A Guys’ Guide To Gifting: Fathers & Brothers Edition

Gift Ideas For MenAs guys, we can have a hard time showing our emotions. Society encourages us to play the stoic, repressing everything, acting strong and tough no matter what we’re actually feeling. Any outpouring of emotion can be perceived as weakness. Taken in tandem with the reality that so much of our worth is placed on how much we make – and spend – on the people we care about, guys can have a serious problem giving gifts to the people that matter most in our lives.

Buying gifts for the ladies and lovers in our lives can be a little less challenging, as we’re allowed to be open, honest, and vulnerable, making it a little easier to show our sentimental sides.

Buying gifts for the men in our lives, however, can be a real challenge. We don’t talk about what we’re truly passionate about; what we really need and want. Because of this, oftentimes gifts for men are the absolute worst!

Thinking of buying your dad yet another tie, this holiday season? Going to get a gag gift, or some generic gift card for your best bud? Don’t do it! This year, let’s raise the game and show the men in our lives how much we appreciate them, by giving them what they really want!

Note to our female readers! Feel free to use these ideas when you are stumped on gifts to the guys in your life.

Some General Gifting Guidelines To Keep In Mind:

  • Not everybody needs a gift. We know a lot of people, living, loving, working, and playing in 2015. It’s just not practical to buy a gift for every person that we know. First thing, decide  if a gift is necessary, or if a simple card or another gesture might do.
  • Keep it even. Although it could take some of the surprise and mystique out of the giving, you might consider having an upfront conversation with people you’re exchanging gifts with, setting some basic guidelines and a price frame. This way, you’re not buying someone a plasma screen TV when all you’re getting is a bar of soap.
  • Gifts don’t have to be expensive. As mentioned above, guys have a tendency to hinge their self-worth on how much we make or spend. This is an outdated way of thinking, that causes a lot of harm. Although it sounds like a cliché, it truly is the thought that counts.
  • Handmade gifts are great! A lot of us don’t have a lot of money. That’s okay. Men are not as encouraged to engage in arts & crafts, but that doesn’t mean we can’t make awesome and beautiful things! Just keep in mind, however, what the recipient might be doing for you. A hand-knitted potholder compared to an all-expenses-paid trip to Jamaica might not seem as impressive.

Now that we’ve set some basic guidelines, let’s look at some gift ideas for the different types of men in our lives, to see some of this year’s most amazing gift ideas, to get your wheels turning!

Gift Ideas For Everybody:

Christmas 2015 Gift Guide

Looking for a fail safe, foolproof gift that would please just about any of the guys on your list? Look no further!

  • For the caffeinated: a pound of good coffee or espresso beans.
  • For the drinkers: For some reason, nothing screams “masculinity” like Scotch. Guys are obsessed with Scotch and Whiskey. I have it on good faith that a bottle of Glenfiddich Scotch Whiskey is the perfect gift for any man. *Note: Not everybody drinks. Do a bit of sleuthing before dropping coin on a bottle.
  • Subscriptions: Subscription clubs are the gift that keep on giving, quite literally! Every month, your dads and bros will receive some awesome product in the mail, giving good feelings again and again.
    • For the drinkers, a craft beer subscription is like receiving a parcel from heaven once a month.
    • The Dollar Shave Club delivers quality razors, once a month, for only a few dollars, removing the need to go to the store for razors and shaving cream (worth its weight in gold).
    • For the Gamers, IndieBox delivers a brand new game from an independent developer, monthly, giving the chance to sample the weird, wonderful world of indie gaming!
  • SOCKS! Established wisdom accepts that socks are crappy gifts. Not so! First of all, guys hate having to make a special trip to the store for one time, useful or not. Secondly, we’re on our feet a lot; working, running, exercising, which is hell on the footwear. Since our moms don’t buy us socks anymore, let’s help each other pick up the slack!

For The Techie:

Livescribe Moleskine Christmas 2015

Livescribe Notebook by Moleskine

Guys love gadgets. It’s almost like we can’t help it. After all, think of what we could do with all that stuff! We could start a new business, get in shape, impress everyone with our immaculate taste and, of course, look smart and sophisticated doing it!

  • Livescribe Notebook From Moleskine: For the person who loves their tablet, but spends entirely too much time staring at a screen, here’s an innovative product from Moleskine that makes the best of the analog and the digital. Simply write normally in the journal, and have it transferred automatically to their tablet! 24o pp., MSRP $29.95, please note that Livescribe Notebooks require a Livescribe Smartpen.
  • Fitbit Surge Fitness Tracker: For the fitness buff, and the data enthusiast, the Fitbit Surge is the ultimate in wearable technology, keeping track of all of their vital statistics throughout the day, or just when exercising, and seamlessly syncing with smartphones and computers. MSRP $249.95
  • HDTV: Because nothing says “I love you” like a big damn TV.

