26 useful gifts for employees this holiday 2020

These gifts will put a smile on anyone's face.
Show you care with these top gifts.
Show you care with these top gifts.TODAY Illustration / Getty Images

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No matter where you work, your company's employees generally come to the office with a smile every day, even when that means having to video conferences amid the additional challenges and responsibilities that come with working from home.

Whether they work for you or work alongside you, make you look good or make you laugh a lot (nothing brightens up the season like a lit Zoom happy hour), the holidays present the perfect opportunity to show your appreciation for their contributions to your team and life.

And this year, a little gratitude goes an extra long way. From small statements (a playful lipstick, sock or game has funk-breaking powers) to more grandiose gestures (an elegant coffee maker, virtual assistant or steak dinner, perhaps?), read on for a mix of 26 useful, yet not yawn-worthy gifts that are guaranteed to put a smile on their face.

To quickly jump to the category you're looking for, click on the links below or keep scrolling to see all 26.

Don’t forget to check out Shop TODAY’s 2020 Gift Guide to find the perfect present for everyone on your list!

Best clothing & accessory gifts for employees

1. Happy Socks

Give them a wallet-friendly gift with wide appeal thanks to Happy Socks. The brand offers a seemingly endless supply of threads spanning from personal (insert inside joke here) to professional. We suggest going with a creative graphic for the ideal in between (holiday crackers and gift sets right this way).

2. Quince Mongolian Cashmere Woven Scarf

Keep them cozy and chic with a classic cashmere scarf. Available in three shades, this co-ed option from Quince has tassels for added flair and punches in at a fraction of the traditional price point (or skip the fringe and go with a more straightforward style).

3. J.Crew Cashmere-Lined Leather Tech Gloves

For added warmth, throw in these cashmere-lined gloves from J.Crew. Not only do they ooze luxury, but they’re compatible with smart devices and can be monogrammed for added customization.

4. Everlane The ReNew 15” Transit Backpack

Upgrade their commute with a stylish (and sustainable!) backpack. This pick from Everlane’s ReNew line is made of recycled polyester, waterproof, and has compartments for all of their work and entertaining essentials (for those going the distance, Tumi’s Just in Case Backpack is another solid bet).

5. Allbirds Tree Runners

Put some extra pep in their step with these eco-conscious kicks from Allbirds. Dubbed by the brand as the ‘98 percent of the time sneaker,’ they feature a lightweight, breathable fabric made from eucalyptus trees and come in both women’s and men’s (go with a classic color or let them choose their own to ensure it’s a good fit).

6. Diff Koko Sunglasses

Protect their peepers, while giving someone else the gift of sight, with a pair of shades from Diff. Proceeds from every purchase are put toward eye exams, glasses surgeries and more for those in need.

Best food & drink gifts for employees

1. See’s Candies Holiday Bliss Assorted Chocolates

Satiate the sweet tooth with their own mini tower of assorted chocolates from See’s notorious candy kitchen, including the brand’s beloved holiday truffles. The Snow Day Gift Set and Christmas Delivery Gift Pack are sure to be additional crowd pleasers (there’s even a dedicated bundle for the sugar-free snacker).

2. Sugarfina ‘Merry Christmas’ 8-Piece Candy Bento Box

For a merry mix of sweet and sour, peek this bento box from Sugarfina, which opens to reveal a mix of eight candies for their tasting and sharing pleasure (the brand also offers a holiday bundle and festive cubes for larger teams and little helpers).

3. DeLallo Cheese & Charcuterie Gift Collection

Keep the taste bud party going with a curation of meats and cheeses. This spread from DeLallo brings together the brand’s Black Pepper Dry Cured Sausage, Sliced Prosciutto, Sweet Sopressata, Granino Cheese and a Merlot BellaVitano Wedge, all wrapped up in a bowed gift box.

4. 1-800 Flowers Holiday Flower Tree

Deck their halls (wherever they may be this season) with holiday tree. We’re also digging the brand’s Festive Tidings Bouquet for a more subtle approach.

