Key Takeaways
  • Shopping for picky people can be a challenging task, but there are gifts that you can give your loved ones that they will be satisfied with receiving.
  • Holiday shopping doesn't have to be hard, especially when shopping for your loved ones; it's crucial not to overthink your gift ideas and know that simplicity may be the best option.
  • Although the holiday season is in full effect, it's essential to stick to your budget to avoid overspending, leading to buying unnecessary items.  
Are you ready to make some real money moves?

Let me guess. You know someone who has said the phrase that we all dread. "I don't want anything this year." But, I mean, even if they really don't want anything, you still want to give them something, right? 

Oddly enough, those without a long wish gift list are sometimes the hardest to shop for when it comes to gifting. This is because they are usually considered "picky people." It isn't that they will look at a gift you've purchased for them and tell you, "I don't want that," like some obnoxious toddler. (Whoever responds that way may just be a prick, and therefore, I wouldn't bother buying them a gift anyway.) Instead, these are people who have very specific interests or needs. 

Image Credit: Anonymous /

Holiday shopping for picky people can be challenging, but by following a few easy tips, you can get past this part of your holiday to-do tasks and satisfy your picky holiday picks.

1. Simplicity may be the best option. 

The more over-the-top you go, the more likely you are to miss the mark. 

Have you ever thoroughly thought through and chosen what you believed was the perfect gift, built anticipation, became overly excited as the time neared for you to give present the gift, and then it all fell flat? It turns out that you completely overthought it. In fact, something simpler and probably cheaper would have been more satisfying to the receiver. 

2. Gift cards are not a gift-giving sin. 

Everybody has a favorite store, including you and the person on your list for gift giving. So take a moment to think about the store where your picky friend likes to shop. Whatever that store is, your person will likely appreciate a gift card for that store because they will be shopping there again. 

If you don't know a favorite store of the person you are giving a gift card to, you can take a more general route. Some malls have a gift card for the entire mall, or you can provide a Visa gift card that can be used anywhere. Both can be a perfect gift card option. If you want to be more gender-focused, guys usually appreciate a home improvement or electronics store card, while girls often enjoy a spa or department store card. 

Gift cards may not be considered the most thoughtful gift, but they are still a good option. After all, as an adult, who wouldn't want to make a purchase at their favorite store for free or at a discounted rate because of a gift card? 

3. Give them the receipt. 

With your gift-giving, be sure also to provide the receipt. By doing so, it is kind of a sneaky backdoor way to give them a gift card while still giving them a gift. 

How is that, you say? Well, when you give someone a gift with the receipt, they can easily return the gift and get the value of it as a gift card. 

Pro Tip: Put the receipt discretely inside the gift box. That way, the gift is still a surprise. 

Therefore, if you choose something they actually want, you've chosen a good gift. On the other hand, if you've chosen something that your picky person doesn't care for, then they can still return the gift in exchange for a store credit or gift card. It is a win-win! 

Providing the receipt with your gift is also a general gift-giving best practice because, even if you follow someone's instructions to buy a gift, you might still get the wrong thing. With the receipt provided, they can easily swap it for the correct item or an item they prefer.

4. Make them something personalized. 

If someone is super picky, why would making them something super specific help? The more of your time and effort put into a gift, the more meaningful it becomes, and that goes a long way in overcoming the barriers of pickiness. People you perceive as picky will often appreciate the effort you put into making a personalized gift, even if they don't care for the gift itself. 

Personalized gifts can include a lot of different things. Some ideas include the following:

  • Creating clothing or blankets with special meaning 
  • Having a design printed on a T-shirt 
  • Crafting an ornament 
  • Commission or create a painting of a special location or family member 
  • A personalized "Build-a-Bear." 
  • And other things that take more time than money. 

You don't have to be super crafty to do this. Many of the listed options are readily available online and are relatively inexpensive. On top of that, the quality will be sure to impress even the pickiest person. 

5. Buy them their "Gazingus Pin." 

You might be wondering, what on earth is a Gazingus Pin? Even if you've never heard the term before, you definitely know what a Gazingus Pin is, and you could probably identify yours in a matter of seconds. A Gazingus Pin is anything that we can't pass by without purchasing. To put it another way, it is that thing that someone collects even if it is entirely useless. 

What is your picky person's Gazingus Pin? That can be an easy go-to gift. 

Examples of Gazingus Pins include: 

  • Hats 
  • Small electronics 
  • Porcelain dolls 
  • Santa Claus statues 
  • Headbands 
  • Rooster paraphernalia 
  • Shoes 
  • And pretty much anything else someone could like. 

If all else fails, look at what your picky friend owns a lot of and buy them more. For example, if your friend has a collection of watches, buying a watch as a gift is a safe bet because that is more than likely their Gazingus Pin. 

Stick to your budget.

Due to holiday shopping for picky people often being complicated and stressful, it can lead to wanting to pull out all the stops or going into "go big or go home" mode. Don't fall for this trap. You want to stick to your holiday budget during the holiday season. Buying a bigger and better gift just for the sake of trying to impress your picky friend is not worth it. 

Any of the five tips given are relatively inexpensive and can still be impactful. 

Breaking your budget is not the answer here. 

The amount you spend on a gift does not correlate with how much someone appreciates it. However, it does negatively correlate with your financial well-being. So remember, if you're holiday shopping for a picky person, find something that will be impactful but won't break the bank. 

What have you been successful in buying for that picky person in your life?

Main Image Credit: Jill Wellington /

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