Alex wrote a gift guide for all the men trying to hunt down something for their significant other. That means that I get to write the other half of that gift guide. Ladies, here is your chance to snag a present that I can promise will impress. I have broken up my gifts into 5 categories: rugged, outdoorsy, fashionable, active, and techie.
Every man wants to be thought of as “rugged,” let’s be honest. And every man does have a rugged side to him, which is why I wanted to start with a few of my favorite picks in this category.
- Tin Cup Whiskey – You can never go wrong with a liquid gift, and whiskey is my favorite option. There is a reason they say it will put hair on your chest (…or maybe thats moonshine…) and Tin Cup is one of my favorite, non-bourbon whiskey choices. They are based in Colorado, and since my western migration I have been trying to embrace more locally oriented brands.
- Bobby McGee Best Made Co Axe -It may be ironic that my axe of choice is coming from a brand based in NYC, but I can pick them with confidence because these axes are actually constructed in my home state of North Carolina. How often will you actually swing this axe? That is up to you, but I can tell you, you’re gunna look damn good doing it and chop through what ever is in front of you.
Now that I am in Utah, getting outside is a little easier for me than it used to be. One of the main things I have learned is that good gear is more important. Here are a few of the outdoor goods that I have been jonesing for recently.
- Poler Stuff Napsack – Are you camping in the cold? In the snow? Then you want a napsack. Think onesy meets sleeping bag. This thing is comfortable, versatile, and allows you a little movement without having to get out of it in the morning (just take a look at the pictures of people in them).
- Stanley Flask – Everyone needs a flask, even if you aren’t putting my suggested whiskey in it. There are plenty of things a flask is useful for and the Stanley flask is one of the most classic styles I have seen. It also comes in black and green for those not stoked on the grey shown here.
- VSSL First Aid Kit – In the world of hiking, weight is critical. Safety is also critical. This VSSL first aid kit is a great way to keep something on you (even on short hikes) without adding pounds to your pack. Which if you are me, leaves more room for snacks.
My days of dressing up are more limited now, but I still like to consider myself a fashionable guy. If there is one thing I learned over my many years in the fashion industry, it’s that style will out shine trendy every day, so I have been trying to transition my wardrobe over the years with this in mind. The world of menswear has been exploding over the past few years too, which mean there are a ton of options here, but a few stand out in my mind:
- Ratio Clothing Custom Button Down – So let me just start by saying I have not received my first Ratio shirt, but their ordering process was so smooth I wanted to go ahead and include them on my gift guide. You fill out a profile for the shirt based on measurements you should already know and then you shop their extensive selection of fabrics. If they deliver on their promise, I may not order a shirt from anywhere else ever again.
- Tie Bar Wool Knit Skinny Tie – Ties don’t have to be expensive, but should still look good. Knit ties are making a comeback and for $20, you can add a little dose of style into his routine he wouldn’t otherwise wear.
- Mott & Bow Raw Denim – Selvedge denim seems to (still) be all of the rage, but for the average man, an upgrade to raw denim may be enough. Mott and Bow has some great options, and for a big thighed guy like me, their cuts suit me better than some other off the rack brands.
Gifts in the workout department are always appreciated, however, I can be pretty particular about my workout gear. There are a few go-tos that are guaranteed to be winners though.
- Reebok 7″ Running Short – I have run in many different types of shorts. So many types of cuts, lengths, and materials to choose from. For me, the 7″ sits right above the knee which is nice, the material wicks well, and the cut is flexible without being too flaring. Honestly, Reebok has made a damn nice short and its worth your try.
- FL2 Shell Series Tee – FL2 is Fabletics for men. If you aren’t aware of Fabletics its a monthly workout subscription. Their shorts aren’t my favorite, but their shirts are so silky smooth I can’t get enough of them.
In the current gift giving market, this might be a little redundant since it seems like almost every present is technologically oriented, but I think there are a few pretty cool pure tech options out there for gifts.
- Pebble Round – This one is pretty simple. Smart watches are integrating themselves more into all of our lives, but I would still like to think of it as a watch in some regard. Pebble Round has a few less apps, but the style and weight make up for that in my book. I want the silver one pretty badly, but this black version is a sleek option too.
- Sonos 2 Room Speaker Kit – My biggest pet peeve with bluetooth speakers is there is typically only one. So when I found this Sonos multi room system I was sold. Two is a good starting point, but they have a 3 room system too.
- Jaybird X2 Headphones – This almost crosses over into the active realm, but it is still pretty techie. Bluetooth headphones make working out so much nicer. No cord slapping against you as you run or lift weights. It is a blessing you don’t understand until you have experienced it. If there is one splurge on the list worth it, I would say it is this one.