Many of us have been working from home for more than a year and a half, and some of us will continue to do so — maybe forever. That said, buying a gift for a friend or loved one who works from home can be tricky. One person might prioritize tech, while another might care more about plant life and energizing lighting. If you need some help, however, you’ve come to the right place. Here at The Verge, we have some expertise in working from home, and we have some great ideas for you to consider.
What makes the ideal home office? Well, the right tech, like the Satechi USB-C Multi-Port Adapter ($80), is essential to getting work done. But comfort is also important, which is why we’ve included a standing desk and an ergonomic chair that can last for years. And if your gift recipient is still stuck working in their dining room or on their couch, a modest gift like a LapGear lap desk ($30) or Nulaxy laptop stand ($25) may be all they need to finally relieve some neck or hand strain. We’ve got ideas big and small, both for physical comfort and a sound state of mind.
Presented By: USPS
The holidays bring joy and excitement as we celebrate the season of giving. While giving gifts may spread the holiday spirit, the sending process should provide the same warm feelings as well. The United States Postal Service is here to help deliver gifts near and far to your loved ones. With more vehicles in their fleet, working day and night, the USPS will deliver over one billion packages to homes across the country.
Plan ahead with the recommended ship-by dates for your gifts and greetings:
Under $20 $20 to $50 $50 to $150 $150 to $400 $400+
This Is Fine Dog Funko Pop
Your desk should have the occasional tchotchke to keep your sanity, and there’s no better way to laugh in the face of stress than with KC Green’s “This is Fine” dog.
Price: $14 to $16
Nulaxy Laptop Stand
If you’re working on a laptop at a desk or table, it really should be elevated to eye level, which can help improve your posture and alleviate neck pain. Nulaxy’s aluminum laptop stand does exactly that and easily disassembles when it’s not needed.
Elgato Cam Link 4K
The Cam Link 4K can connect the HMDI-out signal on most cameras to USB, allowing you to use even a full-frame mirrorless system as your webcam for video calls. It’s one of the best ways to up your Zoom game or subtly flex on your boss asking you to come back to the office.
Price: $115 to $120
There’s a reason why many Verge writers and editors use these iconic wireless earbuds while working from home and commuting. The AirPods Pro offer excellent sound and noise cancellation, as well as deep integration with iOS and a transparency mode that lets ambient sounds in.
Price: $170 to $190
Herman Miller Aeron chair
Herman Miller’s Aeron is the long-standing, ergonomic desk chair of choice for many a working professional. It’s pricey, but the mesh backing and seat will keep you cool during the summer months or times when you run hot. It happens to the best of us.
It’s always a good idea to make sure your home office has some greenery to keep the mood up. Snake plants are an excellent choice for budding plant enthusiasts, namely because they’re relatively easy to keep alive if you’re not the green thumb type.
USB 3.0 switch selector
If you’re working from home, balancing work and personal devices can be tricky. A simple USB switcher like this one allows you to swap up to four peripherals (mouse, keyboard, webcam, etc.) from one computer another at the press of a button.
TWSBI Eco fountain pen
Taking purposeful notes while working from home can keep you focused. The TWSBI Eco is an affordable piston-fill fountain pen that can hold a lot of ink and comes in nib sizes from broad to extra fine.
Samson Q2U mic
Samson’s Q2U is one of the most affordable USB mics you can buy if you’re looking for excellent sound quality for Zoom calls and even entry-level podcasting. It even offers direct monitoring so you can plug your headphones into it.
Price: $55 to $70
Mooas Cube Timer
The Mooas Cube Timer is a simple, fun way to help keep yourself more on task. All you need to do is drop in a couple of AAA batteries, flip it to the desired time interval, and allow it to count down the next 10, 20, 30, or 60 minutes.
Satechi USB-C Multi-Port Adapter
Satechi’s aluminum multi-port adaptor is one of the most versatile hubs out there and should take up minimal real estate on your desk. Three USB-A ports, one HDMI, an SD card slot, one USB-C, and no fuss.
