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Christmas Gifts on a Budget

Christmas time is the best time of the year, but it can also be very expensive to buy presents for all your friends and family. Here are some ways to stay on budget while still giving gifts to everyone special in your life:

Everyone bashes DIY gifts, but here are some easy DIYs that your friends and family will actually enjoy getting and won’t make you break the bank:

1. Recipe Mason Jars

Recipes in a jar are a great way to mass produce your own Christmas gifts! You can buy the mason jars in bulk (only $5-10 for a pack of 12 at Walmart and Target). Once you have your jars, you just have to find some of your favorite recipes (cookie and cake recipes work great), put all the dry ingredients in, and add a recipe card!

2. Reindeer Hot Chocolate

This is an easy, cute, and great ‘hand-out’ gift for those acquaintances you have that you aren’t exactly ~friends~ with but you feel obligated to give them something anyways. You can make a lot of them with very little money and very little time.

3. Canvas Poster

This gift is the perfect present for your friend’s dorm room! You can make a simplistic poster with you and your bestie’s favorite saying, quote, or inside joke! This is one of the best expensive-looking inexpensive gifts you can give! The best part is no one will believe that you made it yourself!

4. Gift cards

This is the perfect way to jazz-up your gift cards. Your friends and family will definitely appreciate the extra time you spent turning a gift card into a one-of-a-kind present.

5. DIY sharpie mug

This classic gift is so easy and adorable! It’s a perfect combination of heartfelt and useful. Your friends and family will definitely put the mug to good use and love whatever design or saying you put on it just because it came from you!

Another great way to put together a great cheap gift is to make baskets or sets of gifts. Here are some great gift basket ideas:

1. Movie Basket:

Fill a gift bag with your friend’s favorite candy, popcorn, and, of course, movies!

2. Candy Bouquet:

Turn your friend’s favorite candies into a beautiful bouquet! This is one creative gift that is sure to fill your friend’s heart (and stomach) with joy!

3. Spa Day:

All you have to do for this basket is pick up some towels, bath salts, facemasks, and chocolate and you have the perfect spa day set!

4. Mani/Pedi:

Give your friend the perfect nail set with a few of their favorite colored polishes, some remover, a nail file, and some separators.  

5. Tea Lovers:

Give your tea-loving friend a cute mug or teapot, some of their favorite teas, and some cookies for a gift they will truly appreciate.

If none of these ideas sound good to you here are some stores where you will find great gifts at great prices:

1. The Christmas Tree Shop:

This is a great store that has practically everything from ugly Christmas sweaters to slushie makers! In one stop you can find a gift for everyone on your list and at  reasonable prices!

2. Target:

One of my favorite stores that will not only have all your Christmas needs, but will also have movies, CDs, books, toys, clothes and so much more. This is another one stop that will have everything you’re looking for and at low costs, too!

3. CVS/Walgreens:

Drug stores are a great place to grab a lot of small cheap items for a smorgasbord of your friends and family’s favorite things. Grab makeup for your mom, cologne for your dad, candy for your friends, and a toy for your dog.

4. Barnes and Noble:

Barnes and Noble now sells more than just books. Here you can find movies, CDs, toys, games, journals, bags, art supplies, and small gadgets that will make the perfect gifts for your loved ones.

5. Dollar Tree:

One of the cheapest places to shop, where you can find a bunch of small trinkets and stocking stuffers all for, you guessed it, a dollar!

So don’t worry if you’re not flushed with cash this holiday season, there are lots of ways to stay on budget while giving your loved ones the best gifts!

Happy Holidays and Happy Bargain Hunting!


Molly Concannon

Fairfield '20

Molly Concannon is a Jersey girl through and through. She attends Fairfield University where she is majoring in Finance and Public Relations. This is her fourth year on the Her Campus team! She is also slightly obsessed with libraries, reading, and Disney movies, and she definitely will try to pet any dogs she sees.
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