Must-Have Presents: Young Teen Gift Guide

Young Teen Gift Guide: Top Presents for Teens

Originally published on 16th Oct 2023 | Updated 26th Mar 2024

Article key points:

  1. Young Teen Gift Guide Essentials:

    This guide provides curated gift ideas for young teenagers, spanning various interests and preferences, aimed at easing the challenge of selecting the perfect gift.

  2. Navigating Teen Gift Giving:

    Adolescents' preferences can be as unpredictable as the weather, but fear not—this guide offers versatile suggestions suitable for various ages and interests, ensuring a thoughtful and appreciated gift.

  3. Teen Gift Trends and Tips:

    From tech gadgets to DIY crafts, this guide covers trending gift ideas and budget-friendly options, empowering gift-givers to find the ideal present for the young teen in their life.


No doubt about it, with the level of independence and moodiness rising it can be hard to guess what great gift a teenager would want and whether they will like it. It can be equally hard to come up with ideas in the first place. This young teen gift guide aims to help out with some ideas, although the suggestions here are just suggestions and are likely to be relevant to other ages too.

Gift Boards

This article is coupled with one of our new gift idea boards which you can access here. The young teen gift guide board, as with all our other gift idea boards, is a great way to get quick inspiration for ideas which you can easily add to your own wish lists.

Navigating the realm of gift-giving for young teenagers can be a daunting task, as their preferences and interests often seem to change as swiftly as the wind. However, fear not, for we've compiled a curated selection of gift ideas that are sure to appeal to the discerning tastes of most young adolescents. While we strive to cover a broad spectrum of interests, do let us know if you have any other brilliant gift ideas to share. After all, the more options, the merrier!

What are some popular gift choices for young teens?

Popular gift choices for young teens include tech gadgets like wireless earbuds, smartwatches, or gaming accessories. Fashion items such as trendy clothing or sneakers are also a hit. Gift cards to their favourite stores or subscriptions to streaming services make great options too.

Be Realistic In Your Expectations!

It's essential to approach gift-giving for teenagers with a realistic mindset. Gone are the days of exuberant displays of gratitude and effusive thank-you's. Instead, anticipate receiving nothing more than a casual nod or a muttered "thanks" from your young recipient. Rest assured, this doesn't reflect their lack of appreciation; rather, it's a testament to their burgeoning independence and burgeoning sense of self.

When selecting gifts for young teens, consider items that align with their hobbies, interests, and burgeoning sense of identity. Whether they're avid readers, aspiring musicians, tech enthusiasts, or fashionistas in the making, there's something for every adolescent. From the latest tech gadgets and fashionable accessories to immersive gaming experiences and creative DIY kits, the possibilities are endless.

So, as you embark on your quest to find the perfect gift for the young teenager in your life, remember to embrace the challenge with patience and creativity. And don't be discouraged by their seemingly indifferent response—rest assured, your thoughtful gesture will be appreciated, even if it's not immediately evident. After all, the joy of giving lies not in the reaction it elicits but in the heartfelt intention behind it.

Books and Stationery

For most teenagers, having space to express themselves and retreat from family life is essential. One avenue through which they can find this space is through books. Exploring the world of literature allows teenagers to delve into different realms, experience diverse perspectives, and escape into imaginary worlds. When considering gifts for teenagers, it's worth exploring their reading preferences. Are there specific authors, genres, or book series that they particularly enjoy? Whether it's the gripping plotlines of fantasy novels, the thought-provoking themes of dystopian fiction, or the timeless classics of literature, there's a vast array of options to choose from. Not only does reading provide entertainment and escapism, but it also nurtures cognitive development and expands vocabulary. Who knows, perhaps by immersing themselves in the pages of a book, teenagers may find themselves more inclined to engage in conversations and articulate their thoughts and ideas more effectively.

Fostering Expression and Creativity Through Books and Journals

In addition to books, other gifts can also encourage self-expression and creativity. Journals and planners offer teenagers a space to jot down their thoughts, dreams, and aspirations, serving as a personal sanctuary amid a bustling world. Funky pens or pencils can add a touch of personality and flair to their writing endeavours, making the act of putting pen to paper all the more enjoyable. For those who enjoy artistic pursuits, adult colouring books or sketch pads provide a canvas for creative expression. Whether they prefer intricate mandalas, whimsical illustrations, or blank pages waiting to be filled with imagination, these gifts offer a therapeutic outlet for self-expression and relaxation. By nurturing their artistic inclinations, teenagers can unleash their creativity and explore new realms of possibility.

