Twenty-nine fail-safe present ideas for your office gift exchange

You’re sure to please with these.

The annual office gift exchange is here, and you have no clue what to buy that silent guy in the other department. Don’t freak out. These gifts are sure to please your coworker (and maybe even get you a laugh)—and you don’t even have to secretly go over the spending limit. Here are some of our favorite items, categorized for three typical spending limits: $10, $15, and $20.

$10 and Under

Release Your Anger adult coloring book

Release Your Anger coloring book
Color your anger awayAmazon

The adult coloring book trend may be winding down, but that doesn’t make the activity any less therapeutic. Help your peers de-stress and relive their childhood, with the addition of some ahem colorful language. $5.

Adulting achievement stickers

Eight stickers
You did it! Great job!Amazon

Give your coworker the “just voted” self-satisfaction every day of the year with a sticker set themed around accomplishing the basics of being alive. Sometimes it’s nice to be recognized for your accomplishments, even if they’re as small as paying your bills on time. That’s the idea behind these “adulting” stickers—do something good and then brag about yourself. $9.

LoveHandle Universal Grip for Cell Phone and Mini Tablet

LoveHandle Universal Grip for Cell Phone and Mini Tablet

LoveHandle Universal Grip for Cell Phone and Mini Tablet

A bunch of color/size options available.Amazon

Love the idea of a grip on the back of your phone, but don’t love having to remove part or all of it to use a wireless charger? Try a LoveHandle Universal Grip. It sticks on to the back of any smartphone, allows for wireless charging, and the elastic band makes it pretty tough to drop your phone while using it. Multiple colors, patterns, and even sizes (there’s one for tablets) mean you’ll find a great design for your coworker or yourself. $10.

Squirrel Tea Infuser

Squirrel Tea Infuser
Tea is for tailAmazon

Maybe you have a colleague who loves squirrels (or tea?) or maybe this thing is just really cute. In any event, this squirrel’s tail flips around to make a fine cuppa. $8.

Field Notes 3-pack

Field Notes Notebook
Take notes—even if you're not in the field.Amazon

Field Notes are great notebooks. They’re lightweight, super durable, small enough to fit in your pocket, and have a variety of tools within them, including a ruler printed inside the cover. PopSci commerce editor Billy Cadden pointed out earlier this year that Field Notes can come with ruled, gridded, or plain paper, but they also now come in a special-made (read: “reversed”) version for those who are left-handed. $10.

Avocado socks

Gray socks with avocadoes
Or, sock-vocado, if you will.Amazon

Remember: millennials love avocados. In fact, if you believe pundits, we love putting them on toast with salt, pepper, lemon juice, and olive oil so much, we can't afford to buy a house. Millennials also love cool socks. These socks have avocados on them and they are very good. Available in men's and women's sizes for $10.

Eyeball Beach Ball

Beach ball with an eyeball design
I see what you did there.Amazon

Just imagine: you’re off to a day at the beach with your coworkers. You tell them all you’ll bring a beach ball. Pretty soon you’ll see them all laugh or be horrified by this—and so will the ball. $8.

The Sloth King

All hail the Sloth King!Etsy

Of the 29 items on this list, this is easily my favorite one. Look how freaking regal his majesty the sloth king is—the crown, the armor, the scepter. That’s a creature I would be gladly follow (very slowly). $10.

$15 and Under

Voice Changer

Purple Voice Changer
Can you here me now?Amazon

What’s more fun than a voice changer? Pass it around the office and let everyone have a go to see how different than can sound. $17.

Foot Hammock

Put your feet up.Amazon

PopSci assistant editor Sara Chodosh swears by this thing. She has one under her desk and tells me “it’s just so nice” to be able to put her feet up when she gets uncomfortable. $13.

ColorDrip Unisex Adult's Blue Sky White Clouds Folding Travel Umbrella

Black umbrella with sky printed on the inside
Stay dry while singing in the rain.Amazon

The weather may be miserable, but there are always blue skies overhead with this umbrella. $12.

Stress Reduction Kit

Stress Reduction Kit

Stress reduction kit

Stress Reduction KitAmazon

This is just a great gift for someone you work with, especially one who handles any administrative duties. $13.


Codenames board game
Bring your spies home.Amazon

I love Codenames. I’ve played it a handful of times, and each occasion has been so much fun. Wil Wheaton and the good folks at TableTop did an excellent review of it, wherein they explain the rules and play the game. 11/10, highly recommend. (PS: Wil, if you’re looking for new TableTop guests, I will gladly fly out to California to be on an episode.) $11.

