Want to be a holiday hero? That cool cat who can sit back and watch their loved ones shout with glee as presents are opened, knowing that they’ve scored the hardest-to-get items that everyone wants. It’s not just little kids who get their hearts set on a particular gift only to have their parents tearing out their hair trying to find it at the last minute. Grown folks can get attached to the idea of one particular gift, too. Many movie and sitcom plots turn on this very dilemma, but in reality, it is SO not funny.
If you’re one of those people who likes to get all of their holiday gift shopping done before the leaves have fallen from the trees, here are some ideas for fantastic experiences and products that you can buy right now. They’ll delight the gift recipient when the big day actually arrives, in no small measure because they’re sure to sell out – you’ll be able to gift something that lots of people want but cannot get their hands on.
Plus, you’ll be able to spend the holiday season having fun, instead of stressing out. What could be better?
Here’s our list of hot-selling experiences and products that are great holiday gifts that you can buy right now:
1. Theater tickets (unless noted otherwise, these are all on sale now):
The Ferryman. A hit in London, Jez Butterworth’s drama set during the Troubles in Northern Ireland is now in America to spin its brutal tale at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre in New York through February 17, 2019.
The Waverly Gallery. Kenneth Lonergan’s memory play, first produced Off-Broadway in 2000, follows a grandson watching his grandmother slowly die from Alzheimer’s disease. The current production at the Golden Theater on Broadway stars Elaine May, Lucas Hedges, Joan Allen and Michael Cera, and it’s earning rapturous reviews – it runs through January 27, 2019.
Hillary and Clinton, a new play by Lucas Hnath (of A Doll’s House, Part 2 fame) begins previews at the Golden Theater on Broadway on March 6, 2019 for an April 18, 2019 opening. Starring Laurie Metcalf as Hillary and John Lithgow as Bill, it promises to be one of the most buzzed-about productions of the spring cultural calendar.
The Lifespan of a Fact. John D’Agata and Jim Fingal’s 2012 book, about the lengthy tug-of-war that stemmed from an essay by the former that was fact-checked by the latter, has been adapted into a quick and entertaining play that makes a good case for the value of truth. Daniel Radcliffe and Bobby Cannavale lead the cast in the limited engagement at Studio 54. Closes January 13, 2019.
Hamilton. Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Tony Award-sweeping modern musical masterpiece Hamilton is still one of the top shows to see and one of the hardest tickets to nab, whether you’re in New York, Chicago or London. So grab ‘em if you can.
Disney’s Frozen. The movie-turned-musical is at the St. James Theater through March 10, 2019; you could be a real contender for favorite parent/aunt/uncle/godparent/grandparent if you can score these.
Harry Potter and The Cursed Child, Parts 1 and 2. Since it opened in New York this spring, the saga of the grown-up Harry and his friends continues to be one of the hottest tickets in town. It’s still on the West End in London, too. In the annals of gift-gifting, if you can deliver tickets, you will definitely receive a tiara and a place in the Gift Giving Hall of Fame.
2. Tech Gear and Gadgets.
Apple Watch Series 4. Apple’s latest watch is perfect for little bite-sized versions of texting and listening to music, fitness and health monitoring. It was the best-received of the fall new product announcements, and if your recipient has health on their mind, then this is the gift for them. And the matte black model is selling quickly. $399 and up.
Google Pixel 3. If your loved one is in need of a new phone and loves taking pictures, the Pixel 3 has one of the best camera phones on the market today – not to mention that Google offers the best Android experience hands-down. $799 and up.
Bose Noise-Masking Sleepbuds. This may be the new tech gadget your significant other has been waiting for. While these might not stop your snoring, they’ll block it out by channeling soothing ambient sounds into your partner’s ears. They’re totally wireless, come in three sizes for a comfortable fit, and can even serve as an alarm clock that only the wearer can hear. $249.95.
iPad Pro. The new iPad Pro will be available on November 7. This version is 5.9 mm thinner (about 15% slimmer) than its predecessor, and no longer features a headphone jack or Home button. Instead, users swipe certain spots on the screen to get back to previous pages. $799 and up.
3. Designer Fashion Accessories. The Business of Fashion reports that certain global brands are consistently flying off the shelves right now, especially among the millennial cohort. Almost any item from one of these luxury brands is probably going to make your fashionista very happy:
Gucci. You almost can’t go wrong with anything from this brand. Top picks include Princetown leather slippers ($695), Flashtrek sneakers ($1,590), the brand’s new GG Jewelry collection and the GG logo belt ($350).
FENDI. Nothing has been bigger this year than logos, except for maybe the high-low FENDI-Fila logo mashup. Together the brands have created a one-of-a-kind collection that combines cutting-edge craftsmanship with sportswear design ON logo bags like the Mon Tresor ($1,790), souped-up sneakers ($950) and terry socks ($170).
Off – White. Virgil Abloh has been a busy man: from dropping sell-out sneakers to dressing Serena Williams for the US Open, to collaborating with everyone from Ikea to Rimowa. Everything he touches seems to gold right now. Nike x Off-White The 10 : Air Presto sneakers ($1,575), Luggage ($1,700) and accessories like Logo belts ($225) is likely to make any stylish recipient very happy.
4. Luxury Men’s Sneakers.
The new look in sneakers is maximalist, so if you have a guy on your list who loves the latest in footwear, act now. Forget architectural clean white kicks – this season is all about color and larger, old-school silhouettes. The words used to describe the new look are “chunky” and “bulky,” and the best ones are going quickly. You’ll find options everywhere right now, but perhaps not so much in a couple of months.
The Nike M2K Tekno ($100) is the ultimate dad shoe. Originally released as a women’s-only exclusive, the design was extended into men’s sizing in August and is stocked by a wide range of retailers from sports stores to luxury boutiques. And just this month the shoe was dropped in 4 additional colorways.
The latest Supreme x Nike collaboration just dropped last week with the help of Japanese fashion brand Comme Des Garcons for the ultimate trifecta: Supreme x Comme Des Garcons x Nike Air Force 1. These are going to sell out really, really quickly.
5. Cool Luxury Travel Gear.
Gucci x Globe-Trotter is the latest hot designer luggage launch. The global fashion house has collaborated with Globe-Trotter, a luxury travel lifestyle brand established in 1897, to create a stylish capsule collection. There are six suitcases (in three sizes and two colors ranging from $2,980 to $4,300) and a beauty case.
Cuyana’s Alpaca Double Face Cape ($450) is made in Peru with 100% baby alpaca wool; it’s the ultimate versatility piece for a travel wardrobe. It’s reversible, too, with a windowpane check on one side and an elegant striped pattern on the other.
Beats by Dr. Dre x Alexander Wang Wireless Headphones ($449) have crocodile-embossed leather, a built-in microphone, and a 12-hour battery life.
The goal here is not to get you more stressed and frenzied, dear reader – it’s just to nudge you to act early to cross some things off your holiday to-do list. Of course, there’s always the risk that what’s hot now will have cooled by the time the holidays actually arrive – but you’ll still get an “A” for effort, and the early adopters in your life will know that you totally get them. Game on.