Last Minute Gifts Under $25

It’s December 22nd and you just realized you still have a few gifts to buy.  Don’t panic, it happens to the best of us!  According to the National Retail Federation’s 2010 Holiday Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey, December 24th will be the second busiest shopping day between December 18th and the 25th.  Millions of people will be pushing their way through the malls and stores this week with the same stressed out look on their faces as you have right now!  If you want to skip the crowds, there is still a little bit of time to buy gifts online-but expect to pay a premium price for getting it delivered by the 25th.  Whichever way you plan to shop for your last minute gifts, don’t worry your pretty little head; I’ve got some great, easy ideas all under $25! 1.  NEW-RELEASE DVD’s are a great last minute gift you can buy almost anywhere!  DVD’s are sold at a variety of different retailers such as Best Buy, Target and Amazon.com as well as CVS, Walgreens, FYE, and even your local grocery store!  Buy one of these fantastic new releases: Inception, The Town, Despicable Me, Eat Pray Love or The Twilight Saga: Eclipse (well, maybe that’s one I really want!) Prices vary, $14.99-$24.99 2. BATH & BODY GIFT SETS are an easy, simple gift to pick up for anyone in your life.  We all know 99% of women love yummy smelling lotions and bath washes, but did you know most men like these kinds of gifts too?  Pick up the 4 Elements of the Perfect Shave by The Art of Shaving at The Art of Shaving, Macy’s or Sephora.  For the ladies, try one of these amazing sets: Philosophy Cheers Trio Set of Shampoo, Bubble Bath and Shower Gel $25 or Fresh Sugar Delight Gift Set $18.50 available in store or online at Sephora.

3. CANDLE SETS can be a very quick, pain free shopping experience for the last minute shopper.  They are useful for the receiver and simple to pick out for giver!  I’ve found the best places to shop for candle sets priced $25 or less are Target, Pier 1, West Elm or Z Gallerie.  They always offer a fabulous selection of modern, simple and elegant candles, holders and complete sets  including this Coffee Break Set from Target

4. PICTURE FRAMES come in all sorts of shapes and sizes and are the perfect gift for so many people in your life.  Pick up this Steel Box Floating Frame at West Elm.  Try personalizing it and include a picture that is meaningful to the person you are giving it to.

5. BOARD GAMES are a hoot!  This is the ultimate fun gift for any family member, friend or colleague!  My personal favorites are Apples to Apples $18, Taboo $23  and Say Anything $24.99 all available at Target.

6. iTUNES GIFT CARDS are most likely to be on everyone’s wish list!  Why wouldn’t you want $25 worth of free movies, tv shows, music and apps as a gift?  Simple, easy, done!  Pick up an iTunes gift card at almost any retailer, anywhere!  Seriously-they sell them at gas stations, grocery stores, pharmacies, not to mention Target, Walmart, Apple, etc.  You get the idea!

7. BAG OF COFFEE BEANS AND A COOL MUG from Starbucks or The Coffee Beanery is a deliciously simple last minute gift for the coffee lover in your life.  Prices vary, but you can pick up a bag of whole beans between $9.95-$16.  Then find a cool mug to include in the gift like the Nesting 3-cup set from Starbucks for $14.95.  If they don’t love coffee, pick up a selection of yummy loose teas from Teavana like this Ayurvedic Chai White tea, 2oz for $10!

8. iPOD NANO SLAP WATCH by Griffin is just a cool, fun gift for the tech-geek in your life.  This watch slaps on your wrist (think back to the slap bracelets from the late 80’s-early 90’s) and comes in a huge array of colors.  Just make sure the person you buy this for has a 6th generation Ipod Nano.  Priced at $23.99

9. CHOCOLATE makes everyone smile!  Give the gift of sweetness with a sinfully delicious box of Godiva chocolates like the traditional 19 piece Gold Ballotin for $25 or Ghiardelli's Red Holiday Gift Tower $19.95

10. AMERICAN EXPRESS GIFT CARD, Mastercard or Visa giftcards are great gifts for someone you are not quite sure what to get, even after all of the ideas you’ve reviewed.  This is the ultimate, last minute shopping item.  It says to the person "Hey, I wanted to get you something but I have no clue what you like.  So here’s $25 bucks-go nuts!"  Although the gift is a bit impersonal, at least it allows the receiver to purchase anything they like!   Pick one up at CVS, Walgreens, your local grocery store, Target, Walmart, Gas Stations, etc.