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20 best gifts for brothers (even those who are impossible to shop for)

Gift ideas for brother figures with all types of interests, like cooking, working out, listening to music and more.
The best gifts for brothers include workout shorts, gaming consoles, wine and more.
The best gifts for brothers include workout shorts, gaming consoles, wine and more.Kara Birnbaum / NBC; Amazon; Fly by Jing; Lululemon

Buying gifts for your brother is always a little tricky. Sometimes, my brother gives me a clear picture of what’s on his wish list, and other times, figuring out what he might like to unwrap is like pulling teeth. To help those who are in the same position, we rounded up gift ideas for your brother (or brother figure) across categories like home and kitchen, tech, apparel and more. We included products recommended by Select staffers’ brothers, as well as others we think you should know about.

Best gifts for brothers

To recommend the best gifts for brothers, we asked Select staff for their recommendations and included a few products from brands we’ve previously covered. As shopping experts, we also added gift ideas we think readers should know about based on our research into what people are searching for.

For the aspiring chef: Fly By Jing Triple Threat Variety Pack

Fly By Jing (one of our favorite AAPI-owned businesses) offers a variety of spices, sauces and other ingredients your brother can use to add flavor to whatever they’re whipping up in the kitchen. The Triple Threat Variety Pack comes with the brand’s Sichuan Chili Crisp, Zhong Sauce and Mala Spice Mix. Fly By Jing says you can use these spicy condiments like hot sauce and add them to eggs, dumplings, salads and more.

For those with a green thumb: Easy Plant Green Snake Plant

Add to — or start — your brother’s collection of indoor plants by gifting him this Snake Plant from Easy Plant, a brand Select associate reporter Mili Godio recommends. The plant comes in Easy Plant’s self-watering pot, which has a reservoir you fill with water about once a month. The pot slowly carries water to the plant’s roots as needed, making it easy to take care of, according to the brand. So if your brother has a black thumb but is an aspiring plant parent, this may be a good gift for them, too.

For the coffee connoisseur: Essential Equator Coffee Set

Coffee lovers who enjoy brewing a cup of joe at home can never have enough beans. Introduce them to three new blends with this set from Equator Coffee (one of our favorite LGBTQ-owned businesses). It comes with 12-ounce bags of the brand’s French Roast Fair Trade Organic, Equator Blend and Ethiopia Sidama Ardi beans. You can choose whether you want coffee to come as whole beans or ground to different sizes like coarse, regular and fine.

For the gym rat: Lululemon Pace Breaker Linerless Short

Your brother is guaranteed to get lots of use out of Lululemon’s Pace Breaker Linerless Short if they regularly hit the gym or play sports. The shorts are available in 5-inch, 7-inch and 9-inch styles and have a flat, stretchy drawcord waistband. They’re made from a recycled polyester material that’s sweat-wicking and quick-drying, too, according to the brand. This pair of shorts has a zippered pocket and is machine-washable, Lululemon says. You can purchase it in sizes XS to 3XL and in over a dozen colors, including Breeze Blue, Black and Highlight Orange.

For those with a sweet tooth: Sugarfina Boutique Candy Tasting Gift Box

My brother’s day isn’t complete if he hasn’t eaten something sweet after dinner. If your brother also has a sweet tooth, this candy tasting box from Sugarfina gives them lots of confections to try. The box has 24 packs of candy inside, each of which contain four pieces of treats, such asDark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramels, Rainbow Bears, Cold Brew Cordials, Chocolate Covered Cookie Dough and more.

For the wine aficionado: Usual Wines Mixed Pack

Usual Wine’s Mixed Pack (from one of Select’s favorite wine subscriptions) comes with bottles of red, rosé and brut (a sparkling wine). Each bottle contains 6.30 ounces of wine, enough for a single glass, the brand says — making ideal for those who want to enjoy a taste without breaking open an entire bottle. It's not just any wine, though; Usual uses sustainably grown grapes and creates the wine without any added sugar, flavors, colorants or other artificial ingredients. You can send your brother a box of six, 12 or 24 bottles.

For the music lover: Wockoder Vinyl Record Player

This record player was the number-one item on my brother’s wish list last year, and he now uses it constantly. To play music, just add vinyls to the turntable and choose from three speeds. When he wants to switch it up, he can also connect his phone, tablet or laptop to the record player via Bluetooth to play digital music through its speakers. The record player has a vintage suitcase design and stands on foot pads, keeping it sturdy on tables or shelves.

For those looking for revamp their wardrobe: Rothy’s The Monty

Rothy’s The Monty shoe blends a sophisticated design with comfortable wear, making it a great office shoe. The sneaker’s upper is made from merino wool, while its contoured foot bed supports feet while you’re wearing them. The outsoles add durability and traction, while the laces allow you to adjust the shoe’s fit to be tighter or looser. The Monty is machine-washable, according to Rothy’s. It comes in Vintage Brown, Timber Brown and Mountain Grey colors and can be purchased in men’s sizes 7 through 16.

