14 Gifts for Teens (2019): Hydro Flasks, Instant Cameras, and More

Teenagers are intimidating. What’s a Tik Tok? Who is Billy Eyelash? Are streaks painful? It can be hard to keep up with the coolest kids around, and that’s especially true when it comes to holiday gift-giving.

We informally polled some of the supercool teens in our lives to find out what they really want for Christmas. While these gift ideas are not one-size-fits-all, they might help you get inspired and reach the ultimate goal: giving a gift the teen in your life actually likes.

Be sure to check out our many other buying guides, including gifts for mom, gifts for dad, and gifts you’ll want to keep for yourself.

When you buy something using the links in our stories, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Here’s how it works. You can also support our reporting and reviewing by purchasing a 1-year print + digital WIRED subscription for $5 (Discounted).

  • 1More stylish headphones

    Photograph: 1More

    For the Music Addict

    1More Stylish True Wireless

    AirPods, schmairpods. True wireless headphones are popular because they’re convenient, portable, and easy to use. All of those features mean nothing, however, if the sound isn’t good. The 1More Stylish are our absolute favorite wirefree earbuds. WIRED reviewer Parker Hall says they’re “way, way too cheap for how good they are,” and aside from having a palatable price, the Stylish are available in multiple colors. But if the teen in your life really just wants Apple’s AirPods, go for the AirPods Pro. They’re pricier but better than the standard AirPods in every way.

  • Photograph: Amazon

    For the Aesthete Athlete

    Hydro Flask 32-Ounce Wide-Mouth Water Bottle

    Hydro Flasks combine a couple of the biggest trends in teendom: Sustainability and sticker-driven customization. Hydro Flasks are to Gen Z what Nalgene bottles were to the teens of the early aughts. They come in a plethora of colors and capacities, and aside from being a status symbol, they’ll also encourage the lucky recipient to stay hydrated throughout the day. Disposable water bottles are not in style, and haven’t been for some time.

    Half of the cool factor when it comes to Hydro Flasks are the stickers. Pick out a coordinating pack for your giftee and you’ll officially be their favorite relative. Probably.

  • Photograph: Nintendo

    For the Mobile Gamer

    Nintendo Switch

    Handheld gaming has entered a new era, and the Nintendo Switch is its leader. This console can be used in a traditional sense, meaning played while sitting on a couch in front of a TV, but it can seamlessly slip out of its dock and instantly switch (get it?) to a handheld experience. It’s not a phone, yet it’s not an HDMI-tethered behemoth; the Switch is in a class of its own.

    Nintendo’s eShop has a ton of titles up for grabs, and some of the best games at the moment are only available on the Switch. We also like the Nintendo Switch Lite quite a bit. It has better battery life and a sharper screen, but it cannot dock to a TV. This comparison can help you decide between the two.

Read More