Doesn’t it seem like every retail e-blast / advertisement / Instagram page has spent the past two months asking: Is there a mom in your life who deserves a token of your love? Well if you haven’t gotten that perfect Mother’s Day gift yet, time is a-tickin’. And yet, that’s a lot easier said than done, especially when you can’t leave your house.
Plus, many of us have complicated (to say the least) relationships with our mothers. And yes, Mother’s Day is not the most inclusive of holidays (nor is Father’s Day, for that matter). And yes, these holidays can be beyond tough for those of us who have lost a partner or have lost a parent of our own. That said, if there is a mom — biological or adoptive or step or in-law or otherwise — in your life whom you want to honor this Mother’s Day, you probably want to gift her in style. And that means no kitschy charm bracelets, no aprons and in the name of all that is good, no engraved Lucite heart-shaped keepsake clocks. Really. Click out of that window; we’ll wait.
Instead, gift her something that’s as unique as she is — and tailor-made to suit her weird and wonderful personality. And although there are as many mom genres as there are stars in the sky, we took a crack at gathering just a few of our favorite mom archetypes (momchetypes?) and the elegant, unusual items we think they’d love. So, if you’re shopping for a skater mom, a travel mom, a design-sponge mom or an enviro-mom (or all of the above) this May, get ready to find just the thing — and probably get one for yourself too.
For the crafty mom
Buying a mom a candle for Mother’s Day is maaaybe overdone. Buying her a super-simple at-home kit to make her own waste-free candle, complete with plant-based packaging and natural coconut blend wax? Definitely fresh. We love these Siblings kits so much, especially the peony, honeysuckle, and amber scent; it will basically turn your living room into a garden.
For the wishful-beaching mama
We may not be able to go to beaches right now (please, for the love of public health, don’t go to beaches right now) but if Mom is missing that golden glow, nab her the fancy natural self-tanner of her dreams. Luna Bronze has got her covered — literally — with its “Heavenly Body” tanning mousse set that even comes with an application mitt and handy how-to video.
For the fit (or at least hydrated) mom
If there’s one thing she needs to remember to do — whether she’s spending her days working at a computer or working out in her living room — it’s drink water. We’re not going to get through quarantine if we don’t hydrate, okay moms? Might as well make it super cute as a motivator.
For the armchair traveler
Well, maybe she’s usually an actual traveler but is now stuck at home like the rest of us. Or maybe she’d always prefer to read about faraway places than visit them. Either way, Rizzoli’s new series of pop-up books (made up of maps and sculptural paper landmarks) is pure art plus escapism. AKA the best combination.
For the Kondo mom
She already has color-coded bins and kitchen drawer organizers, but what about a cute place to stash those don’t-really-belong-anywhere things that are still so necessary? This woven basket will definitely spark joy.
For the ahead-of-the-trend mom
Because tassels are the new pom-poms, didn’t you know?
For the basic wine mom
You know the one. And let’s just say this up front: We here at SheKnows are super into moms’ varied relationships with drinking, as long as they’re healthy and working for all involved (you know, mom, kids, partner, cats, what have you). So whether you’re a sober mom or one who loves boozy brunch with the kids, you do you. That said, we’re pretty sure at least one of your (basic but oh-so-elegant) mom friends can’t wait for Mother’s Day on the porch in her J.Crew with rosé allllll day. This pretty and portable assortment from Vinebox is just for her.
For the on-the-go boho mom
Just because she’s a hippie doesn’t mean she’s content to sit on the couch all day doing macrame. This bohemian mama has places to go, people. Gift her a luxe natural leather crossbody with detachable tassels, to take her — and her essentials — wherever she’s off to next.
For the skater mom
If you ask me, Vans are always the correct gift. And this neutral-floral print is pretty perfect.
For the type-A mom
If you know a mom who just can’t help but organize everything, give her a boost with this sneaky addition to any purse or handbag. The waterproof pockets can turn a Birkin into a baby bag and no one’s the wiser.
For the sleep-deprived mom
Yes, OK, fine. That’s all moms — but if one on your list would reeeeeally benefit from some extra z’s and you have the cash to spare, set her up for a chic night’s rest with this bedside kit, complete with journal, sleep mask, carafe with water-and-possibly-also-whiskey glass, Herbivore lip conditioner, scented soy wax candle and cute matches to boot.
For the feminist chef
Who says you can’t smash the patriarchy and cook up a mean manicotti? For the mom who does it all, a reminder that she’s setting a great example for the next gen of power gals.
For the artsy enviro-mom
Whoever said eco-chic had to mean gifting granola and recycled five-toed shoes? Inspire Mom to take a damn picnic — even if it’s just in the backyard — with this lovely lunch tote.
For the weekend warrior
And speaking of eco-totes, this classic seagrass carryall will hold her essentials for a quick overnight trip to that sweet B&B she’s eyeing — once B&Bs open again, that is. Sniffle.
For the natural-beauty nerd
Many moms want one. But few moms can justify dropping even medium cash on an unnecessary (what’s “necessary,” really?) but deliciously cool pink quartz thingy you roll around your face in hopes of de-puffing. But that’s what gifts are for, right?
For the yogi with an edge
For the gamer on the go
She’s not a regular mom; she’s a cool roving gamer mom, duh. For your biggest Mother’s Day splurge ever, let her zone out in gameland with the Nintendo Switch, which allows at-home play with the console or portable gaming on the go. And you get to borrow it, duh.
Our mission at SheKnows is to empower and inspire women, and we only feature products we think you’ll love as much as we do. Please note that if you purchase something by clicking on a link within this story, we may receive a small commission of the sale and the retailer may receive certain auditable data for accounting purposes.
A version of this story was originally published in May 2018.