Sometimes, you just want to buy small gifts for that special (or maybe not-so-special) someone in your life. Unless you won the lottery or lost a bet, not everyone in your life is expecting a brand new car from you.
And for the many instances in which it’s better to give a small gift, most of us would love to give something that’s both inexpensive and impactful — more than just a throw-away gag gift. For that, you’ll probably have the best luck on Amazon. It’s home to a ton of great, affordable products people actually want, and you get the added perks of easy, fast shipping and prices that are nearly always the lowest on the internet.
The trade-off is that you need to be willing to invest the time, eye strain, and concentration wrinkles necessary for going through 30+ pages of product results. To save you the time, we curated a few of our all-time favorites and other great products from a wide range of interests below.
The top 5 best gifts for under $20 on Amazon:
- The world’s strongest coffee from Death Wish Coffee Co. $19.96
- A Popsocket for their phone $10.67
- A warm winter hat from Carhartt $16.99
- The best hair mask you can buy for damaged hair from Arvazallia $12.95
- A bath bomb gift set $9.99
Check out all 45 small gifts under $20 below:
The world’s strongest coffee
Death Wish claims to be the world’s strongest coffee, with about double the caffeine of your average cup. They attribute the added kick to a unique blend of Arabica and Robusta beans and a slow roasting process. It’s Fair Trade, has no additives, and makes a pretty good cup of coffee.
Ever-functional Popsocket Grips for their phone
Popsocket Grips look gimmicky, but they’re a legitimately helpful tool. They make it easier to hold a phone without straining your fingers, and it makes your phone feel more secure — like you’re not going to twitch and accidentally throw it into the ocean.
A warm Carhartt hat
Grab a warm, comfortable hat from a trusted outdoors brand for less than $15 and in 30+ colors.
A little electric milk frother for homemade treats
This handheld electric milk frother makes it easy for them to treat themselves to something extra special more often. It’s easy to use and clean, and does a reliable job with everything from coffee to matcha drinks.
A $6 wash and stain bar that can revive even the most hopeless clothes
This $6 bar is one of the first things we ever featured on Insider Reviews. With a little bit of water, the mix of vegetable soap, borax, and essential oils removes the dirt and grime from clothes extremely well. VP of Commerce Breton Fischetti called it the “best thing [he’d] done” for his dress shirts.
The best hair mask you can buy for damaged hair
This super hydrating hair mask is made specifically to treat severely damaged and dry hair — and it’s good at its job. We named it the best hair mask you can buy for damaged hair.
A fruity hand cream that’ll look great on their counter
This rich hand cream is made with shea butter and peach extract to moisturize seriously dry skin. We love the refreshing, light peach scent and the adorable container, which looks just like a peach.
Organic bath bombs full of essential oil aromatherapy blends
For less than $15, you can grab six vegan bath bombs blended with natural essential oils that range from peppermint to sweet orange to eucalyptus and more.
A pack of sticky notes to keep them on track
For the friend who likes to keep it really organized, help them stay on track with this thoughtful set of sticky notes. With categories like “To Ponder”, “To Remember”, and “To Buy”, they can keep track of everything they need to accomplish in the near future.
A mini, functional waffle maker that takes up minimal countertop space
This small but mighty waffle maker takes up minimal counter and storage space, is easy to clean, and is perfect for when you’re craving just one or two waffles and don’t want to make a whole spread.
A pair of classic gold hoops
This chunky gold hoop adds a simple, yet elegant touch to nearly any look. Plus, there are three different sizes and color options to choose from to complement their daily jewelry.
A famous hot sauce made from peppers grown in community gardens across the US
This all-natural, tangy hot sauce is best known for its part in the popular Youtube series “Hot Ones.” It’s made from peppers grown in community gardens throughout the nation.
A two-year pocket planner
If they’re always proactive and glued to their calendar, gift them the ability to concretely plan ahead (two years ahead, to be exact).
A tracker for their valuable possessions
They can attach the Tile Mate to keys, luggage, a backpack, briefcase, or any other valuable possession to ensure they never lose that item again. If they misplace the object with a Tile tracker, they can just check the Tile app to see its location in seconds.
A stainless steel bar that removes strong smells from your hands after cooking
This strange but useful stainless steel bar helps you remove the odor of onions, fish, and garlic from your hands after cooking.
A protective cover for their AirPods case
Apple AirPods: They’re incredibly convenient, but also incredibly easy to lose and scratch up. A silicone cover is a cheap and attractive way to protect their charging case that protects their beloved earbuds.
A pack of silicone animals that lift lids so steam can escape from pots and pans
These heat-resistant silicone lid lifts let steam escape from pots so they never boil over, and they come in funny shapes.
A velcro headband for washing their face at night
Get them a cute and simple terry cloth headband that velcros on to keep hair out of their face during their nightly skin-care or morning makeup routine.
A pair of $10 headphones with over 30,000 5-star reviews
These $10 in-ear headphones are sort of like finding diamonds in the rough. They have over 30,000 five-star reviews on Amazon and are one of few cheap tech products with universal praise. The best features include noise isolation, good sound, and staying put.
A duo of Mario Badescu’s beloved facial mists
Mario Badescu makes some of the most universally loved and affordable skin care products out there, and these facial sprays are the most recognizable. The Green Tea Spray hydrates, tones, and rejuvenates the skin. The Rosewater Spray is the real cult-favorite, and makes the skin look dewy and “glowy.”
A cult-favorite clay mask
The Aztec Clay Mask is one of those cult-favorite skin-care products that’s been plucked from obscurity and gone straight to the limelight of YouTube testimonials with over 4 million views. Suffice it to say the mask is very effective at cleaning the gunk out of pores and clearing up skin.
