8 Last Minute Gift Ideas for the Hard to Shop For
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Haven’t finished your holiday shopping yet? You’re not alone. If you’re still stumped on gift ideas for those hard to shop for people on your list, we rounded up unique products to help get your shopping list finished.
For the music enthusiast
For the music enthusiast who loves original recordings, the Yamaha MusicCast VINYL 500 Turntable lets them enjoy old school sound captured on the original vinyl. This glossy and elegant wireless turntable features an aluminum platter, felt mat, and a straight tonearm with an Audio-Technica moving magnet.
A clever mix of analog and digital, you can easily stream your records using Bluetooth and WiFi or use an Ethernet port to stay wired to a router. A built-in phono pre-amp lets you integrate it into an conventional stereo system. And if you want the convenience of voice control, te VINYL 500 works with Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri via AirPlay 2.
Price: $699.95, on sale fo $499.95 on Yamaha, check price on Amazon
For the person who always forgets their glasses
For the person who always misplaces or forgets their reading glasses and then can’t read the menu in a dimly-lit restaurant, give the gift of clear vision when they need it. ThinOPTICS readers are small, bendable readers that perch on the bridge of your nose. They’re flexible and so lightweight you carry them around in a small case attached to your phone so you always have them with you. The readers come in four different strengths and the cases come in fun, colorful designs. Since you most likely take your phones everywhere, you’ll always have your readers with you.
ThinOPTICS also introduced a line of full frame glasses and sunglasses, which come in different styles, strengths and colors, and have an ultra-slim case.
Price: starting at $20 on ThinOptics, check price on Amazon
For the traveler
Know someone who needs white noise in order to sleep? The ‘LectroFan micro2 is a tiny Bluetooth speaker that doubles as a sleep sound machine. It has eleven built-in sleep sounds, including white noise, fan, and ocean sounds.
It’s small enough to throw in a suitcase for travel so you can drown out any street noise in a hotel room, or just play music from your connected mobile device.
The micro2 has play and play/pause controls on the front of the speaker and promises 20 hours of battery life on a single charge. During the day, you can pair it to your mobile device to listen to music or take phone calls.
Price: $34.95 on SoundofSleep, check price on Amazon
For the wine aficionado
If your significant other likes red wine and you prefer white, or if you’re saving that special bottle of wine for when you can drink the whole thing, you’ll want to check out Coravin Model Eleven. It’s a device that lets you pour wine by the glass, so you don’t have to open that nice bottle of wine, only to have it go bad if you can’t finish it.
Place the device over a bottle of wine which plunges a needle into the cork. Then you pour out as much as you like. The capsules in the device contain argon gas which is pushed into the bottle as you pour, so no oxygen gets into the bottle. When you pull out the needle, the cork reseals itself.
If that isn’t clever enough, it also connects to a smartphone app via Bluetooth and offers pairing suggestions, while keeping track of your wine collection. While the Coravin Eleven is as pricey as some rare bottles of wine, the company makes less expensive models with the same wine preservation technology but fewer extra features starting at $199 (check price on Amazon).
Price: $999.95, on sale for $559.96 on Coravin (models from Amazon ship in time for Christmas)
For the screen queen (or king)
We all know someone who spends much of the day looking at a computer screen at work or at school, then using a smartphone or tablet at home. You probably heard (more than a few times) that too much of the blue light emitted from those digital devices is bad for your eyes. Experts say in addition to eye strain, it causes dry eyes, headaches, blurry vision and can lead to other issues down the road. I tested the top blue light glasses and found that GUNNAR Optiks makes the best. Their computer glasses have special technology in the lens that blocks that blue light, making your eyes not have to work so hard. These are great for students, friends who work on a computer all day and video gamers. If they wear reading glasses, GUNNAR has Blue Light Reading Glasses in magnifying powers ranging from +1.0 to +3.0 and come in amber and liquet (lighter) lens tints.
Price: $49 to $99 on Gunnar, check price on Amazon (ships in time for Christmas from Amazon)
For the coffee lover
Any coffee lover on your list will be thrilled to receive this top-of-the-line DeLonghi Magnifica Automatic Espresso/Cappuccino Maker crafted by one of Italy’s top brands. And, because it uses fresh beans to make individual cups of coffee, there are no pods or cups to buy or discard.
This beautiful machine not only sits pretty on any countertop, but it also makes great coffee. Once you choose the type and strength of coffee you want, the built-in burr grinder grinds the beans and then immediately brews your espresso. There is also a built-in milk frothing wand for making cappuccinos.
Price: $737.95, on sals for $489.95 on DeLonghi, check price on Amazon (ships in time for Christmas from Amazon)
For the multitasker
Logitech’s MX Master 3 wireless mouse is for people to take their work seriously. The MX Master 3 has strategically placed front and back buttons, a comfortable thumb wheel, and actions that you can configure, depending on what specific program you’re working in. If you do a lot of work in Adobe Photoshop, there are customizations optimized to help you fly through that touch-up.
The coolest feature for multi-taskers is the ability to work on multiple computers at once through a feature called Flow. Slide the cursor to the edge of the screen, and it moves to the next computer screen. Even more impressive, you can cut/paste from one machine to the next. You can also transfer files and images between computers so no more copying to an external drive and transferring.
This mouse is a workhorse that pairs with up to three devices and has a battery that lasts over two months before needing to be recharged via the USB-C port.
$99 on Logitech, check price on Amazon
For the person who likes to pick out their own stuff
Gift cards may seem like an easy way out, but with Giftly, you can pick any merchant, including restaurants, stores and venues, and suggest how to spend the money. Giftly isn’t a gift card for a particular store. Instead, Giftly is more like giving cash in that gift recipients to choose how they'd like to get the money: as a gift card or as a credit to their debit card, credit card, bank account or PayPal account. That's flexibility an ordinary gift card just can't match.
Giftly gift cards are sent as by email or text message, or you can print a paper card. Customize your card by picking the color and theme of the card, and choosing item art (anything from buying a cupcake to spending a day at the beach) or upload your own. If you're suggesting shopping at a specific place, Giftly includes a map as well.
While recipients are still welcome to spend the gift however they'd like, Giftly makes gift cards feel personal again. They even give recipients an easy way to respond by telling you how they spent your gift.
[Image credit: gift giving via BigStockPhoto, Yamaha, Logitech, Adaptive Sound Technologies, Gunnar, Coravin, Thin Optics, DeLonghi,Giftly]