The coolest birthday gifts for teens

Coolest birthday gifts for teens | Cool Mom Picks ultimate birthday gift guide

Yes, we know that teens want money for their birthday gifts. And clothes. And money for clothes. Also Starbucks. It can be hard finding a cool birthday gift for teens these days, especially because they’re going to have very particular taste.

So, start there. Ask yourself, what do they like? What movies do they talk about? What music do they listen to? What causes do they support? What do they do with their free time? What do they want to do when they grow up? You’ll end up with a cool birthday gift, guaranteed.

Use this list of great birthday gift ideas for teens to get you started. (And check our list of the best birthday gifts for tweens, too.) They’re all approved by our team’s own teen sons and daughters, from all over the country.

Be sure to see our full list of the coolest birthday gifts for kids by age

All gifts have been editorially determined by our staff, there is no compensation in exchange for picks.
CMP is an rstyle and Amazon affiliate and we may earn a small commission on purchases at no expense to you. This helps us remain independent and support our team.


Billie Eilish in concert: Tickets are a cool birthday gift for teens this year

Tickets to a favorite concert

(price varies)

Whether you get to go with them, or they take a friend, they’ll flip out if you can hook them up with one of their favorites. Tours this year: Billie Eilish (above), Lizzo, Ne-Yo, Fallout Boy (though it will have to include a trip to Tokyo), BTS, Drake, Maroon 5, Shawn Mendes, Queen with Adam Lambert…name a genre, basically


Polaroid One-Step Stranger Things edition | Coolest birthday gifts for teens

Stranger Things edition Polaroid One-Step

($109.99 at Amazon)

Shoot like Jonathan with the original instant cam — now a retro-cool instant cam, thanks to Netflix. Feel free to add in a Stranger Things 3 Funko POP! figure too, as seen in our gift guide for tweens.

Custom Pop socket with a photo or design | Coolest birthday gifts for teens

Custom Pop Socket

($15, Pop Socket)

Choose a favorite photo (maybe with the BFF?) and get popping.

Pandemic Game | Coolest birthday gifts for teens

Pandemic Game

($24.99 on sale at Amazon)

This hugely popular collaborative game has a team working together as the last defense standing in the way of deadly diseases that threaten the world.

Celestron pro travel telescope | Coolest birthday gifts for teens

A pro travel telescope

($72 on sale at Amazon)

If they seem like they’re constantly in space…well, maybe that’s where they want to be. The Celestron 21035 Travel Scope 70 is a highly rated professional travel telescope that happens to be handy for more novice astronomers too. It also comes with a travel bag, additional lenses, and other cool stuff.

Apple AirPods | The coolest birthday gifts for teens


($159-199 at Apple)


USWNT shirt for boys or girls | Coolest birthday gifts for teens

US Women’s National Soccer team shirt

($31.99, Team USA Shop)

Available in girls and boys styles. Of course.


Dear Evan Hansen, the novel | Coolest birthday gifts for teens

Dear Evan Hansen, the Novel

($14.69 at Amazon)

Whether or not they’re already super fans of the musical, Val Emmich’s story is required reading. Psst…it would be a super cool way to let them know you got Dear Evan Hansen tickets on Broadway or for the touring show.


SPEKS mini magnetic set is like a fidget toy 2.0 | cool birthday gifts for teens

SPEKS magnetic ball

($24.99 at Amazon)

This fidget toy 2.0 is a huge hit with our teens and older kids who love rolling it around in their fingers or using it to created different 3-D shapes. It comes in original silver, or lots of fun colors. Don’t be surprised if you want one for yourself.


Safety pin earrings and ear cuff | coolest birthday gifts for teens

Safety Pin Earrings

($52, Bauble Bar)

Yes, children from the 80s — they’re back. And so are ear cuffs. Love them together in fact.
(Ear cuff sets start at $34)

DIY Mochi ice cream kit | coolest birthday gifts for teens

DIY Mochi ice cream kit

($30, Uncommon Goods)

The hottest frozen treat these days isn’t froyo, parents. It’s Japanese mochi. Now you know.


Adidas Hardens Vol 3 Basketball Shoesl | Coolest birthday gifts for teens

Adidas Hardens Vol 3

($140, Adidas)

Created in collab with James Harden, these shoes pay tribute to his high school basketball career, making them perfect for teens. They’re made for on-the-court play, but kids will wear them off the court, too.


