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24 special gifts for Mother’s Day

Off-the-beaten-path gifts for that unique, amazing mom. (Photos: Walmart, Bouqs, Target)

Get ready for Mother’s Day 2023 and pick out the perfect present … with a little help from this handy guide. Moms aren’t big on asking for gifts — she just wants you to be happy! — but that doesn’t mean she won’t appreciate a little something to unwrap on May 14. In addition to our expert gift picks for moms and mothers-in-law, we’ve spoken to Smart Shopping Expert Trae Bodge, who regularly shares her savvy tips on national TV shows including the Today Show and NBC Nightly News.

People are splashing out on mom this year, but sales won’t be drastically higher than 2022. “I expect spending to be up only modestly this year,” says Bodge of Mother’s Day shopping. “Spending increases most years, but some more so than others. With the economy on shaky ground, my guess is that shoppers will be conservative in their spending, similar to how they spent over the holidays.” Luckily, we have some great gift picks that are amazingly affordable, like this flowering Bromeliad for $20, a $32 “Thank You, Mom” candle and a chai tea selection for just $25.

When it comes to knowing what to get for mom, Bodge advises listening throughout the year. “So often, the people we buy gifts for are dropping clues all year long,” she says. “It could be as opaque as, ‘I’d really like one of those someday,’ to something more vague, like expressing an interest in something.” And Bodge has a great life hack for keeping track of hints! “When I hear clues like that, I’m now in the habit of jotting them down in a folder I have in the Notes app on my phone,” she says.

Check out our fabulous Mother’s Day gift picks below.

If your mom loves spending time in makeup superstore Sephora, treat her to this product duo from Gucci. The luxury brand’s Flora scent, Gorgeous Gardenia, is included in rollerball form alongside a tube of their mascara. “This is probably the best thing I have ever gotten from Sephora,” writes one customer. “I was so happy to see that Sephora introduced the Gucci mascara because it is by far my absolute favorite mascara… and that’s saying a lot considering how many I’ve tried.” And the eau de parfum is a winner, too! “It is so feminine and you don’t want to stop sniffing it smells so good.” Bonus: The pretty floral packaging is gift-ready.

Appreciation + aromatherapy


‘Thank You, Mom’ Scented Candle

Bergamot, lavender and sage aromas waft through the air when this 13.75-ounce soy blend candle is lit. But the message on this gift may be even better than the scent! A simple thanks will make Mom’s day.

$38 at Amazon

Mom will get 60-80 hours of beautifully-scented burn time with Homesick’s 13.75-ounce candle. Top notes of bergamot, lavender and sage intermingle with jasmine, ylang ylang, sandalwood, musk and lily. The “Thank You, Mom” candle comes packaged in a lovely floral box and you know your mom will love the sentiment. We love that there’s also a place to add your own message on the box. “Smells so light and floral, my mom loved it,” writes one happy customer. “It also looks super cute as a decoration.”

Why go through the hassle of printing photos yourself, ordering frames separately and then putting it all together to wrap and pack when you can simply use Keepsake? The framing company will take your photo upload and ship out a beautiful framed print for mom. “I ordered three framed photographs from Keepsake and my order arrived within three days, even on the week of July 4th,” writes one customer. “The frames were high quality, professional and beautifully packaged. Great value for the price and I love supporting a small business. I will be ordering again!” Choose a favorite childhood photo or a great snap of the grandkids.

Wrapped in your love


If you’ve ever felt a Barefoot Dreams blanket then you know they are seriously soft. If your mom loves to cozy up on the couch for her favorite shows or with a good book, we think she’ll love this everyday luxury. Measuring 54 x 72 inches, there’s plenty of room to stretch out with this polyester microfiber throw. Bonus: Mom can toss it in the washing machine. If cheetah isn’t her thing, we also love the silver Fauna print.

We’ve never seen such a cute toaster, and we think your mom will agree! Also available in sage, cornflower blue, black, white and oyster gray, it has a touch-activated panel and preset buttons including Bagel, Frozen and Reheat. The extra-wide slides accommodate a variety of breads — perfect. And the Walmart reviews are great, too. “This toaster is the prettiest toaster I’ve ever owned! It truly is a work of art,” writes one customer. “I LOVE the color. It isn’t just pretty, however. It works great and has settings not just for toasting, but for warming things up and for bagels etc. I like that it has the mechanism that hugs the slices of bread while toasting.”

Mama has a nice ring


Some mamas just want jewelry. And they wouldn’t be wrong! If you’ve got a mom who loves sparkle, this JTV piece makes a great gift. Tiny white zircon stones set in 18k gold (over sterling silver) spell out “Mama.” Add a velvet gift box for $14 or a wood gift box for $17 and present her ring in style. Fun fact: Zircon is a naturally-occurring stone that resembles diamond, not to be mistaken for lab-created cubic zirconia.

