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  • Writer's pictureKatie Frantz

Is Re-Gifting Okay?

Can you believe it's almost Christmas?

One life skill I have found very useful, especially when dealing with the aftermath of Christmas gifts, is learning the tasteful way to re-gift items I do not desire to keep for myself. 

That perfume that just isn't your scent, or the scarf that you know you'll never wear. Don't fall trap to collecting clutter just to save face, or donate it with feelings of guilt.

Re-gift it!

Re-gifting can be an appropriate practice when done thoughtfully and with consideration. Here are some tips on how to re-gift like a pro!

Re-Gifting Tips

  1. Inspect the Gift for Personalization:

  • Before re-gifting, make sure the item is brand new, unused, and in its original packaging. Check for any personalized elements, such as a card, gift tag, or note that might reveal its original giver. This is a VERY important factor. It would be embarrassing to give a gift that has a note on it to someone else. 

  1. Keep Track of Origins:

  • As odd as it may sound, it is wise to maintain a list or note of the people who gifted you items, as to avoid re-gifting to the original giver or someone within the same social circles. Believe it or not, I've heard stories of someone "re-gifting" a present to the person who originally gave it to them. Oops! Talk about an uncomfortable situation.

  1. Choose Appropriate Recipients:

  • When re-gifting, make sure the gift really suits the person you are giving it to. If it's a gift you feel they would truly enjoy or appreciate, and re-gift it in a genuine way, then it can be a wonderful win-win experience!

  1. Update Packaging + Personalize:

  • If the original packaging or gift bag/wrapping looks worn or damaged, make sure you repackage the item in new wrapping paper or a gift bag. This helps freshen up the gift's appearance and gives you the opportunity to add your own personalization and touches to the gift for your recipient. I almost always re-package my gifts and personalize it as much as possible.

  • Another great way to personalize your re-gift is to add item(s) to the original gift with some chocolates, a small trinket, or a complimentary item. This makes your re-gift feel more personalized and gives an additional thoughtful touch to the gift.

  1. Consider the Timing:

  • Timing is important. Choose an appropriate occasion for re-gifting. Avoid re-gifting for major events or situations where the gift needs to come directly from you. I found the best time to re-gift are for spontaneous situations or light-hearted occasions. 

  1. Be Honest if Asked:

  • If the topic comes up or if someone directly asks about the origin of the gift, be honest about the fact that it is a re-gift. Avoid trying to pass it off as a newly purchased item. A response I find helpful is to say, "You know, I was gifted this, but don't need it for myself and I thought you would really appreciate it. This is why I wanted to give it to you!" 

  1. Consider Gift Cards:

  • Gift cards are probably the easiest items to re-gift. Since they don't hold as much personal meaning or sentimental value, they are a perfect re-gift option. 

  1. Express Gratitude:

  • Whether you choose to keep or re-gift an item given to you, it is vital to express genuine gratitude to the original giver. Gratitude when receiving and giving gifts anchors you. It really is the thought that counts, and acknowledging the gesture is  so important.

Re-gifting is a skill that I'm grateful for and can help our society as a whole. Remember, the KEY to re-gifting successfully is when it's done with sincerity and consideration for the feelings of both the original giver and the new recipient. If done thoughtfully, it can be a practical and useful way to share gifts and reduce waste.


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