It’s that time again, time to dust off the old Christmas tree, hang the musty stockings and conveniently place that mistletoe because it’s the festive gift-buying season. We have spent the past month compiling our essential Holiday Gift Guide to make your purchasing decisions a little easier this year and hopefully take some of the pain out of finding the ‘perfect’ gift. Below are our recommendations for must-have stocking stuffers and under-the-tree satisfaction guarantees for 2022.
Fresh Clean Threads
Imagine your friend or family unwrapping a super soft, comfortable, and properly fitted tee that works well with everything from cargo shorts to jeans, and even under a suit jacket.
For the unaccustomed, Fresh Clean Threads take a simple no-frills approach to create quality men’s basics to help you look good and feel great. They have achieved this by creating not only comfortable and stylish apparel but also have made it incredibly affordable for the average consumer to empower people everywhere to look and feel their best.
Sold in both individual purchases and variety packs, Fresh Clean Threads offers consumers every style they could wish for including tanks, polos, henleys, hoodies, and our new Fall/Winter favorite long sleeve. They are made from an uber comfortable blend of 60% ringspun cotton and 40% polyester which they call their StratuSoft fiber blend and the reason they have become a viral sensation (despite some solid marketing) is that not only do their tees hold their shape longer because of the way they are made, even after washing, they are still incredibly soft and feel great.
To sum up, Fresh Clean Threads continues to impress us with clothing that is versatile, super soft but most importantly fits just right.
Google Pixel 6a
When they need a new phone on a budget, it is hard to look past the brilliant Google Pixel 6a – – it’s affordable has a good battery, is easy to navigate, and has a very good camera, and all of this is wrapped up with an eye-catching design that punches above its weight in quality.
For some time now, the company has been offering a smart AI-based approach to the Android OS and bringing some groundbreaking features, a stellar camera experience, and fluidity to the Android space that has not been seen for some time. The 6.1-inch Pixel 6a features an OLED screen and is paired with 128GB of storage and 6GB of RAM and is powered by the very latest Android 13 operating system.
Powering the 6a is Google’s Tensor chipset, the very first chip built in-house by Google, which brings some nifty A.I features and handles everything you can throw at it in its stride keeping the Android OS virtually lag-free, some may even say iOS smooth which is the biggest compliment we could give. This chipset also helps with battery life, the 4410 MAh battery gave some respectable numbers over the time we tested the device often delivering 6-7+ hours of screen on time which could mean 2-day battery life depending on your usage. The Pixel 6a also features 18-watt fast charging.
Lastly are the cameras, the Pixel 6a has a two-camera rear setup with a 12.2MP main (f/1.7), 12MP ultrawide (f/2.2), and an 8MP (f/2.0) selfie shooter. The quality of photos the Pixel 6a takes is so good that we would easily rank it in the top 10 for smartphone camera of the year, bested only by its larger older siblings.
To ‘wrap’ up, the Google Pixel 6a is a powerful AI-centric smartphone with a beautiful svelte design, powerful processing smarts, and a stunning camera that won’t cost you an arm and leg to get it.
Anker Soundcore frames
What if you could listen to your favorite music discretely and look stylish doing it? If this sounds like your gift receiver, then you need to buy them the Soundcore Frames.
Soundcore Frames are bone-conducting earphones blasting sound into your ears hidden in the temples of a pair of customizable and swappable sunglass frames that you can suit for every occasion. From the exterior, they look like any modern pair of sunglasses but if you delve a little deeper you will discover that the Frames feature the company’s patented OpenSurround system, designed with two customized drivers in each arm, custom DSP, and a listening port for an immersive listening experience. The main speaker is in front of the user’s ear, with another located behind the ear to help amplify the stereo sound. Also, of note is the inclusion of touch and swipe motions to play and pause music, answer phone calls, raise and lower the volume, and advance or reverse tracks.
The magic happens when you purchase the Frames, with 10 different and stylish looks to choose from, the frames come in an assortment of sizes, shapes, and styles including tinted sunglasses, prescription, and blue-light filtering options. With Soundcore’s Pull and Plug quick-release system, consumers can easily swap out different styles and their virtual try-on system is also helpful when you are trying to pin down a few styles that best suit you.
We were impressed with just how stylish the frames are, they are made from quality materials from temple to lens and the stereo sound quality is quite good. Battery life was also impressive, clocking in around 5 hours of continuous playback and they fast charge in a little over an hour. They also have a reassuring IPX4 splash-resistant water resistance if you get stuck in the rain.
Nomad Base One MAX
Want to help the ones you love to power up? The Base One Max from Nomad features a stunning all-metal and glass design and is the best piece of charging hardware the company has ever made. Combining official MFi MagSafe charging at up to 15W and similar Qi charging for any compatible smartwatch or including the Apple watch, there is a lot to like about this charging solution from Nomad.
