the ultimate vice gift guide / the best gifts of 2021
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Illustration by Kate Dehler

The Biggest, Best VICE Gift Guide Ever

From deeply thoughtful to impressively practical to cool and sexy; for friends, family, and freakazoids; we truly have a gift for everyone.
December 6, 2021, 8:00pm

So, you’ve done it again: waited until the bowels of the Holiday Season™ are upon us before devoting time to pondering how you’ll make your friend, family, and partner happy through a material sign of affection that murmurs, “hey, kid, I know ya.” Normally, this means its time to start an IV drip of coldbrew and obsessively stalk the Instagram accounts of your loved ones in hopes of finding a breadcrumb of info that might help you figure out what the hell could possibly make this person smile through their Seasonal Affective Disorder. Will it be a body pillow? A Shrek butt plug? A vintage $800 promotional button-up shirt from Baz Luhrmann’s 1996 film adaptation of Romeo + Juliet? There are too many options, and yet sometimes it can feel like there are none. You’re sweating. You’re ready to drink a whole bottle of weed lube. (Don’t do it, babe.)

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But y’all, relaaaaaaaaax! Throw on Insane Clown Posse’s 1994 holiday album A Carnival Christmas, and kick off your Crocs. We’ve got this, and therefore, you’ve got this.

We’ve been hustling our cabooses off, looking at every sale section under a microscope and trawling every fancy store like it’s our job—oh, wait, it is—so that we can rest assured that our gift ideas are literally the best ever. Yes, we can confidently declare: WE HAVE THE BEST GIFT IDEAS! [Bangs giant gong…]

Look no further. Don’t listen to anyone else. Those people are squares; they have no sauce; they want to hurt you! We’re here to French kiss you and make you look like the best friend, brother, sister, dad, coworker, wife, transcendental meditation coach, dodgeball teammate, or polycule member ever, bestowing the best gifts for people who love tech, for people who love to cook, for people who love to eat, for people you don’t wanna spend a lot of money on, for people who deserve something XXXtra special this year, and so on and so forth.

Welcome to the complete, ultimate, 2021 VICE gift guide. Choose your own adventure below.


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The Best Gifts by Price

Operating on a budget? Not a bad idea, even if your budget is “a lot.” Whether you’ve only got magic beans or you’ve got a Scrooge McDuck swimming pool full of gold coins, we’re on it when it comes to finding unique gifts.

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The Best Gifts for Every Type of Friend

If your friend group looks anything like ours, it’s kind of like a cross between the cast of Grey’s Anatomy and the Garbage Pail Kids. Each bud has their own distinct personality and flavor (LOL thinking about the true freakazoids in the group text), and when spending our hard-earned cockles, we want to make sure we’re hitting the right notes. That’s why we’ve made it easy to find on-point offerings for all the homies.

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The Best Gifts for Every Family Member

One hit-or-miss thing about the holidays: spending time with family. Of course we want it to go as smoothly as possible, and to feel like one of those hyper-wholesome clans that all wears matching flannel pajamas. (Actually, do we want that?) No matter whether your family is ultra trad and cheery or deeply dysfunctional, these gifts are a great way to say “maybe I didn’t choose you, but I do love you.”

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The Best Gift for Your Boyfriend, Girlfriend, Husband, Wife, or Miscellaneous Boo

Whether this person is brand-new to You World, a long-term lover, or a forever partner-in-crime, we thought it all through so you can just sit back, smash that “add to cart” button, and look like an A+ mate.

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The Best Gifts for Food Lovers

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The Best Tech Gifts

There’s a reason that Black Friday tech deals have people acting totally nutso in the name of a flat-screen TV or fancy set of speakers: We all love the feeling of being wowed by technology. That’s why tech gifts are a surefire way of showing off that you’re in the know and got The Thing of the Year, big or small.

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Gifts for Everything (and Everyone) Else

Alrighty, you want to cover alllllll the bases before you pull the trigger and head to checkout. No prob—in fact, we encourage this degree of overthinking, since we’ve already done it for you.

There you have it: so many unique gift ideas that you never again have an excuse for hitting the mall in utter desperation at 4:30 PM on Christmas Eve. You’ve got this, kids. Add to cart, get it outta the way, and reap the appreciation from people whose love language is receiving presents… and even those who are more the “acts of service” type, or whatever.

Happy holidays, from your loving team at VICE’s Rec Room.


This story was originally published on December 1, 2021, and is being continuously updated as we find more amazing gifts for your entire brethren.