How To Make Practical Gifts Feel Tailored To The Woman In Your Life


The minute you hear ‘practical present’ your brain probably has the tendency to drift to dark places. “Santa brought you socks again this year” places. But gifts that are sometimes legit useful can often be the best to give your partner. These are the gifts that make her life better or easier, and truly show that you care about her well-being. Not a bad recipe, that.

Of course, there’s always the danger that practical gifts will feel boring. If you get her a new mattress and it feels more like “your bed is old and gross so I bought you this,” and less like “imagine the sex we’ll have on it!” then you’re sure to struggle. You just have to present your functional present it in a way that still feels romantic and exciting.

It’s all about packaging. And presentation.

Here are some awesome-yet-practical gifts that should never feel boring if you give them the right way!

The gift: New sheets

Why it’s a great gift:

Many of us don’t prioritize our sleep comfort — relying on scratchy sheets or a crappy mattress just to save a buck. But then the quality of our whole day is affected by poor sleep, it’s why we can’t concentrate on work or have a sore neck or keep getting headaches. Better sheets will up her sleeping game immensely and thus, make her life better. It’s a thoughtful present that will improve so many things (and bonus that if you stay over a lot — it’s pretty nice for you too).

How to make it feel fun:

Think about a trip where you both couldn’t get enough of a hotel bed and tell her, “I wanted you to feel as good every morning as we did when we woke up in that soft bed in Madrid (or insert your location here. Please don’t say Madrid if you’ve never been to Madrid).” You can also pair the sheets with cute lingerie or a nice robe and slippers. It’s a romantic and practical comfort gift all wrapped in one (Christmas) package.

Buy it: Try Brooklinen’s 480 thread count sheets starting at $109.

The gift: An underwear subscription box

Why it’s a great gift:

We all feel better in nice underwear, but constant washing (and thin material) means underwear becomes torn and faded fast. Also, periods. (And if mentioning a period grosses you out, you need to get over that. No woman has time for an adult man who can’t handle even the thought of a period.) But even though we feel hot in new underwear and terrible in old underwear, it’s also expensive. So it becomes a cost many of us can never justify (for some mysterious reason) leaving us with a whole drawer of only ‘bad day’ undies.

How to make it feel fun:

This is a practical gift that can also be sexual, which seems to be the sweet spot of this list. Make it clear how absolutely gorgeous she looks in the first pair and how you can’t wait to see a new pair of underwear on her every month.

Buy it: Skivvie Nix underwear is cute/sexy while also being super comfortable. She’ll love having it delivered every month. $20 per month or prepay 6 months for $108

The gift: A portable washer/dryer combo

Why it’s a great gift:

One of life’s great horrors is having to go to the laundromat on a regular basis. It’s this crazy, horrible time suck that feels like it requires a hundred hours of your time. Even if she has a washer and dryer in her building, she’s forced to constantly get quarters or touch other people’s underwear when they forget a load in the dryer. Leading her to recieve angry notes like: Stop touching my underwear in the dryer, if I want to leave my load in for 12 hours, I CAN.

A portable washer/dryer (which doesn’t need hookups and can drain in the sink or tub) is an awesome way to save her a ton of stress and time each week.

How to make it feel fun:

Wrap this in a giant box with wrapping paper so she can actually open it (you’ll be tempted to skip that annoyance and just slap a bow on it. Don’t). And be ready to help set it up/get it going. Then, have a night in of Netflix and chilling ready for her with all the fixings: wine, take-out, a cozy blanket. And between snuggling do several loads of her in-house laundry. And fold that shit. Look, sometimes the little things are the hottest.

Buy it: This wonderfully reviewed combo washer and dryer for small spaces is on Amazon for only $119.97

The gift: A gas or grocery gift card

Why it’s a great gift:

All those everyday living expenses add up. So, being able to just pull out a gas gift card and not worry about filling up the car for a couple of weeks or month makes a big difference on your psyche. Not thinking about how she’s going to get to work or make it home once the red gas light has come on (calculating whether she’ll make the 3 and ½ miles) will free her up to pursue other dreams.

How to make it feel fun:

This is all about letting her know that you want to support her by taking off that financial stress. Is she in grad school? Then let her know you want to make things a little easier because you’re so proud of how hard she’s hustling and know she’s been living off of buttered noodles and ramen. Is she a struggling actor? Then tell her this is a gift that will get her to auditions until she hits it big (which you know will happen any minute now). You want to be a patron of the arts, and there’s no one you believe in more than her.

Buy it: Ger her a gift card to her favorite grocery store and nearest gas station online!

The gift: A month of a cleaning service

Why it’s a great gift:

Is this the most romantic thing ever? Maybe not. But a month of a cleaning service coming every week and cleaning her floors, bathroom, and kitchen is kind of pure luxury? We don’t know anyone who wouldn’t benefit a lot from the convenience.

How to make it feel fun:

Make a homemade card or ‘coupon’ to a month of a clean house. And be ready with suggestions of what this will free her up for (spa time, movies, time with friends). Let her know that you know how hard she works and you wanted her to have a month of not having to worry about chores on top of everything.

Just don’t get fooled by one of those topless cleaning services thinking that will jazz it up for more fun. The cleaning part costs extra and from what we hear, they don’t do a great job.

Buy it: Look up local cleaning services and then schedule and pay in advance!