Overall, gifts that cater to teenagers' need for space, self-expression, and creativity are sure to be well-received. Whether it's through the pages of a book, the strokes of a pen, or the colours of a sketch pad, these gifts provide avenues for exploration, growth, and personal development. So, the next time you're searching for the perfect gift for a teenager in your life, consider the power of literature, journaling, and artistic expression to nurture their minds and spirits.

Music and Entertainment

As teenagers navigate the tumultuous waters of adolescence, music often serves as a guiding beacon, shaping their identity and providing solace in times of uncertainty. At this pivotal stage of their lives, teenagers are forging their own unique tastes and preferences, particularly when it comes to music. Whether it's the infectious beats of pop, the soul-stirring melodies of indie folk, or the raw energy of punk rock, there's a genre to suit every teenager's mood and disposition.

Do they have a favourite artist?

When considering gifts for teenagers, it's worth tapping into their musical inclinations. Is there a particular artist or band they've been raving about? Perhaps their favourite musician has just released a highly-anticipated album that would make the perfect addition to their collection. While scoring tickets to see Taylor Swift in concert may prove to be a Herculean task, gifting them a copy of her latest album is sure to elicit smiles of delight.

In addition to albums, music-related merchandise can also make for thoughtful gifts. Consider purchasing music posters featuring their favourite bands or artists to adorn the walls of their bedroom sanctuary. Not only do these posters add a pop of personality to their living space, but they also serve as constant reminders of the music that moves and inspires them.

If they play an instrument then they may like some sheet music for their favourite artist or the soundtrack of a favourite film of theirs.

Music streaming sites

If you're uncertain about their musical preferences, fear not—there are plenty of ways to uncover their favourite tunes. With the proliferation of streaming services, from Spotify to Apple Music to Tidal, it's easier than ever to access a treasure trove of music at your fingertips. Take some time to do a bit of sleuthing and find out which platforms they frequent. Armed with this knowledge, you can gift them a voucher or contribute towards a music subscription service, allowing them to explore new artists and discover their next musical obsession. Would they appreciate a new Bluetooth speaker for their room?

Ultimately, gifts that cater to teenagers' love of music and entertainment offer a window into their inner world, providing them with the means to express themselves and connect with others on a deeper level. So, the next time you're on the hunt for the perfect gift for the teenager in your life, consider the transformative power of music to uplift, inspire, and unite.

Tech Gadgets

In today's digital age, tech gadgets have become essential companions for most teenagers, offering a myriad of opportunities for communication, entertainment, and creativity. With smartphones being ubiquitous among teens, accessories and peripherals that enhance their mobile experience make for thoughtful and practical gift options. Consider gifting them a stylish new phone case to protect their device from everyday wear and tear or an accompanying accessory like an Apple watch to complement their tech-savvy lifestyle. For those who enjoy music on the go, new earbuds or Bluetooth headphones provide immersive sound quality and convenience during commutes or workouts.

Do they complain their battery never lasts long enough?

In addition to enhancing their mobile experience, tech gadgets can also address common challenges faced by teenagers, such as battery life issues. A portable power bank serves as a practical and reassuring gift, ensuring that they stay connected and accessible for longer periods, whether they're out with friends or attending school activities.

However, if their current phone is struggling with battery performance and they're due for an upgrade, gifting them a new phone might be a timely and appreciated gesture. However, the allure of a new device with improved battery life might result in them spending more time engrossed in their digital world and on social media, albeit to the detriment of face-to-face interactions.

Capturing life-long memories

While smartphones have become indispensable tools for capturing memories and documenting life's moments, some teenagers may yearn for a more immersive and dedicated photography experience. In such cases, a digital camera makes for an exciting and exploratory gift, allowing them to unleash their creativity and develop their photography skills. With a plethora of camera models available on the market, ranging from entry-level point-and-shoot cameras to advanced mirrorless options, there's a suitable option for every aspiring photographer. Considering that it might be their first foray into photography, opting for a second-hand camera can be a cost-effective way to test the waters and gauge their interest without breaking the bank.

In conclusion, tech gadgets offer a wealth of possibilities for gift-givers looking to cater to the interests and needs of teenagers in today's digital age. Whether it's enhancing their mobile experience, addressing practical challenges, or fostering their creativity and exploration, tech gadgets serve as versatile and impactful gifts that resonate with the tech-savvy generation. By selecting thoughtful and innovative tech gifts, gift-givers can empower teenagers to navigate the digital landscape with confidence, curiosity, and enthusiasm, fostering a love of technology and innovation that extends far beyond the confines of their screens.

