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12 Holiday gifts that won't make teens roll their eyes

Maria Mora is a freelance writer and single mom fueled by coffee, questionable time management skills, toaster oven waffles and the color orange. She lives in Florida with her two young sons. If you see her on Twitter, tell her to stop p...

Impress your teens with these unexpected holiday gift ideas

Teens are a mysterious species. They want to be treated like adults, but when the holidays come around, they're still little kids at heart. And they want to be wowed when it's time to dig into the presents under the tree. We did the detective work and found cool gifts that won't make your teens roll their eyes.

Impress your teens with these unexpected holiday gift ideas

3-D printing doodle pen

3-D printing is the hottest innovation in technology. An actual 3-D printer is totally unaffordable, but the new 3Doodler 3-D pen is the perfect way to embrace this super-cool tech without blowing your holiday budget. If your teen is anything like me, she'll probably start drawing 3-D wangs right away. (Michaels, $100)

Impress your teens with these unexpected holiday gift ideas

Library stamp sweatshirt

Libraries are probably a mysterious relic of the past according to your e-book-loving teen, but it doesn't mean this library stamp sweatshirt isn't cool. (Out of Print Clothing, $40)

Impress your teens with these unexpected holiday gift ideas

Teensy laptop

You can't beat the price of the Acer Chromebook. The 11.6-inch screen isn't going to make this your go-to movie-watching laptop, but the compact size is perfect for teens on the go and college-bound kids. This can slip right into a backpack or purse. (Amazon, $200)

Impress your teens with these unexpected holiday gift ideas

Personal stylist

No one likes shopping with a picky teen. Instead of sending her to the mall on her own, let a professional do the work. Give her a Stitch Fix gift card, and a pro stylist will help her find the perfect outfit for a special occasion.

Impress your teens with these unexpected holiday gift ideas

Go-anywhere camera

The GoPro HERO action camera is priced better than ever this year. This is a must-have for your teen who likes to document everything. Kids can take this waterproof camera surfing, on roller coasters or into the bathroom for 400 selfies. Mounting gear will cost you less than $20. (B&H Photo, $129)

Impress your teens with these unexpected holiday gift ideas

The gift of safe sex

A variety pack of condoms in your teen's stocking will be an eye-opening reminder that your teen had better practice safe sex. It'll be funny and a little embarrassing, but you can't deny it'll get a conversation started. Plus, teens never think they can afford condoms. (Amazon, $5)

Impress your teens with these unexpected holiday gift ideas

Nebula tights

Space-printed tights are all the rage, and it's easy to see why. They're awesome. Impress your teen with a gift that shows up on Tumblr about four times per second. (Etsy, $24)

Impress your teens with these unexpected holiday gift ideas

Gummy bear lights

Your teen is too old for a night-light, but no one is too grown up for a glowing gummy bear. Turn it on by squeezing its cute little belly. This cool holiday gift transitions perfectly to the dorm room. (Uncommon Goods, $27)

Impress your teens with these unexpected holiday gift ideas

Living, glowing dinosaur

If you can't get your teen a puppy this Christmas, then try a plastic dinosaur full of living, microscopic creatures that glow when you shake them. Part conversation piece and part actual pet, the BioPop Dino Pet is one of the coolest ways to decorate a bedroom. Perfect for your science-loving teen. (Biopop, $60)

Impress your teens with these unexpected holiday gift ideas

Waterproof speaker

This rugged waterproof, wireless speaker can go from the shower to the beach. It streams music up to 33 feet from devices like cellphones and laptops. Like toddlers, teens can be a little accident-prone. The tough construction of this cool speaker means it'll be harder to break. (Amazon, $78)

Impress your teens with these unexpected holiday gift ideas

Game console repair kit

It's the 21st century. We no longer repair game consoles by blowing on them and possibly licking them. This game console repair kit gives your teen the tools needed to fix and potentially hack game systems and other electronics. Don't ask. (Think Geek, $100)

Impress your teens with these unexpected holiday gift ideas

Soda sampler box

Hopefully your teens are too young for sampling craft beer. As a safe and legal alternative, hook them up with a cool sampler box of gourmet sodas. (Beverages Direct, $34)

More on teens

I'll let my teen drink at home once in a while
Tips for eating disorder recovery
Talking to kids about legalized pot

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