Every year we spend way too much money on Christmas junk. Countless candy canes, toys, gadgets, fad items, and so on. Some things are great and really impact your daily life, but most things get used for a month (or day) to only get put away in a box for eternity. If you follow this list, your gift recipients will be thanking you for years to come.
1. The Gerber Shard - $5.99
This little, unassuming tool has been a game-changer for me. For the size of a housekey, you get a flathead screwdriver, a Phillips screwdriver, a wire stripper, a pry bar, and a bottle opener. I'll confess that I have yet to strip a wire with this bad boy, but I have actually pried some small nails out of where they were hammered. Of course, it's the bottle opener that gets the most use. It takes a little practice to get down just right, but once you do, you'll never go thirsty again. The flathead is also sharp enough to cut the tape on all those Amazon boxes you're expecting this month. This is the perfect stocking stuffer for the men and women in your life.
2. The Wusthof 7-Inch Santoku Knife - $119.95
This Japanese knife (made in Germany, coincidentally) is the all-purpose kitchen hero. I have been using this knife for all my chopping and dicing needs for the last several years and it remains the sharpest knife I own (with annual sharpening). The perfectly-balanced weight of the knife is enough to glide right down through a tomato or bell pepper with frightening ease. Once you go Wusthof, you won't go back.
3. The 4-Hour Body - $16.65
If that book trailer (above) doesn't convince you, I don't know what will. Timothy Ferriss has influenced my life more than any other author/entrepreneur/guinea pig. I mention the guinea pig because Tim learns how to become superhuman by trying all the theories on himself and then sharing his results and techniques with you. The tagline alone ("An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman") makes you want to open the cover and start reading. The biggest takeaway from this book for me was the introduction of the slow-carb diet. In it, you eat only proteins, veggies, legumes, and healthy oils for six days out of the week. On the seventh day, you get to go crazy; chocolate lava cake, Hawaiian pizza, half a fifth of Jack, you name it. As unintuitive as it sounds, it does work. I lost seven pounds in my first month alone.
4. The Philips Sonicare Toothbrush - $39.95 - $189.95
Sonicare is a household name for a reason. Philips created a toothbrush that cleans your teeth at 30,000 brush strokes per minute. I bought this last year when my dentist told me that my gums weren't doing so hot. By my next visit, the dentist was surprised that my gums had significantly improved. Way to go Sonicare!
5. The T-fal Nonstick Fry Pan with Lid - $29.56
Unless your gift recipient is a die-hard cast iron devotee, they will absolutely love this pan. Not only does this pan heat very evenly, it even works on the fancy induction stovetops. The nonstick surface is great for eggs, stir fries, and anything else you can throw at it (except for metal utensils!). Seriously, use a silicon spatula, they're amazing.
6. The Anker Portable Phone Charger - $19.99
This little stick could save your life. Well, if you're stuck in a blizzard somewhere and your iPhone battery dies. And you're off of the main highway. If you have reception...but regardless! This is a great stocking stuffer that should live in everyone's backpack or purse. Even if you're a responsible battery charger, your charge-ignorant friend will be forever thankful when you offer a full charge when their phone dies from live-blogging their Christmas Caroling Bar Crawl this holiday. It's also great for long bus rides, waiting in line for the iPhone 7, and the DMV.
7. One Year of Amazon Prime - $99
You may have noticed that all of these products are available (and linked to) Amazon. This is in part because of their exceptional Amazon Prime membership. With it, you can order any of these items with free two-day shipping. Not bad. But in addition to that, you get a slew of extras: stream tons of tv shows (Including Arrested Development seasons 1-3!), streaming of their music library, one free digital book rental a month, and more. Seriously, I use Prime way too much. If you're new to online shopping, maybe this will end up being a gift for yourself :)
Eddy is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.