Computer Gaming

Computer gaming has become an integral part of many teenagers' lives, making it a staple inclusion in any young teen gift guide. No gift list for a teenager would be complete without the mention of some type of games console, whether it's the iconic Nintendo Switch, the versatile Xbox, or the cutting-edge PlayStation. Love them or loathe them, they are key to many teenagers' lives and gaming consoles offer a gateway to immersive digital worlds where teenagers can escape, connect with friends, and challenge themselves in various virtual environments. The allure of gaming consoles lies not only in their ability to entertain but also in their potential to foster creativity, problem-solving skills, and social interaction among teenagers.

What gift can I get to go with the console they already have?

While gaming consoles themselves may be on the pricier side, they are often considered a worthwhile investment due to the countless hours of entertainment they provide. However, for gift-givers with budget constraints, there are alternative options to consider within the realm of computer gaming. Rather than splurging on a new console, one could opt for purchasing a new game title to add to the teenager's existing collection, a book or soft toy of their favourite gaming character or a gaming magazine.

Additionally, gaming accessories present another avenue for gift-givers to explore within the realm of computer gaming. From ergonomic controllers to immersive headphones, these accessories enhance the gaming experience and elevate the teenager's gameplay to new heights. A new controller, for instance, can provide improved responsiveness and comfort during gaming sessions, while a set of high-quality headphones can deliver immersive audio that enhances the overall gaming atmosphere.

In conclusion, while gaming consoles may dominate the landscape of computer gaming gifts, there are plenty of alternative options available for gift-givers looking to cater to the interests of teenage gamers. With thoughtful consideration and a touch of creativity, gift-givers can delight teenage gamers with the perfect gift that reflects their passion for gaming.

DIY Kits and Crafts

In the realm of gift-giving for teenagers, DIY kits and crafts hold a special allure, offering not only the promise of creativity and self-expression but also the satisfaction of bringing something unique and handmade to life. These kits provide teenagers with the opportunity to explore their artistic talents, experiment with different techniques, and unleash their imagination in a tangible way.

Creative DIY Making kits

For the budding fashionistas and accessory enthusiasts, DIY jewellery-making kits are a popular choice. These kits typically contain an assortment of beads, charms, and cords, along with instructions for creating a variety of jewellery pieces, from bracelets and necklaces to earrings and anklets. With endless possibilities for customization and personalization, teenagers can design jewellery that reflects their individual style and personality, making a statement wherever they go.

For those who enjoy the soothing flicker of candlelight, candle-making kits offer a delightful sensory experience. These kits come complete with wax, wicks, fragrance oils, and containers, allowing teenagers to craft their own custom candles in a range of scents and colours to suit every mood and occasion. With each candle they create, teenagers can infuse their living spaces with warmth, comfort, and ambience.

For aspiring artists and creative souls, paint-by-number sets and art supplies provide a canvas for self-expression and exploration. These sets typically include pre-drawn canvases or boards, numbered paint pots, brushes, and instructions for replicating a variety of artworks. From serene landscapes and majestic animals to whimsical portraits and abstract designs, teenagers can unleash their inner artist and bring their visions to life with each brushstroke. With practice and patience, they can hone their painting skills and develop their unique artistic style, gaining confidence and satisfaction with each masterpiece they create.

Relaxing paper crafts

Lastly, for those who appreciate the delicate beauty of paper art, origami and papercraft kits offer a delightful challenge and a sense of accomplishment. These kits contain patterned paper, folding instructions, and templates for creating a variety of intricate designs, from simple animals and flowers to complex geometric shapes and architectural marvels. Through the ancient art of paper folding, teenagers can cultivate patience, precision, and creativity, as they transform humble sheets of paper into works of art that inspire wonder and admiration.

In conclusion, DIY kits and crafts offer teenagers a creative outlet for self-expression, exploration, and personal growth. Whether they're crafting jewellery, pouring candles, painting canvases, or folding paper, these activities provide a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction, as well as an opportunity to cultivate new skills and passions. So, the next time you're searching for the perfect gift for the teenager in your life, consider the transformative power of DIY kits and crafts to ignite their imagination and nurture their creative spirit.

Gift Cards and Subscription Boxes

When it comes to finding a great gift for a teenager, gift cards and subscription boxes offer a world of possibilities that cater to a wide range of interests and preferences. Gift cards, in particular, are a versatile option that allows recipients to indulge in their favourite hobbies, explore new trends, or simply treat themselves to something special. Whether it's a voucher for a clothing store, a restaurant, or an online gaming platform, gift cards empower teenagers to make their own choices and curate their own experiences.

