Christmas trees, mistletoe, and of course office holiday parties. That’s right folks, tis the season for random gifts to delight and entertain your coworkers. If you’re like me, then your office Christmas — I mean holiday — party is right around the corner. Usually, there is a gift exchange. For many of us, it’s either a white elephant or secret Santa event. Whichever event your admin has planned, take a look at the best white elephant gifts for under $20 below:
- White Elephant Container
- “Bring Me Wine” Socks
- The “NO” Button
- WTF Pad
- Mini Trash and Recycle Desk Organizers
- Mr. Coffee Mug Warmer
- Tabletop Fountain
- Natico Decision Maker Paper Weight
- Year In A Box Meme Calendar
- This Might Be Vodka Water Bottle
- Electric Wine Bottle Opener
- KCup Variety Pack
- USB Clock Fan
- The Corporate Dictionary
- NSFW Rabbit Salt and Pepper Shakers
- Aromatherapy Oil Diffuser
- Himalayan Salt Lamp
- Swear Word Adult Coloring Book
- Wine Wand
- Groot Chia Pet
Table of Contents
1. White Elephant Container
Alright, so this is the safe bet if you want to be cute, but don’t want to color outside the lines. While it may not be the fought over gift of the evening, it’s safe to say you won’t be getting an email asking you to report to HR the following Monday. Plus, it’s a cute way to decorate an office desk and store some candy or holiday cookies for munching.
2. “Bring Me Wine” Socks
However you celebrate the holidays, chances are that booze are part of the tradition. Furthermore, every year, without fail there are bottles of wine galore unwrapped during our white elephant gift exchange. At the very least, spice things up with these clever wine-lover socks. They are well within your budget, and you can grab a cheap bottle of Cabernet on the way to the party to complete the gift.
3. The “NO” Button
If you’ve got cubicles full of passive aggressive coworkers, then the “NO” button may be just what the supervisor ordered. In the future, your colleague won’t even need to expend the energy, or air, to decline that project deadline. It may not be a hit with managers, but the worker bees are sure to appreciate this not so subtle way of sticking it to the man. At the very least use it to relieve some stress when that deadline gets moved up a week!
4. WTF Pad
Another clever way to relieve some stress and complain amongst your office mates, the WTF Pad says pretty much what you’re thinking in an entertaining and safe way. Bonus, the pad comes in different colors. My coworker got this for me (we share a cube wall) and it’s great to pass notes about all those things that are stressing us out. However, I advise avoid using names or make sure you have a shredder handy!
5. Mini Trash and Recycle Desk Organizers
Finally, a gift for the project management team in your office! Because the mantra for that team is “every thing has its place, and every place has its thing.” Spruce up their desk decor with a functional gift that may bring a smile to their face when the Excel spreadsheets threaten to make them cry. Throw in one of those “For Big Mistakes” giant erasers for flair.
6. Mr. Coffee Mug Warmer
Must…have…caffeine. I’m pretty sure that every person in the workforce has said this at least once. While not everyone appreciates a cup of Joe in the AM, many in the corporate world rely on the midnight oil to meet those insane deadlines. At the very least they won’t be sucking down not so iced coffee with this little guy. If you’re feeling real generous, grab an accompanying mug to go with this one.
7. Tabletop Fountain
I’ll be honest, I’m not sure what makes this gift so popular. Perhaps people enjoy the sound of running water to soothe them during those times of stress. Or maybe it’s just something cool to decorate the cube with. However, someone got a different tabletop fountain at our white elephant exchange last year, and it was hands down the most stolen item up for grabs.
I’m not a big fan of maintaining the water level and other maintenance involved, but it seems that not everyone shares my concerns. If your white elephant is a popularity contest, this will definitely earn you some cool points.
8. Natico Decision Maker Paper Weight
Let fate decide when you submit those TPS reports. The Natico decision maker paper weight is the magic eight ball of the corporate world. Ideally, you won’t actually use the decision maker for when to submit your work, but it’s still a fun and entertaining way to pass the day. Also, you can really freak out your boss by setting it to “Maybe” when they come by the desk asking for the third time about that really important proposal.
9. Meme Calendar
Help your coworkers start their day off right, with a laugh from this meme calendar. Perfect for the cube dwelling individuals like myself. However, it could be adapted to work in one of those cushy offices as well. They can keep track of their favorite meme’s by pinning them onto the cubicle walls or that cork board with random to-do notes. If you’re going to get a calendar for the office party, then this should be the one.
10. This Might Be Vodka Water Bottle
Help your office mates get through that 2PM meeting with this deceptive water bottle. Is it water, or is it vodka? Ironically, this may be more popular among the healthy crowd who are less likely to drink. Regardless, this is a safe alternative to some of the other more risque coffee mugs and such.
