Gifts

29 Affordable Mother's Day Gifts for Moms Who Say They Don't Want Anything

But they actually do (you know it).

February  8, 2022
Photo by Mark Weinberg

Moms are notoriously difficult to buy gifts for. It’s objectively true that the vast majority of moms “don’t want anything” for Mother’s Day, maybe just “spending time together” if possible, along with some kind of heartfelt card or even just a quick phone call.

But given all the work they did to keep us alive well into adulthood, they definitely deserve a lot more than that. And since you know mom doesn’t want you to spend too much, we're sticking to a budget this year. Ahead, 29 affordable Mother's Day gifts all ringing under $35—don't forget to give her a call though!

Photo by Uncommon Goods

1. Repurposed Sari Patchwork Apron, $30

Both a piece of art and a kitchen essential, this apron is handmade by artisans in Bangladesh with swatches from previously loved saris and featuring kantha stitching in contrasting colors. The patchwork is on the front of the apron (which also has a large pocket) while the back features a single print.

Photo by Brooklinen

2. Brooklinen Mulberry Silk Eyemask, $29 $26.10

For the mom whose only wish is to get more sleep, a silk eye mask can help. It’s super soft on the skin and won’t cause any frizz or breakage on her hair, and most importantly, blocks out light for as long as she wants.

Photo by Bath & Body Works

3. Bath & Body Works Eucalyptus Spearmint Hand Cream, $7.50

Grab a few tubes of moisturizing hand cream in her favorite scent so she’s never without one when she needs it most. Go the extra mile and stash one in every purse and jacket pocket, we bet she’ll smile at the thoughtfulness the next time she (inevitably) forgets to grab one before leaving the house.

Photo by Uncommon Goods

4. Essential Oil Shower Steamers, $15

A bathroom remodel complete with a freestanding tub is likely out of the question, but she can still get all the spa vibes with these little shower steamers. Drop one on the shower floor and let the water dissolve the puck and release essential oils like energizing eucalyptus and calming lavender.

Photo by Brooklyn Candle Studio

5. Brooklyn Candle Studio Sunday Morning Minimalist Candle, $28

Help her feel like every day is Sunday morning with this inspired candle. Fruity and floral with a woodsy base, it’s a perfectly balanced scent with great throw even when it’s not lit.

Photo by Nordstrom

6. Lake & Skye Lavender & Sandalwood Pillow Mist, $24

A few spritzes of this editor-favorite pillow mist means she can drift off to dreamland more easily. It’s a little luxury she might not buy herself, which makes it a great gift idea.

Photo by The Sill

7. The Sill Snake Plant Laurentii, $32

If she prefers stick-around plants over flowers that wilt too soon, a hardy snake plant fits the bill. It only needs to be watered every few weeks (in fact, too much water will send it straight to the nursery in the sky) and can grow in low-light conditions, but make sure pets don’t confuse it for a snack.

Photo by Great Jones

8. Great Jones Holy Sheet, $40

This half-size sheet pan has a special nonstick coating for all manner of oven successes. It's a colorful take on an everyday essential, though she might be tempted to only use it for special occasions.

Photo by Anthropologie

9. Anthropologie Bistro Tile Vanity Tray, $28

This Parisian bistro-inspired catchall tray is perfect for specs, keys, and jewelry—don't be surprised if she asks you where you bought it so she can grab a few more.

Photo by Rocky Luten

10. Thomas Keller K+M Bean-to-Cup Hot Chocolate, $24

Fancy coffee is one thing, but how about fancy hot chocolate? This blend, crafted in Napa, California, will make for a really lovely treat.

Photo by Rocky Luten

11. Palais des Thés Signature Tea Blends, $21

To make your mom feel like French royalty.

Photo by Uncommon Goods

12. Sunflower Garden Grow Kit, $12

If you usually send a bouquet, switch it up this year with a grow-your-own sunflower kit that includes seeds for six heirloom varieties and easy-to-follow instructions.

Photo by Ty Mecham

13. Fellow Carter Travel Mug, $30

This gorgeously designed mug will keep drinks hot for 12 hours, and cold for up to 24.

Photo by Sephora

14. Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask, $22

Beauty lovers swear by this overnight mask to help prevent cracked, chapped lips.

Photo by Crate & Barrel

15. French Kitchen Marble Wine Cooler, $39.95

This doubles as a vase, or a chic place to stash cooking utensils.