5. Blue Apron Meal Plan

Take some of the load off, while encouraging a little exploration in the kitchen, with a meal plan from Blue Apron, which can be customized to accommodate different schedules, serving sizes and dietary preferences (last time we checked, the menu was serving up hits like Zesty Pork Chorizo Tacos, Curry Mustard Chicken and Creamy Pesto Cavatelli). The brand’s gifting options include gift cards to purchase meals and wine pairings at their leisure.

6. Omaha Steaks Tasteful Gift

Treat them to a fancy steak dinner inside the comfort of their own home with an elevated combination of sweet and savory staples from Omaha Steaks. The Tasteful Gift has all the fixings for a festive feast (additional business gift packages and certificates for browsing here).

Best home office gifts for employees

1. Rifle & Co. Pocket Notebook Set

From gilded leafs to vibrant florals, there’s just something about jotting notes in Rifle & Co.’s patterned notebooks that feels special.

2. Hygge Games The Hygge Game

Encourage them to partake is some thoughtful fun with a card game from Hygge Games. This conversation starter is sure to be a hit with their office or home pod.

3. Diptyque Amber Feather Scented Candle

Watch them light up with a bougie candle from Diptyque. This universal, limited-edition blend strikes the perfect balance between sweet and spicy, with notes of orange, amber, ginger and cinnamon (additional scents and sizes available).

4. Yeti 10-Ounce Tumbler with Magslider Lid

Ensure they stay hydrated with a performance tumbler. This one from YETI keeps cold drinks cold and hot drinks hot, and boasts a splash-resistant MagSlider for avoiding messy spills.

5. Keurig K Mini Single-Serve K-Cup Pod Coffee Maker

Save them a crowded caffeine run with their own single-pod coffee maker. This one from Keurig comes in four shades and fits right at home (it’s only five inches wide) on most desk and kitchen tops.

6. Skullcandy Riff Wireless On-Ear Headphones

Noise can prove a big distraction at work, especially with many logging in from alternative (read: family-filled) environments. These sleek, wireless headphones from Skullcandy will help them unplug and provide the quiet comfort they’ve been craving (additional finishes available).

7. Apple HomePod Mini

Give them the gift of a virtual assistant with the newest addition to Apple’s HomePod family — a compact, yet powerful smart speaker that features Siri to help support all of their professional and personal scheduling and listening needs. Now showcasing: White or Space Gray.

Best grooming & relaxation gifts for employees

1. OPI Holiday ‘20 Nail Polish Mini 4-Pack

If they change their nail polish as often as their button-ups, there’s a good chance they’ll appreciate this mini nail polish cracker from OPI, which opens to reveal four bestselling shades that are prime for work and play.

2. Drybar Four Shots of Detox Dry Shampoos

Save the blowout enthusiast this holiday season with a hard-working ensemble of mini dry shampoos from Drybar starring the brand’s latest scent: Bubbles & Berries.

3. Mac Limited-Edition Fireworked Like a Charm Mini Red Lipstick Set

Help them stand out in all those virtual holiday parties with this trio of lipstick darlings from Mac latest holiday collection.

4. Ilia Eye Heart Clean Holiday Set

Keep it simple with this set from Ilia, equipped with three clean beauty goodies (eye tint, mascara and liner) for creating a minimalistic and modern look, all nestled inside a pouch for easy office stashing.

5. Lush Seasons Greetings Set

Coming in clutch for Secret Santa swaps and last-minute surprises, this clean box from Lush is pre-packed with the brand’s Snowflake soap and Dream Cream for keeping skin fresh and moisturized (they even did the wrapping for you).

6. Kiehl’s Since 1851 Healthy Hands Trio

You can’t go wrong with this handy trio from Kiehl’s, which contains two hand creams and the brand’s Ultimate Strength Hand Salve — especially great for essential workers who use (and therefore wash) their hands a lot and couldn’t be more deserving.

7. Goodhabit The Mix & Mingle Mini Kit

Help protect their pores from long hours of screen time with this digitally-savvy dopp kit from Goodhabit, boasting a lineup of blue light-blocking skin care essentials.

Still looking for the perfect gift? Be sure to check out Shop TODAY’s 2020 Gift Guide to shop for everyone on your list, including:

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