The 52 Best Secret Santa Gifts Under $50
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Being an awesome gift giver is great. Being an awesome gift giver without spending an arm and a leg is better. Way better. If you’re taking part in a secret Santa gift exchange this year that has a budget of $50 or less, we know it can be a bit tricky to find something that won’t be tossed in the junk drawer, which is why we scoured the web to find budget-friendly items suitable for every person you could have drawn. (Like home office decor for a coworker, cozy items to get through winter for a family member or funny games for a friend.)
Keep scrolling for the best secret Santa gifts under $50 that anyone would be happy to open this holiday season.
How Do Secret Santa Gifts Work?
Secret Santa is an age-old tradition that generally ensures everyone is taken care of during the holiday season. It’s a great option for larger friend groups or families, and it tends to relieve the pressure of finding the perfect present for every single person. Instead, everyone picks a name, sets a budget and focuses on getting their giftee something they’ll truly enjoy.
Plus, when it’s time to exchange gifts, half the fun is guessing who your Secret Santa was.
What Is a Good Secret Santa Gift?
A good secret Santa will largely depend on who your giftee is, but some of the best ones are useful and feel like you’re treating them to something they wouldn’t get themselves. Start by zeroing in on their hobbies and interests; scan their social feeds for any Facebook Groups they’re part of or pages they’ve liked.
Then ask: What are the odds they’ll actually use or enjoy this? That’s your sweet spot. (And no worries if you feel clueless, that’s where the ideas below come in!)
The Best Secret Santa Gifts of 2022
For the Cousin Who Just Moved into a New Place
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Feels like the softest hug ever
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: The material sheds
There are tons of housewarming gifts you can buy a person for under $25, but we think anyone would be delighted to receive this faux fur blanket. It's soft, fluffy and reversible, so your cousin will love showing it off as much as they love snuggling up in it.
For the Candle Lover
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Smells like a warm and inviting spa
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Wax burns unevenly
You know that friend or co-worker that's always stocking up on candles? This gift is perfect for them, especially if they haven't had the pleasure of trying Voluspa. The set comes with three vanilla-scented tin candles that they'll be happy to light over and over again.
For the Friend with All the Best Playlists
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Great value for the price
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Sounds a bit tinny
Bring on the dance parties. This speaker is pocket-sized, charges in an hour and connects wirelessly via Bluetooth.
For the Budding Barista
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Flavors really shine through, without any "chemical-y" tastes you get from some syrups
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: It’s a bit pricey
Upgrade their at-home bar game with this set of USDA-certified organic simple syrups. You'll soon find them snubbing Starbucks in favor of their homemade Madagascar Vanilla latte, or playing bartender, serving up soon-to-be-legendary Salted Caramel Old Fashioneds. Trust.
For the Friend Who Likes All Things Spicy
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Airtight fermentation jar and lid can be reused
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Need to purchase your own ingredients
If their meal isn’t complete without a dash of hot sauce, this make-your-own hot sauce kit lets them personalize their favorite condiment.
For the Person Who Loves to Lounge
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Super cozy and warm
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: She’ll want to wear them all the time
A cheery addition to any WFH fit.
For the Mom That Loves Cozy Clothes
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: They’re unbelievably soft
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: They can be a little slippery
Part of becoming an adult is realizing socks—especially ones as warm and cozy as these—actually make a great gift.
For the Dad Who Never Misses a New York Times Crossword
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Filled with tons of clever crossword puzzles
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: It’s so massive it can be overwhelming
He can keep track of his progress by filling out this crossword puzzle book, which consists of more than 300 puzzles (!) and includes perforated pages for record keeping.
For the Jewelry Collector
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Has compartments for rings, bracelets and necklaces
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: It’s best for traveling, and may be too small for daily use
If she needs a place to keep her ever expanding jewelry collection safe and organized, this compact (and cute) box helps store all of her baubles.