A small but mighty car mount for devices
The TechMatte car mount is another under-$10 diamond in the rough with over 9,500 reviews on Amazon. Its strong neodymium magnets allow it to be both compact and secure.
A wifi smart plug that lets them turn devices off remotely
Give them the gift of never needing to spend another night wondering if they turned off their heater or hair straightener before leaving the house. This smart WiFi plug works with Amazon Alexa, Google Home Assistant, and Apple HomeKit. They can use voice commands, create schedules for lights and appliances, and turn things on and off when they’re leaving home or nearby.
A quirky loose-tea infuser shaped like the Loch Ness Monster
Make their tea time more fun with these cute loose tea infusers that look like a swimming Loch Ness Monster.
A five-year journal that tracks their answers to the same questions
This “one question a day” journal gives users the benefit of a personal record without the labor of a full-fledged journal. The simple guide has one question per day, to be answered for five years in a row. By the end, even if they don’t write in it every day, they’ll have great account of how they’ve changed over the course of five years.
Reusable stainless steel straws
Most of us feel at least a little guilty using plastic straws given how bad they are for the environment. Reusable stainless steel straws that come with their own cleaning brush are a thoughtful (and impactful) gift most people will use often.
Cable clips that keep cords in place
These handy adhesive clips keep cables from slipping around on a table and control any cords that run along the wall.
Bargain computer glasses that remove strain from computer glare
These $10 computer glasses are a fraction of what you’ll find at competitors, but they do the job of reducing eye strain. They’re reportedly 40% blue-light-blocking, and they come in a standard tortoiseshell pattern that works on pretty much everyone. They’re also lightweight enough to feel like wearing nothing.
Socks modeled after famous paintings
Unique, informal, and more convenient than most of us even realize — socks are a great gift, especially if they can add some personality.
A cult-favorite hair styling gel
As some reviews note, American Crew Fiber is a common recommendation for thick, curly hair. The cream thickens, texturizes, and adds fullness to hair without looking shiny or spiky.
The perfect spatula
This is the kitchen hero product of many Insider Reviews writers and editors for good reason. It’s the result of a Kickstarter campaign aimed at making the perfect silicone spatula. Among other upgrades like a fiberglass core that keeps the handle cool, its most important feature is that it’s made from a single piece of non-toxic, BPA-free silicone that prevents the top from becoming dislodged or hiding any unhygienic bits of food and ingredients.
A cult-favorite lip balm with SPF 25 and over 1,000 reviews
They’ll thank you for this cult-favorite lip balm with SPF during the winter months when the multi-pack from CVS isn’t cutting it.
An extra-long charging cable, which is the closest you’ll get to gifting never-ending convenience
It’s something every one of us will feel grateful for a couple of times per day, but always put off buying for ourselves: a serpentine, 10-foot long charging cable.
A water bottle that lets them naturally infuse water with fruit
Turns out water tastes much better when it’s naturally flavored with fruits and herbs. This is a nice way to do that naturally, minus all the sugar and additives of other drinks.
An extremely fun board game that made Kickstarter history
Exploding Kittens is basically a highly strategic version of Russian roulette with a cat theme. It was the most-backed project in Kickstarter history, and this version is family-friendly.
A heatable eye mask for some beauty sleep
Improving their sleep is a gift in itself. This eye mask will help them get some shut-eye, plus it’s microwave safe for the colder months.
Ina Garten’s newest cookbooks for her devotees
If they host or entertain frequently, chances are they’ve used an Ina Garten recipe before. Known for her elegant but laid-back style, Ina’s new cookbook is full of the tips and tricks that bring a professional touch to simple, home-cooked dishes.
A popular reusable bag that folds up to the size of an envelope
Baggu has a good reputation for its durable, super convenient, reusable bags. They’re made from 100% rip-stop nylon so they’re not likely to break, can carry up to 50 lbs, and fold up to the size of an envelope for easy storage. Plus, they come in a lot of colors and patterns.
A wine aerator that doesn’t take up a ton of space
Wine drinkers will almost certainly enjoy the benefits of this inexpensive tool that can improve the taste of even the cheapest bottle. All they need to do is pop the gadget into the top of the bottle and pour themselves a glass, then they can put the cork or a bottle stop back in to preserve it.
A set of more than a dozen Korean sheet masks
The gift of 16 Korean sheet masks means at least 16 nights of relaxation.
Reusable lunch bags that they’ll actually want to use
Plastic bags are an unnecessary expense when you could just have reusable ones. Their environmentally-conscious and frugal sides will thank you for these sandwich and snack bags, which are dishwasher safe and BPA free. They’ll save a ton of money and plastic waste by using these, plus the colorful patterns are much more fun than clear plastic.
A cute and practical phone holder
This endearing little dino isn’t just a piece of decor, it can actually can hold their phone. It comes in over ten colors, so you can find one in their favorite color.
A wireless charger
This ultra-slim wireless charger makes charging easy at home or in the office. The company says it should work with most phone cases on, and the led light will turn off to keep your room dark while charging at night.
A fun family game
Watch Ya Mouth is easily one of the most fun games to have come out in recent years, and it’s especially great when playing with the family on a holiday morning.
Smart LED light bulbs
Smart light bulbs usually fetch a far higher price since they often operate through an expensive hub, but these under-$20 options work without one. This specific set is programmed to turn on when the sun sets and off when the sun rises.
That’s all for our small gifts under 20 dollars … happy shopping!