10 Secret Santa Ideas for College Students

We all know that once Thanksgiving passes, the countdown to Christmas begins. Even if you don’t celebrate Christmas, many people take part in gift exchanges with friends to get in the spirit. Sometimes it can be hard to find a gift that is meaningful, useful and not too pricey (let’s face it, most of us are broke college students). However, there is no need to scramble with this variety of gift ideas:

  1. 1. Planner

    With the New Year coming up, your organized and productive friend will love a fresh planner to keep track of everything. Target and Staples have tons of different layouts and designs, but a personal favorite is the At a Glance brand. 

  2. 2. Gift card to Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts

    Most college students are constantly sleep deprived and getting coffee a few times per week. Eventually, coffee purchases add up, so a gift card can go a long way. Though it isn’t super exciting, this gift is extremely useful for coffee lovers. 

  3. 3. Candles

    For your friend who is a homebody, candles are the perfect gift to make a living space more cozy and enhance the smell. Especially with the holidays coming up, stores have an array of unique smells. Bath and Body Works has always been a favorite of mine and when they have sales, you can get high quality candles for under $10. 

  4. 4. Hydroflask

    If you’re willing to spend a little more for this person, Hydroflasks have been the trend of the year due to their ability to keep water cold for long periods and trendy design. The 18 ounce bottle is $30, and prices go up depending on size. 

  5. 5. Framed picture 

    This option is inexpensive, sentimental and simple. Printing a photo at a local convenience store is usually less than a dollar. Specifically, Urban Outfitters has tons of cute frames for polaroids and regular photos. 

  6. 6. Booze

    If you are 21+ and enjoy a drink, you can’t go wrong with getting a college student their favorite kind of alcoholic beverage whether it be a case of beer, seltzers, or a bottle of wine. This is not as creative, but they will thank you later. 

  7. 7. Cookbook or kitchen supplies

    If your friends live in an apartment or somewhere off campus, they likely will benefit from a book of simple recipe ideas or any form of kitchen supplies. This gift is ideal for the “mom” friend or anyone who is trying to be practical in their living space. 

  8. 8. Musical playlist

    If you love music, customizing a playlist for a friend is one of the most meaningful gifts. Although it does not cost anything, it can be very personalized. If you feel like you want to spend money along with this, you could always add their favorite candy to this gift or get them a poster / Red Bubble sticker of their favorite band. 

  9. 9. Sherpa clothing

    The sherpa fleece material is one of the biggest recent trends due to its extreme comfort and warmth. Personally, I have a sherpa zip up that is so easy to throw on and feels like wearing a blanket 24/7.

  10. 10. Face masks

    As the weather gets colder, nothing rejuvenates dry skin like a face mask. Face masks are ideal for skin hydration, acne prevention and relaxation. You can find inexpensive ones at Target or CVS, but if you want to spend a little more, Sephora has some high end ones as well. 

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