For the Fragrance Fanatic
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Fragrances are long-lasting
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Bottles are a little smaller than expected
A sampling of YSL’s signature aromas, with scent notes like lavender, orange blossom and musk accord.
For the Skincare Lover
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Ultra moisturizing without a greasy residue
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Fragrance-free (although some users like that)
Packed with peptides and multivitamins, this luscious hand cream is designed to moisturize and protect the skin from environmental stressors.
For the Astrology Expert
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Pretty ceramic exterior
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: It’s quite fragile, so it could break during shipping
She knows which signs are compatible and when Mercury is retrograde, so she’ll adore this tiny trinket box, embellished with her star sign on the lid and its dominant traits displayed inside.
For the Environmentally Conscious
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: The included pouch makes it super easy to take them on the go
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Must be hand-washed
This set of glass straws is equal parts eco-friendly and elegant, letting him sip on his morning coffee and save the turtles in style.
For the Fitness Buff
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Comfortable material that doesn’t slip
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Less resistance because of the woven fabric
Great for yoga, pilates and whatever at-home workouts your gym-loving bestie is breaking a sweat these days, this pack of three bands in different resistance levels make a killer addition to her regimen.
For the Dorm-Dwelling College Student
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: You can create your own flavors based on whatever you’re craving
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: The ice cream can be difficult to get out
Sized just right for tiny dorm rooms, this mini ice cream maker makes for the perfect post-study treat.
For the Eco-Friendly Snacker
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Lightweight and easy to clean material
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: The lid is hard to pop back on
A BPA-free, silicone bowl that’s sturdy enough to transport everything from leftovers to salads.
For the Noon-Time Napper
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Super relaxing scent
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Fragrance fades away kind of quickly
Give the gift of better zzz’s with an aromatic, calming combo of chamomile and lavender oils, two ingredients that are known to be natural sleep aids.
For the Friend in Need of a #SelfCareSaturday
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Lathers and exfoliates well, with a rich texture and great consistency
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Scent can be a little powerful for some
Upgrade their shower routine while sticking to a budget. This Frosted Cranberry scent is sweet but not cloying, and it does a great job of sloughing off dead skin cells while moisturizing.
For Crafty Types
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: The full-bodied scent is strong without overpowering the room
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Finding a candle vessel, if you don't have one handy (though Siblings sells those too)
Your java-loving friend will love this candle kit, which serves as a creative outlet and makes their home smell like freshly ground coffee beans with a hint of chocolate. All they'll need is their own heat-safe vessel to add the wick and wax to.
For the Sister in Need of a Spa Day
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: A relaxing and creative way to provide some self-care time
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: A bit hard to mix
A set of 15 face, eye and body masks that aid in soothing, hydrating and brightening skin.
For the One Who Loves the Countdown to Christmas
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Includes 12 80-piece puzzles
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Might be hard to keep up with the daily puzzles
Every time they pop open a new day, the holiday excitement grows.
For the Baker
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: The perfect addition to any baker’s kitchen
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Some people didn’t love the tastes of the different salts
An assortment of flavors that will thrill their taste buds, from vanilla cardamom and cookie batter to lavender and lemon ginger.
For Your Little Nephew
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Can play several games with it, so kids are entertained for hours
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: The box is part of the play set, so be careful not to rip it open
If the kiddo in your life loves playing with cars, this will take their obsession to a whole new level (and get all the adults involved too). The raceway doubles as a set of games, ranging from corn hole to basketball, with a car replacing the ball. You'll be surprised how much use they'll get out of it.
For the White Claw Drinker
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Keeps cold drinks super chilled
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Too big for some popular drinks
Have you ever tried to use a regular koozie on a slim can? Yeah, it doesn’t work too well. But this slim can insulator from YETI fits perfectly, to keep that hard seltzer ice cold until the last drop.
