The Best Gifts Under $5 That Are Actually Useful

best gifts under $5

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There are plenty of occasions that aren’t birthdays or holidays when you want to get someone a little something without breaking the bank. Surprisingly, there are plenty of gifts under $5 that people are sure to love and appreciate.

Even if you’re only dropping $5, you want it to be $5 well spent. Whether you’re looking to commemorate a work achievement for a colleague or surprise a friend with something out of the blue, these affordable gift ideas are all thoughtful and useful options. Some fall into the classic gift category that everyone will enjoy and others can be more fun and unique or tailored to the recipient. They’re truly some of the best gifts under $5 that you can find, and they all make for an easy, versatile and low-commitment purchase. You might as well order some just to have on hand in case anything comes up that calls for a little present.

Read on to explore a sampling of our favorite gifts under $5 that you definitely won’t regret buying. There’s no doubt that you’ll think of someone who deserves a pick-me-up, and one of these will be the perfect thing to do just that.


1. Tie-Dyed Socks


Outlet shopping is a great way to find a deal, but can also be chaotic in person. Online outlet shopping is the perfect solution to get good quality items for less, like these cool blue tie-dyed J.Crew socks. They’re one of the best gifts under $5 because the recipient will never guess that they were under $5, knowing the reputation of this brand. They’re also one size fits all, so they’ll likely fit anyone you want to give them to.

j crew tie dyed socks Courtesy of J.Crew Factory

2. DesignWorks Ink Lined Journal


Everyone who buys this notebook loves it, enough that they use one themselves and get more to give as gifts. It’s a functional gift under $5 that anyone who writes or even takes notes or makes lists in any capacity will appreciate. It’s good quality, looks chic and serves a purpose. The pages are lined to keep things neat and organized, and people will be proud to show it off at work or school.

marbled notebook Courtesy of Target

3. Irish Coffee Mug


If you know anyone who values their kitchen aesthetics and likes to look good while drinking any beverage, this is the perfect gift under $5. It’s called an Irish Coffee Mug because it’s particularly suited to showcase the layers and whipped cream of that drink, but this slender tempered glass mug is suitable for any hot or cold beverages. Some added bonuses are that it’s dishwasher and microwave safe, and looks elegant even when it’s empty.

irish coffee mug Courtesy of Crate and Barrel

4. Portable 2-Pack No Touch Door Opener Tool


In the post-COVID era, this is a great gift that anyone will find extremely useful. You just pop one of these tools onto your keychain and it’s with you at all times for pressing elevator buttons, taking money out of an ATM or even latching onto door handles to open them without touching a thing. It’s a gift that everyone will appreciate these days.

no touch door opener Courtesy of Amazon

5. Aloe Vera Potted Plant


This is a unique take on a classic gift. Instead of getting a succulent, go for this affordable aloe vera plant. For under $5, you’ll be giving someone a plant that can last over 100 years with proper care, and it’s easy to keep alive. Not only will it make anyone’s home more vibrant, but they can actually utilize the aloe vera for medicinal purposes. It’s a lot to give for such a low price.

aloe vera potted plant Courtesy of Ikea

6. Glass Jar Lavender and Eucalyptus Candle


Another classic gift idea, this glass jar lavender and eucalyptus candle is one of the best you can get for only $5. It smells great, looks great and burns for up to 25 hours. It’s a great option for a housewarming gift or anyone who could benefit from adding a little warmth and brightness to their home.

glass jar candle Courtesy of Target

7. Silk Sleep Mask


Better sleep is one of the best gifts you could possibly give. This sleep mask will give someone exactly that. It’s lightweight, pure silk and blocks 100 percent of ambient light. It’s adjustable and super comfortable to wear, so it won’t move while you sleep and will do nothing but help you rest easy.

silk eye mask Courtesy of Amazon

8. Bamboo Straws


This bamboo straw kit is the perfect gift under $5 to help people become more eco-friendly. They look great in any drink or displayed in the kitchen or on a bar cart, and they’ll replace those old plastic straws. These bamboo straws are made to last but are also meant to be biodegradable and can be composted after use. Each one is a little bit different, and the kit comes with a cleaning brush and cotton pouch if you want to take them on the go.

bamboo straw kit Courtesy of Public Goods

9. Glow-In-The-Dark Nee-Doh


If you want a great gift for kids or stressed-out adults, this Glow-In-The-Dark Nee-Doh is a fun and unique option. It’s made to be a stress toy with a soft texture that you can knead, pull, throw and squish but always return to its original shape. Adults will appreciate the stress relief, and kids will love to play with it and watch it glow in the dark.

stress toy Courtesy of Urban Outfitters

10. Medium Eco-Friendly Tote Bag


This simple, lightweight and eco-friendly tote bag is one of the best gifts under $5 because it’s a necessity that anyone will be able to use. Everyone needs something reusable for errands, groceries and all sorts of shopping or travel. It’s a great size, a neutral color that goes with anything, can fold up to be stored and is durable enough for long-lasting use.

eco-friendly tote bag Courtesy of Uniqlo

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