Need to round out his Christmas gifts with a small, thoughtful, and useful present? Then get something that rounds out his grooming regimen. There are thousands of products that fit snugly in his stocking, and though small in stature, they can make big improvements in his daily self-care regimen. (Also, you can do this easily without feeling passive aggressive. It’s not like you’re going to gift him some mouthwash or deodorant here.)
Here are some suggestions for some grooming goods and products that make perfect stocking stuffers. If you’re otherwise looking for a larger, centerpiece-type gift, we have a roundup of the best grooming gifts as well.
A sheet mask
Slide one or two of these masks into the side of his stocking; they’re a terrific one-off item that gives him a spa-like experience at home. These moisture treatments pump a ton of nutrients into his skin, leaving him with brighter, firmer skin after the fact.
He can do them before work or on a big day, or even before bed if he wants to wake up with some seriously glowy skin. (Glowy is good, for the record.) Dr. Jart+ ($6) has the best assortment, hands down.
A top-shelf soap
There’s the dime-store soap, and then there’s that thrice-milled soap (or milled as many as seven times), which lasts weeks if not months longer. Heck, a single large bar from Claus Porto ($21) on his kitchen sink ledge can last a year, and keep his hands from drying out all the while.
In the shower it’ll wear faster, but still last exponentially longer than anything that costs $1. And that smell? Divine!
A manicure kit
If his nail clippers have long rusted, and if his hang nails are long overdue for a clipping, then surely he’ll appreciate a fresh kit. Get him an all-in-one set, from tiny snippers to cuticle pushers and dirt cleaners.
Wolf Project ($11) has a terrific, full-range kit–tweezers included.
An all-purpose balm
Balm is one of those all-purpose products that every guy should have ready. It can shield his lips from winter chapping, or even smooth flyaways in his beard or hair. It can protect wounds from bacterial intrusion, all while expediting healing and recovery. It can protect a tattoo from fading in the sun, or keep hangnails at bay on the tips of each finger.
In short, a reliable balm goes a long way, even in tiny tubes. Oh, and Doctor Rogers RESTORE ($30) is the best out there.
A night cream
A good night cream or mask will magnify all of his efforts to preserve those youthful good looks. By protecting his skin from moisture loss overnight (a huge problem at the height of winter), and by pumping nutrients into the skin, these products help him wake up with some seriously stellar skin—especially with continued nightly use.
Our favorites are Aesop’s night mask ($125, wear it 1-2x weekly) and Clark’s Botanicals night cream with retinol ($115, wear it on all the other nights, or nightly sans any mask in rotation).
An anti-chafing cream
If he isn’t vocal about his thick thighs and all the sweat they can build up, then he’s probably suffering silently. Things can get real murky down under, and a tapioca-starch cream is the ticket to soothed skin, as well as preventing things like thigh rub, fungal breakouts, swamp crotch, and more.
It might feel like a gag gift to present him with Happy Nuts’ Comfort Cream ($14), for example, but he’ll treasure it each and every day, promise.
A shine eliminator
Speaking of sweat buildup… anyone with excessively oily skin knows how annoying it can be to have a shiny brow all day long—even a slightly warm room can turn the forehead into a studio light bounce.
A simple cream-to-powder product like Menaji’s Liquid Powder Shine Eliminator ($36) is a lifesaver for these folks. Mix a pea-sized amount into the daily moisturizer, or apply it after the moisturizer, for a matte finish, and to thwart any oil accumulation throughout the day.
A scalp massager/exfoliator
A 2-3x weekly scalp scrub in the shower will help lift any dead skin up atop his head, while also boosting circulation to the hair follicles. (So, against the logic that this will incite hair fall, it in fact strengthens hairs and promotes thicker growth at the roots.) Plus, it feels so damn good.
Just tell him to go gentle up there—he doesn’t need to draw blood to achieve said results. The hair experts at Sachajuan ($17) have a terrific option.
While you’re at it, check out of 25 days of self-care advent calendar and a list of candles for every mood.
Photo via Claus Porto