Let’s be real: 2020 has been a shit show. We started with a bushfire in Australia, moved into a global pandemic, had a brief encounter with murder hornets that almost immediately got side-lined by reports of police brutality and civil unrest… The economy is collapsing, natural disasters are on a rise, and those of us who haven’t taken to the streets in protest about one thing or another are just keeping our heads down and praying that the Gods of 2020 see fit to spare us and our loved ones from this barrage of apocalyptic disasters.
In light of everything going on right now, holiday celebrations may seem frivolous. Many won’t be making it home for the holidays this year–it’s safer to stay home for one Christmas than to risk anyone missing future holidays–and rising unemployment rates mean that the holidays look different for many of us this year than they did last year. But I would argue that it’s in the face of such adversities that celebrating the blessings you still have becomes even more important. As a mother, especially, I feel like it’s my duty to teach my daughter to enjoy the family she has, help those who are less fortunate than we are this season, and work toward a brighter future. Ultimately, it’s that–and not presents, or ornaments–that makes Christmas such a special time of year.
With all of that being said, for those of us still in the financial position to do so, presents will likely continue to be part of our holiday season. In our family, we swap stockings, with each adult filling a stocking for one other adult in the family. We’ve found that this is a relatively inexpensive way to make sure that everyone has something special to open on Christmas morning.
As I was looking through stocking stuffer ideas, I kept coming across ideas that would have been perfect had I drawn Vuk’s name. Since I did not, I figured I’d instead pull aside some of those ideas for any of you who may have media-lovers in your lives whom you’re struggling to come up with gift ideas for. These 20 stocking stuffer ideas are small enough to fit in a stocking, cost $20 or less, and would be perfect for any gamer, TV-lover, or movie fanatic in your life.
Note: This post uses affiliate marketing. This means that if you make a purchase after clicking on a link in this post, we will–at no extra cost to you–receive a small portion of the profits. Thank you for supporting our family this holiday season.
1.) Overwatch Face Mask
If you like including practical gifts in your stockings, consider this Overwatch Face Mask. Competitive gamers will love showing off their favorite battle royale game when they’re out in public, and you’ll love knowing your loved ones are staying as safe as they can from the continuing global pandemic. Cost: $14
2.) Blue Light Glasses
Blue light overexposure can lead to tension headaches, blurred vision, and overall discomfort, making it hard for media lovers to enjoy their beloved games, movies, and shows after a long day at work. Enter blue light filtering glasses, non-prescription glasses that help filter high-intensity blue light from screens like computers and TVs, allowing the mediavores in your life to indulge in their favorite hobbies without sacrificing their vision. Blue light glasses come in a variety of shapes and styles, and you might want to shop with your loved one’s face shape or eye color in mind, but if you’re looking for a basic suggestion, try this standard pack of 2 blue light glasses. Cost: $15
3.) Trigger Extensions & Joystick Caps
For competitive gamers, there’s nothing better than having a slight edge over the competition. By extending the controllers slightly, these trigger extenders and joystick caps allow the Playstation 4 controller to respond more quickly to the slightest movement of a player’s hands. Because… science. Cost: $11
4.) Cord Organizers
There’s nothing worse than tangled web or cords that most gamers have spiderwebbing across their living room floor… unless you try to travel with your gaming supplies and find an even worse tangle in your carrying case. The solution? Reusable cable ties that you can tie your cords off with. These ones even come in different colors so you can color-code your systems and keep track of which cords go to which devices. Cost: $6
5.) Legend of Zelda Bow Tie
If you’re shopping for a guy who has to wear formal clothes at any upcoming engagements, you’ll score huge brownie points with this Legend of Zelda bow tie. The mandala design ensures that those not in the know won’t realize it’s from a video game, while those in the know–your happy recipient included–will delight in the stealth Zelda reference. Cost: $9
6.) Apex Beanie
Another practical gift idea, this slouchy knit beanie is designed to look like the death box from Apex. The simple black and white design will look good with whatever winter gear your loved one is already sporting, making this design a cut above some of the other gamer beanies on the market. Cost: $10
7.) Chocolate Game Controller
If you’re the type of family that’s always included candy, of some sort, in your stockings, then you’ll love this chocolate bar shaped like a PS4 controller. This sweet surprise is a surefire way to bring a smile to a gamer’s face on Christmas morning! Cost: $18
8.) Single-Serve Popcorn Maker
Moment of truth: neither Vuk nor I actually like popcorn. But for many movie lovers, popcorn is a staple, and I’ve been told more than once that you can’t have a “real” movie night without copious amounts of popcorn and candy. If the person you’re shopping for falls into that camp, they’ll love this single-serve popcorn maker. All they have to do is pour kernels to the fill line and pop it into the microwave for some fresh, theater-quality popcorn in a portion-perfect container. Meanwhile, it’s silicone, so it can squish or expand into your stocking as needed to give it that perfectly-stuffed appearance. Cost: $15
