25 Graduation Gifts Grads Actually Want

Are you looking for the perfect gift to give your graduate? Here are the best graduation gifts grads actually want!

graduation gifts
photo by @laurenhonea.jpg

Graduating is a big thing! You finally get to celebrate all your achievements and the effort you have put into getting through high school or college. Graduation gifts are the perfect way to tell your grad how proud you feel about them and encourage them to take on this next chapter in their lives.

I personally graduated a few years ago, which makes me an expert in knowing what grads actually want and will use, and I’m here to share it with you!

Here are the 25 trendiest graduation gifts.


1. Custom Gift Box

If you’re not sure about what to give your grad, why not pick a bit of everything? Custom gift boxes are such a great idea for every graduate since you can adapt them to the grad’s wants and needs.

I love this one from Etsy because you can totally personalize it and include a little note on the inside.

2. A Custom Portrait

What better way to remember your graduation forever than with a custom portrait? This is a unique gift no one else in the world will have, so it’s special and made just for you.

These custom graduation illustrations are made by DelaneDesign, a talented illustrator on Etsy, and she takes every specification to make sure the portrait suits your graduate perfectly.

3. Money!

Whether they’re graduating from high school and moving to college, or graduating from college and getting into the real world, grads need a lot of money to pay their rents, bills, food, and so many other necessities.

That’s why money is always welcome, and here’s a cute way to make a creative gift with it!

4. Personalized Makeup Bag

If your grad is moving into a dorm room anytime soon, she’ll definitely need her own personalized makeup bag.

Since she’ll probably be sharing her dorm with another girl, having a personalized bag is essential to keep all her products together and avoid any confusion with her roommate.

5. Custom Monogrammed Laundry Bag

This is one of the most recommended graduation gifts for college students.

A laundry bag is an absolute essential because they will have to get their laundry from their dorm to the laundry room every time they clean their clothes. I love this one from Etsy because it makes it easier to transport your clothes and it’s personalized with your initials so no one will take it by accident.

6. Student Care Package

Being a student isn’t easy. It comes with a lot of stress and sometimes all you need is to relax for a bit.

This student care package is one of my favorite graduation gifts because it comes with everything you need to make your life a bit easier (and sweeter).

7. Zodiac Embroidered Journal

These days everyone is obsessed with their Zodiac sign! And even if your grad isn’t, isn’t this zodiac embroidered journal super cute?

They come in all the different zodiac signs and are perfect to document the new chapter in a grad’s life.

8. Cute Planters

What better way to decorate your future college dorm or apartment than with these cute planters?

They will make the grad feel at home while they are adapting to their new place.

9. Personalized Spotify Plaque

Spotify plaques have become super popular lately because they are such a unique graduation gift idea.

All you need to do is choose your grad’s favorite song on Spotify. Then they’ll create a beautiful glass plaque with a custom photo and a unique code. You can scan this code on your phone and it will take you directly to that song!

10. Portable Blender

Staying healthy can be a bit hard when you live in a dorm room or you just moved out of your parents’ house.

A portable blender is super useful to make your own smoothies in your dorm and it’s easy and fast enough for when you don’t have time.

11. Personalized Handwritten Bracelet

Jewelry is such a classic gift that never gets old, but it’s even better when the gift is your actual handwriting.

If you get your grad a personalized handwritten bracelet, they will simply ask you to send a picture of the quote or word you wish written by you on paper and they’ll transform it into a beautiful piece of jewelry.

12. Fjallraven Kanken Backpack

A backpack is a perfect gift for a college girl because you know she will actually use it.

Fjallraven backpacks are super popular in college because they’re practical and not bulky, but they still fit your laptop or iPad.

13. A Jewelry Stand

Organizing your jewelry can be a tricky task, especially when you live in a dorm room with another girl.

This jewelry stand is perfect to keep all your jewelry in one place and avoid any untangling struggles.

14. Aromatherapy Candles

Graduating comes with a lot of new things to worry about such as finding an apartment or getting good grades in college. Here’s why this set of aromatherapy candles is perfect for any college student.

15. Initial Necklace

I love how elegant and delicate this initial necklace from Etsy is. If you’re not sure what to get your grad, jewelry is one of the graduation gifts you can never go wrong with.

16. Polaroid Camera

Polaroid cameras are back and they’re super popular right now!

Your grad will love capturing all the important moments of her life and keeping them as Polaroid photos. The nostalgia of having your memories as instant photos is something else.

17. Personalized Planner

Staying organized is key when you’re a student, but also when you’re an adult who just graduated.

This personalized planner from Etsy not only is super cute, but it also is super helpful and will help the grad stay on top of her to-do lists.

18. Air Purifier

If your grad is going to college, I’m sure he/she is aware that dorms aren’t the places with the cleanest air.

An air purifier is the best way to make sure you breathe 100% clean air and don’t get sick.

19. Makeup Mirror

If you’re looking for high school graduation gifts, a makeup mirror is a must-have for every college student.

A lot of people forget that dorms don’t have any mirrors, and then they have to walk to the communal bathroom every time they need to get their makeup done.

20. Mejuri Earrings

Mejuri is a jewelry brand that has become super popular this year among college students. Their pieces are so dainty and nice, and they are of the best quality.

Your grad will definitely love a pair of Mejuri earrings.

21. Hoka Running Shoes

If you’re looking for graduation gifts for a girl who loves fitness and is into running, I highly recommend getting her a pair of Hoka runners.

They are the best of the best when it comes to sportswear, and it’s always great to have an extra pair of shoes when you’re moving out.

22. Custom Acrylic Wall Calendar

Sometimes it’s easier to get organized when you see the full picture. This acrylic wall calendar is super convenient and will help your grad stay on top of all her tasks and deadlines.

23. Monogram Mug

I’m a huge fan of mugs and I don’t think you ever have enough mugs.

This tiled monogram mug from Anthropologie is the perfect custom gift for a grad who is moving out of their home.

24. Satin Pajama Set

Pajamas are something everyone is constantly complaining about, especially when you’re in college.

Grads don’t want to spend money on pajamas, so I promise they will appreciate getting a pajama set for their graduation.

25. Fairy Lights

The first time you get into your dorm room or your new apartment, all you can think about is decorating it to make it feel like home.

If you’re looking for affordable graduation gifts your grad will actually use, fairy string lights are perfect for you!

This post was all about the best graduation gifts!

Other posts you may like:

The Best 20 Grad Party Ideas You Have To Try This Year

30 Graduation Gift Ideas College Students Actually Need

This post contains affiliate links, which means that I may receive a small commission if you purchase through them (at no extra cost for you). I only recommend products and services that I have personally used and love. You can read about my disclosure here.

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