10 Gift Ideas for the Minimalist

Updated on August 19, 2017

As someone who identifies as a minimalist, holidays, birthdays, or basically any gift giving moment are times where the fewer gifts received means things are all the better for me. In fact, I don’t mind if I get few to no gifts for my birthday, or if I just get sometime small, such as a good meal for the holidays. Of course, I haven’t always been this way. In fact, during my materialistic times, I was always excited when the holidays, such as Christmas or even my birthday, came. I loved the idea of getting something I really wanted for free or just something in general. And I always wanted something, so I could never have enough gifts.

But now, things have changed. Now I don’t prefer gifts and try to discourage them when possible. However, I always feel bad when someone genuinely gives me something. If I find I have no use for it, I always struggle to give it away. I mean, I believe gifts come from the heart. Gift giving is a way of one showing appreciation and love for another.

So instead of me rambling about not wanting gifts or so much of them as a minimalist, I want to suggest gifts that I think would be perfect to give one who is a minimalist, or even one who seems to have everything they need. With these suggestions, there is a big chance your gift will be appreciated and useful, and not something that will be given away eventually or lost in one’s pile of don’t really need.



Yes, books are tangible things, and in theory a minimalist would not want to stockpile them. But really, books are things that are easy to pass along after their use. And that’s what I do with many of the books I read: I own them for a while. After I’m done reading them, I usually will donate them or give them to family or friends that I know would like them. And for those who really don’t want to own anything physical, such as they don’t have the space to house them, you can always give them a digital book—they don’t even need to own an e-reader device. As long as the one you are giving the book to owns a computer, they can read the book through their computer. Lastly, I believe that there is a book out there for everyone, so you can’t go wrong giving a book as a gift. Even for those who don’t like to read, there are audio books that you can give. So you can’t lose with this gift!



I haven’t met a person who doesn’t like music, so this is another gift that is a no fail. Now that music is available digitally, this is one of the best non-tangible gifts out there. Even if you decide to create a cd of your favorite tunes to give as a gift, one can always burn the songs digitally to a music playing device or their computer. They don’t even have to keep the disk.



Everybody likes food and everybody needs food, so why not give it as a gift. You can even be creative with this gift, putting together your own homemade creations or even creating recipe jars, such as cookie or soup in a jar, for the receiver to make on their own. I remember when I was a child, my mother would bake an assortment of cookies during Christmas to give to coworkers and friends and it was always a hit. In fact, they loved them so much that they started asking for them every year. So I believe food, whether homemade or store bought, can be the perfect gift that not only can be personalized, but appreciated by those who may not purchase certain food on their own, such as gourmet chocolates.



If you know someone who loves skincare, maybe even one who likes to try out new and different things, this can be a perfect gift. And this is yet another gift that can be personalized by creating a basket containing a variety of fun large and small items. I will even include candles with this, since they sometimes are paired together. Beyond tangible items, you can even purchase a day at the spa or salon as a gift.



This is one gift that can vary to the very simple and nice, to the grand and luxurious. A trip to a national park or local theatre show can not only be convenient for one who doesn’t prefer to house items, even if temporary, but also meaningful for one who has wanted to go on a certain trip or attend a specific event for a while. Maybe there’s an upcoming concert they wanted to go to but couldn’t afford, or they always dreamed of going on an African safari. Whatever the case, trips and events can often be the best gifts to give a minimalist



Similar to books and music, movies too are another gift that doesn’t necessarily require giving a tangible item. And even if you decide to buy a dvd movie for one, I believe it’s another item that can easily be passed along or donated for others to enjoy. But going back to my earlier point, these days a lot of movies can easily be streamed or watched on the computer. You can even purchase a movie rental service for one to choose their favorite movies to watch whenever they want.


Gift Cards

Gift cards have always been the classic gift to give one who not only is a minimalist, but is difficult to buy for (i.e. has all that the want or need). Ideal gift cards for a minimalist will focus on non-tangible items, but of course if you know one who is in need of or is saving up for something in particular, a gift card can be perfect to help support that. Some gift card suggestions are: favorite restaurants, movie theaters, gym memberships, and of course, the classic debit gift card.



This is a cost effective and classic intangible gift to give. This is especially valuable if the one who you are giving the gift to needs help with something and if you have a skill, talent, interest, or experience in specific areas to offer. You can offer your help for free and even be creative with the gift, creating fun “I owe you” tags, cards, whatever comes to mind. Examples are babysitting, dog walking, car repair, house repair, general errands, sewing, etc.



Now of course in this category, plants can be views as a tangible item, which may not be ideal for some minimalists. But especially in the case of flowers, which usually don’t last long (especially floral arrangements), this can be a gift that one can enjoy for a while.



Simply the intention or promise to make time for someone can be a great gift and, quite possibly, the most important gift one gets. Especially if your life is always busy and on the go, maybe promises to schedule time to chat with a friend or invite one over for dinner can be meaningful, and not just for the one who you are giving this gift to, but also for you. Especially if you are on your own journey to living simply, this can be a gift to help you get there.

Question: Helpful Gift Ideas

Are these suggestions helpful in figuring out a gift for a minimalist or one who seems to have everything?

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© 2017 Crystal


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