19 Holiday Gifts for Teens, College Students from Uncommon Goods (2023)

If you’re looking for something different, meaningful, and fabulous for your teen or college student, the creative artisans (aka elves) at Uncommon Goods have you covered. They make one-of-a-kind gifts and cleverly offer an inventive way to sort offerings by your recipient’s interests.

Uncommon Experiences are live virtual classes that come packaged with the ingredients or supplies your recipient will need to participate in a class. Learn how to bake a Raindrop Cake or yummy chocolate truffles, create earrings or learn magic tricks.

Note: We are a reader-supported site and receive compensation from purchases made through some of the links in this post. 

Christmas gifts from Uncommon Goods your teen will love

1. Create Your Own Reel Viewer

reel viewer

Who knew that your college student (or anyone in your family) could create a personal retro reel-viewer with a customized disk of their own photos? A grown-up version of one of childhood’s greatest gadgets.

2. Long Distance Friendship Lamp

friendship lamp

Sync up your lamps via WiFi. Then you keep one lamp and give one to your teen, your mom, your sister, or a friend, and when you touch it, theirs will light up as well, even if they are on the opposite coast. Light up your loved ones’ lives with these in-sync lamps.

3. Collegiate Pouches

college pouches

Show college spirit with one of these handy and lovely pouches. These adorable zippered pouches are perfect for holding cosmetics, jewelry, or other valuables. Designs depict landmarks for each college that make that school unique.

4. It Was Never A Dress Color-Changing Mug

Raise a mug to girl power. Empower women and girls one sip at a time with this mug that transforms the standard black washroom sign into a bold, cape-wearing hero when filled with hot liquid.

5. Glitter Hearts Toilet Bombs

The essential oils in these glittery tablets will leave the bathroom with a pleasant aromatic fix. Take heart (or hearts) for this aromatic fix.

6. Custom Pet Embroidered Sweatshirt

The only thing better than cozying up with your furry friend is cuddling in your new favorite sweatshirt featuring their custom, embroidered portrait. This comfy crewneck is a precious tribute to our four-legged babies. Wear your bestie on your chest(ie).

7. The Adventure Challenge Scrapbook

Make memories while doing things you never thought of. Pick a category, scratch off a hidden challenge, and complete whatever is revealed. Bake a cake together, except this time, blindfold the person with less baking experience while the other person can only read the instructions. Good luck! Choose from the Couples, Friends, or Family editions.  Let the games begin!

8. Custom Paint-by-Number Kit

From a digital library to….the wall. Let them turn their favorite family photo, vacation pic, or pet portrait into a painterly masterpiece. Roll up your sleeves and get creative with a paint-by-number kit.

9. Storm Cloud

Add atmosphere (pun intended) to a bookshelf, counter, or bedside table with this decorative storm cloud that changes with the weather and predicts what is to come. Pretty and practical. Stay one step ahead of the weather with this eye-catching gadget.

10. College Football Game Day Coaster Set

Show school spirit and adulting skills with these helmet-shaped bamboo coasters. There are 18 schools to choose from (and many more to come). Cheer on your team with a “Cheers!”

11. DIY Mochi Ice Cream Kit

I scream, you scream, we all scream for…mochi! Now it is easy to make the irresistible chewy-gooey rice-cake treats at home. Matcha green tea, and cocoa powder, are the can’t-miss flavors included.

12. Game of Phones

A unique, conversation-starting game that brings their digital and real-life besties together. WARNING: Playing may cause ongoing fits of laughter. This phone game turns their digital sidekicks into a tool for a hilarious scavenger hunt.

13. Awaken and Refresh Shower Steamers

Let them turn their ordinary 40-minute shower into an extraordinary spa experience with these essential oil-infused aromatherapy tablets. A hot shower + a steamer = AAAHHH.

14. Music Playing Cards

This jazzed-up deck will delight music lovers with illustrations of musical greats, such as Elvis, Freddie Mercury, Beyonce, and T-Swift, and four genres (aka suits) represented; Hearts = Pop, Spades = Rock, Diamonds = Folk, and Country, and Clubs = Soul, Blues, and R&B. Cue the snacks and playlists!

15. Vintage National Parks Puzzle

national parks puzzle

Celebrate a love for the great outdoors and our nation’s most beautiful wildernesses with this 1,000-piece puzzle. The view will never get old. Good thing! This puzzle may take a while.

16. Color Changing Cinema Lightbox

What teen doesn’t dream of seeing their name in lights? This colorful, retro lightbox adds blockbuster bling to any dorm or bedroom and comes in 3 sizes. This lightbox is back-lit like an actual marquee and cycles through many colors.

17. Outdoor Safe Smart Wristband

Give yourself more peace of mind by gifting this nifty piece of tech. It uses encrypted technology to store vital medical info, is HIPAA-compliant, and can let loved ones know you’re safe with a simple tap of a phone. This is a practical gift for runners, adventurers, and teens who enjoy solo time in the great outdoors. This wristband is water-resistant and does not require batteries, charging, or a subscription.

18. Therapy Dough

therapy dough

This dough is infused with essential oils, and lets teens relive childhood fun with adult benefits: stress relief and aromatherapy. Colorful putty that was inspired by the kind art therapists use.

19. Bubble Wrap Calendar

Start the new year with a pop, thanks to this bubble-wrap calendar. Doesn’t everyone love to pop Bubble Wrap?

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About Melissa Milsten

Melissa Milsten lives in Westchester, New York with her husband, their four teenagers and Ruby the dog (who is sometimes the best behaved member of the family). Her background is in publishing and marketing. When she isn’t working or parenting, you might spot her on a yoga mat or lacing up a pair of sneakers. You can read more about her here

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