Wooden etched tweet
Forever enshrine a viral moment that brings you or your giftee joy, and make it a beautiful desk accessory that will (hopefully) be less fleeting than the late-night thoughts Elon Musk sends into the Twittersphere when the sun goes down.
Dazzne Desk Mount LED Light
Quality lighting makes you look your best on videoconference calls. These Dazzne LEDs are even fit for a streamer, but they’re affordable enough to be that perfect upgrade for many folks.
Steelcase Leap V2
An ergnonomic office chair isn’t just an investment in your loved one’s home office or personal work space — it’s an investment in their health. The Leap V2 is more cost-effective compared to some of our other favorites, but it’s a dependable chair that’s built to last and provides ample support where you need it most.
Nanoleaf Elements Wood Look Hexagons Smarter Kit
Creative and fun smart lighting when they’re on — elegant wood accents when they’re not. Nanoleaf’s natural-looking panels are one of the most unique pieces of wall decor you can get if you’re looking to dress up your space and add your own touch.
Ikea Symfonisk picture frame
Ikea’s Symfonisk picture frame lets you fill your home office with your favorite jams without sacrificing precious desk space. The Sonos-connected smart speaker comes in two styles, both of which are pseudo-incognito, yet it still manages to deliver the excellent sound for which Sonos is known.
Aarke Carbonator III
There are a number of ways to kick the La Croix and make your own carbonated water at home, but few solutions are as elegant or exquisite as Aarke’s Carbonator III. The latest model is available in a range of finishes — from stainless steel to matte black — each of which sports a minimalist design that’s easy to appreciate on your kitchen counter.
Fully Jarvis standing desk in bamboo
There are few standing desks of better quality and of a nicer fit and finish than Fully’s Jarvis, which is why they’ve become a mainstay among Verge staffers across the country. Standing for part of your day can be immensely helpful for your posture and keeping energized.
Rok Espresso Maker
Sometimes you need that caffeine hit, and one that you handmake yourself can feel all the more rewarding and energizing. Rok’s manual pump is both classy and efficient, a hand-polished machine capable of churning out full-bodied espresso in under 30 seconds.
Contigo Travel Mug
Looking to keep your hot drinks hot for hours on end? Contigo’s excellent travel mugs are colorful, easy to clean, and feature a lid that’s designed to automatically seal when you’re done drinking, preventing you from spilling coffee on your keyboard when your cat inevitably crashes the party.
The Sony WH-1000XM4 are one of our favorite pairs of noise-canceling headphones, if not our favorite. They’re comfy on the ears, they sound phenomenal, and they charge via USB-C. They also support multipoint pairing, so you don’t need to worry about missing a work call when you’re secretly binging Succession on your laptop.
Ikea Rissla desk pad
Ikea’s lengthy desk pad helps keep your workstation free of scratches and scuffs while also padding the front edge, adding stability, and helping ease pressure on your wrists and forearms while you work.
10-inch ring light
When making video calls at home, both you and your giftee deserve at least the bare minimum when it comes to lighting. A ring light, like this adjustable 10-inch offering, creates a soft glow that is pleasing on anyone.
Gevo headband cover
Some over-ear headphones can cause pain on the top of the head when worn all day. A headband pad, like this flexible knitted option from Gevo that’s compatible with most models, can provide an additional layer of comfort.
3M Gel Wrist Rest
Even if you use a fancy mechanical keyboard, an essential wrist rest can mean the difference between comfortable typing or annoying wrist pain. 3M’s basic, leather-like offering is easy to keep clean and provides just the right amount of support.
Price: $20 to $23
LapGear Lap Desk
Working on your couch for an hour, an afternoon, or forever? This versatile lap desk can accomodate machines up to 15.6 inches in size while giving you space for your mouse and phone. Plus, it’s available in a slew of styles and textures, just in case “white marble” isn’t your thing.
Price: $30 to $35
Ergodriven Topo comfort mat
Standing desks can be the best, but you need to relieve the pressure on your feet if you intend to stand upright for hours on end. Thankfully, the Topo mat is comfy and provides you with ideal positions to stand in, encouraging some small but vital movement.
Price: $69 to $99