Let's admit it. We've all given (or received) gifts at one point or another that simply weren't of much use and were simply left to rot (or even thrown away). Such gifts are a royal waste of money for both the giver and a waste of space for the receiver. While we celebrating the spirit of giving this Christmas, let us move towards more practical and useful gifts that are more likely to be utilized...and thus making it worth every penny you spent buying it.

Here are my top 5 gift ideas under $50:

1. Buy experiences.

What do you buy for someone who already has everything? This is a common question I found myself asking whenever I was shopping for a gift...until I read an article about how we are happier spending on experiences rather than things.

Ever since, I've become a huge advocate of buying experiences for someone when I run out of ideas on what to give them. We are all familiar with sites like Groupon and Ensogo, which offer many great deals for outdoor activities, facials, fitness classes and manicures at a fraction of the merchant's original price. Why not purchase a spa session for your boss, even going so far as to book the timing for her so that all she needs to do is to show up for the treatment? She'll definitely thank you for it.

P.S. Just be careful when it comes to sites like StreetDeal (and its associated counterparts including RivaLife, OlaPrice, MySweetSavings, etc) which have earned themselves a notorious name for their "hidden" membership fees which most shoppers do not even realize due to the tinyyyyy clause I found in their longgggg T&Cs.

2. Beauty boxes for your beauty junkie girlfriend.

A lot of females are obsessed with vanity and brands when it comes to their beauty or makeup regime. While I would hardly call popular brands like SK-II, Benefit or Laneige affordable, many actually launch festive sets comprising of their best-sellers that are a lot more value-for-money. Some even release "limited edition" colours or packaging of their products which beauty junkies tend to treat as valuable collectibles. 

For instance, a Peter Thomas Roth mask retails at $85 in Sephora, but you can now get a set of 5 masks in their festive box for $120. The price-tag of less than $25 per mask for half the size now seems a lot easier to digest, doesn't it?

3. Get packaged gift boxes from Watsons.

I love going to Watsons for my Christmas shopping because they always put together amazing gift sets that look a lot more expensive than they really cost. There are shower sets which include a bath towel, a scented bath gel and even a moisturizer for less than $15 per set! The best part is that they package it so prettily for you so it looks like a luxury gift at an affordable price-tag. 

This works best for gift exchanges such as Secret Santa or your office's annual party. 

4. Transform lives with an organic beauty kit.

With health and wellness on the rise, why not gift your friend a life transformation with an organic beauty kit? The amount of chemicals and radiation that we are exposed to in a single day has risen sharply compared to our parents' time. Combined with our stressful lifestyles, it is no wonder most of us are seeing rapid signs of ageing on our skins at a much younger age than before.

Blended is offering a Transform-Your-Skin starter kit for only $48, which is suitable for all skin types. The kit includes the following products, completely free from chemicals and using only plant-derived and certified organic ingredients: 
  • Vitamin C serum
  • Sunblock (yes, such a thing exists!)
  • Oil-control and pore-reducing powder
  • Coffee brightening detox scrub
  • Restorative manuka honey mask

5. Do It Yourself.

If you have a very tight budget and a lot of people on your gifting list, the best way is to create your own gifts. There are tons of recipes and instructions online enabling you to express your artistic side through homemade gifts which you can customize for every single person. If you're not a very artistic person (like me) or simply do not have the time to spend doing arts and crafts, I've collated a few simple DIY ideas you can use which you can check out in a subsequent post.

Have a great Christmas!

This post was created for Nuffnang's Bloggers Guide to Christmas. For more festive tips, sneak peeks and giveaways, hop over to http://sg.localguide.to/xmas!

With love,

Budget Babe