Dialect coach Samara Bay helps Hollywood actors with movie roles, but she also helps people use their voices to find their power. Her insights on redefining what power and authority sound like make for a compelling read. If mom loves inspirational authors like Brené Brown, we think she’ll enjoy Permission to Speak. “Samara Bay’s book is a powerful, enjoyable read,” writes one Amazon reviewer. “I couldn’t recommend it more highly. You will like yourself better, stand a little taller, feel a little braver and get a loving kick in the butt to use your voice for good.”

Who needs a Dyson Airwrap when this $55 dryer is so great? Revlon’s One-Step Volumizer has over 333,000 glowing reviews on Amazon and that’s because it really works. Simply brush out your hair with the One-Step Volumizer and hot air dries as you style. The new model even has an improved motor.

“This thing is magical!” writes one Amazon customer. “Seriously. Where has this been all my life??? Why have I been sleeping on this!? Why have I been using a blower dryer AND a round brush all my hair drying life when I could’ve been using this all along?” If the mom in your life doesn’t own a Revlon One-Step and she has hair, we recommend that you make this purchase.

A sentimental gift idea, this Uncommon Goods original has so many personalized details. Each family member’s birth flower is depicted through artist Veronica Ballart’s watercolors on archival matte paper. Then details about each person are added below the flowers; hobbies, achievements, and attributes can be highlighted — to mom’s delight, no doubt. Opt for two to eight flowers, unframed, for $85. More flowers and framed options go up to $175.

Chocolates are a very popular Mother’s Day gift option — why stray from a classic? This Godiva box is downright delicious and mom will love the assortment of premium chocolates. Amazon reviewers note that their boxes arrived safely-packed with unmelted chocolate. “The chocolates were delivered nicely on ice and the taste was incredible!!!” writes one Amazon reviewer who bought the Godiva Gold Edition box as a Mother’s Day gift for her sister. “My mom finished the whole thing within a day,” writes another satisfied customer. Hopefully your mom will share a few pieces!

Vibrant sunflowers, white spray roses, yellow billy balls and mini hydrangeas combine in a bold, sunny bouquet that mom will love. Opt for one bunch of 12 stems for just $49 (shown) or go bigger and order the Deluxe (24 stems) for $64 or even the Grand size with 36 stems for $79. If you’re so inclined, you can even upgrade and add a vase for $12 or $18. A bouquet is always welcome, especially when it’s a Bouqs bunch.

Skincare is having a moment, and we think sought-after products make great Mother’s Day gifts for moms who want to treat their skin right. Sunday Riley’s CEO Glow face oil is a great option; it’s ultra hydrating thanks to its nutrient-rich Vitamin C formula. Mom can massage a few drops onto her face, neck, and decolletage for a dewy glow. A .5-ounce bottle runs $40, but we think mom will love this serum so much you may want to consider upgrading to the 1.18-ounce size!

A great gift for the mom who is into home decor, you can find this unique vase at Target. Standing 13.25 inches, it’s the perfect place for a sweet little bouquet. The watertight terracotta looks great filled with flowers or just standing solo. This Opalhouse and Jungalow design collab is only available online, so order one for mom now. “I am in love!” writes one Target customer of her vase. “What a perfect addition to my collection. Packed with care and arrived in perfect condition.”

A handy tool to have in her kitchen arsenal, The Wine Opener makes getting that bottle open a snap for mom (or anyone). Choose from gold or chrome, and add text for an additional $9. Each gift box also includes rechargeable batteries, a USB charging cable, and a foil cutter. “Bought it for my husband but really it was for me!” comments one reviewer. “So easy to use, foil cutter is perfect addition! We all fight to use it in the house.” Don’t make mom fight for it, gift her her very own Wine Opener this Mother’s Day.

Easy like Sunday morning


They’re a splurge, but Printfesh’s pajamas are beloved for their quality, 100% organic cotton and for their vibrant prints. Opt for Papaya Paradise (pictured), Hot Pink Bagheera, Lemon Cloud Zest, or Blush Bagheera prints, in sizes that range from XS to 5X. The relaxed cut adds to this style’s comfort level. We can just picture mom relaxing in her Printfresh jammies on Mother’s Day and enjoying breakfast in bed!

For the mom who loves cooking


If the mom in your life enjoys cooking (or just cookbooks) we highly recommend this gem. Deb Perelman’s Smitten Kitchen recipes are not intimidating, and they are delicious. Named Amazon’s Best Cookbook of the Year and a Bon Appetit Best Book of the Year, Smitten Kitchen Keepers needs to find its way to your mom’s kitchen this Mother’s Day. Hot tip: gift the cookbook along with a dish you’ve made her!