For the Coworker Who Just Bought a Desk
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Cute ceramic hues
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: A bit too small for some succulents, so your giftee may have a hard time repotting their plants
So damn cute. (And tiny enough to keep on an office desk.)
For the Person Who Wants a Spa Experience At Home
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Works incredibly well
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Fingers bend easily
Technically for headache relief, but we’ve never said no to a midday head scratch.
For the Budding Fashion Influencer
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: A pretty addition to classic outfits
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Some phone sizes may not fit inside
Elegant and fits all of your evening essentials. What more could they want?
For the Plant Lover
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Ideal for watering small house plants
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Much smaller than a lot of buyers anticipated
The long, thin nozzle makes it easy to water right at the base of the plant (and not the floor alongside the pot).
For the Sugar Fiend
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Taste incredible and arrive super fresh
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: She’ll be dying for more
Sure, $27 for cookies seems a little steep, but once you’ve tried Milk Bar’s Compost Cookies, you’ll understand why it’s worth every penny.
For the Aspiring Fashionista
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: So many accessories for kids to play with; feels like you're getting a solid value for the price
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: While rare, some reviewers reported damaged dolls upon delivery (though it's worth noting Amazon offers free returns)
Rainbow High is one of the hottest toys of 2022, and this latest set doesn't disappoint. The doll comes with a full outfit change and glam set, giving kids plenty of options to style and accessorize her.
For the Boss Who Clocks in Overtime
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Looks cute
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Metal frames are a bit flimsy
She will appreciate these blue light-blocking glasses on long days behind a screen.
For the Co-Worker Who’s Always Eating Breakfast in the Afternoon
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Makes scrumptious waffles
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Some buyers say it took between 7 and 8 minutes to make one waffle
The best reason not to skip breakfast. Plus, Dash offers all kinds of waffle designs, so you can choose the maker that best fits your giftee’s interests.
For the Uncle Who’s Always Renovating
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: A nifty tool to have on-the-go
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: The knife doesn’t work that well
Handy types will love this smartly designed multi-tool with 18 functions—from a screwdriver tip to a bottle opener. Plus, it’s the size of a credit card so it can easily be stowed in their wallet.
For the Aunt Who Just Bought Her First Monstera
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Filled with helpful photos for beginner plant parents
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: More information on each plant would be nice
This book contains info on the 60 most popular houseplants and how to help each of them thrive. Plus, just think how cute it’ll look displayed on a coffee table.
For the Fearless Friend
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Cute and inspirational
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Sized for people with smaller wrists
She's got your back no matter what and this playful beaded bracelet will remind her of your friendship each time she wears it.
For the Cousin Who’s Back in the Office
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: It’s easy to collapse
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Silicone material makes it a little squishy, so it takes some getting used to
This collapsible cup transports their morning coffee and folds down to practically nothing for the commute home.
For the Person Who Enjoys a Healthy Dose of Competition
- Biggest Pro: Chic appearance
- Biggest Con: You may get sucked into playing all day
If your brother is the most competitive person you know, he'll get a kick out of playing this classic board game on Christmas morning. Plus, the whole thing stores in a fabric box that looks great on a bookshelf. Just sayin’.
For the Most Generous Person You Know
- Biggest Pro: Provides 10 meals to kids in need
- Biggest Con: She’ll want a full set
This chic, minimalist mug’s smooth porcelain finish feels great in your hands, and at 13.8 ounces, it can still hold a hearty cup of joe (or cocoa) without being so massive it overtakes your friend’s precious cabinet space. Our fave feature, hands down, is that for every purchase, Feed donates ten school meals.
For the Minimalist
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Elegant and sweet
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: May not keep its shine long term
The thin gold band, small jewel and initial make for a simple, but elegant, accessory.
For the Busy Bee in Need of zzz’s
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Can help users sleep better each night
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Each patch can only be used once
This set of four wellness patches, which contain a sleepy time blend of CBD and melatonin, can help your giftee get some much-needed rest this holiday season.