For those who prefer to be in slippers: Bombas Men’s Sherpa Lined Gripper Slipper

Bombas’ slippers are the ideal footwear for your brother to sport while relaxing or working from home. The sherpa-lined slippers have silicone grippers on the bottoms to help prevent your brother from slipping on slick floors, and they’re designed with a cushioned footbed. The slippers are machine-washable and fold flat, the brand says, making it easy for him to pack them in his suitcase while traveling. You can purchase the slippers in M, L or XL sizes. They come in four styles: Frost Blue, Harbor Grey, Midnight Navy and Maroon.

For the DIY-er: Lego Technic Formula E Porsche 99X Electric Building Set

Select production coordinator Gabriella DePinho bought her brother a Lego set during the holidays, which she said he had fun building. Lego offers a variety of sets for all ages, including this E Porsche 99X Electric car, which takes 422 pieces to put together and is suitable for those ages 9 years old and above, Lego says. Once the car is constructed, you can even launch it forward, thanks to the built-in pull-back motors. The car also pairs with the Lego Technic AR app, so your brother can scan the finished car in the app and then virtually race it.

For the jetsetter: Sleep Number Travel Pillow

Sleep Number’s Travel Pillow can make flights, road trips and train rides more comfortable for your brother. It has an ergonomic shape, according to the brand, as well as a removable, machine-washable cover. The pillow is filled with memory foam pieces and down alternative fibers to conform to the shape of his head, while the included clasp allows him to clip it onto bags or luggage.

For those expanding their skin care regime: Harry’s Winston Set

My dad is a fan of Harry’s durable, thoughtfully designed razors — which I took note of, thinking it would make a great holiday gift for my brother. The brand’s Winston Set comes with its Winston Handle in your choice of graphite or navy, three blade cartridges and a travel cover to protect blades on the go. You can also choose if you want the set to come with shaving gel or cream.

For the pet parent: Petcube Bites 2 Lite Pet Monitoring Camera

Pet parents naturally worry about their furry friends when they’re not home. If that sounds like your brother, ease his anxiety with Petcube’s camera, which provides a wide-angle view of rooms and live streams video to a companion app, ensuring he can always keep an eye on his cat or dog. The camera also has two-way audio, so your brother can talk to and hear his pet; and includes a built-in treat dispenser.

For the dad: Aura Carver HD Smart Digital Picture Frame

Aura’s Wi-Fi-connected digital picture frame allows your brother to show off pictures of his family. It has a 10.1-inch screen and built-in speakers, and comes with free unlimited storage. The frame pairs with a companion app, where your brother can upload pictures and videos or invite other family members to add content.

For the little brother: Shark Warmies

Warmies’ offers weighted stuffed animals in dozens of characters like sharks, sloths, dogs, cats, dinosaurs, alligators and more — so you’re bound to find your brother’s favorite. The stuffed animals get their weight from flaxseed and dried lavender, giving them what the brand says is a calming floral aroma. Most of the standard-sized stuffed animals weigh 1.5 pounds. You can also warm them up in the microwave or chill them in the freezer, Warmies says.

For the college student: GrubHub Gift Card

The best gift I could give my brother, a junior in college, is a meal he doesn't have to cook or pay for himself. Food delivery platforms like GrubHub allow you to send your loved ones digital or physical gift cards they can use towards meals or groceries. You can add any amount you’d like to the gift card and email it to the recipient or ship it to them.

For the outdoor adventurer: REI Co-op Trailsmith Pack

REI’s Trailsmith Pack ensures your brother is always ready for his next adventure, whether that’s a hike, a camping trip or a day spent in nature. The backpack’s nylon shell is water-repellant, according to the brand, and its padded, adjustable shoulder straps and padded back panels are lined with mesh for added breathability. The top of the backpack opens and closes with a buckle, and it’s built with an interior organization system, plus a padded laptop sleeve. There are also water bottle pockets on the outside of the backpack.

For the gamer: Nintendo Switch

The Nintendo Switch is one of my brother’s prized possessions. It acts as a handheld device you can play with on the go, or you can slide it into the included dock and connect it to a TV for a more immersive gaming experience. The Nintendo Switch comes with two Joy-Con controllers, allowing multiple people to play games together, and up to eight consoles can be connected over Wi-Fi. You can play numerous games through the Nintendo Switch — check out some of the best ones here.

For the reader: Amazon Kindle

The 2022 model of the Kindle is the lightest and most compact one yet, Amazon says. It has a glare-free display and offers light and dark modes, allowing your brother to change how the font looks depending on his reading environment. The Kindle — available in Black and Denim colors — is built with a USB-C port, and Amazon says a full battery gives you up to six weeks of use. It has 16 GB of storage so your brother can download thousands of books and audiobooks, too.

For the one who thinks they’re handy: Victorinox Swiss Army Huntsman Knife

My brother swears by his Swiss Army Knife, relying on it when he’s putting furniture together, building car parts and fixing things around his apartment. The multi-use tool has a screwdriver, bottle cap opener, scissor, corkscrew, multiple blades and more, all of which fold into a compact plastic handle.

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