The Best 40th Birthday Gifts, According to People Whove Reached (or Are About to Reach) 40 – New York Magazine

26 items in this article 6 items on sale!

Photo: Courtesy Universal Pictures

If you have a friend or a loved one about to turn 40, its likely that theyre currently taking stock of all theyve accomplished so far, while in the back of their mind gearing up for a whole new batch of anxieties. Its a birthday that can feel like a whirlwind, according to Christopher Choa, the director of cities and urban development at engineering firm AECOM. Youve mastered what you need to do for family and work, he told us, but youre anxious about having to deal with so many responsibilities on your own.

It would make sense, then, that such a transitional moment might call for a gift that seems a step up from the types of things you might give on any other birthday. According to Choa and the seven other cool people we spoke to all of whom have either marched over the hill or are about to turn 40 the best 40th-birthday gifts can be things to help one stay calm and relaxed or allow for a bit of self-pampering, items that let the recipient further indulge in a favorite pastime (like a nice cutting board for the home chef), or special pieces that the recipient could have for the next 40 years. (After all, by 40, youve learned to take care of your favorite things, says Scott Schuman, the founder of the Sartorialist.) Below, our eight cool people share 26 ideas from a sleek hairbrush to an anti-aging moisturizer to a statement pair of socks to the aforementioned cutting board that they say will help anyone entering their fifth decade do so in style.

Marie du Petit Thouars, the founder of cult-y candle and fragrance brand Maison Louie Marie, says that at 40, a person might find themselves with the time and space in their home to develop new skills. Thats precisely why she recommends gifting this pasta-making machine (that a professional pasta-maker has also recommended to us). Its something youd never buy yourself, du Petit Thouars says, but thats what makes it a wonderful addition to any foodie friends kitchen.

By the time youre 40, you might want even the most functional objects in your home to reflect your aesthetic and taste, according to du Petit Thouars, who says that this French press which weve also written about before manages to be both functional, unique, and calming. Its simple, the ceramic is unusual, and its elegant, she says all things that make it sound like a pretty great gift.

Fashion blogger and flight attendant Tenille Murphy told us that this Stagg kettle (that weve called the most stylish electric kettle there is) was a spot on gift from her husband. She adds: My first thought was how pretty, dare I say, sexy, it was, before noting that its as functional as it is stylish. As Murphy explains, the Stagg kettle has a digital readout enabling you to heat water to a precise temperature, which is one reason why she says it would make a great gift for any full-time tea drinker. And the kettles sleek, matte-black finish begs to be on prominent display in any kitchen, she says.

Another 40th-worthy kitchen tool, according to Murphy, is a high-end knife, like this Japanese chefs knife that she owns and loves. Japanese knives are lighter, typically hand honed, and, in my opinion, prettier, she told us. Murphy says if you really want to impress your recipient, you could gift the knife with one of Sur La Tables knife-skills classes. She took one and called it a game-changer that taught her how to best use her new knife for chopping, paring, slicing, and cutting like a professional chef. If youre interested in giving a knife but want to shop around, check out our everything guide to knives.

Should your recipient be all set with knives, Murphy says that an equally thoughtful gift would be a high-quality cutting board they can use with them. You cant just cut on any old surface once you have good knives, Murphy explains. According to her, these Epicurean cutting boards dont damage blades, stack nicely in drawers, come in a variety of sizes, and best of all, are very affordable.

And should your recipient be all set with knives and cutting boards, Murphy recommends giving them this tray that she calls a safe place to store their beauties without damaging their sharp edges. Because it can fit inside a drawer, the tray helps to keep countertops clutter free, and unlike wood blocks that sit on counters, it doesnt matter which slot I lay my knives in.

Fancy olive oil is another thing someone rarely buys for themselves, but that most home cooks really appreciate. While weve written about many chef-approved olive oils, this high-quality bottle du Petit Thouars recommends is new to us. She found it at a small store near her home in L.A. that she says only sells the most amazing Italian goods. For more olive oils to choose from, check out our list of the best olive oils, according to chefs.

