The Re-Gift that Keeps On Giving

Oh, the holidays. They bring gatherings, good feelings, gifts, and ... garbage. How do you keep your cool when it comes to wading through the clutter brought on by this special time of year? One way is by cleaning your closets and clearing the chaos with regifting. Sure, some people think it’s tacky to give a gift that was once given to them, but from an economic and environmental standpoint, it makes a lot of sense. Here are some important rules to regifting to rid yourself—and save the landfill—from that godawful (or good, but mis-gifted) present.

To Regift or Not to Regift

First things first: Ask yourself why you are giving this item away. Are you doing it because you’re being cheap, you ran out of time, and/or you don’t want it tucked under the bed or in your closet anymore? Then you’re doing it for all the wrong reasons. Giving a gift is a special thing, and the item you’re giving should reflect that feeling to the special person who is receiving it. Just because a gift is not brand new does not change or diminish the reason why we give. When you regift, you’re still keeping the receiver in mind and giving them your item because it’s something they would like to have, not because you just don’t want it.  

It’s Not Personal

Is the item personalized or homemade? If so, regifting is a hard no. Always check your item for engravings, a monogram, a signature, or any other indication that it belongs to you and you alone. If you don’t want to open a present only to find out it’s an embroidered item with the name Edna on it, then chances are, your receiver doesn’t either. Unless, of course, their name is Edna.

Reduce Reuse Recycle Regift

 

The Difference Between Used and Pre-Owned

It’s all in the wording, but really what is the difference between used and pre-owned? When you’re considering regifting, make sure the item is in good working condition. If it’s never been used and is in the original box, that’s even better! Refrain from giving your friends or family members items that have been visibly used, have wear and tear, or are dusty. It’s likely your receiver doesn’t want that old food processor from the depths of your kitchen cabinets any more than you do, but they may like that extra kitchen gadget you never opened.

Tie a String Around Your Finger and the Gift

One of the biggest no-nos in regifting is inadvertently regifting an item back to the original giver. Not only is this embarrassing for you, but it can also hurt the original giver’s feelings. It’s important that if you get an item that doesn’t fit your style or that you don’t need, to take note of who gave it to you. And if you had a memory lapse and aren’t sure who it was, it’s best not to regift it at all. You don’t want to have an episode of Seinfeld on your hands.

Honesty is the Best Policy

If someone does find out you regifted, it’s always best to fess up. We’ve all received a gift that didn’t fit our bodies, lifestyle, or personalities, so it’s best to just say so. If you give a present to someone and they find out it was a regift, let them know it wasn’t your style or you already had one and you knew they would love it. You don’t have to say anything negative about the item, just that you thought they would really appreciate it. And after all, it is the thought that counts, isn’t it?

Giving a gift is a special thing, and the item you're giving should reflect that feeling to the special person who is receiving it.

— TC Clark
Posted on Dec 6, 2018

Summary: Some people think it’s tacky to give a gift that was once given to them, but from an economic and environmental standpoint, it makes a lot of sense. Here are some important rules to regifting to rid yourself—and save the landfill—from that godawful (or good, but mis-gifted) present.