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Best Gift Ideas for 15- and 16-Year-Old Girls

My name is Jolene Belmain, and I love my family, including my fur babies, and cooking.


Fortunately, teenage girls have so many interests, hobbies, and ideas that finding gift ideas is generally pretty easy. But if your teenager is anything like mine, she is picky and has strong opinions. You might need a little help coming up with a gift idea that really hits the mark.

The teenage girl is old enough to be a young lady, but still young enough that she might scoot back into the safety of being a little girl when she needs to. She has wide-ranging interests and enjoys an amazing array of experiences.

My gift ideas fall into a few categories that most teenage girls find appealing:

  • Music
  • Electronics
  • Friendship
  • Exercise
  • Cosmetics
  • Keepsakes
  • Loungewear
  • Art

I've added some other ideas about experiences your teenager might enjoy, too, and gifts that involve spending time with you. Don't forget that even though teenagers like to be with their friends—or alone in their rooms with their computers and music—spending time with family is important to them, whether they know it or not. If you have a teenage niece, granddaughter, or daughter, consider giving them the gift of an experience and time together.

Music: A Teenage Girl's World

Most teenage girls are obsessed with music. They walk around wearing headphones or earbuds listening to their favorite artists. They make their friends compilation CDs and buy new music online.

  • An iTunes gift card is a great gift. Choose the price range that works for you, and the teenager in your life can pick out her own music. She'll love you for it!
  • MP3 players and Apple iPods are audio storage devices that teenagers use to download and store their favorite music. Teenage girls love these players, so if she does not already have one, consider one of these for her.
It can sometimes seem as though a teenager's friends are the most important people in their life. Consider a gift of a class, camp, or excursion she can have with her friends.

It can sometimes seem as though a teenager's friends are the most important people in their life. Consider a gift of a class, camp, or excursion she can have with her friends.

Technology and Electronics

An iPod Touch lets her download and take her favorite music with her no matter where she goes. The iPod is easy for teenagers to use: uploading music is simple and as long as they keep their device charged and have a decent pair of earbuds or headphones, they are set. My 16-year-old has her player with her all the time (except at school!). It keeps the peace in our family: She can listen to her music—and we can listen to ours.

With life becoming so much more about technical electronics, gifts of technology are wonderful and practical. Technology gifts range in price and needn't be overly expensive.

  • An iPad or Amazon Kindle Reader is a great gift for girls and will help them with homework as well as entertainment.
  • A storage device in the form of a USB flash drive is handy for backing up schoolwork. Flash drives come in a wide variety of shapes and colors so you can find one to match her personality.
  • If you are unsure about what types of electronics she already has, consider a gift certificate to Apple or another computer store in her area. These are always appreciated for repairs, accessories, or other necessary items.

Gifts to Share With Friends

Girls love to share with their friends. They loan each other clothes and buy identical jewelry and accessories so they can wear them together. Your teenager will be surprised and delighted that your gift includes another one for her BFF!

  • You can't go wrong with accessories. Give the teenager in your life something she can wear—and include an identical one for her friend. Purses, belts, scarves, and hats are fun and inexpensive ways for your teenager to express her style.
  • Special jewelry, like a set of matching bracelets or necklaces, that she can share.
  • T-shirts are fun to share. Find two of the same with a fun pattern that she will like.
  • Lessons! Teenage girls love to learn new things with their friends. Buy her some lessons that she can take with a friend. A few possibilities, depending upon where she lives: cooking, surfing, dance, or ceramics.
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Gifts for Active Teenage Girls

Teenage girls love to dance and move! These ideas will give her what she needs to stay fit and keep her sports and dancewear up to date.

  • Dance and exercise wear including sports bras, stretchy pants, and simple cotton T-shirts are also useful for teenagers who play sports or have school P.E. classes.
  • A gift certificate for an athletic shoe store. Teenagers grow quickly. She may need the next size up running shoes.
  • Buy her a series of her favorite dance classes. If you're not sure what type of exercise she likes, expose her to something new with demonstration DVDs of pilates, zumba, or yoga so she can try it out on her own.

Zumba is the latest fitness dance craze. The music is fun. My teenage daughter loves learning the latest dance moves. She knows she's getting fit at the same time, but she calls it "dance time."

This DVD includes Latin, reggaeton, belly dance, calypso, hip hop, and so many more dance moves that my teenager loves learning.


Cosmetics: For Girly-Girls and Artsy Teenagers Alike

Some teenage girls like sparkly pink and others like black. Either way, the beauty section of your local department store will net you hundreds of wonderful gift ideas for a fifteen- or sixteen-year-old.