For The Music Lover:

Gramovox Christmas 2015

Guys love sound. We’re addicted to our hi-fis, and the ability to have crystal clarity in every situation. For the high-end audiophile to the most minimal mobile listener, we’ve got you covered!

  • Gramovox Floating Record: Vinyl has been making a comeback in a major way, increasing 260% in sales since 2009. Whether it’s nostalgia, the sound quality, the album art, or just wanting an excuse to listen to an album all the way through, vinyl makes listening to music a feast for the senses!For the music lover in your life who loves the vintage, while still being thoroughly modern, here’s the Floating Record, from Gramovox (pictured above). The Floating Record updates the classic stylus shape we all know into something unique and striking, making for a great conversation piece as well as sounding amazing! Gramovox Floating Record, MSRP $399.99
  • Vinyl Subscription: Now that you’ve got the turntable, get the audiophile in your life a monthly vinyl subscription to help them fall in love with music all over again! There are vinyl subscription plans for every style, taste, and price point, and each is excellent in its own way. Consider VNYL for a cheap and easy introduction to the addiction. Vinyl Me, Please is one of the most popular services, featuring exclusive pressings and special artwork at an affordable rate. For the music hound that has everything, Seattle’s Light In The Attic Records and Savannah, GA’s Graveface Records both rescue strange, weird, and wonderful albums from obscurity.For a complete experience, the Turntable Kitchen offers a vinyl/wine of the month & a vinyl/coffee combo.

For The Foodies:

BBQ Christmas 2015

Kikkerland BBQ Suitcase

People like to think that guys can’t cook, or when we do it has to be outside. Not true. Most couples split the cooking duties, at this point and, after all, everybody likes eat.

Here are some gifts for your foodie bros, to help them make delicious food and feel super manly while they’re doing it!

  • Hi Mountain Bacon Cure 16 Oz.: In 2015, nearly everybody is obsessed with bacon, if they’re a carnivore. Why not make your own? Hi Mountain Bacon Cure allows the epicurean in your life make bacon of whatever thickness their heart desires, curing and smoking up to 25 pounds of meat. Can be used to make sausage as well! MSRP $13.36 for 16 Oz.
  • Culinary Torch: While the kitchen has become a much more gender neutral place, in recent years, baking is often still thought to be women’s territory. Guys, why not get into desserts this year WITH OPEN FIRE! Nothing screams masculinity like a blowtorch (which also makes for delectable creme brulee). Culinary Torches @ Amazon
  • Kikkerland BBQ Suitcase: Okay, so we’ve taken steps towards feeling comfortable in the kitchen, but no matter how cliche it might be, guys love to keep outdoors.For the gourmand on the go, the Kikkerland BBQ Suitcase (pictured above) updates the classic BBQ shape to a sleek, minimal, modern chrome finish, perfect for camping and roadtrips! MSRP $85.00

For The Fathers:

Christmas Gift Guide 2015

Our Dads do a lot for us, which can often go overlooked or under-appreciated. While it might have made sense, in prior generations, to gift absentee fathers with throwaway gifts, our Dads are way more involved in our lives, often tackling half of the parenting duties.

This year, let’s show our Moms AND Dads how much we appreciate them, by getting them what they really want.

  • Christmas Story Leg Lamp: Feel like giving your Dad a “major award” this year? Consider this authentic replica (pictured above) from the Christmas Classic A Christmas Story. The perfect gift to thank the men foolhardy enough to allow us to play with weapons as children. Just don’t let Mom dust it! MSRP $49.95
  • Black Box Innovations Personal Pocket Safe 1 GB USB Flash Drive: Is your Dad somewhere between high-tech and technophobe? Uses a smartphone, but doesn’t quite trust “the internets”? Introducing the Personal Pocket Safe, letting your Dad keep all their sensitive information in one place. This is the big daddy of big Dad keychains! MSRP $94.93
  • World’s Best Dad Skywriting: How to express our feelings, to the men who taught us how to shave, how to drive, how to date (and how NOT to date, sometimes), how to drink (and how NOT to drink, sometimes); the men that have literally shaped and molded us into the men we have become.Forget the cheesy cards, the tacky t-shirts, and mugs, this year let him know how you feel in 1000-foot letters! Anything else would be inadequate, a pale reflection of how we really feel about our heroes.

That ought to be enough to get your whitewalls whirling. What are you getting the guys in your life this year? Let us know in the comments!

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Author My First Apartment
J Simpson

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J. Simpson is a prolific freelance writer, blogger, and musician, based out of Portland, Or. He is fascinated with every aspect of modern living, and how to make the best of it, frequently writing about business, technology, and spirituality, as well as every aspect of culture - music, art, literature, cinema, TV, and comics. For more from J., follow him on Twitter at @for3stpunk.

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