Clothing Gift Cards

For fashion-forward teens who are always on the lookout for the latest trends, clothing store gift cards provide the perfect opportunity to update their wardrobe with stylish new pieces. Whether they're into streetwear, athleisure, or classic preppy styles, a gift card allows them to shop to their heart's content and express their unique sense of style.

Gaming and Tech Gift Cards

Similarly, for tech-savvy teenagers who spend hours immersed in virtual worlds, online gaming gift cards for platforms like Steam, PlayStation Network, or Xbox Live offer access to a vast library of games, downloadable content, and exclusive perks. Whether they're into action-packed shooters, immersive role-playing games, or adrenaline-fueled racing games, a gaming gift card unlocks endless entertainment possibilities.

Subscription Boxes

In addition to traditional gift cards, subscription boxes have become increasingly popular among teenagers seeking curated experiences tailored to their interests. Beauty enthusiasts can indulge in a monthly beauty box filled with skincare and makeup samples from top brands, allowing them to discover new products and experiment with different looks.

Bookworms and literary enthusiasts will appreciate a book subscription box, which offers a carefully curated selection of books tailored to their reading preferences. From bestselling novels and literary classics to niche genres and emerging authors, each box delivers a literary journey that sparks imagination and fosters a love of reading.

Finally, for gamers who can't get enough of virtual adventures, a gaming subscription service provides access to a diverse library of video games spanning genres, platforms, and eras. With unlimited access to a vast catalogue of titles, gamers can embark on epic quests, engage in intense multiplayer battles, or unwind with casual puzzles and simulations.

In conclusion, whether you opt for a gift card or a subscription box, the key is to choose a gift that reflects the recipient's interests, passions, and personality. By giving them the freedom to explore and indulge in their favourite activities, you're not just giving a gift—you're giving them the gift of joy, excitement, and discovery.

Fashion and accessories

When it comes to selecting gifts for teenagers, fashion and accessories often reign supreme, offering a plethora of options to suit every style and personality. One surefire way to delight a fashion-forward teen is with some trendy clothing or accessories that reflect their unique sense of style. However, choosing the perfect garment can be a daunting task, so opting for a gift card to their favourite clothing store ensures they have the freedom to select items they truly love and will wear with confidence. Whether it's streetwear, athleisure, or bohemian chic, a gift card empowers them to curate their own wardrobe and express their individuality.


Beyond clothing, accessories play a pivotal role in completing any ensemble and making a fashion statement. A stylish backpack or tote bag not only serves a practical purpose but also adds a touch of flair to their everyday look, whether they're heading to school or simply hanging out with friends. Likewise, a new pair of sunglasses can elevate their style game and protect their eyes from the sun's rays, while fresh footwear injects a dose of cool into their step.


For those who love to accessorize, jewellery is always a welcome gift. Whether it's a dainty necklace, a stack of bracelets, or a statement ring, jewellery adds a personal touch to any outfit and serves as a timeless keepsake they'll cherish for years to come. However, if you're considering gifting earrings, it's essential to choose wisely, as they often cannot be returned due to hygiene reasons. Opting for pre-selected earrings ensures they receive a pair that complements their style and won't cause any headaches in the return department.

Make-up and Skincare

For teenage girls who are delving into the world of makeup and skincare, practical yet fun gifts like skin care products or a makeup brush set are sure to delight. Whether it's a luxurious moisturizer, a hydrating lip balm, or a set of high-quality brushes, these gifts not only enhance their beauty routine but also instil a sense of confidence and self-care. By giving them the tools to experiment with different looks and pamper their skin, you're empowering them to embrace their natural beauty and express themselves with confidence.

Hobbies, Sports and Outdoor Gear

When it comes to selecting gifts for teenagers, considering their hobbies, sports interests, and outdoor activities opens up a world of exciting possibilities. By choosing a gift that aligns with their passions, you're not only providing them with a source of enjoyment but also fostering their personal growth and development.

If the teenager you're buying for has a specific hobby, such as reading, cooking, or gardening, there are countless options to consider. From bestselling novels and cookbooks to gardening tools and DIY kits, you can tailor your gift to their interests and provide them with the tools they need to pursue their hobbies with enthusiasm and creativity. For those with a furry friend at home, pet accessories such as toys, treats, or a cosy bed make thoughtful gifts that show you care about their beloved companion.

Ideas for sports lovers

For teenagers who are avid sports enthusiasts, there's a wide array of gear and equipment to enhance their athletic pursuits. Whether they're passionate about basketball, soccer, skateboarding, or any other sport, a new piece of equipment can take their game to the next level. Consider gifting them a high-quality basketball, soccer ball, skateboard, or other sports equipment that aligns with their interests and helps them perform at their best.

