The 12 Best Gifts to Buy Coworker's in 2018

Affordable presents for your work besties

Smiling businesswomen holding Christmas gifts in office
Luis Alvarez / Getty Images

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There’s nobody quite like your #workwife. In fact, when you really think about it, you probably spend more time with your coworkers than you do your own family. Together you tackle projects, endure boring meetings (lots of meetings!), gossip about the inner workings of the company, and even vent about your personal life. Day in and day out, your colleagues see you at your best… and at your worst.

When a birthday or a holiday comes around, it’s the perfect opportunity to show your favorite coworkers just how much you appreciate them. A gift for a coworker doesn’t have to be anything grand—a small token of appreciation is plenty.

The best gifts for coworkers are usually funny—a little something to break up the monotony of everyday office life. But remember: A funny gift can still be practical. Choose something that they’ll use every day. Office supplies, coffee mugs, desk accessories, or even a little something to help them pamper themselves at the end of a very long day.

Though it’s the thought that counts, it’s always fun to give a really great, unique gift. With that in mind, we rounded up the best gifts for coworkers we could find:

  • 01 of 12

    Most Useful: Knock Knock Sticky Notes Packet, Honest Acronyms

    She has plenty of the orange and yellow variety. Plus, she can get those for free in the office supply closet. But these? Well, these are not your average sticky notes. The set comes with six packs of sticky notes, and each one has a well-known acronym on it—WTF, ASAP, OMG, FYI, BTW, and TMI—plus a few lines to write a message. And, when you think about it, those six acronyms really cover all the bases. What else could you need to say to a coworker?

    Each pad is a 2.75-inches square and has 40 sheets with repositionable adhesive.

    Reviewers not only see the humor in these sticky notes but also tout their practicality. This set gets more than 100 five-star reviews, with most reviewers praising it as the best gift ever.

  • 02 of 12

    Most Relaxing: Be Good Company Executive Mini-Sandbox

    No summer fridays? Well, that’s a real bummer—and something you’ll have to take up with management. The good news? When you’d really rather be anywhere but your desk on a Friday afternoon, this little sandbox can help. Take a break from that spreadsheet and zen out while raking some sand on this personal desk-size beach.

    The five-inch square desk accessory includes the pearl white sand, a sand pail, a grooming rake, a digging shovel, mini seashells, a sun umbrella, plus one beach chair.

    Nearly 200 people have already given this gift for coworkers five stars, with many touting it as both fun and therapeutic.

  • 03 of 12

    Best Food Gift: CraveBox Care Package

    There’s only one way to get through a long, boring meeting: snacks— lots of snacks. This fun gift will help your coworker avoid the dreaded mid-afternoon slump (that’s a gift for you, too, since nobody likes a hangry coworker!) by ensuring his desk is always stocked with a plethora of snacks.

    The box of goodies comes with 30 individually wrapped snacks. There’s candy, cookies, granola bars, and crackers from popular snack brands like Nabisco, Nature’s Valley, and Welch’s inside. And each box is filled with basically everything you could ever want to satisfy any craving, from salty to sweet.

  • 04 of 12

    Best Mug: Kyonne Creative DIY Build-on Brick Mug

    There’s not much to do in a boring meeting or while on a lengthy conference call, except maybe stare out the window or tap your feet. But it doesn’t have to be that way! This fun mug does double-duty—it not only holds 12 ounces of coffee to keep your coworker caffeinated and awake, but it also functions as a little distraction. The sides of the mug serve as a building surface that included blocks adhere to.

    Reviewers note what a creative gift this mug makes, but do caution that, if there’s a downside, it’s that the set doesn’t come with quite as many building blocks as pictured.

    Continue to 5 of 12 below.
  • 05 of 12

    Best Plant: 3-Piece Tillandsia Air Plant Crystals Kit

    When you look at gray walls and a computer screen all day, it can really drag your mood down. Countless studies tout the benefits of greenery and getting outdoors—research shows that being outside is de-stressing and makes people more productive. But spending your days in the great outdoors just isn’t an option when it comes to office life. Make sure your cubemate reaps whatever benefits they can with an array of ​easy-to-care-for indoor plants.