One thing that stands out for us is the added little design and functionality touches that they add, such as the integrated Apple Watch charger that features a protective soft touch charging base that can also power up compatible Airpods. Or the fact that the unit weighs in at a hefty and reassuring 2 pounds and has the MagSafe charging puck slightly elevated to allow you to grab your device and go with ease. Or maybe it’s the glass panel that seems to finish off the device with just the right touch of luxury aesthetically that appeals to the minimalist in all of us.
It isn’t the cheapest charging solution on the market, but it is the most premium and built to last and there is a lot to say about that.
SmartDesk Pro by Autonomous
The team behind Autonomous is all about practical, functional minimalism. They firmly believe that the user experience is the most important factor to take into consideration, so while products should have a great degree of function, they should also be intuitive and simple to use, to unleash their full potential. In a recent Harvard Health Blog, they highlighted a new study that suggests that a standing desk can reduce factors that lead to obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer (especially cancers of the colon or breast), and resultantly premature death. The SmartDesk Pro by Autonomous is for those seeking to supercharge their workspace and their productivity.
The fully adjustable StandingDesk Pro features a robust solid SPCC steel frame paired with your choice of beautifully finished and customisable warp proof MDF tops including natural wood, and a variety of color options to match your office or home workspace. With a full sit to stand range of motion up to 52 inches, the desk features 4 programmable height settings with a smooth, silent upgraded dual-motor system capable of lifting up to 310 lbs at the press of a button.
This stunning and versatile standing desk allows consumers to increase energy levels and focus while personalizing the workspace to fit you, instead of you fit it. Reassuringly, all of their desks have also been certified by the Business and Institutional Furniture Manufacturers Association (BIFMA), Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC), and the Global Safety Body UL.
Best of all, self assembly can be done in under 30 minutes and it comes with a 1 year warranty on the top and massive 7 year warranty on the frame.
Autonomous is snowed up with Christmas deals this December. Visit their website to grab crazy $9 offer every day and earn up to $100 credits when joining the minigame. You can also get an exclusive 5% off retail price with the discount code: 21OCR
Columbia Aerial Ascender™ Infinity Jacket
When it comes to staying dry and warm, there is only one brand we wholeheartedly recommend and that is Columbia. Their new Aerial Ascender Jacket has some notable features that make this our go-to coat this season.
Made from weatherproof Omni-Tech™ Rebound Stretch 100% polyester complete with zippered hand pockets and a drawstring adjustable hem; the Aerial Ascender is built for the Winter warrior and has all the features ready to tackle the mountain. Most notable is the inclusion of a ski pass and goggle pocket, and an adjustable powder skirt
Notable in the Ascender is the evolution of Columbia’s own Infinity thermal reflective pattern of unique-looking gold dots that delivers improved heat retention and breathability. The Omni-Heat technology is now so effective, we’re not saying go scale Everest with anything else but this jacket, but for everyday tasks, it should get the job done!
Lastly are also some worthy additional features which we have come to appreciate, things such as an adjustable hood that can fit over a ski helmet, zippered chest pockets for your valuables, adjustable cuffs to tighten over gloves, and even underarm venting to allow adequate airflow without feeling the cold. All these features combined make for an experience that is unlike any other we have had with outerwear.
Withings Steel HR Smartwatch
When you want smartwatch functionality in a traditional watch body, Withings is the only choice we recommend.
The Steel HR is available in two sizes: 36mm and 40mm and boasts an impressive 25-day battery life, 5 ATM water resistance, and features hand dials that show time and a sub-dial that shows the percentage of personal daily activity goal achieved.
Withings have also included a very convenient dynamic digital screen at the top of the watch face that displays pertinent health data and smartphone notifications, and you even can choose the information you would like to be shown on the screen through a multifunction button on the side of the watch. This button allows users to navigate through data options including calories burned, daily steps, distance, sleep duration, and smart alarm, and to receive notifications for calls, new emails, texts, and event reminders.
Of note is also some powerful sleep-tracking features, the watch will automatically monitor the user’s pulse while sleeping to provide the resting heart rate and this is thanks in part to Withings’ photoplethysmography (PPG) technology embedded within, which monitors heart rate using green LED lights to detect variation in the level of blood in the wrist. Plus, we just think it looks pretty damn cool and will make a great gift.
When it comes to versatile, high-quality, stylish and sustainable garments that allow you to have less and experience more, FIOBOC have you covered.
FIOBOC combines technology with fashion and pushes the boundaries of what is possible for each piece of clothing, including moisture wicking fabrics and odor and stain resistant properties into every piece of apparel that they design.
With a focus on sustainable practises and style, they offer a range of products for both men and women including t-shirts, polos and outerwear in a range of styles and colors that is bound to suit the most discerning of consumers.
We are a big fan of their Sky Blue Pullover Sweatshirt which is made from Graphene because of its elasticity, heat preservation and antibacterial properties which is perfect for those colder months.
So, there you have it, all our recommendations to make you go from Grinch to Kringle with a few simple purchases.
Let us know your favorites in the comments below!