Are they into watching or playing a particular sport? A new water bottle to keep them hydrated when playing sport, whether it is a current trend of a Stanley Quencher, a Hydro Flask or something different, or a phone case in the design of their favourite sports team. A new duffle bag could help them transport their kit to their next event.

Ideas for outdoor adventures

If outdoor adventure is more their style, camping gear and outdoor games offer endless opportunities for exploration and fun. A sturdy tent, cosy sleeping bag, or portable stove can inspire epic outdoor adventures and create lasting memories in the great outdoors. Additionally, outdoor games like cornhole or Frisby provide hours of entertainment for family gatherings, backyard barbecues, or camping trips with friends.

For those who enjoy exploring the city streets or cruising down the boardwalk, rollerblades or a skateboard make excellent gifts that encourage physical activity and outdoor exploration. With their sleek design and smooth ride, rollerblades offer a thrilling way to navigate urban landscapes, while skateboards provide a fun and stylish mode of transportation for cruising around town.

Overall, when it comes to gifts for teenagers, considering their hobbies, sports interests, and outdoor activities allows you to select a gift that not only entertains but also inspires and enriches their lives. By choosing a gift that aligns with their passions, you're giving them the tools they need to pursue their interests with enthusiasm and confidence, fostering a sense of joy, adventure, and fulfilment along the way.


When it comes to gifts that truly leave a lasting impression, experiences reign supreme. Offering teenagers the opportunity to create cherished memories and embark on exciting adventures, experiential gifts go beyond material possessions to provide moments of joy, wonder, and connection.

Making memories through shared experiences

Consider treating the teenager in your life to tickets or vouchers for unforgettable experiences that cater to their interests and passions. Whether it's a visit to a theme park, a museum, or a movie attraction, these outings promise hours of entertainment and discovery. From thrilling roller coaster rides and interactive exhibits to blockbuster films and cinematic masterpieces, each experience offers a chance for teenagers to immerse themselves in new worlds and make memories that will last a lifetime.

For those with a love of music and live entertainment, tickets to see their favourite artist in concert or a live show offer an electrifying experience that's sure to leave them buzzing with excitement. Whether they're fans of pop superstars, indie darlings, or Broadway musicals, the thrill of seeing their idols perform live on stage is an experience they'll treasure for years to come.

How about encouraging a new or existing skill?

Alternatively, why not consider gifting them an experience that allows them to explore a new skill or pursue a passion? Cooking or baking classes offer a fun and educational opportunity to learn new recipes, techniques, and culinary secrets from professional chefs. Whether they're whipping up gourmet dishes or mastering the art of pastry-making, these hands-on classes provide a delicious way to expand their culinary repertoire and impress friends and family with their newfound skills.

One for the thrill seekers...

For thrill-seekers and adrenaline junkies, indoor skydiving or rock climbing sessions offer an exhilarating challenge that pushes their limits and boosts their confidence. Whether they're defying gravity in a wind tunnel or scaling towering walls at an indoor climbing gym, these heart-pounding adventures provide an adrenaline-fueled rush that's sure to leave them feeling empowered and invigorated.

Ultimately, experiential gifts offer teenagers the chance to break free from the confines of their screens and immerse themselves in the beauty and excitement of the world around them. By gifting them with unforgettable experiences, you're not just giving them a momentary thrill—you're giving them the gift of adventure, discovery, and lifelong memories that will stay with them long after the experience has ended.

Are there any trending gift ideas I could add to my young teen gift guide?

Absolutely! Some trending gift ideas for young teens this year include tech gadgets like wireless earbuds, LED light strips for their room, trendy clothing items and skincare sets. These gifts cater to their interests and help them stay connected while having fun.

What are some budget-friendly gift options for young teens?

Looking for budget-friendly gift options? Consider items from this young teen gift guide like trendy phone accessories, DIY craft kits, or gift cards to their favourite stores. You can also opt for fun socks, personalized notebooks, or cool stationery sets to surprise them without breaking the bank.

Easily add gift ideas to a wish list

As mentioned at the beginning, we have our own dynamic gift guide which you can access to go along with this article. The young teen gift guide, and all our other gift guides, allow you to get quick inspiration for ideas and you can easily add any of the showcased items directly to your own wish lists to add to the amazing gifts you might already have thought of.

Whatever you decide to give, we're sure that it will be well-loved coming from you. The ultimate goal is to get them something they will love and enjoy so don't forget to see if they have a wish list on Giftwhale to consult for any specific ideas of themes that they are currently into. Happy shopping!

The Giftwhale Team
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