Tacky, Tasteless & Scary—Gifts to Avoid

It's staaaaarting… the fake trees, the blow-up Santas, the holiday pressure that can lead you to buy really strange stuff. Fear not! A quick trip through our little shop of horrors will remind you to spend wisely.

Price: $9.99-$13.99
Shrub covers. And then your pine tree will need a coat. Stop now.

Price: $54.99
Darth Vader toaster. The Dark Lord's face… with jam? May the Force be with you as seek a more normal gift like, say, socks.

Price: $68.50
Frankentoys. Years later, in therapy, your child will sob hysterically as she recalls with terror, the toy you thought was cute and humorous.

Price: $7.50
Garbage bag dress. There's a reason Hefty isn't a designer name.

Price: $129.99
Portable Stripper Pole. Funny—until your 12-year-old finds it.

Price: $79.95-$89.95
Steak branding iron. Nothing spells macho like his initials, branded into your flank… steak.

As further protection, prevent crafty disasters by reading Regretsy; steer clear of anything advertised on cable at 3 A.M.; avoid clearance rack items—and remember: Most of this post was brought to you by SkyMall.

It's the thought that counts. Tell us your holiday gift horror stories.

Join the Discussion