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16 gifts to cheer up lonely friends and loved ones - especially if they've got the January blues

These sentimental 'cheer up' gifts will put a smile on their face...

sad on blue monday
Leanne Bayley
Leanne BayleyDirector of Lifestyle & Commerce
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If you know someone who's struggling with their mental health, grieving or feeling lonely, it can be hard to show that person how much you care.

Whether you have a vulnerable relative, a friend who's dealing with anxiety about this crazy world, someone close to you is grieving a loved one, or just going through a really tough time right now, we've rounded up the ultimate list of gifts to help put a smile on their face in 2024, even if just for a minute. 

Blue Monday may have been and gone - it's always on the third Monday of January and is considered by some to be the most depressing day of the year - but we're still in the depth of January and January is tough. You might have the post-holiday blues, you might be cold and fed up of the weather, you might be living on beans on toast because you're waiting for pay day. Blue Monday maybe be considered a marketing gimmick from the travel industry, but personally, I do feel a bit down around this time of year.

Top cheering up gifts - at a glance

  • Flowers: This is debatable but I personally love receiving flowers if I'm feeling down. Seranata Flowers, M&S Flowers, and Bloom&Wild are all great options. 
  • Spa gift set: NEOM Organics has lots of feel-good gifts for loved ones. The 'Scent to make you happy' range has gift suggestions for better sleep, less stress and more energy. 
  • A motivational book: When I say motivational, I don't mean 'here's all the things you're not doing right with your life and how to fix it', I'm talking about the caring books full of compassion. I'm a big fan of Donna Ashworth's Wild Hope book as it's full of healing words to find light on the dark days. 
  • A personalised note or a card: Thinking of you cards needn't to be sombre, this colourful 'Sending you a big hug' card from Moonpig will definitely brighten their day. 
  • A big hug: Sometimes the small things make a big impact. Arrange to go our for a coffee or arrive on their doorstep with big open arms.

How we chose the best gifts to cheer someone up

  • Personal experience: After the loss of my amazing mum in 2021 I was inundated with messages of support from family, friends and colleagues. I also got sent a lot of thoughtful gifts in the post, some of which I've highlighted below. 
  • Speedy delivery options: If someone is struggling with their mental health, you'll want to tell them you're thinking about them and you won't want to hang around 1-2 weeks for delivery for their gift to arrive. 
  • Affordable options: These gifts aren't about lavish declarations of wealth, they are often inexpensive ways of letting someone know you care. I've tried to keep it as budget-friendly as possible. 

From 'thinking of you' gifts, to grief cards, birthday presents, 'miss you' gift ideas or something to cheer others up on those tough days, here are the best buys to help you feel connected to your loved ones.

  1. 1/16

    Bloom & Wild Letterbox Flowers

    Bloom and Wild flowers

    Bloom&Wild Flowers

    Who doesn’t love a bunch of beautiful flowers? Bloom & Wild’s are perfect for friends; they come in a box that can be posted through the letterbox, and the receiver gets to arrange them themselves. A perfect indoor activity. What's more, there's a category called 'arrives soonest' so you can get a bouquet to them as fast as possible. 

  2. 2/16

    M&S Brownie & Blondie Mini Selection Letterbox Gift

    Brownies

    M&S Brownies & Blondies

    You can't beat a home delivery of delicious brownies. All of M&S' brownie bases are made using 70% cocoa dark chocolate and the blondie bases are made using creamy white chocolate. They're made in small batches to create the home taste and texture. Perfect crisp crackly top, super fudgy centre, chewy or gooey in all the right places. Yum! 


  3. 3/16

    NEOM Organics Happiness Scented Candle

    Neom Happiness Candle

    Neom Happiness Candle

    Who knows what happiness really means, but we're all striving for it. This would make a perfect gift for anyone who's feeling a little unhappy right now. The 100% natural Happiness fragrance is made up of 10 essential oils including white neroli, woody and powdery mimosa and zingy lemon, and has been expertly blended to help boost your mood.

  4. 4/16

    Wild Hope: Healing Words to Find Light on Dark Days

    Wild Hope: Healing Words to Find Light on Dark Days

    Wild Hope by Donna Ashworth

    If you haven't discovered the life-changing words of Donna Ashworth yet, you must follow her on Instagram. It's not just me who's a fan! Davina McCall described this book as "beautiful and uplifting" and Fearne Cotton said it provides "soul-nurturing permission to relax, connect and be kinder to ourselves." Donna's bestselling books include Wild Hope, I Wish I Knew, Love, Loss, Life and To the Women. You can't go wrong with any of them. 