Photo by Ty Mecham

16. Piecework Modern Jigsaw Puzzles, $26

If your mom has taken up jigsaw puzzles during the pandemic, these food and booze designs will be a fun surprise. Pair it with actual snacks for a double whammy.

Photo by Lululemon

17. Lululemon Uplifting Scrunchie, $8

If your mom has a habit of “borrowing” your scrunchies, send her one of her very own.

Photo by James Ransom

18. Mikuni Noble Handcrafted Tonic 01: Tuthilltown Bourbon Barrel Matured Maple Syrup, $29

Perfect for weekend breakfasts at home.

Photo by Amazon

19. A Little Tea Book: All the Essentials from Leaf to Cup by Sebastian Beckwith and Caroline Paul, $20 $16.79

If your mom’s a tea enthusiast, this book will be a massive hit. For bonus points, get one for yourself so you can compare notes.

Photo by Uncommon Goods

20. Blooming Lollipops, $20

Instant candy gratification and long-term florals.

Photo by Julia Gartland

21. Bee's Wrap Reusable Food Wraps, $18-$46

Help mom green her kitchen with reusable food wraps to keep her bread and vegetables and cheese fresh without plastic. It might even mean more snacks-to-go for you.

Photo by Bombas

22. Women's Tri-Block Ankle Socks, $12.50

It’s an undeniable fact that a good pair of socks are, in fact, a fantastic gift because no one ever buys nice ones for themselves.

Photo by Rocky Luten

23. Five Two Silicone Baking Mat, $15

If your mom is still fussing around with parchment paper and tinfoil, gift her this multipurpose silicone mat for all her baking needs.

Photo by Ty Mecham

24. Moleskine Recipe & Wine Passion Journals, $30

Leave it to Moleskine to create low-key perfect notebooks for scribbling in everyday musings. There's one here for your mom's recipes as well—that you will steal later, naturally.

Photo by Dermstore

25. Patchology FlashPatch Rejuvenating Eye Gels, $15

Because moms are gonna mom, which means worrying about everything from if you've eaten dinner to if you're wearing enough layers in the winter.

Photo by Amazon

26. Swedish Dream Sea Salt Soap, $21.99

Surely we all deserve some nice soap after using harsh hand sanitizers that smell like rubbing alcohol.

Photo by Rocky Luten

27. Five Two Wool Dryer Balls, $36-$70

Because your family's miracle worker needs a few miracle workers of her own. Go on, make laundry day easier, eco-friendlier, and just plain happier.

Photo by Rocky Luten

28. Bushwick Kitchen Salted Honey, Set of 2, $27.99

This is the condiment mom didn’t know she needed.

Photo by Walmart

29. Mainstays Seagrass and Paper Rope Storage Baskets, Set of 2, $24.09

Is there anything moms love more than baskets? This set of hand-woven seagrass baskets is perfect for storing little items around the house.

This post was updated in February 2022 to add even more gift ideas.

What are you getting your mom for Mother's Day this year? Let us know in the comments!

This post contains products independently chosen (and loved) by our editors and writers. Food52 earns an affiliate commission on qualifying purchases of the products we link to.

The All for Farmers Market

We’ve joined forces with Tillamook to support All For Farmers—a coalition benefiting farmers across the nation—with a special market that gives back. Featuring Shop all-stars and a limited-edition Five Two apron, a portion of proceeds from every purchase supports American Farmland Trust’s Brighter Future Fund.

The All for Farmers Market

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • naradnarayan
    naradnarayan
  • bookjunky
    bookjunky
  • Vannes_Et_Sa_Femme
    Vannes_Et_Sa_Femme
Nina is a writer, editor, and enthusiastic home cook in New York City.

3 Comments

naradnarayan May 5, 2021
you are providing us good content and relatable content.
thanks
 
bookjunky March 10, 2021
As a mother of two adult children, I would take a pass on most of this. A lot of it would make me downright sad to receive. What I would like is for someone to make me a nice meal, and give me some big hugs, and be happy to spend time with me, A nice bottle of wine and a friendly game of Scrabble would be the icing on the cake.
 
Vannes_Et_Sa_Femme February 9, 2022
I cannot imagine offering my mother a single thing on this list. A nice brunch, bottle of wine or some lovely flowers, and quality time would go so, so much further.