    This trio of three air plants needs minimal light, no soil, and just an occasional spritzing (we’re talking once a week!), plus comes with gorgeous crystal planters.

  • 06 of 12

    Best Desk Accessory: Boss Lady Name Plate

    What do you get for your boss? You know... that person in charge of your promotion timeline, your bonus, and, well, whether or not you have a job. Phew, that’s a lot of pressure!

    Get on her good side with this sleek nameplate. It’s nothing like the one that’s company-issued. This one is black with gold engraving, and more importantly, tells it like it is: She’s the boss and everyone knows it. (There’s also a similar name plate by the same company that’s better suited for male bosses.)

     

  • 07 of 12

    Best Office Supplies: Inspirational Pen Set

    Some days you’re super productive; other days, well, that’s another story. There’s no telling when a bout of writer’s block will strike, but we’re willing to bet productivity slumps on Friday afternoons. A little snack and some coffee can help, but this trio of pens provides a jolt of motivation the healthier way.

    Each pen features an inspirational phrase—take the leap, let’s do this, and do great things—to help your coworker get in the groove just in time to make that deadline.

  • 08 of 12

    Best Game: Desktop Golf

    Golf

     Courtesy of UncommonGOods

    When he can’t be on the links on a sunny summer day, this fun little desktop game is the next best thing. Just larger than the size of a standard piece of printer paper, this miniature golf course will keep your coworker busy and maybe even improve his short game (no promises!). You may even find yourselves engaged in a little office tournament on, particularly slow days.

    Reviewers note that this fun game is perfectly sized for a desk—it doesn’t take up too much space, but it’s large enough to adequately play with.

    Continue to 9 of 12 below.
  • 09 of 12

    Best Under $20: I'd Rather Be Home With My Dog T-Shirt

    Be at home

    Courtesy of Etsy

    Some days—okay, maybe most days—the office is the last place you want to be. This comfortable and comical shirt tells it like it is: Your coworker would really rather be at home binging on the latest season of The Handmaid’s Tale and snuggling with her dog.

    The high-quality cotton shirt is handmade in the United States. It features a relaxed cut that looks great on both men and women. Choose crew-neck or v-neck; short-sleeve or long sleeve.

    Reviewers love how comfortable the shirt is and note how many compliments they get whenever they wear it.

  • 10 of 12

    Best Under $10: Moderately Successful Adult Award Ribbon

    Ribbons

    Courtesy of Etsy

    Does your coworker expect a lot of praise for completing a small task? Or maybe they pass doing the bare minimum every day. Poke a little fun at your favorite coworker with this silly and totally unofficial award. The superlative on this satin ribbon is “moderately successful,” though there are other ribbons available that are just as funny. “I put on pants today,” “not the worst,” “I is smart,” and “best at saying what we’re all thinking” are just a sampling of the other ribbons available. Each one has a spot on the back for a personal message.

  • 11 of 12

    Under $5: Someecards Office Mad Libs

    Sometimes you need a gift that costs less than the price of your cafeteria lunch. This funny and interactive book is destined to be a hit but fits that bill. Just like the classic game you knew and loved as a kid, this 48-page book features 28 fill-in-the-blank stories that are all about office life. It may be a gift for your coworker, but we can just about guarantee it’ll be loved by everyone in the office. (OK, maybe not your boss—it’s a little bit of a distraction!).

    Reviewers call it the “gift that keeps on giving,” noting how much fun their colleagues have playing together.

  • 12 of 12

    Most Relaxing: Because Work Wine Glass

    Glass

    Courtesy of Etsy

    Work can be hard—really, really hard. At the end of a long week crunching numbers, sometimes what your coworker needs the most is a way to unwind. Netflix can help, but some wine to go along with that Friday night binge watching session can really be cathartic.

    This funny handmade 15-ounce wine glass says “because work” in pretty hand-lettering, letting everyone know exactly why that pour of pinot is so heavy-handed.

    Reviewers love the quality of the wine glass and call it the perfect gift for a hardworking coworker. But if there’s a downside, it’s that this glass needs to be hand-washed—we all know how much effort that takes!