It’s practically Christmas, and you really should have done your shopping by now. But maybe you’ve been distracted by the glory that was Clash of Champions, or maybe you’re like me and you’ve been busy writing year-end “best of” lists, or maybe Braun Strowman physically threw you into a Christmas tree and it’s taken you a while to recover.
We all end up shopping at the last minute sometimes. And when you’re shopping late, especially when you know the person you’re buying for will receive your gift after the holiday is over, the pressure’s really on to impress. Fortunately I’m here to help, with some last minute outside-the-box gift ideas for the pro wrestling fan in your life. The other one, I mean. Besides you.
An Enamel Pin
Enamel pins have become a go-to gift of choice in the last few years, and there’s a wide variety of wrestling pins available these days, particularly on Etsy.com. One of my favorites is this goofy little Randy Savage by Marianthi Aldridge, which is actually one of several comical Macho Men that Etsy has to offer.
Reclining Worm has a wide selection of ’80s wrestlers in pin form, but I’m especially fond of the matched Road Warrior pair. While you could give both, what’s really fun is keeping one for yourself and giving the other to a friend or loved one who you consider the Animal to your Hawk, or the Hawk to your Animal. 123Pins‘ Diamond Cutter pin is the perfect gift for the WCW fan in your life, while their Too Sweet pin is great for any Bullet Club fan (since they definitely already own multiple T-shirts).
Pro Wrestling Wall Art
If you want a gift that’s really classy, or at least kitschy in a classic way, you can’t go wrong with art. The very definition of classy kitsch is an original black velvet painting of El Santo by artist Arturo Terrones, which is surprisingly affordable on Etsy. On the other hand, the Attitude Era fan in your life might prefer Patrick Sparrow’s print of the Brothers of Destruction, which also comes with an enamel pin of Kane.
Comic book artist Ramon Villalobos is offering a really cool canvas print of his portrait of CM Punk in his Society 6 store. On the other hand, if you’re looking for a wrestling print so classy that most people won’t even realize it’s wrestling-related, this golden-haired Gorgeous George may be just the thing.
Actual Wrestling Gear
Maybe you’re shopping for someone who is actually an aspiring wrestler, or just aspires to dress up like one. Broz Sports Designs has all sorts of trunks and pads. Highspots has a lot of that stuff too, as well as a truly amazing selection of lucha masks. Even if you don’t know any aspiring wrestlers, there’s probably someone in your life who would get a kick out of a Jushin Liger mask or even some hot pink Macho Man trunks.
A Wrestling T-Shirt
If there’s one thing wrestling fans love, it’s T-shirts. Obviously we all know about the WWE Shop and Pro Wrestling Tees, but I’m trying to think a bit outside the box here. One fun thing about artist-produced (some might say bootleg) T-shirts is when they present a wrestler you love in a fun way that no official merch ever would.
This fun “Hell Yeah” Stone Cold Steven Austin shirt by Donut Glow is a perfect example. There are also people making shirts of beloved wrestlers that WWE hasn’t gotten around to giving any merch yet, like this cool Luke Harper “Yeah yeah yeah” shirt from Migs Media, which Luke Harper and all his friends already own. Then there’s Lucha Collective, who use T-shirts to raise money for important causes. All proceeds for the turnbuckle “Resist” shirt, for example, go to the Southern Poverty Law Center. Maybe you and the person you’re buying a shirt for share a favorite wrestling podcast, and you can buy a shirt to support them. For example, my favorite wrestling podcast is Not Your Demographic, and their official T-shirt is really cool.
A Subscription to a Streaming Service
This one is especially convenient for so late in the year, because it’s instantaneous. Whoever you’re shopping for probably already subscribes to the WWE Network, but you can sign them up for another streaming service and maybe introduce them to whole new worlds of wrestling.
Anyone who likes a bit of colorful absurdity in their wrestling will get a kick out of Chikaratopia, while British Strong Style fans might prefer a Demand Progress subscription. Anyone who’s curious about Joshi wrestling will enjoy Stardom World, and of course just about anybody will find something to enjoy in New Japan. Just remember, if you decide to go this route, be cool about it. Don’t be that guy who’s like “I subscribed you to New Japan World so you can finally be a real wrestling fan.”
Something Weird and Random
Honestly, I divided this list up into categories, but there just wasn’t anywhere to put this vintage Ric Flair Halloween mask. But it’s such a cool, weird artifact, and I can think of multiple people in my own life who’d get a kick out of receiving it for Christmas. Sure, that mostly says a lot about the kind of people I know, but if you’re reading my gift guide, you probably know the same kinds of people. People who really love wrestling, and are excited by camp and absurdity.
So whether you get them this Ric Flair mask (seriously, I want this thing to sell immediately after this list gets posted) or something equally strange that you find all on your own, share your affection for the weird with your friends and loved ones. That’s what Christmas is all about.