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30 Graduation Gifts a Grad Can Actually Use

A bed with a comforter on top, a skillet with a steak cooking, and a screen displaying a recipe.
Brooklinen/T-fal/Amazon

It’s almost May, which means graduation season is nearly upon us. If you have a child, friend, or relative making the big leap out of high school or college, you’re likely pondering what to get him or her—and we have some excellent ideas!

Not all graduation gifts are created equal. Of course, like any other gift, it’s the thought that counts, but something that’s both thoughtful and useful is always the best way to go. Whether they’re heading to a dorm, their first apartment, or a new job, here are some gifts any grad is sure to love and use!

Kitchen Goods

Matte black forks sit on a napkin, a steak is cooked in a pan, and oranges sit on a white plate.
Homequen/T-fal/Corelle

Whether your giftee will be making meals in a dorm or an apartment, kitchen goods are always a safe bet for graduation. From quality cookware to flatware, these gifts might not be flashy or exciting, but they’ll definitely be used often.

Any grad will thank you for saving them from having to buy any of the following necessities:

Nespresso Vertuo Plus Coffee and Espresso Maker

Because everyone needs good coffee.

Homequen Black Flatware Set 20 Pieces

Nothing says cool like matte black utensils.

Corelle 18 Piece Dinnerware Sets

Classic white will go with anything.

Glaver's Drinking Glasses

This set of eight includes two sizes.

Organization and Storage

A slim storage cart, an under sink organizer filled with supplies, and a closet with hanging storage.
SoleJazz/Xsin Lung/Granny Says

Help your graduate be proactive and keep their new space organized. Whether they need some small storage solutions for a dorm room or some under-the-sink organizers for their apartment, any of these items will help them keep their new home neat:

GRANNY SAYS 3-Shelf Hanging Closet Organizers

Adds more storage space to any closet.

Xsin Lung Under Sink Organizer

To help keep one of the messiest places in the kitchen organized.

SOLEJAZZ Slim Storage Cart

Slim enough to fit anywhere.

IRIS USA 32 Qt. Plastic Storage Bins

Perfect for keeping holiday decorations or winter clothes out of the way.

Home Accessories

An Amazon Echo sits on a counter, a projector plays a movie, and an essential oil diffuser sits on a table.
Amazon/Auking/Vitruvi

Practical gifts don’t have to be boring. Accessories bring the fun! From essential electronics to décor, the following gifts will be exciting to unwrap, as well as functional and fun to use:

Auking Mini Projector

Who needs a TV?

Echo Show 10

Alexa, buy Echo.

Vitruvi Stone Diffuser

Perfect for soothing exam stress.

AeroGarden Harvest Elite Indoor Garden

Help them save cash and grow their own herbs.

Homesick Scented New Home Candle

The perfect gift for a new home.

Linens

A pillow sits on a bed, a mattress topper is on a bed, and a white comforter is spread over sheets.
Casper/Serta/Brooklinen

Don’t underestimate how nice it is to receive a nice set of towels or sheets as a gift. If you know your grad’s style, snag them the colors or patterns they’ll love. Don’t know what they like? No problem! You can’t go wrong with classic white. Either way, any of these pieces will be a most welcome gift:

Brooklinen Luxe Core Sheet Set

So they can find out what all the hype is about.

Casper Sleep Pillow for Sleeping

Help them drift into dreamland after cramming all night.

Serta ThermaGel Memory Foam Mattress Topper

Make that dorm mattress far more comfy.

YnM Weighted Blanket

For cozy evenings studying or sipping tea.

Office and Work

A black tufted chair sits in front of a desk, a woman holds a striped lunch bag, and a planner is filled in with events.
Zobido/Baloray/Clever Fox

Whether they’ll be commuting to work or class, office supplies and career-related items make fantastic graduation gifts. Whether it’s a quality laptop bag or an organizing solution for their home office or dorm, any of these gifts are sure to please your new grad:

BALORAY Lunch Bag

Not their elementary lunch box.

Clever Fox Planner

Help them keep track of their schedule and appointments.

ZOBIDO Comfy Home Office Task Chair

No matter how hard they're working, they'll be comfy in plush velvet.

Jerry & Maggie Desktop Organizer

Perfect for a dorm room desk.

Kits and Sets

A set of cleaning products, a set of laundry products, and a tool kit.
The Bare Necessities/Tide/Efficere

For those who want to give a unique but still useful gift, kits are the way to go. From helping your giftee keep their laundry in check to must-have tools, these options will come in handy, even if they don’t realize it now:

40-Piece All-Purpose Household Pink Tool Kit

Because everyone needs a hammer at some point.

Dorm Room Multipurpose Cleaning Kit

Help them keep that dorm room spick-and-span.

SHBC Compact First Aid Kit

It's important to be prepared for life's little emergencies.

Better Together Bundle

There are no excuses for that huge pile of dirty laundry with this kit.

Rockland Melbourne Hardside Expandable Spinner Wheel Luggage

Because everyone needs a vacation at some point.


Whether your loved one is graduating from high school or college, any of these practical options make perfect gifts. While they might not be the flashiest, they’re certainly functional, which is just what you need when it’s time to start adulting.

Shea Simmons Shea Simmons
Shea Simmons is an Atlanta-based writer who has written about everything from whether Crisco is a good moisturizer to how to KonMari your space. Her work has appeared in Bustle, My First Apartment, and Make It Grateful. Read Full Bio »
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