SHERO beanie from Stuzo clothing | Coolest birthday gifts for teens

Shero Beanie

($30, Stuzo Clothing)

Made in LA from a cool woman-owned business. We can think of a lot of teens who’d love to wear this — and have earned it.


Sugarwish choose-your-own-candy delivery | Coolest birthday gifts for teens

Create-your-own candy box

($19.50-79.50 at Sugarwish)

They’ll love getting a notification that they get to choose their own treats, then have their every candy wish fulfilled. The Ultimate Box of 16 would be a smart and uh, sweet, Sweet 16 gift.

Fluide beauty gender-neutral glitter sets: Coolest birthday gifts for teens

Fluide beauty gender-neutral glosses: Coolest birthday gifts for teens

Fluide Beauty Cosmetics

($12 individual glosses, $45 for Gloss Addict Set, $24 for glitter duo at Fluide)

Fluide is the brand taking teens by storm — it’s gender-neutral, made for everyone, in a celebration of all the many ways our teens see themselves and want you to see them. If you want a place to start, try the best-selling blue-tinted Elsewhere gloss, or their uber-popular Fluide glitters for $15 each or 2 for $24.


Prismacolor advanced hand-lettering markers | Coolest birthday gifts for teens

Prismacolor Advanced Hand-Lettering Markers

($14.99 on sale at Amazon)

If you’re shopping for an illustrator, comic artist, anime fan, or super journaler, these is the marker set to own — making it a very cool birthday gift for teens at a great price.


Ambient unicorn light | coolest birthday gifts for teens

Unicorn ambient purple light

($16.90 at Hot Topic)

They will never outgrow this one. Trust those of us adults who want one too.


Cool kids' gifts under $15: Miles Morales: Spiderman YA novel

Miles Morales: Spiderman by Jason Reynolds

($7.79 at Amazon)

If your teen has seen the movie but not read the fabulous YA Marvel novel, get it. It’s amazing.


Moxi suede roller skates in 9 colors | The coolest birthday gifts for teens

Moxi Suede Roller Skates

($299 at Urban Outfitter)

In 9 amazing colors, your teen will look ridiculously cool zooming around the neighborhood in Moxi’s sturdy, well-constructed skates. Plus, cheaper than a car, right?

PS4 1 Tb slim console | Coolest birthday gifts for teens

PS4 1TB Slim Console

($290 at Amazon; deals often available)

It’s not just about gaming anymore. With this amazing teen birthday gift, you’re giving them access to TV, music, movies…and okay, lots and lots of games.


PS4 Final Fantasy XIV Shadowbringers | coolest birthday gifts for teens

Want a game to go with it? The brand new Final Fantasy XIV: Showbringers expansion pack is the top-rated game on Metacritic.  ($39.99, Amazon, or download from the Playstation Store)


Cat Tarot deck | Coolest birthday gifts for teens

Cat Tarot and Guidebook

($19.95 at Urban Outfitter or $15.96 at Amazon)

Our teens thought tarot cards were a little woo-woo until they discovered this adorable new deck. Cool gift for a cat-loving teen looking for a little guidance — not from their parents.


Feminist women of color authors tee from Philadelphia Printworks | Coolest birthday gifts for teens

Feminist women of color authors tee

($25, Philadelphia Printworks)

This hand-printed tee includes a list of amazing writers woh have added to discussions about feminism, racism, and sexism, making it a perfect birthday gift for your favorite woke teen — boy or girl. Especially because your purchase helps support incredible organizations.

The March Journal, based on the graphic novel trilogy by Congressman John Lewis, with Andrew Aydin and Nate Powell

March Journal

($8.66 on sale, Amazon)

Inspired by the autobiographical graphic novel trilogy by Rep John Lewis, with Andrew Aydin and Nate Powell, the journal offers prompts, illustrations, and plenty of space for kids to plot out their world-saving plans.


Monthly Birchbox subscription | Coolest birthday gifts for teens

Birchbox Subscription

($13-15/mo, Birchbox)

As little as $13 a month gets her samples of all kinds of cool beauty, cosmetic and skincare products to try. Not that she isn’t beautiful just the way she is, obv.


HBD gift card to Starbucks | Coolest birthday gifts for teens

Starbucks gift card

(price varies)

Fine, they want a gift card? Get them a gift card. Just be sure to wrap it like it matters.

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