Astronaut socks

Yellow-toed and heeled socks with astronauts on the moon
You may not step on the moon, but you can step on a print of an astronaut of the moon.Amazon

As I mentioned earlier, socks are great. So is space. Show off your love for NASA with these cool astronaut socks. $12.

Blah Button

Yellow and blue blah button
For the person in your life who doesn't know when to stop talking.Amazon

Remember how much fun (and definitely not annoying) the Staples “That Was Easy” button was? This is just like that, but it can say more things than “That Was Easy.” $11.

Sigmund Freud mug

Sigmund Freud mug
Have a Freudian sip.Amazon

The Unemployed Philosophers Guild makes excellent mugs, and I’ve bought many as gifts for friends and family. Take a look through their store—you’ll find one your coworker will love. $16.

Christmas tree scented candle

Christmas Tree Scented Candle
It's beginning to smell a lot like Christmas.Amazon

Why can it only smell like pine between Thanksgiving and New Year’s? This candle will let your coworker’s home smell like the holidays year round, plus its wick crackles. $15.

Wine sippy cups

Wine Sippy Cups
Put a lid on it.Amazon

One of the best parts about seeing a Broadway show: drinking wine like you’re a toddler. These cups have lids, so you have take them on the go. And they’re shaped like wine glasses on the inside, so they’re classy. $16.

Gone with the Gin

Yellow book with red text
Frankly, my dear, I don't give a daiquiri.Amazon

I appreciate a good pun and, as a video producer, a good movie reference (please send puns to Gone with the Gin lists 50 cocktail recipes, each paired to the themes of a movie. $12.


Doo good by your coworker.Amazon

Yes, this is a genuinely hilarious concept that makes for great discussion during your team holiday party. But also: it’s a quality product. Your coworkers will all laugh when someone opens their white elephant gift and see the word “poo.” But at the end of the night, your coworker will come to understand the true powers of this smell-hiding spray. Then who’s the joke on? $12.

Pac-Man Mini Arcade Game

Mini-arcade Pacman
Blinky, Inky, Pinky, and Clyde in the palm of your hands.Amazon

Pac-Man in the palm of your hand. $17.

$20 and Under

Stuffed Bigfoot

Stuffed Bigfoot
The real Bigfoot may not exist, but this one does.Amazon

Look at this Sasquatch. Really look at it. It’s so gosh darn cute. Anyone would be happy to open up a package to find this little friend. $20.

Edgar Allen Poe-ka Dot Tote Bag

Gray tote bag with Poe's face
Missing something to carry your items? Never more.Amazon

I meant it when I said I like puns. Edgar Allen Poe-ka dots. Bravo. $20.

Matador Mini Pocket Blanket

Hand holding folding blanket
A blanket that can fit in your pocket.Amazon

Folded up, this water-resistant blanket is small enough to hang from a belt loop. But once opened, it’s nearly 4′ x 2′. It’s a great gift for the outdoorsy type. $20.

Mason jar baked goods

Brownie mix in a mason jar
All the ingredients, pre-measured and ready to bake.Amazon

Who doesn’t love brownies? The Mason Jar Cookie Company will send you ingredients all measured out, and your coworker gets to keep the mason jar. The brownies come in peppermint and peanut butter varieties. $16.

Exploding Kittens

Red Exploding Kittens box
The best part of the game? Shouting "NOPE!" at friends.Amazon

Exploding Kittens is a great card game that only takes a few minutes to learn. In fact, there’s an official tutorial video narrated by Lucky Yates. Multiple PopSci staffers are fans as well. $20.

Asteroids Mini-Arcade Game

Asteroids Mini Arcade Game
An Atari classic, available to play any time.Amazon

Play this classic Atari game wherever you go (or just under your desk, out of sight of your boss). $20.

Love Letters: Letters to Santa (Clam Shell Edition)

Love Letters: Letters to Santa (Clam Shell Edition)

Classic party game with a holiday twist.Amazon

Love Letters is a pretty classic party card game. In it, each card has an action, and the goal is to eliminate all other players. This version swaps in characters from the original game for a Christmas-themed crew. The game can be played with 2-4 players. $20.

Beard Beanie

Man wearing beard beanie
Keep your head and face warm.Amazon

Help your coworkers keep their heads (and faces) warm this winter. $20.

Interested in talking about deals and gadgets? Request to join our exclusive Facebook group. With all our product stories, the goal is simple: more information about the stuff you’re thinking about buying. We may sometimes get a cut from a purchase, but if something shows up on one of our pages, it’s because we like it. Period.