For the Sister Who Adores Getting Ready
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: The satin-lined microfiber can help hair dry more evenly
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Not the best option for some hair textures
Unlike regular bath towels, the satin and microfiber blend of this quick dry hair towel can help reduce frizz and hair breakage.
For the At-Home Movie Watcher
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Contains both sweet and savory seasonings
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Bottles are just 1.5 ounces each
If they spend their weekends streaming the newest movies at home, this set of six popcorn seasonings—which features fun flavors like s’mores, truffle parmesan and bleu cheese buffalo—is the perfect addition.
For the Reflective Friend
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Helps you get to know people even better
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: A few questions can be emotionally triggering for some
If you’ve yet to introduce the viral card game We’re Not Really Strangers to your friends, this is the perfect opportunity. There are three levels that get progressively more personal as you move up, this game is great for digging in deep to know about your crew’s likes, dislikes and more.
For the Person Who Always Falls Asleep with Makeup On
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Can remove waterproof makeup
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: You have to wash the dirty cloths to clean them
Everyone knows someone who isn’t great at taking their makeup off every night, so make their skincare routine that much easier with this 10-day cloth set of the Original Makeup Eraser. They can last for up to 1,000 washes and pledge to remove all makeup, including waterproof mascaras and HD foundations.
For the Lip Balm Obsessed
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Super hydrating, thick formula
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: You don’t receive a ton of product in the containers
Laneige’s iconic lip masks are known to not only provide an über-moisturizing feel to the lips, but they smell (and taste!) incredible, too. Plus, with this pack of five, your secret Santa giftee won’t need new Chapsticks for a while.
For the Mom Who Always Cooks with Wine in Her Hand
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Effectively keeps drinks cold all night
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Glass insert can be broken
If your mama appreciates a great glass of wine, she certainly needs this stemless glass that’s complete with an insulated interior and an insert to keep her drink chilled for hours.
For the Functional Fashionista
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: A spacious alternative to a tote bag
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: There aren’t any pockets
Maybe your bestie isn’t too into purses or clutches, but constantly needs a good bag to hold their necessities. Gift them this Mini Tote Bag from Urban Outfitters that’s made from a durable cotton canvas material and is available in five hues.
For the Cheeseboard Enthusiast
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Doesn’t have a coating or varnish, so it won’t peel with continuous use
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Some buyers report manufacturing issues
If she can’t stop talking about the latest butter board trend on TikTok (or her pride and joy are equally delicious and pretty cheeseboards), she definitely needs this artisan-style wooden cutting board.
For the Baker with an Aesthetically Pleasing Kitchen
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: The marble keeps the pin cool and heavy, making it a good option for rolling dough
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: The marble can crack
This gorgeous white marble rolling pin is just as functional as it is pretty. Don’t be surprised if they find more reasons to bake after receiving this chic gadget.
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Great for locking in loose waves so they last all day
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Wish both came in 8.3-ounce size (dry shampoo is 5.4 ounces)
Worth $54 if purchased separately, this duo is everything your work wife needs to have Christine Quinn-caliber waves (well, these and maybe the Beachwaver itself). Our editors were impressed with how well the dry shampoo cleans up greasy roots and adds volume, while the hairspray offers a flexible—not crunchy!—hold, so your style lasts all day.
For the Pokémaniac
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: Super soft and snuggly
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Can rip easily
OK, so Pikachu Squishmallows sold out almost instantly. Never fear—this microbead plush is just as cuddly, and it can double as a pillow if they're flying home after the holidays.
For the Bestie Who’s Always Making Soup
- Biggest Pro from Reviewers: microwave-, oven- and dishwasher-safe
- Biggest Con from Reviewers: Cocotte only holds one serving of soup
If they affectionately refer to winter as soup season, they’ll definitely appreciate this too-cute mini round cocotte from Le Creuset, effectively upping their lunch-and-dinner-game.