Untangling the Anxiety: Holiday Gift Shopping for the Overwhelmed and/or Indecisive
As the holiday season rolls in, so does the familiar mix of excitement and stress, especially when it comes to gift-giving. The human instinct to be generous is deep and ancient. Research shows that when we give gifts, we become happier, healthier, and more connected to others. At the same time, holiday gift-giving is often overwhelming, anxiety-producing, and stressful. We hope that naming some of these challenges and sharing some solutions/gift ideas can help make a space where the act of selecting your gifts can be more relaxed and joyful.
What gift do I get when I don't know someone well?
When gifting someone you don't know well, it's safest to aim for universally appreciated items like a social pheromone (C24 is perfect for almost anyone), a perfume fixative, or a perfume scent locket that can also be hung in a closet, car, or next to a bed if someone doesn't wear jewelry. These gifts are practical yet feel special.
When gifting someone you want to know better, a carefully selected perfume or sample set can convey a special level of caring attention and thoughtfulness. Visit our guide to choosing the perfect perfume for (almost) anyone for tips and tricks to help.
Whatever route you choose, including a heartfelt note will make your present feel more kind and personal, emphasizing the gesture of giving itself.
What do I buy for a group of people in a social circle, family, or workplace?
Buying gifts for a circle of people is a delicate balance between wanting to keep things equitable, giving something unique, and keeping an eye on the holiday budget. Premade sample sets are an economical and fun way to make sure that everyone gets something that suits the seasonal occasion or that fits their personality.
Gifting sample sets at a small group gathering makes a great excuse for a 'perfume party' where people can check out each other's samples and compare favorite notes.
I'm feeling budget-conscious, how can I still gift something memorable and meaningful?
Consider making a personalized sample set ($20 USD) that speaks to something special about or meaningful to your recipient.
Do they have a favorite tv series, novel, or movie? Maybe they'd like a selection of themed scents or scents for their favorite characters.
Are they wishing for or planning a vacation? Maybe they'd like a selection of scents for the climate of their dream destination (tropical, wintery, foresty, etc.).
I want to splurge! What are some extra special ideas?
Consider splurging on special reserves like dark-fruited Cherries of Night, glowing Ambre de Amour, uniquely compelling Spiritus Fumosus, honey-sexy Love Song of Shui Sin, or incense-laden Gifts of the Magi.
If someone already has some favorite Alkemia perfumes, they might enjoy a perfume spray upgrade of their favorite extrait(s) ($45 USD) or give them a paired set of a spray and a rollerball of the same scent so they can surround themselves with fragrance ($65 USD).
My person already has a big perfume collection. What can I gift them?
A set of single layering note perfumes either as a sample set ($20 USD) or in bottles ($20-$45 USD) will let your favorite perfume lover customize the perfumes in their fragrance wardrobe to match their moods or the seasons, experiment with making their own fragrance creations, rekindle romances with perfumes that have become boring, or add their favorite scent element. Single layering notes are also beloved by people who prefer simple, unfussy perfumes. Our newest single layering notes are Vanille and Tabac.
Our exclusive perfume fixative ($18 USD) will enhance the longevity of any perfumes that are too ephemeral. Our fixative is now available in an alcohol-free spray format ($30 USD) that can work as a base layer for any EDP or cologne.
I have a lot of people to buy gifts for and I'm overloaded with choices, overwhelmed with decisionmaking, and I don't have enough time/mental bandwidth/spoons/patience/focus. Help!
Wishing you calm serenity, blessings of the season, and happy holidays (whichever and however you celebrate them)!
- Man Tangled Up in Christmas Decorations by Al Brule, 1953
- Christmas at Chicago Union Station by Norman Rockwell, 1944
- Escena galante (A Gallant Scene) by Víctor Patrício de Landaluze, c. 1880
- La llegada al baile (Arriving at the Ball) by Víctor Patrício de Landaluze, c. 1880
- Depiction of Romans celebrating Saturnalia from a wall painting found at Pompeii
- Woman Sitting on a Bed by a Pink Plant by M. Kato, 1919
- Gifts of the Magi by J.C. Leyendecker, 1900
- Vintage New Year Holiday Card, c. 1900