“What I look for in a cookbook: Photos for every recipe, attainable ingredients, detailed instructions that make the recipe seem achievable. Deb nails all three,” writes a happy Amazon customer. “I have already made several recipes out of this book, and all have been a success (turkey meatloaf for skeptics and ranch-y crushed potatoes [DIVINE, one of my favorite meals I’ve ever eaten]; chicken with chorizo, tomatoes, and rice; chicken parmesan; salted milk chocolate cake [this is THE BEST CAKE I HAVE EVER MADE and I bake a lot!]; green angel hair pasta; fettuccine with white ragu).” Best cake she’s ever made? In all caps? C’mon, you know you want to try it.

For the crafty mom


Cricut Joy Machine

If your mom enjoys whipping up all kinds of crafts, a Cricut machine is the perfect gift. Mom can crank out cards, decals, labels and so much more with this bad boy.

$179 at Amazon

It’s a crafter’s dream! Cricut’s small machine, the Joy, is perfect for creating personalized and custom decal designs. All mom needs is the Design Space app to get started. Projects including banners and decals are easy to make. The Circuit Joy comes with a digital library of 30 images, with more available. And don’t let the tech aspect overwhelm mom, it’s actually easy to use. “My mom wanted this for Christmas and she was so excited to open it,” writes an Amazon reviewer. “It was super easy to set up and she was amazed on the speed it cut the vinyl. She was nervous about using an app but she got the hang of it pretty quick.”

Give mom a break from her everyday lotion and swap in this delightful Truly body butter. The light Coco Rose Fudge scent is dreamy and the shea butter blend includes collagen and algae extract for supple skin. It’s just 3 ounces, but a little of this ultra thick lotion goes a long way. “I can’t tell you how much I love truly’s products,” writes a Target shopper. “[T]his product helps lock in moisture, and the truth is you don’t need that much. I recommend putting a lotion before then the butter.”

Mom will totes love this bag


On clearance, this bag is a steal. The Isaac Mizrahi Live! tote features a zip top closure and QVC shoppers are loving this bag. One reviewer explains why: “This tote is perfect from the texture to the handles to the size,” she begins. “…The deep side pockets easily fit a water bottle or travel mug. The inside is roomy. The top zipper is smooth to use. The ability to switch from hand carry to over shoulder carry is easy to manage. The feet on the bottom keep it upright too. Faux leather is very nice looking and the feel is smooth. The quilting is nicely done with substantial padding…”

If mom is into plants, skip the bouquet and get her something that will stay alive — thanks to her green thumb. This Bromeliad has an impressive 2,852 reviews on Amazon. Maybe your mom will be number 2,853! “I was very happy with the condition that this plant arrived in,” writes one Amazon customer of her Costa Farms experience. “Very well packaged. Also came with a pot which I did not expect,” she notes. “Would buy again.” If the flowering Bromeliad isn’t appealing, other options include a Chinese Evergreen, a Peace Lily, or a Dieffenbachia plant.

If you’ve got a mom with a sweet tooth, maybe she’d prefer her flowers in edible form. In that case, these artisanal cupcakes are the perfect Mother’s Day gift: they’re festive, beautiful, and downright tasty. Four chocolate and four golden butter cupcakes are topped off with buttercream flowers, making an unforgettable bouquet. And you know they’re good; Fort Lauderdale, Florida’s We Take The Cake bakery has appeared on the Food Network and Oprah’s Favorite Things. “The packaging was lovely and very sturdy,” writes one Goldbelly customer of her cupcake bouquet. “The cakes themselves were totally delicious!”

Is it a coat? A sweater? Wrap or cardigan? Whatever it is, over 14,000 Amazon shoppers are singing this versatile piece’s praises. And you can read our full review on the Dokotoo Teddy Coat to find out what all the fuss is about. Available in over 30 colors and patterns, the only hard choice will be picking a hue. Or you could be like this Amazon reviewer and buy multiple: “I have bought seven of these!” she writes, “Three for myself & others for gifts. As the description says, they are slightly oversized. These function well as a hoodie while out & about and equally well as a hoodie for lounging in your pajamas on a cold night.”

For a tea drinking mama, Vahdam’s chai trio is quite the treat. The Private Reserve Collection includes three tins of loose leaf chai varieties: Ginger Masala, Maharani Spice Oolong, and Sweet Cinnamon Spice Masala. To bump up your Mother’s Day gift, add a mug or tea kettle. The Amazon reviews illustrate this set’s success as a Mother’s Day present. “If you or whoever you are buying is for likes chai it is definitely worth the money!” writes one reviewer. “It lasted my mom from Mother’s Day – Christmas; so about 7 months. She loved it so much she asked me to get it for her again.”

It may not seem exciting, but packing cubes are really helpful! And Baggu’s colorful prints make them a fun gift, especially for moms who love to travel. This set includes a large and a small pouch made from recycled ripstop nylon. In addition to the Sunshine Fruit print, they’re also available in Awning Stripes, Sanrio Friends, Farmers Market, and Lake. Packing cubes are perfect for corralling socks and other wayward items, which will make mom’s trips a bit easier.

The reviews quoted above reflect the most recent versions at the time of publication.

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