Men. They can be so hard to shop for. First of all, have you ever been shopping for men's clothes? There is no selection. You can buy pants or shirts or jackets or shoes. That's it. Where is the variety? And, it's unfortunate that women can borrow from men (watches, button-downs, jackets, t-shirts) but men can't borrow as easily from women.
But, I think that they key for most men (key word most) is that they prefer practical gifts. Which is totally fine; I like practical gifts as well. But, to make a gift truly outstanding, you want to add a touch of luxury to something practical.
1.) Shinola watches are beautiful. They remind me of a classic Timex watch, but only more exquisitely made and something that you wouldn't be ashamed to wear around adults. As a bonus, they're the hot new brand this year, being made not only in America, but also in Detroit. I think this watch would make a great "starter" watch, perhaps for someone who just graduated from college or is starting graduate school. The prices are reasonable considering the craftsmanship.
2.) Cuyana Overnight Bag: Have I already sung the praises of Cuyana? I think they are an amazing company and I am looking forward to acquiring more of their pieces over the years. I find that many men--many people, in general--are lacking a good overnight bag. Let's be clear--a gym bag is not an overnight bag, a backpack is not an overnight bag, a rolling carry-on is not an overnight bag, a plastic grocery bag is not an overnight bag. An overnight bag is an overnight bag. This one by Cuyana is beautiful and monogrammable.
3.) Smythson Jewelry Box: I wish someone would buy this for me. Pretty much everything Smythson makes is beautiful and smells like heaven. It's perfect for watches, cufflinks and rings.
4.) J. Crew Cashmere Hoodie: Here's what I've learned about people. They love hoodies. But you can't give someone a hoodie for Christmas--that's poor person talk. You gotta get them a cashmere hoodie. Who cares if it's impossible to take care of cashmere? If you're running in circles where you go around buying people cashmere hoodies, chances are they can afford a trip to the cleaner's.
5.) Eye cream: I've never tried the stuff from Kiehl's. I mean, I would start there, because Kiehl's makes excellent products, especially for men. However, depending on the age of your recipient, you might want to go with another product. Take a trip to Sephora and have a look around. I like to find a nice gay retail worker, because they usually know the best products for men.