11. Electric Wine Bottle Opener
Did I mention that wine seems to be a very popular gift at white elephant gift exchanges? If you’re looking for a re-usable gift that people will get multiple uses out of, then you can’t go wrong with this electric wine bottle opener. I mean there’s really not a whole lot to this one, I don’t know what you expect me to say.
12. K Cup Variety Pack
At this point, I’m pretty sure most offices have a Keurig. If your office doesn’t, then you can skip this gift. However, if your boss is like mine, then he has a private stash of K cups to keep the caffeine flowing throughout the day.
Pretty much everyone I know uses a Keurig. I can’t remember the last time I saw an old school coffee pot in use. Nowadays it’s either french press, Keurig, or Starbucks it seems. If you know your co-workers are bean fiends, then try putting this variety pack up for grabs.
Just please make sure you’ve got at least one K cup user in the group before going all in on this gift. It can be a smash or a complete blunder. Use caution!
13. USB Clock Fan
Who doesn’t love a cool gadget to hook up to the unused USB ports on their laptops? First it was mini fridges, or toy rocket launchers (which are cool but don’t fit the $20 budget), and now we have the USB Clock Fan. Digital display of the time lets you count down the minutes until the lunch hour, and the fan will help keep you cool when the pressure is on.
14. Corporate Dictionary
If you or your coworkers are struggling to climb that corporate ladder, maybe the reason is because you don’t speak the lingo. Try the corporate dictionary out. If they’ve ever been in a meeting about a meeting or had the pleasure of hearing a workplace adage, then they’re sure to get a kick out of this tongue in cheek jab at corporate America.
15. NSFW Rabbit Salt and Pepper Shaker
Ahem…nothing says uncomfortable office party like the NSFW Rabbit Salt and Pepper Shaker. What could make for better comedic relief than a couple of rabbits going at it? However, be careful that your audience will not be offended.
If you can pull this off, it’s sure to bring a little life to an otherwise dull office Christmas party and could cause a little competition for who gets to take these cute little bunnies home.
16. Aromatherapy Oil Diffuser
While this isn’t my cup of tea, apparently these are all the rage. I can definitely see why folks would want a soothing scent circulating in the hustle and bustle of the office atmosphere. However, it’s also great for home use.
Although comedic effect does wonders for the office celebration, sometimes a useful (and popular) gift is just what the doctor ordered. Unfortunately, your budget won’t allow you to also pick up the OnePure Essential Oil Kit, but that’s not really your problem.
17. Himalayan Salt Lamp
Ohhhhhmmmmm. Here we have another little gem for those looking for a respite from the daily stress of the office. The Himalayan Salt Lamp gives off that calming glow we all need right before our head hits the desk — errr, I meant pillow.
Furthermore, the lamp comes with a dimmer switch. This makes a great gift for those with light sensitivity issues (like my former coworker — Hi Cindy). Actually, it’s generally a good gift and another very popular item right now.
18. Swear Word Adult Coloring Book
Help your friends and co-workers tap into their inner Van Gogh and let off some steam, before someone loses an ear. Tackling that childhood pastime of coloring can be a great way to relieve stress, and for some reason, the fact that it’s full of curse words makes it that much better.
While not everyone will appreciate this, there’s always that one friend who has a sailor’s mouth. They’ll definitely get a kick out of this white elephant gift.
19. Wine Wand
Alright, I know we’ve covered the whole wine is popular subject by now. If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em. Surely there will be a bottle or 10 floating around the white elephant exchange. Offer another accessory for your friends and colleagues to fight over.
The wine wand is a triple threat. Helping to chill wine (without ice watering it down), assist with pouring, and also aerating the wine to bring out the flavor. While I’m a whiskey drinker myself, this is sure to be a hit.
20. Groot Chia Pet
What white elephant gift list would be complete without at least one chia pet. However, this takes the cutest Guardian of the Galaxy and turns him into your own personal desk ornament. It’s great because Groot is a tree, so it makes sense that his hair would be chia leaves. Any pop culture junkie is sure to fight over this little guy. Even those who aren’t up on current trends just might find him adorable enough to steal.
Well, there you have it folks. That’s 2018’s best white elephant gift list. Hopefully this has at the very least sparked your creative juices for finding that sought after white elephant gift for the office party. If you’ve found this gift list helpful, you might want to check out some of the others write ups I’ve done in the top gift lists section.
Perhaps you didn’t find anything to tickle your fancy. In that case, take a look at the different gift recommendations here. However, be warned that not all of them will be in the $20 budget. Also, I’m still building out the site, so if you’re looking for gift ideas for a specific genre, leave a comment in the section below for me to tackle. Until then, happy holiday shopping!
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