  • Most teenage girls love experimenting with lotions, lip glosses, lipsticks, eye shadow, nail polishes, and powders. Don't forget about perfumes and scented lotions!
  • Many teenage girls struggle with acne or other skin eruptions. If this is true for the girl on your list, consider buying her a high-quality face scrubber. There are many at different price ranges. If you are buying a gift for a girl you don't live with (a granddaughter or niece), consider a brush that does not come with its own soap. This way she can use the cleanser she has chosen herself.
  • If the girl on your list likes makeup, take her to a fancy makeup counter at a department store or cosmetics shop where she can get professional help applying makeup.
  • An inexpensive gift that you can enjoy, too, if you live near the teenage girl in your life, is a manicure or pedicure (or both!). An afternoon getting your feet massaged and nails done is nothing short of heaven!
Many teenage girls love a chance to get dressed up and look like the budding young women they are. A gift of jewelry, makeup, or a manicure might be just what your teenager needs to feel extra special on a special day.

Many teenage girls love a chance to get dressed up and look like the budding young women they are. A gift of jewelry, makeup, or a manicure might be just what your teenager needs to feel extra special on a special day.

For Her Dresser: Items She Will Treasure

  • A wood jewelry box, personal journal, or even a cuddly little teddy bear are great gifts for a fifteen- or sixteen-year-old girl.
  • Of course, a gift certificate to her favorite store or some cold hard cash may be the best gift of all for a teenage girl. She likes to go shopping but doesn't usually have the money to do so. A gift certificate or cash is always appreciated!

Help her keep all of her treasures safe from younger siblings with a lockable jewelry box. Teenage girls love collecting little keepsakes, so no wonder their jewelry boxes are always overflowing with bracelets, rings, and necklaces.

With so many drawers and compartments to choose from, this box has plenty of room to keep jewelry safe from curious younger sisters and brothers. For a special touch, slip a $20 bill or jewelry store gift certificate into one of the drawers.


Cozy Pajamas and Loungewear for Teenage Girls

Girls love to lounge around the house, doing homework, and watching TV. Teenage girls also love sleep-overs.

Cozy loungewear and pajamas make a really great gift for teenage girls. Consider getting the girl on your list sweatpants in the latest color and style—something she could even wear to school or after an athletic event. Girls love matching sets of pajamas too. If you have a teenage girl in your life, you will also know that Japanese anime characters are very popular. Anime pajamas are adorable and have a modern, Japanese look. What is your teenage girl's favorite anime?

Scrapbooking, Drawing, and Art

Teenage girls are often creative. Foster the budding artist in your special teenager with art supplies that encourage her to keep being creative, or try something new.

  • A watercolor paper pad and a nice set of watercolor paints is a lovely gift that may inspire some beautiful artwork!
  • High-quality pens and drawing paper and a guide book to help her draw.
  • Scrapbooking is a popular new hobby for teenage girls. There are aisles in many crafts stores featuring the books, tapes, and stickers available for scrapbooking. The teenage girl in your life might love to have a special place to preserve her memories—tickets to a favorite concert, postcards, and photographs.

A Date With Your Teenager!

I am often surprised at how much my teenage daughter enjoys spending time with her father or me—one on one—without her younger sister. Even with all of her social activities and homework, there is always time to squeeze in a little date. Use this time together to get to know what's going on in her world!

  • Give her a gift certificate to a movie theater in a card with a message that says, "Dinner and a Date with Mom (or Dad)".
  • Lunch and shopping can be a fun girls-day-out with a teenager. Head to your favorite mall or shopping neighborhood and enjoy an inexpensive lunch out after shopping.
  • If your teenager enjoys art, take her to a museum. It might open her mind to something different (and make for some interesting conversation between you!). Show her how much fun it can be to try something new together.

© 2010 JoleneBelmain

Do you have a teenage girl on your gift list?

Catherine Bushell on November 08, 2019:

Thanks so much! These are all great ideas! I would also recommend air pods for a more expensive gift, and my 14 year old loves scrunchies and Kanken bags. Teens are VERY picky though!

Yay on November 08, 2019:

Great ideas

a.bidhuri on May 24, 2018:

I need a gift for my friend for her birthday.....she'll turn 16

Gunjack on May 16, 2018:

I think a brooch (vintage one) is perfect for TEENAGERS

ELiza on April 21, 2018:

Hey my daughter is more a sports person and like boyish things. What should I get her?

Dee on March 27, 2018:

A stuffed animal with a few pockets to hide different gifts in ea. Like a gift card in one pocket and another pocket could have earrings. Then you can find a key chain that means something for her in the stuffed animal. Put a bracelet around its neck for her.