  5. 5/16

    Moonpig Sending You A BIG HUG To Brighten Your Day Card

    Moonpig card

    Moonpig Card

    If you can’t afford anything physical but still want them to know you’re thinking of them, how about sending a card in the post with a hug?

  6. 6/16

    The Little Calm and Happy Company Quotes Jar

    Happy Friendship quotes jar

    Happy Friendship Quotes Jar

    This is such a sweet gift for someone. The directions are as follows: Each morning or afternoon at work your friend can pull out a little quote that not only brings them closer to you but helps them refocus, find calm, relieve stress, and enjoy the day that much more.

  7. 7/16

    Name A Star Gift Experience

    Name A Star gift experience

    Name A Star Gift

    If you're looking for a gift that's a little special, then treat someone to their very own star! The star can be given any name of your choice and it comes with a beginner’s guide to astronomy. The star can't be renamed so it's forever theirs. 

  8. 8/16

    Aura Carver WiFi Digital Picture Frame

    Aura photo frame

    Aura Digital Photo Frame

    If you're looking for a gift with a lasting impact - look no further! Aura's Carver digital photo frame is ideal because you can share treasured memories with loved ones around the world on a stylish and easy-to-use device. You can also set up the frame for that person so they can immediately place it on a shelf and watch their happy memories on a slideshow. It's super easy to use - and it's controlled with a discreet touch bar that sits on top of the frame allowing friends and families to continue sharing their photos.

  9. 9/16

    Lily & Roo Gold Personalised Family Calendar Necklace

    Lily & Roo Gold Personalised Family Calendar Necklace

    Lily & Roo Family Calendar Necklace

    This gold family calendar necklace is set with your choice of gemstones to mark the dates which will mean the most. Personalise your way and choose any name, dates and birthstones (up to four).

    This one of a kind sentimental piece comes complete with a ‘find your meaning’ gemstone card and luxury gift box.

    Ideal for a husband to gift his wife if she's feeling particularly down, and it's a great way to commemorate anniversaries, birthdays or special occasions. 

  10. 10/16

    ETSY No Words Just Hugs Candle Gift Set

    no words just hugs candle gift set

    Etsy Handmade Candle Gift Set

    In one simple gift box, you can show your loved one how much you care and treat them to a lovely candle, complimented perfectly by the sweetest keepsake token.

  11. 11/16

    Wonderbly Our Friendship Photo Book: Scrapbook Edition

    Wonderbly Our Friendship Photo Book: Scrapbook Edition

    Wonderbly Friendship Book

    Looking for a unique gift that’ll show them how special they truly are? What better gift than a book... all about them and the friendship you have. This photo book can be curated and personalised to highlight all your funniest, tear-jerkiest, and favourite moments.

  12. 12/16

    A Wish To Say Everything Will Be Alright Bracelet

    Bracelet to say Everything Will Be Alright

    NotOnTheHighStreet Wish Bracelet

    Let them know that better and brighter days are on the horizon with wish bracelet. This is a thoughtful gift for a friend who's going through a tough time.   

  13. 13/16

    Letterfest Personalised Plant Pot

    Personalised plant pot

    Letterfest Special Date Pot

    If your friend enjoys gardening this would make a truly special gift - his or her own personalised plant pot. It can even be engraved with your date shown in vertical numbers with your name below. 

  14. 14/16

    Hotel Chocolat Taste: Everything Collection

    Taste: Everything Collection

    Hotel Chocolat Chocolates

    Chocolate is always a good idea. The H Box is a varied selection of Hotel Chocolat's most iconic chocolates. From patisserie-inspired Carrot Cake and Eton Mess to the brand's bestselling tipsy truffles brimming with premium alcohol, there’s something to suit every mood.

  15. 15/16

    You Got This Gift Box

    You Got This Gift Box

    NOTHS You Got This Gift Box

    The You Got This Box is a perfect gift if you want to cheer someone up and want to send someone a little pick me which is filled with positive vibes. There's even a pair of smiley socks inside.

  16. 16/16

    It's A No From Me Hun

    It's a no from me hun by Nikki J. McFarlane

    It's A No From Me Hun By Nikki J. McFarlane

    If someone you know is feeling a little stressed and needs a lesson in how to tackle modern life, consider this your survival guide. Full of handy hints about how to get out of kids' parties, deal with men, avoid awkward conversations and more - this is the book for you. With funny stories it will make your friend laugh out loud.

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