Actual Dads Told Us What To Get Them For Christmas This Year

We asked them so you don't have to.
A food processor, cashmere socks, snake plant and pickle ball rackets.

Why is it that you can’t step outside without spotting a “dad hat” or a “dad sneaker,” yet when you try to buy a gift for anyone’s actual father, it’s like a 404 error message engulfs the universe. Tired gender norms aside, dads can be hard to shop for, largely because they’re not always great at communicating what they want.

To save you some time this winter season and to hopefully gift the fathers and father figures around you with some items they’ll truly cherish, we asked some of our favorite dads (and the people in close to them) what’s on their wishlists for 2023.

From kitchenwares to home tech to many types of socks, here are gifts for all sorts of dads that dads have actually asked for.

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A John Boos reversible cutting board
Alex McCrery, co-founder of hospitality workwear brand Tilit, wants to upgrade his cutting board. It's a great universal gift for any dad who's into cooking or home design.

"As a former full-time chef and now chef to two little girls, one of the things I’ve been eyeing is a chunky cutting board upgrade like Boos butcher blocks," McCrery told HuffPost.
A retro-inspired Igloo standing cooler
Chris P., husband of HuffPost senior audience editor Abigail Williams and dad to a 2-year-old, is asking for this incredibly cool looking Igloo cooler that comes in a ton of vintage-inspired colors, can stand on its own and has an easy carrying strap.
Nike Killshot 2 sneakers
Williams' husband is also asking for these low-profile leather Nike sneakers, which are sharp enough to dress up with slacks and a sweater but still casual enough to wear with jeans and a T-shirt.
A GoPro action camera
I am not ashamed to admit I love YouTube reels and watch a ton of Sage Pasch's videos showing her funny and realistic morning and evening routines as a mom of two in her early 20s.

Pasch‘s fiancé — also in his early 20s — frequently appears on camera, so I asked the YouTuber what her partner wants this winter. (He preferred to remain anonymous.) Because the family spends a ton of time outdoors, Pasch said her fiancé wants a waterproof GoPro action camera that he can use to take family videos when they're surfing or swimming.
A Nakie outdoor hammock
Pasch's fiancé is also asking for a Nakie outdoor hammock, which comes with all the tools you need to hang it and can hold close to 500 pounds, so all the kiddos can safely pile on.
The Sill
An easy-care houseplant
A friend's dad who preferred to remain anonymous is currently taking care of his sick wife and asking for low-maintenance house plants, like this easy-care snake plant that comes in this chic pot from the Sill. If you have a dad that's dealing with a lot right now, he may appreciate having some color and life around him that's easy to take care of.
The largest coffee thermos you can find
That same friend said his dad asked for a coffee thermos, but explicitly wants something huge and non-fussy. Bubba cups are a time-honored classic that will hold close to the whole pot of coffee and are nearly impossible to break.
A Hamilton Beach food processor
Shopping manager editor Emily Ruane's brother-in-law, Matt M., is a dad to a 5- and 2-year-old. This year, he's asking for a Hamilton Beach food processor that was recommended in one of his favorite cookbooks. "My sister has it and loves it,” he added.
Banana Republic
Banana Repubic's athletic tapered pants
Ruane’s brother-in-law also recommends gifting the athletic tapered pants from Banana Republic. "[They're] thicker than slacks and can go formal or casual," he said, adding that a pair usually lasts him two years.
A Google Nest
My dear friend Clark and his father are both into cooking and current events. Clark, who's in his early 30s, recently gifted his dad a Google Nest so he can watch the news as he's making dinner. It's a user-friendly home tech item that doesn't totally break the bank and could be great for other news lovers or multitaskers.
J. Crew
A cashmere sweater
It wouldn't be a dad gift guide is there wasn't a mention of a nice new sweater. No less than six of my friends said their dads ask for sweaters every winter, with one saying, "Dads are bad at buying their own." HuffPost senior shopping writer Lourdes Avila Uribe's dad Fernando Uribe runs cold, and this year (like every other year) is asking for a nice cashmere sweater like this one from J.Crew.
Cashmere socks
Uribe's dad is also asking for cashmere socks to keep his feet warm this winter. They're a little more indulgent that a basic crew sock and can make for a great present.
L.L. Bean
A timeless L.L. Bean sweater
Of course, my own dad, the king of New England, goes for 100% wool sweaters, mainly from L.L. Bean. They're great for skiing or other winter sports, as they're still warm even if they get wet.
L.L. Bean
Under-layers for winter sports
Speaking of skiing, my dad also asked for new turtlenecks to wear as a base layer. He is partial to the L.L. Bean "unshrinkable" long sleeves that keep their shape over time and last for years.
A cashmere Henley
Another go-to dad item? A Henley. Uribe's brother Juan Uribe — a brand-new dad — is asking for this super chic cashmere Henely from Quince. It's an elevated take on a beloved, casual silhouette and will pair well with jeans or slacks.
Durable workwear
Shopping writer Tessa Flores says her unbelievably cool dad, Eliazar Flores, is asking for Carhartt relaxed-fit duck cotton overalls with elastic suspenders for the second year in a row. "I like how durable they are and that I don't have to wear a belt with them like I do with regular pants," he previously told HuffPost.

