Guilt-Free Gift Ideas for Men and Women Who Need More Me-Time, Not More Things
Finding the perfect gift for a friend or loved one can be an intimidating task, even if you know them through and through. But it’s easier if you consider their personal habits, not just their favorite things. Does she get manicures regularly? Does he schedule haircuts like clockwork? Salon and spa beauty gifts for men and women along these lines will leave your bestie, sibling, or significant other looking polished and feeling relaxed.
Gifts for her
What is it? You know the drill. During a mani-pedi, technicians soak the client’s hands and feet, then groom her nails, cuticles, and calluses. They nails with a varnish from a wide selection that includes natural-looking hues, vibrant colors, and even chip-resistant gel polishes. Nail art can add even more decoration.
Why is it gift-worthy? Though a basic mani-pedi can be done at home, going to a professional takes the stress out of making it neat and long-lasting. Plus, there’s built-in time to scroll through Instagram or leaf through a magazine during the pedicure.
Who is it for? Anyone who likes to look put-together from top to toe.
What is it? Typically, aestheticians first cleanse the skin, then buff away dull and dead skin with an exfoliating agent. Some facials might include extractions, when the aestheticians clear clogged pores or blackheads. A facial massage boosts circulation and prepares skin to absorb the products to follow, while a neck and shoulder massage simply relaxes the client. A custom mask—determined earlier during a skin evaluation—is applied to treat specific skin concerns like acne or aging. The facial concludes with the aesthetician applying a serum, moisturizer, and sunscreen in soothing strokes.
Why is it gift-worthy? Devoting so much attention to the face allows the client to lie back and relax muscles kept tense through daily drudgery. And the very idea of having an expert care for your skin is a relief that’s second to none among beauty gifts. (If the client is worried about extractions stressing them out or inflaming their skin, the aesthetician can leave them out.)
Who is it for? Anyone who likes their “me time” to also have a practical purpose.
Want more information? This rundown of frequently asked facial questions—plus a step-by-step video—gives an idea of what to expect.
What is it? Aestheticians gently wax or thread brows to perfect their shape. They take into account the client’s preferences—e.g., whether they want a runway-inspired bushy brow or sleek arches—while making sure the brows complement face shape and add definition to individual features.
Why is it gift-worthy? While the ouch factor won’t go away entirely, an aesthetician is much better at cooing encouraging asides than a pair of tweezers is.
Who is it for? Those who have pictures of Cara Delevingne on their vision board.
What is it? Your basic maintenance-level haircut and dye job. After a hairdresser trims tresses, a colorist bestows the favored hue. This can include overall color, highlights, or special treatments like balayage. If you’re unsure which color treatment your loved one usually gets, take a look at our guide to coloring treatments to learn more about them.
Why is it gift-worthy? A trip to the salon is the ultimate whole-new-you experience, even if the client asks for the same thing every time. Nothing is more instantly transformative than a fresh cut and color.
Who is it for? Anyone who’s ready for their next trip to the salon, whether it’s a monthly routine or a twice-yearly sojourn.
Gifts for him
What is it? During men’s manicures, polish is optional. Instead, the focus is on making rough hands smooth and trim. A typical treatment includes cutting, buffing, and filing nails into a natural yet neat shape. Some may also include extras like a dip in softening paraffin wax, a hand massage, or a hot-towel treatment.
Why is it gift-worthy? Hands are overlooked in most men’s personal-care routines; this is a chance for him to sit back and give them their due.
Who is it for? Anyone who works with their hands or wants to look neat and trim in a professional setting.
What is it? The classic barbershop service includes a haircut and a hot shave, a welcome departure from a quick shave in front of the bathroom mirror. For bearded gentlemen, a trim keeps chin hairs in check and well-conditioned.
Why is it gift-worthy? The service helps clients hit pause in the middle of their day-to-day routine, then leave feeling refreshed.
Who is it for? Those who appreciate an old-school approach to things.
What is it? Hair removal for the hirsute among us. Results are longer-lasting than buzzing or shaving, and it’s less likely to lead to irritation. Options abound from manscaping to brozilians to back and chest waxes. That said, the experience may be uncomfortable for first-timers. Aestheticians will generally go out of their way to answer questions about how best to prepare for appointments and what to expect during them.
Why is it gift-worthy? He’ll appreciate smooth skin without red spots, and there’s a thrill-seeking element to trying something new. If he already gets waxed regularly, this is a way to show him you appreciate the trouble.
Who is it for? Anyone who would like to get rid of excess body fuzz.