What do You Do With Gifts You Don’t Want?

Gifts You Don't WantWe all know that it’s the thought that counts when it comes to gift giving. But getting an unwanted gift can be a real bummer.

Unfortunately, gifts you don’t want are a part of just about every holiday. We are a very materialistic society of enthusiastic gift-givers. Most of us feel the need to just give, give, give to everyone around us, from office co-workers that we don’t particularly care for to the mailman to Great-Aunt Gertrude, who we haven’t seen in five years. All of this selfless gift giving is bound to lead to some unwanted gifts.

So, what do you do with gifts you don’t want? Here are a few ideas…


I’m not a big fan of regifting, even when it comes to gifts I don’t want. I’d be terrified of someone finding out that I regifted their gift. It really is a personal choice, though, and if that’s you’re okay with it, then have at it! Just remember who gave you what when it comes time to regift those gifts you don’t want. Placing a sticky note with the gift giver’s name on an unwanted gift, so you don’t accidentally give it back to the original gifter.


Keep in mind that you can repurpose just about anything! If there’s something about a gift you don’t want that you actually like, you may be able to repurpose it. For instance, a shirt with an interesting pattern can be turned into a tote or pillow cover. Scented bath salts can be turned into scented sachets if you don’t take baths. Candles can be turned into wax melts, and vice versa. Coffee mugs don’t have to go into your crowded cupboards; they can be used as pencil holders, candle holders, or planters. And the list goes on!


Count your lucky stars if you received the receipt along with a gift you don’t want! You should be able to easily return the item and get cash back or store credit. Don’t feel bad about returning gifts with receipts either. Chances are, the gift giver wasn’t sure if you’d like the gift in the first place, which is why they included the receipt.


If there’s just one thing you don’t like about a particular gift, such as the color or size, you should be able to exchange it. Even if you don’t have the receipt, most stores will allow you to exchange an item for something similar. In some cases, you may also be able to exchange an item for something completely different.


Garage sales and yard sales are great times to unload all of those gifts you don’t want. You can also sell unwanted gifts online on websites like eBay. You can even sell unwanted gift cards on eBay and special gift card selling websites like Gift Card Mall.


Here we are complaining about gifts we don’t want, and there are many less fortunate than we are just wishing for a pair of shoes or a hot meal. Consider donating gifts you don’t want to others who can use and appreciate them. Homeless shelters, women’s shelters, food pantries, and churches can always use charitable donations of clothes, food, and personal hygiene products.

What do you do with gifts you don’t want?

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