If your dad spends a lot of time working outdoors or just likes the workwear style, he'll get a lot of use out of these versatile overalls.
A pickleball starter kit
My friend Rosie Carlson's father is adding more activity into his life and wants to get started with pickleball lessons. Surely he'll need a set of paddles and some other starter equipment to get into the game.
A Tommy Bahama Henley
Once again, my dad goes full New England icon in asking for "quality clothing without logos or very small logos." He asked for Henleys and statistically has enjoyed clothes from Tommy Bahama, a brand that seems to moving away from floral button-ups and more into high-quality basics. If you too have a low-key dad who likes things that last for years and aren't flashy, I'd recommend peeping this brand.
Merch from a cause you (or he) supports
My dad really melted my heart when he said he'd love some merch from Savage Sisters, the harm reduction organization that I volunteer with or general "gear that supports good causes.” It's kind of the adult version of gifting a project from art class, where your dad can be proud of you and feel included. I love this shirt supporting the Fort Greene community fridge and also love how easy it is to find great merch that supports good causes on Bonfire.
A Carhartt pocket tee
Ruane's husband Chris Grosso, a father of two little girls, always asks for the classic Carhartt pocket tee, a closet staple for over a decade. "His shirts get more wear and tear these days, cooking for and taking care of two little kids, so I think he'll be delighted to unwrap a few new ones," she said.
Bombas socks
Another classic dad gift with many options: socks. Williams’ husband is asking for Bombas socks made from moisture-wicking merino wool that naturally regulates temperature and keeps feet from getting funky.
Low-rise socks
My dad asked for lower-rise socks he can wear with sneakers or running shoes when he's on the go. If your dad is also a Virgo king who organizes his grocery lists by what aisle things are in, he also may love an uber-practical present like this one.
A good book (or a gift card to a local bookstore)
My dad — as well as many of my friends' dads — are asking for "good books," which means something different to everyone. If you've got a music-loving dad that's into oral history, he'd probably love Jonathan Abrams' 2022 release on the origin of hip-hop. But you can never go wrong with a gift card that lets them shop online while supporting local bookstores.
A fun spin on a classic
Ruane's friend Mary Guerin knows her husband Mike, a dad to two school-age kids, wants a new pair of everyday boots. In searching for something classic but with an unexpected element, she found and loves these red elastic Blundstone boots (which I also own) that are durable and sporty while still being fun.
Vuori performance joggers
Guerin also cited Vuori as a favorite brand for athleisure. We found these bestselling under-$100 joggers that offer a moisture-wicking four-way stretch fabric crafted from recycled polyester. Over 8,000 reviewers have awarded these comfy pants a 4.8-star rating.
A waffle-knit beanie from a hometown coffee brand
As a former resident of Chicago, Guerin has his eye on this stylish waffle-knit beanie from a beloved third-wave roaster and retailer that got its start in the Windy City.
A gift card for online or in-person framing
A genius suggestion that we’re totally stealing for everyone on our lists this year, Guerin also asked for a gift card to Framebridge, a startup that specializes in both mail-order and in-person framing. (There are a number of locations throughout major cities on the Eastern seaboard.) The brand’s website is overflowing with inspiration, and they also offer design services.

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