9.) Poké Ball Bath Bombs
Hoping to indulge your loved ones with something relaxing? Try these bath bombs, which have been shaped to look like Poké balls from the Pokémon series. You’ll look like a genius for having found such a unique stocking stuff, and you can feel good about encouraging your loved ones to take some time for self care at the end of such a stressful year. Cost: $18
10.) Light Saber Tooth Brush
A tooth brush is always a pretty safe stocking stuffer. The average person is supposed to swap their toothbrush out every 3-4 months, so even if they just bought themselves a toothbrush, they’ll need another one relatively soon. This tooth brush is designed to look like Rey’s light saber from the Star Wars series, making it extra-cool while remaining affordable and practical–the best of all worlds! Cost: $8
11.) Arcade Light Switch Cover
Maybe you’re shopping for an adult who has a designated gaming-themed media room, or maybe you’ve met someone (like Vuk and me) who enjoys showcasing their passions in their home. If that’s the case, they’ll love this light switch cover, which is designed to look like the buttons on an arcade game. Seriously. I want these to replace every switch in my house! Cost: $11
12.) Sailor Moon Wine Stoppers
Dedicated anime fans will love these decorative Sailor Moon wine stoppers, which will class up any function they invite their friends to while simultaneously showcasing their love for Sailor Moon. This set of two is perfect for people who host friends relatively often, though they also have single wine stoppers for a few dollars less. Cost: $20
13.) Mockingjay Pin
I’ve never been a huge fan of buying button pins as stocking stuffers, because I find that even funny ones still look like generic button pins from a distance. Not so with this Mockingjay pin, which replicates the iconic pin from the Hunger Game series in a stunning way. This can be clipped easily to a purse or backpack to nerd it up in a fun and classy way. Cost: $5
14.) Fingerless Compression Gloves
Gaming puts a lot of stress on your joints, especially in your fingers and wrists. These fingerless compression gloves help gamers relieve early arthritis and carpal tunnel symptoms while leaving their fingers free to move about the controller as needed. Because if you can’t drag gamers away from their games, you can at least make sure they’re comfortable! Cost: $20
15.) Video Game Rage Candle
The issue with a lot of gag gifts is that the laugh you get for your joke is great, but too often, the gift then winds up shoved in a drawer of forgotten things, regifted, or–worst of all–tossed in the trash entirely. Not so with this Video Game Rage candle. The joke is that your gamer will need a relaxing scent to cool down after they rage-quit out of a particularly frustrating gaming sequence. But the truth is that just about everyone can use candles, making this a pragmatic gift that they’ll actually use even after the laughter dies down. Cost: $17
16.) Floppy Disk Coasters
These floppy disk coasters are a throwback to the early days of gaming, when the only “console” you owned was a massive Windows-brand computer and games came not on digital download but on literal floppy disks. These coasters are made of silicone, making them as floppy as the name suggests and a fun call-back for older mediavores and retro-lovers alike. Cost: $9
17.) Dobby is Free Socks
Let’s face it: though he had many positive characteristics, Harry Potter wasn’t often clever. Which is possibly what made the moment he tricked Lucius Malfoy into freeing his house elf, Dobby, by giving him a pair of socks so beautifully memorable to many fans. With this pair of socks, Potter-heads can celebrate this classic moment. Best of all, from the ankle up, they look like a pair of basic blue socks, making it easy to match them with most outfits. Cost: $6
18.) Death Star Salt & Pepper Shakers
At the intersection of classy and nerdy lie these death star salt and pepper shakers. They’re perfect for a Star Wars-loving couple or a bachelor/bachelorette who has just moved into their first home. If you want to be really pragmatic, you can even include some salt and pepper in their stocking so that they don’t have to go shopping to fill these shakers up! Cost: $20
19.) Cards Against Humanity: Geek Pack
This stocking stuffer idea comes with one caveat: you have to know that the recipient owns the original Cards Against Humanity game. Assuming they do, this R-rated booster pack makes for a perfect stocking stuffer. It adds some geek-themed cards to their game, keeping things feeling fresh on their next play through. Cost: $5
20.) Rick and Morty Toxic Energy Drinks
Let’s face it: waking up at the butt-crack of dawn to greet Christmas morning isn’t as fun when you’re the one who had to shove presents under the tree after coaxing hyped-up kids to sleep. And so we have the adult Christmas tradition of drinking copious amounts of caffeine while plastering a pleased-to-be-here grin on our faces for the sake of the small folk running around. When you tuck these Rick and Morty energy drinks into an adult mediavore’s stocking–especially if that mediavore has kids–you’ll be doing the silent nod of understanding while also giving them a little laugh at one of the most outlandish shows on TV today. Cost: $12
Stuff Those Stockings Full of Nerd Love!
There was a time when finding the perfect gift for movie-lovers, gamers, and TV-fanatics was hard to do. Today’s media-laden culture all but begs you to find not just any gift, but the perfect gift for your local mediavore, no matter what their preferred fandom happens to be. So while they’ll still love go-to favorites, like Steam, Playstation, or Origin gift cards, 2020 is the year to branch out with your stocking stuffers and find them something truly unique!