Du Petit Thouars adds that shed love anyone who gave her this healthy dark chocolate. Its from Belgium, where I grew up, and I always come back to it. If you choose to go the dark-chocolate route, consider gifting this with writer and cook Skye McAlpines treasured dark-chocolate tip that she shared with our friends at Strategist UK: My secret obsession is four chunks of chocolate on hot toast with a sprinkling of salt and a drizzle of olive oil. I cant tell you how unbelievably good it is.

Im turning 40 in April, and with every passing year, my interest in motivating myself to go out at night has dwindled, Brett Heyman, the founder of accessories brands Edie Parker and Flower by Edie Parker, told us. However, my interest in having friends over for a cocktail and a truffle goat cheese or soft ewes milk on a cracker has skyrocketed. Thats why she recommends sending your new 40-year-old a cheese-of-the-monthmembership, like this one from Murrays Cheese, which will ensure them a delivery of the latest and greatest fromages for as many months or years as you choose. In Heymans words, its the most thoughtful way to say I see you, and I love you.

For the big 4-0, I dont want to give a practical gift that will be swept up in the tide of daily life and forgotten, says writer Amanda Fortini, but rather a beautiful, not-so-useful object that you will treasure and would probably never buy for yourself. Thats why she chose to give her husband this set of tarot cards from Taschen, which is based on Salvador Dals cards commissioned for the James Bond film Live and Let Die. In addition to being a full deck you can use for a reading, the cards, which Fortini says are equal parts trippy and spooky and come in a purple felt box, would make for an eye-catching coffee-table accessory.

Perhaps your recipient is a sucker for the latest Scandinavian dramas or lives for MSNBCs nightly lineup? If so, you might want to get them something theyll really, really use. Yes, $1,500 can seem like an insane amount of money to spend on a TV, says Strategist senior editor Peter Martin, but OLED, the LED alternative thats been top of the television market in recent years, really does feel like 3-D. Martin says that this LG television specifically is worthy of the big spend you might be planning if this birthday gift is going to a significant other or an old friend, noting that they can enjoy it for decades to come. If youre looking to spend less than $1,000 on a good TV, check out these expert-recommended models.

Entering any new decade brings the stress of change, but your fifth decade can prove to be a particularly unsettling one, according to the folks we spoke to. Du Petit Thouars told us her go-to gift for someone anxious about their birthday is this solid brass incense burner that she calls an elevated way to burn incense (and looks good whether in use or not). The vessel burns the incense horizontally and has a curved catch-all brass tray underneath, minimizing mess and making it easy to clean, too.

According to Athena Hewett, the founder of skin-care studio Monastery, stylish candles that dont look millennial are increasingly hard to find. Thats why, for a 40th birthday, she recommends going for something more unexpected and sophisticated, like one of these sculptural candles from Carl Durkow. The unscented beeswax designs come in fun shapes that Hewett says are perfect for any mantel or shelf, and will draw attention whether lit or not.

If youd rather give a sophisticated candle that also smells nice, Fortini told us these candles from the cult perfumer Regime des Fleurs that she loves to give her friends would make for a great 40th-birthday gift. They come in a lovely porcelain vessel that looks like an antiquity unearthed, she explains, adding that recipients can use the vessel to hold pens or makeup or change after the wax burns down. And they smell divine, she promises.

At 40, life is complicated enough as it is, Choa told us. To simplify it somewhat, he recommends giving several pairs of these Albert Kreuz socks in the striking red color. With matching socks, he says, your recipient will never need to sort after laundering ever again, and their socks also wont look like anyone elses. And once they start wearing them, Choa says from experience that others will notice and, soon enough, the recipient will be set up in perpetuity for recurring supply.

For the well-coiffed woman or man who might want to start their new decade with a quality hairbrush, Hewett says this Yves Durif comb-and-brush set that she keeps spotting feels like the Mason Pearson for our generation. A well-made brush like this one, she says, offers a more luxurious massage for your scalp, is better at detangling, and stimulates the oil in the follicles to smooth and shine your hair. (Hewett notes that this one is the perfect size for throwing in your bag, too.)And like any good quality tool, its excellent craftsmanship is just obvious to an adult, she adds.

