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Milestone Birthday Gift Guide

Life is a journey punctuated with special moments that make a big impact on us. Whether it's 18 years or 80, there are some milestones that mark important times in our lives. These pivotal moments are also a time to pause, reflect and celebrate.

Choosing the perfect gift for a loved one who is celebrating a milestone birthday can feel daunting—you want to find just the right thing. To help you make the perfect choice, we spoke to four gifting professionals who share their best tips.

Why are Milestone Birthdays so Special?

Milestone birthdays are a moment to stop, take stock of how far we've come, and take in the richness of it all. While some birthdays might pass us by without too much fanfare, others are a major cause for celebration. Here's why...

Honoring Life's Big Moments

"Milestones birthdays often coincide with significant moments in our lives," says the team at VidHug, the video app that makes it easy for anyone to create a surprise group video. "Our Sweet 16, for example, is a moment of freedom and independence associated with getting a driver's license. In later years, milestone birthdays are moments to reflect on life and meaningful relationships."

The team at Baskits, the premier Canadian gifting service, agrees. "Many shy away from the thought of growing older but at Baskits, we think it's a reason to celebrate and reflect. Whether it's someone's first steps into adulthood at 18 or half a century of life at 50, it's a perfect time to show your appreciation for a loved one."

Life is busy and in our daily rush to get things done, we can forget to stop and savor the special moments. "Milestones give us an opportunity to celebrate the people we care about—their love and friendship, their accomplishments, and their growth," says VidHug.

"While we try to be grateful for every day, those special milestone moments enable us to create long-lasting memories that carry us through to the next milestone."

Connecting With Those we Love

Whether it's children, grandparents, or our best friends, milestone birthdays are a great reason for us to get together with those who mean the most to us. "Milestone birthdays represent moments where your circle gets together to forget stresses in life and celebrates. This selfless act provides everyone involved with the benefit of the memories that are enjoyed forever," says the team at Cold Garden, a Calgary-based microbrewery.

7 Meaningful Milestone Birthday Gift Ideas

Stuck for the perfect gift? Here are seven meaningful milestone birthday gift ideas that are sure to be joyfully received.

1. Unforgettable Experiences: For the adventure lover

Image Credit: VidHug

What could be more beautiful than the gift of wonderful memories? "Looking back, we seldom remember the gifts we received on any particular occasion, but the special events and experiences that we share with the people that we care about leave an indelible mark. That's why the best gifts are those that come with an unforgettable experience," says VidHug.

Think about the person you're buying for—what experiences do they always talk passionately about? It could be a visit to the theatre, seeing one of their favourite bands, or a trip to a special place. Obviously, some of this will be restricted due to the pandemic, but you can still get creative and plan out something memorable in their local area.

While this gift can suit any age, VidHug thinks it's a great idea for someone celebrating their 25th birthday - a quarter of a century!

"Create a list of 25 fun and exciting things for them to see and do in and around their city—anything goes—but try to choose things you know they'll enjoy. You may even enlist friends and family to help make the list", they say.

"On their birthday weekend, all of the contributors join in to do the things that they recommended until all 25 are completed. To remember it forever, use VidHug to create a short video at each of the 25 experiences and compile them into a "Top 25 at 25" montage that they can keep forever." We love this idea!

2. A Gourmet Meal at Home: For fussy foodies

Image Credit: VidHug

If the person you're buying for has a penchant for fine food, they might be feeling a bit boxed-in with the pandemic. The good news is that you can bring a gourmet meal to them.

"Treat your partner to a gourmet dinner party, and if you can keep it a surprise, that's even better," says VidHug.

"You can book a personal chef for one night only through some local platforms. The chef works with you to prepare the menu and accommodate any dietary restrictions. They arrive at your home, prepare the meal, and clean up everything before they leave. You get the experience of having an incredible gourmet meal prepared in your own home and served for your partner and their nearest and dearest, without any of the shopping, mess, or dirty dishes!"

3. Jewelry: A timeless gesture

Whether it's a sweet 16, a 40th, or an 80th birthday, jewellery is one gift idea you can always rely on to make a lasting impression. Jewellery is something that the wearer keeps close to their heart and takes joy from every time they look at it. Plus, there are so many beautiful ways to make jewellery a truly personal gift.

Birthstone Jewellery

If the birthday boy or girl likes their stone, you could opt for a gorgeous piece of birthstone jewellery. From enchanting emeralds to romantic rubies, there are so many ways to incorporate these beautiful stones into a personal gift.

Personalised and Engraved Jewellery

What could be more special than a thoughtfully selected piece of jewellery engraved with a heartfelt message? This could be a poem, a verse from a song, or just a few words that will mean so much to the recipient. Gifts should be as unique as the person receiving them, so if you can't find anything you like off the shelf, why not create your own piece of jewellery that they're sure to love?

