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Oh, the teenage years. The in-between time in our lives when we’re halfway between child and adult and the changes in our mind and body become so apparent. Being a teen in today’s world can be confusing and intimidating with social media platforms and pop culture influences being more present than ever before. Because of this, we want to offer ideas that inspire self-esteem, confidence, exploration, and trust from some of our favourite brands and makers!
Buying gifts for the teens in your life can be tricky, but it doesn’t have to be. Our intention with this list is to provide you with mindful gift ideas that not only nurture your connection with them, but also nurture the relationship they have with themselves.
Connection is what keeps us going. We all need people in our lives that we can be our true, authentic selves around. The Friendship Game from School of Life is the perfect way to build connection and get to know your friends and family just a little more. Players take turns rolling the dice and answering personal questions about love, work, self, and family. The more you can open up and be vulnerable, the more success you’ll have.
This game will help the teen you’re shopping for spend more quality time with the important people in their lives and have intentional conversations that matter. It’s a personal and thoughtful gift that you can feel good about - and our personal favourite on this list!
Sundays’ organic nail polish is an easy way to add a little fun to any look! Sundays is a nail salon based in New York that’s dedicated to wellness, they wanted to create a natural nail polish that matched their values without compromising on quality. Their nail polish is salon-quality, vegan, cruelty-free, moisturizing, and 10-free - meaning that they’re made without the use of the 10 most common chemicals found in nail polish. The brand was built on simplicity and individuality, so their beautiful variety of shades will definitely have the perfect match for the teen on your list.
No outfit is complete without a cute pair of earrings to tie everything together. These brass studs are the perfect everyday pair! Moonlight for Violet was established in 2009 by Shannon Kehler, a lover of colours and geometric shapes. Most of the earrings she creates are made with polymer clay which makes them super light and comfortable for earring lovers of all ages.
Her classic Hexagon Brass Studs come in a variety of colours and are made with gold-plated brass studs and surgical steel. So they’re great for those with sensitive ears!
These cross stitch kits from Diana Watters are the perfect way to ignite creativity, inspire self-care, and easily provide a new hobby for any teen. Diana Watters shares meaningful and inspiring goods and created her cross stitch kits to give everyone the opportunity to get their creativity flowing. The kits come with everything you’ll need to create a beautiful cross-stitch artwork. It’s the perfect gift for that teen in your life who’s always looking for a new creative project and loves to work with their hands. We have some really fun designs as well, ranging from flowers, to bumblebees, and even a festive llama!
Fanny packs have made a come back in a major way. Now that we're all toting around masks and sanitizer, they've become a nice convenient way to access the essentials. Sticky Lemon is a company from the Netherlands that makes super cute and colourful bags made from recycled plastic water bottles that are the perfect accessory for the teen in your life. Two styles and a variety of colours, we've got these at both shops and online, and hopefully they don't get mad when Mom wants to borrow it for herself.
Minimal prints and organic cotton make these hair scrunchies from The Freon Collective a super cute and great little gift for just about anyone! The patterns are printed using water and plant-based ink and are also pre-shrunk to ensure a good fit. Plus, they’re made right here in Canada!
The Freon Collective is a small business in Toronto’s Distillery District that focuses on offering reusable alternatives to disposable products. They’re a low-waste lifestyle brand that only uses ethically sourced and sustainable cotton to create their products. We also love that any unused fabric scraps are donated to textile programs to be used for other projects, so the Freon Collective can stay committed to their low-waste promise.
Puzzles are a great way to pass time while giving your mind a little exercise. Here are our favourites according to who you’re shopping for!
Did you know that puzzles can help keep your brain sharp? Bookworms probably already know this, so they’ll be thankful for this fun Bibliophile Book Club 1000 Piece Puzzle inspired by the best-selling book. It features one of Jane Mount's signature and vibrant illustrations that bring literary people, places, and things to life. Galison puzzles are packaged in sturdy two-piece matte-finish boxes, making them perfect for gifting, reuse, and storage.
For the astronomy-loving teen in your life, the 1000-Piece Earth Puzzle from Four Point features incredible detail as well as a challenge that will surely get anyone’s mental gears turning. The best part? Four Point Puzzles donates 10% of their Earth puzzle sales to wildlife and habitat conservation—not only on Earth Day, but every day. Not to mention they’re Canadian too!
Who doesn’t love a good bowl of ramen? Seltzer’s Ramen Bowl Puzzle is a great gift for the food-loving teen. Seltzer is a women-led company that values creativity, curiosity, and laughter. They call themselves makers of cheerful goods that aim to inspire creativity and connection, something we could all use a little more of.
This journal is a thoughtful gift that will encourage teenage boys to share their dreams, hopes, and fears honestly with their mothers or caretakers. Just Between Us: Mother & Son was written by Merideth Jacobs, the award-winning co-author of the “Just Between Us” Series, and her son Jules. Each page offers advice, guidelines, and prompts for both mother and son to reflect on, and encourages vulnerability and honesty to build connection.
Just Between Us is a great way to approach and share difficult challenges that boys face growing up, and share important milestones and memories. It’ll be a beautiful keepsake to look back on as they grow older.
This Do What Makes You Happy Shirt from The Funnel Cake Tree is the perfect reminder to do exactly that! The shirt is made from 100% heirloom cotton and is handmade with love in Ohio. Not to mention, the bright yellow colour will have anyone smiling anytime they see it.
The simple and quirky design makes it a great choice for the teenager on your list. Give them a reason to smile with a fun t-shirt to match!
The Young Person’s Guide to Conquering the World is an illustrated journal that was written by Teen Vogue’s Editorial Team has one overarching message: You are the boss of your own life, and the world needs your leadership. It provides an empowering space for teenagers to start the process of figuring out what they want, what their gifts are, and how they can impact the world.
This journal is definitely a keepsake that will be treasured for years to come. It’s divided into sections like their goals and ambitions, their relationships, their physical and emotional self-care, and their sense of higher purpose to help them get started on the journey to discovering their true, authentic selves.
Teens are known to be hard to shop for, but we believe that building confidence and connection is so incredibly important during this age. We hope our ideas help you find the perfect gift or inspire you to find something that truly resonates with the young adult in your life.
What are your thoughts on buying gifts for teenagers? We would love to hear your thoughts and experiences. Share them below in the comments!