Heyman told us that jewelry is one of two gifts (along with that cheese) that would assuage her slight dread, because its personal, meaningful, and, if chosen well, cool as hell. If youre looking for inspiration, she says one of the best pieces of jewelry she ever received is an ID bracelet with I Love You in her daughters handwriting engraved onto it. While Heymans style from the ultra-high-end jeweler Sidney Garber is no longer available, this 14-karat Mejuri bracelet, while still expensive, costs a fraction of Garbers pieces and comes with the option to engrave for no extra cost. Mejuri, we should note, is fast becoming a Strategist favorite for special jewelry, with some of its hoops making an appearance in our list of 130 gifts you can buy for less than $104 (all of which were recommended by people with exacting taste). The brand is also one of nine that our own staffers recently tested jewelry from, with our tester concluding that Merjuri uses quality materials for less [money] than what youd typically pay at a traditional retailer.

According to Hewett, just because youre turning 40 doesnt mean youre unable to keep up with fashion trends you might just want a more elevated way to do so. One such trend she is keeping up with are scrunchies, noting that the 90s hair accessory is having an extended moment and not just among VSCO girls and other teens. For an age-appropriate twist on the scrunchie, she pointed us to this nice and classic satin-silk option from Sophie Buhai a designer whose scrunchies weve written about before with a name that kind of says it all.

If the trend catching your recipients eye is tie-dye, a 40th-birthday-appropriate option that will help them to fit in at Grateful Dead shows and the school playground alike, according to Hewett, is this refined spin on the tie-dye tee from designer John Elliot.

A person approaching 40 will be interested in preserving their best stuff for the next 40 years, says Schuman, who recommends giving both men and women a fashion essential that many overlook: A pair (or two or three) of shoe trees. Shoe trees are super important to maintain good shape and order for both dress shoes and expensive sneakers, he told us, adding that theyre a great way to maintain what we already own. Schuman doesnt have a favorite style: Buy the best you can afford, he told us. While there are less expensive plastic options, these shoe trees made of 100 percent cedar have a handcrafted look that makes them a bit more giftable, and are also quite functional (in addition to helping shoes keep their shape, the cedars moisture-absorbing ability will help dry them out between wears).

In kind of the same vein, du Petit Thouars says these made-in-Italy scented tablets from Santa Maria Novella are a great gift for the clotheshorse about to turn 40. My husband first gifted me these, and I now cannot live without them in my closet, she says. Rest them on any free space in your closet, and the rose-infused wax will have your clothes smelling like a summer garden (just note that the brand says not to let them touch any fabric directly).

For a practical but still luxurious gift, Murphy recommends giving this anti-aging cleanser and moisturizing face oil from True Botanicals, a brand that she describes as a beautiful, all-natural skin-care company with products that are good for the body and for the planet. According to Murphy, the moisturizing face oil fights the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles (True Botanicals calls it our best-selling moisturizer), and the cleanser purifies while gently cleansing, without stripping skin. She adds that they come in amber glass bottles that would look very nice on the shelves of a medicine cabinet.

For the new 40-year-old who is also a passionate gardener (indoors or out), du Petit Thouars recommends this book on foraging and arranging. I like their approach to flower arranging with wild plants, she told us, adding that it reminds her of her summers spent flower-picking and arranging at her childhood home outside Paris.

Fortini also says the right book can make for a great 40th-birthday gift, noting that the best book to give would be one that has meant something to you personally, with a note explaining why. Didion, the collected 1960s and 1970s work of author Joan Didion, is the one shed give to anyone she knows turning 40, she says.

If the 40-year-old in your life is always jotting things down, du Petit Thouars says they might appreciate a more elevated notebook in which to do so. Everyone needs a classy notebook at 40, she says, recommending this illustrated option from Herms. It may not be cheap for a notebook, but it is cheap for Herms, and would allow you to surprise someone with something from the luxury brand without breaking the bank.

Actually good deals, smart shopping advice, and exclusive discounts.

The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best acne treatments, rolling luggage, pillows for side sleepers, natural anxiety remedies, and bath towels. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.

Visit link:
The Best 40th Birthday Gifts, According to People Whove Reached (or Are About to Reach) 40 - New York Magazine

Related Post

Recommendation and review posted by Alexandra Lee Anderson

Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments are closed.