Diamond Jewellery

When you want to make a show-stopping gesture, diamond jewellery is your go-to choice. Timeless and elegant, diamonds really are forever. From classic diamond studs to dazzling tennis bracelets and diamond eternity necklaces, whatever piece you choose is sure to make the recipient feel incredibly special.

Jewellery Gifts for Men

Whether it's your husband, father, or grandfather, there are so many striking jewellery gifts for the important men in your life. Some popular jewellery gifts for men include cufflinks, money clips, chain necklaces, and link bracelets. Before you decide, do some detective work and find out what precious metal and styles they prefer, so you can be sure it will be a gift they'll cherish forever.

4. A Wine Club Membership: For the sophisticated sipper

A trip to Tuscany to enjoy a full-bodied Chianti might be a distant dream right now, but the birthday boy or girl can still enjoy some of their favourite drops from around the globe. "We have several wine clubs to choose from in Canada that offer access to exclusive wines from all over the world," says VidHug.

"For lasting memories the birthday celebrant can create a VidHug video wine journal, recording their impressions of each wine they try (and the memory of the people they shared that bottle with) and play the montage at the end of the year."

5. Gift Baskets: For someone who has everything

Image Credit: Baskits

If you're buying for one of those tricky people who seems to have absolutely everything, a beautiful hamper stuffed with gorgeous goodies is a great idea. Think about the person in question and consider some of their favourite indulgences. From gourmet chocolates to French champagne, organic teas, and luxurious bath and beauty products, the options are truly endless.

"At Baskits, we appreciate how challenging it can be to find the perfect birthday gift—especially for that person who has it all! Rosedale is our most luxurious gourmet Baskit and is perfect for celebrating a big birthday. Arranged in a beautiful keepsake trunk for the home and overflowing with gourmet treats, it's a sure show-stopper that can serve as a present from a group or a "wow" individual gesture."

6. Home Brew Kit: For the craft beer lover

Image Credit: Cold Garden

Craft beer has exploded in popularity in recent years with microbreweries popping up all over the place. If the birthday boy or girl is a lover of craft beer, why not give them a home brewing kit?

"We believe the best way to celebrate a milestone with alcohol is an introduction to the cultural side of the drink, not just a case of beer," says Cold Garden. "Think of the impact of picking up a special release craft beer along with a home-brew kit to try their own," they say.

"This provides an experience and something to remember the moment by, all the while, signaling there are more interesting things to alcohol than just getting drunk. There's always a story behind well-made products and alcohol is no different."

7. Planet-Friendly Pampering: For guilt-free "me time"

Image Credit: Buck Naked Soap Company

Whether it's your mom, your grandma, or your best friend, one thing most people are terrible at doing is carving out some time for themselves. Now more than ever, it's important for our loved ones to slow down and enjoy some quality "me time".

Pamper products are always a beautiful gift idea because it's not just the product you are gifting, but the relaxation time that comes with it. Even better if these products are natural and sustainable, so the recipient also can feel good about their experience.

"For milestone birthdays we'd suggest a spa kit of artisan soap, bath bomb, salt soak, and matching wooden wick candle, specifically chosen with a scent in mind for the intended," says the team at the Buck Naked Soap Company, the natural, vegan and sustainable, bath and body brand.

"Regardless of age, the one thing we all have in common in this COVID climate is relaxation. The best gift you can give anyone is aromatherapy, peace of mind, and a little alone time." We couldn't agree more!

How to Choose the Perfect Milestone Birthday Gift

Image Credit: Baskits

Worried about choosing the right gift for someone you love? Don't fret—our experts share some tips to help you make the perfect choice.

Play Detective

The first step is to sniff out some clues. "Pay attention to what your loved one enjoys or any hints they might have dropped," says Baskits." Think about any favourite sports, hobbies, or special interests that you can tie in," they say.

The Buck Naked Soap Company agrees. "Make it special. What does the birthday person just love more than anything? What do they need to make life easier? Make it an experience, more than just a gift."

If you've decided on jewellery as the perfect milestone birthday gift, it shouldn't be too tricky to play detective. Sneak a look at the recipient's jewellery collection and take note of which precious metal they prefer—it could be yellow gold, silver or rose gold. Also, notice the style they tend to wear—are they a lover of the minimal look? Or would they go mad for a vintage-inspired piece?

Make it Personal

You also want this to be something the birthday boy or girl will remember for years to come. "When thinking about the perfect milestone birthday gift, you have to think about the person," says Cold Garden.

"We think a combination of experience and something to remember it by is the perfect gift. This provides fun in the moment and a signal in the future to remember the moment whenever it's needed most," they say.

Remember, it's the thought that counts

The old adage is true—regardless of what gift you choose to give, it's the intention behind the gesture that counts. When you bring this special person to mind, think about what would be really meaningful for them, then whatever you choose is bound to be absolutely perfect.