Sailor.” I love a company with a sense of humor! We tried the Man Soap; a creamy bath and body blend made from goat’s milk. The 6-ounce bar has a marbled texture which catches the eye and a refreshing, but not overpowering, scent. Because their soap doesn’t contain alcohol, it leaves skin feeling soft and silky, not dry like traditional bar soaps. The soap doesn’t leave a “film” behind on the skin. I like that each of their products is handcrafted in small batches and never tested on animals. The company owners test all the products on themselves instead! There is also 100% satisfaction guarantee on all products.
Sir Hare Man Soap retails for $8.99
12. Groovy Groomsmen Gifts Weekender Travel Bag– I love the concept behind this company. The founder, Chris, attended enough weddings to decide men were not natural shoppers. He wanted to give groomsmen the opportunity to give creative (read this as “not tacky”) gifts and Groovy Groomsmen came into being. He also has a brother site Groovy Guy Gifts for anyone not getting married. Here you will find all sorts of gifts from “The Stud Sack” (a version of the man bag, but way cooler) to ArGuyal Groomsman Socks. All orders over $75 include Free Personalization and Free Shipping. We went with the Weekender Travel Bag, a stylish 100% cotton canvas bag with leather accents, brass accents and the option for personalization. It’s roomy with plenty of pockets inside and out, along with carry handles and a removable shoulder strap. Not only does it look stylish, it’s also good for travel. I’m excited that my son can use this on his occasional trip home from college rather than the laundry bag he always drags in!
The Groovy Groomsmen Gifts Weekender Travel Bag retails for $79.99
Unique Gift For Kids:
13. Fire Station Playset by USA Toyz– Wooden toys is one of my favorite gifts to give the baby. They’re sturdy, last forever, and there are no small parts that fall off and create choking hazards. That’s why I was thrilled to receive this Fire Station from USA Toyz. Designed for ages 12 months and older, the set “helps develop logical thinking skills and hand-eye coordination skills.” I’ve noticed it also enhances creative play and often see the baby pushing the fire truck while saying, “Vroom Vroom.” Note: The Fire Station has to be assembled so plan ahead if Santa will be delivering this one. The set is brightly colored to catch children’s attention and includes furniture for the fire station, two firefighters, assorted fire gear, and a fire truck and helicopter.
The Fire House Playset retails for $39.99
Unique Gifts For Everyone:
14. MarshmallowMBA – Think marshmallows are boring? You’ve never tried the gourmet flavors from MarshmallowMBA. With more than 75 flavors like Cinnamon Roll, Raspberry Lemonade, and Peanut Butter, every member of the family can have a favorite flavor. The brainchild of Amy Trout Hughes and Sandra Stegman, these marshmallows have five ingredients or less, all natural flavors, and no preservatives. All of their marshmallows are gluten-free, egg-free, soy-free, wheat-free and fat-free. Additionally, all the flavors except cremes are dairy-free. We sampled several of their treats including their holiday offerings of S’morks, like a S’more on a stick, in flavors of Fire Toasted Vanilla, Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel, Chocolate Mint and Chocolate Strawberry and a grown up version of the traditional Krispie treat, Brown Butter Bourbon. We also tried the Traditional Boxed Half Dozens in Holiday Mint and Honey Orange Vanilla, the Marshmallow Cup in a fantastic cinnamon roll flavor, and the Fire Toasted Vanilla S’mores Box. Seriously, these flavors are nothing like I have ever gotten in a store. They’re fresh, have no chemical taste, and make amazing additions to dessert bars, hot cocoa bars, or gift baskets. Note: These are processed in a facility that uses wheat, soy, dairy, and nuts.
The MarshmallowMBA S’morks Bucket of six S’morks retails for $24.
15. Gentle Friends – The brainchild of Kimberly Parry (of Kimberly Parry organics), Gentle Friends was created to provide healthy and effective pet products. All of the products use all natural, certified USDA organic ingredients sourced from small farms around the world. Each product is mixed by hand in small batches to provide products you will not be afraid to use on your pet. The Bar Soap, Wound Wash, and Shine Conditioning rinse have a pleasant fresh Lavender scent, while the Ear Oil is odorless. All of the products are vegan, veterinarian approved, and not tested on animals. Our pets, who are very picky, didn’t mind when I applied the products to their skin. One of my favorite things about Gentle Friends is their commitment to partnering with rescue centers and animal sanctuaries. This year they’ve partnered with an organization I love (we’ve purchased hay for our sheep from them to support their efforts) The Gentle Barn. The Gentle Barn provides refuge to severely abused or neglected who are too old, sick, lame, or scared to be adopted. Their rescue animals include horses, donkeys, cows, pigs, sheep, goats, turkeys, chickens, llamas, peacocks, emus, cats, and dogs. Not only are these products a great way to care for your pet, you’ll be helping animals in need.
The Gentle Friends Wound Wash and the Shine-Conditioning Rinse retails for $12.99. The Ear Oil retails for $11.99 and the Bar Soap retails for $10.99.
16. Apollo Box Mozzarella & Ricotta DIY Cheese Kit– Let’s face it. Gift buying can be difficult. The Apollo Box will make shopping easier with fun and creative gifts from small vendors around the world. Their Apollo Box app makes it easy to browse and interact with virtual 3d products in your own environment. Because none of us want to be the person who buys something only to discover it wasn’t exactly what we wanted. With everything from home decoration to Apparel and Shoes, you will be sure to find something for everyone on your list. I spent an hour browsing through the site and kept finding products I wanted. If you are looking for something for someone who loves DIY or the foodie on your list how about making your own cheese? This DIY Cheese Kit comes with everything you need (Except cow’s milk) to make a batch of delicious homemade cheese in one hour. Kids will love to help out with making the cheese too.
The Mozzarella & Ricotta DIY Cheese Kit retails for $26.99
17. Hammer Stahl 12″ Fry Pan– With a Culinology/Food Science Major and several special dietary needs in our house, we spend a lot of time creating recipes in our kitchen. I learned long ago about the value of high-quality cookware. Hammer Stahl is the only US manufacturer to make the superior titanium-stabilized 316Ti stainless steel available through gourmet retailers. Not only are the products crafted in small batches, they include a lifetime warranty. What’s different about 316Ti stainless steel? In a word, everything! The 7 -Ply construction allows the pan to heat quickly, evenly and cook from all sides while being able to go straight from the stove to the fridge to the dishwasher. The cooking surface is durable, resisting pitting and corrosion, and designed to keep its flawless shine for years. One of my favorite features is the handle. It stays cool to the touch during cooking, thanks to its ergonomic design. No more accidentally burning myself! This sturdy pan has plenty of room to cook a one-dish meal for the family (or fry, brown, or saute, whatever you need.) Because of its versatility, ease of cleaning, and quality, you’ll find this pan is an integral addition to your kitchen cookware.
The Hammer Stahl 12″ Fry Pan retails for $179.00
Which stocking stuffer or unique gift would you like to receive? I can’t blame you if you say, “All of them!”