Unexpected gifts that your friends, family and wallet will love

Dec. 22, 2016, 9:46 p.m. | By Zoe Friedman | 7 years, 7 months ago

Trendy gifts under $20

The holidays always bring joy, family, good food and of course; stress. Finding the perfect gift for your best friend, loved one or that future loved one (wink, wink), is hard, especially on a high school budget. Candy, cheap jewelry and socks are always great options for a quick and cheap holiday gift but nothing quite says, "Happy holidays!” like a unique gift that keeps a few bucks in your own pocket. This gift guide can apply to any kind of person - your best friend, dad, aunt, teacher, favorite cook - regardless of the holiday they celebrate. So for this year, never fear, SCO is here for all of your gifting needs!

Be with the force of writing. Photo courtesy of This is Why I'm Broke.

Star Wars Lightsaber Pen, $14.10
Give the gift of writing this season with a pen that looks like a mini-lightsaber. It lights up the moment the pen touches the paper. Try wrapping the pen in silver-metallic tissue paper or a clear plastic pen case topped with an orange or yellow bow for a color scheme that is sure to pop. If you use this pen on a test, the force will be with you! Disclaimer: Force not included.

Adorable ceramic creature self-watering animal planters!  Photo courtesy of Amazon.

Ceramic Creature Self Watering Animal Planter, $9.99
This kit includes four ceramic planters: a pig, cat, rabbit, and panda. Place the included soil and seeds in each ceramic planter, perch the planter on the edge of a glass of water, and insert the straw into the mouth of the planter. You'll have an indoor, self-watering herb garden in no time! Gift this kit to your favorite cook and prepare for a five course meal in thanks! Warning: get Google Translate ready, because the instructions are in Chinese.

Chocolate ornaments are both delicious and pretty!  Photo courtesy of Anyanet.

Hot Chocolate Ornament, $15
Aesthetic and tasty! Just fill the ornament with a layer of hot chocolate mix, miniature marshmallows, and chocolate chips. Hang it up or drink some hot cocoa straight away! Either way, it makes a perfect holiday gift. Who said hot chocolate doesn't grow on trees? If you choose to package the ornaments instead of hanging them, wrap in a clear plastic box and top with a bright red bow for striking contrast.

We didn't forget about Hannukah! These delicious cookies make the perfect gift.  Photo courtesy of Dylan's Candy Bar.

Dylan's Candy Bar Petite Hanukkah Cookies, $12
These cute Hanukkah cookies will have you spinning the dreidel in no time. The package comes complete with four dreidel cookies, four Jewish stars, a rainbow menorah and Gelt! Take a bite and enjoy a sweet and nutty flavor followed by a gentle crunch from the hardened sugar icing. Just remember, it's rude to eat the cookies before you wrap them!

Sand Waves Moving Art- a beautiful and entertaining gift idea!  Photo courtesy of Bits and Pieces .

Sand Waves Moving Art, $14.99
The beach is bitter cold this time of year, but don't let that stop you from having your perfect beach weekend getaway. Now you don't just have to imagine the beautiful white-sand oasis and the soothing noise of the crashing blue waves; you can bring it right into your room with this Sand Waves Moving Art! This desktop rotating picture frame filled with colored sand and glow-in-the-dark glitter will help you relax and soak in those rays. Wrap the frame in cool-colored geo-patterned wrapping paper, such as aqua, and tie with a warm-colored ribbon, like a deep orange. Disclaimer: sun not included.

SCOflake DIY Bath Salts, $15 dollars
1 cup pure Epsom Salts
1 cup kosher sea salt
3/4 cup baking soda (make sure it's fresh. Old baking soda will not soften the bathwater as well).
Ten drops of the food coloring of your choice, or until needed
Five drops of the essential oil of your choice

Nothing beats a homemade gift that'll make you feel, and smell, good! Combine the Epsom Salts, sea salt and baking soda in a metal bowl and stir. Next, add your desired food coloring and stir until the entire mixture turns that color. Add the essential oil. Stir the entire mixture and spread the mixture onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Let the mixture dry on a tabletop at room temperature for two hours or until the mixture feels dry to the touch. Spoon 1/4 cup of the mixture into clear gift bags and tie with ribbon. Optional: add a label and give your bath salts a name!

Smooth and healthy skin in one gift!  Photo courtesy of eVitamins .

Essential Burt's Bees Kit, $9.99
This gift can get you all-natural skin care on the go. Soap bark and chamomile deep cleansing cream offer a gentle clean. Hand salve nourishes your skin. Milk and honey lotion keep your body smooth and moisturized. Coconut foot cream is sure to keep your pedicure on point. Of course, don't forget Burt's signature beeswax lip balm designed to heal chapped and aging lips.

With this SCO review of the coolest (and wallet friendly!) gifts out there, prepare for the best gift-giving season yet! Have your own unique gift ideas? Let us know in the comments below!

Tags: christmas holidays new year DIY Gifts Hannukah

Zoe Friedman. Zoë Friedman is a junior at Montgomery Blair HS. She loves running XC and track, exercising, writing, cooking, marketing and creating business ideas. She's self-published two cookbooks since her freshman year. In her free time, she watches baseball and makes and packages her own energy … More »

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