Since Santa may be practicing social distancing this year and holing up at the North Pole, it’s up to you to fill your friends’ stockings for them. We’ve rounded up the best minimal-clutter quarantine gift ideas to send this holiday season, including everything from bath bombs to baking tools. While you may not be gathering around the Christmas tree together this year, there’s no reason to miss out on holiday cheer.
1. Bath Bombs and Beauty Treats
Help your friends and family members feel like #quaranqueens with a basket of bath bombs and beauty treats. Lush Cosmetics is a great place to start with a variety of holiday gifts to send during quarantine, including specially designed, packed and wrapped gift sets. With an assortment of colorful bath and beauty goods like shower gels, bath bombs, and lotions, each box is sure to pamper your lucky friend.
2. Cheeseboard/Charcuterie Board
Ideal for date nights at home, a stylish cheeseboard won’t just add some yum to your friend’s night in; it will probably end up on their next Insta story too. We’re fans of the Bambusi Cheeseboard and Knife Set, made from premium, long-lasting bamboo. It even comes with a drawer and cutlery set, and scooped edges for crackers and meats.
3. Hot Pot Set
For the friend who misses their favorite hot pot spot, give them everything they need to do hot pot at home. The Sonya Electric Hotpot allows for Shabu Shabu and grilling in one convenient place and comes with two strainer ladles.
4. Bread Lame With Cool Design
Definitely not a lame gift, a bread lame is a double-sided blade that is used to slash the tops of bread loaves in artisan baking. If your friend has a few quarantine baking challenges under their belt, they may want to up their game by using a bread lame with a fun design like a hibiscus flower or mandala from the Etsy shop KADADesign Studio. These lames are made of hardwood and come in stylish leather pouches.
5. Chocolate Mug Hug Card
If you can’t remember the last time you hugged your friends, send them a chocolatey-hug-in-their-mug instead. The Chocolate Mug Hug Card from Poppikit is just $10, and it comes with double chocolate cake mix that can be made in 90 seconds in a microwave. You also have the option to send them a personalized message so you can tell them just how special they are.
6. Rabble Board Game
For the friend stuck indoors with roommates, Rabble is sure to rekindle their fondness for each other. A fishbowl-style game, Rabble dares players to guess the absurd words on their cards — “ombre” or “first-world problems,” for instance — as quickly as possible while giving clues. In each of the game’s three rounds, players are given restrictions on how they can give clues, such as using a single word or acting it out. Occasionally, a player might be subjected to a challenge during their turn, such as speaking in a high-pitched voice while acting or continuously fist-bumping the air. Rabble can be played with groups of any size and even with friends over video. It’s simple enough to play with kids, too.
7. Let’s Roam Game Subscription
For the gamer with nobody to play with at home, a virtual game subscription from Let’s Roam is ideal. It comes with an embedded video chat where they can play with their entire family at once. Games include trivia, charades, Pictionary and others. If you already have a game console like Xbox Live, PlayStation Plus, Nintendo Switch Online or Steam, you can play with friends who have the same console. But no need to dish out cash for a console — a video game subscription is available to anyone with an internet connection.
8. Flower Growing Kit
Gift your plant-loving friends and family with a dose of nature with this sunflower growing kit, complete with seeds, pots and a set of instructions even the novice gardener could follow. After all, it’s the quarantine gift that keeps on giving.
9. Mindfulness App Subscription
2020 has been a non-stop stress-fest. Help your friend soothe their bundle of nerves with a subscription to Calm or Headspace. They’ll get access to guided meditations, stress and sleep tracks, masterclasses, and stretching videos to help them keep burnout at bay. Best of all, this gift is 100-percent clutter-free.
10. Online Cooking Class
If you have a friend who’s hooked on Postmates and drive-throughs, consider giving them a virtual cooking class. The Kitchn offers great “kitchen 101” courses to help beginners nail the basics. For experienced foodie friends, MasterClass offers in-depth tips and tricks from the likes of Gordon Ramsay and Alice Waters.
Erica Garza is an author and essayist from Los Angeles. Her writing has appeared in TIME, Health, Glamour, Good Housekeeping, Women's Health, and VICE.