With Christmas right around the corner, it’s time to start shopping, if you haven’t already, for gifts for those on your list. And, if you don’t want to be known as a sucky gift giver, take our advice and take a look at these twenty gifts you should never give.


Unless you’re buying them for your significant other, this is definitely a no-no. Underwear is as personal as it gets, and if you give them to someone you don’t have that kind of relationship with, things could get really weird, really fast. Even if you do plan on giving them to your bae, it still might not be such a good idea–unless you plan on giving it to them when no one else is around. Can you imagine the looks on the faces of your family and friends when your significant other opens up the box and pulls out some racy underwear?


Ah, the dreaded Christmas sweater. The gift we love to hate. Unless you’re a grandmother or a great aunt, this item shouldn’t even be anywhere on your Christmas gift list.

Advice: This is best given as a gag gift or for use at an ugly-Christmas-sweater party (yes, there’s such a thing).

According to Time magazine, sweaters have been around since the 19th century, although the Christmas sweater didn’t become a thing until just a few decades ago. In fact, according to The Wall Street Journal, the Christmas sweater started being mass-marketed in the 1980s.


If your girlfriend or wife has been asking you lately if she looks fat, regardless of your response (and we hope you gave the right response), it’s probably not a good idea to give her exercise gear for Christmas. While you’re at it, you can cross shapeware, workout apparel, bathroom scale, diet cookbook and gym membership off that list, too. The last thing anyone wants to hear is that you think they need to lose weight. Even if that’s not the message you’re trying to send, it will most likely be taken in that way.


Making the choice to get a pet is a big decision–and, it’s one that’s usually best left up to the one(s) who will be caring for the pet. Keep in mind that not everyone is ready for such a responsibility. So, unless you’re getting the pet for your kids or someone else who lives in your household, it’s not a good idea to give a living, breathing creature to someone else. Instead, try this tip from MSN: “Try a stuffed animal first, and see how friends do with that.”


You know that gift that you got last year that you really didn’t like and now you’re trying to pass it off onto someone else? Yeah, that’s what a re-gift is. No matter how tempting it may be to re-wrap it and give it to someone else, don’t do it. Especially if you don’t remember who gave it to you. You could end up giving the gift back to the original giver, and that would be just plain embarrassing–for them and for you.


We understand that you may not like your in-laws or step family, but that’s no reason to intentionally get them a sucky gift in the hopes of crushing their ego. Here are some examples of what we mean:

-The mother-in-law who gives her son a lavish gift but gives her daughter-in-law something cheap and tacky.
-The stepdaughter who gets her new stepmother a hideous shirt.
-The jealous friend who gives junk food to the friend she knows is on a diet.


Unless you’re planning on giving these to your teenager (trust us, they’ll thank you), it’s probably not a good idea to give cash or a gift certificate to your significant other. People like getting gifts that required some thought and effort on the part of the gift-giver. Even if you have to get creative and give them something homemade, it’s the thought that counts.

TIP: Cash gifts are often seen as tacky and awkward. Our advice? Just don’t do it.


Candles are the perfect gift to give to a co-worker or an acquaintance–not so much when it comes to your significant other. Candles scream “we’re just friends,” so unless that’s the message your trying to send to the person you’re romantically involved with, candles are a no-go. Besides, most people have a ton of candles in their home already, and the last thing they need is more candles–no matter how good they smell. Another thing to keep in mind is that strong-scented candles can be quite bothersome for people with sensitive noses.

2. CDs and DVDs

These gifts used to be all the rage at one time, but thanks to the growth of digital downloads and streaming services available through iTunes, Netflix, Hulu and the like, these once hip items are now outdated. Plus, giving CDs and DVDs to certain people might send a not-so-nice message. According to 99.3/105.7 KISS FM in Richmond, VA, giving CDs and/or DVDs to your co-workers can send an “I didn’t want this so I’m gonna give it to you” message.


Who doesn’t love a good laugh? But, that’s pretty much all you’ll get out of gimmick gifts. I mean, seriously, when is anyone ever going to use unicorn hand puppets or shaving cream that smells like bacon or a ‘knit your own beard‘ kit? You’ll just be wasting your money when you could have spent it on something more useful. Plus, it’ll probably end up in a corner somewhere collecting dust until the recipient decides to get rid of it.


Make sure you get your loved ones a gift they’ll like or else they’ll be forced to return it. And, that can make for an embarrassing situation, especially if they run into you while they’re returning it or at some point down the road you ask them if they’re enjoying the gift and they have to make up some lie to save themselves and you from embarrassment. Whatever you get, just be sure to put some thought into it. Thanks for reading, and happy shopping!