Illustration of yellow gifting box for the committed

The Tried-and-True

“I like what I know and I know what I like.”

Who they are

  • Tried-and-True recipients know what they like, and they prefer to stick to their favorites. They’re particularly gratified when you show that you recognize their preferences. 
  • They tend to want more of what they already enjoy, so they may not appreciate gifts that are attempts to get them to try something for the first time, introduce them to a new activity, or push them out of their comfort zone. 
  • They often enjoy gifts that are extensions of their favorite things. For instance, a sweatshirt with the logo of their favorite diner.
  • If it’s an item they enjoy and can still make use of, don’t worry about giving them the same gift year after year.
  • They often enjoy receiving an ample quantity of something they value—a giant box of their favorite brand of ballpoint pen.
  • They appreciate good-quality versions of common, useful items, such as an umbrella or socks.
  • Their favorite items may suggest related gifts. For instance, if they’re devoted to a particular kitchen tool, they might enjoy more items from that brand.
  • They’d prefer to get something from their wish-list than something they didn’t ask for.

Gift-giving advice for the Tried-and-True

“My roommate in college would only use a specific type of Sharpie pens. I got her a “bouquet” of them for her birthday so she could always have one nearby, and she said it was a favorite present.”

“One of my favorite podcasts is Binge Mode. My brother got me a t-shirt with the logo, and it makes me happy every time I wear it.”

“I always felt guilty for buying my dad the same peppermint bark every year, but the year I switched it up, he was obviously disappointed. Now I understand why! He loves his holiday peppermint bark and looks forward to a treat he wouldn’t buy for himself.”

“For years, I’ve tried to give gifts that would help my husband enjoy new activities. A ukulele, a wok, juggling balls. It has hurt my feelings that he didn’t appreciate them. Now that I realize that he’s a Tried-and-True, I understand why he didn’t like the gifts–and I see that I might have hurt his feelings, by giving gifts that really weren’t his kind of thing.”

More gift ideas

  • Multi-pack of their favorite pens, skincare product, sticky notes, coffee, etc.
  • Accessory or tool related to a hobby they love; if they love camping, give a filtration straw
  • Gift card to a restaurant or store they frequent
  • If they often complain of being too hot or too cold, they might enjoy gifts that help regulate temperature (neck fan, electric blanket, lotion-warmer)
  • Upgraded version of a useful household item, such as a pill organizer or a charger
  • Replacement of something they’ve used up or worn out, such as a bathmat 
  • Merchandise from their favorite movie, sports team, or band
  • A special edition of their favorite book
  • Premium versions of their favorite cooking items like spices or olive oil
  • Bottle of their signature fragrance
  • Their favorite wine or spirit, or bar tools to make their favorite cocktail
  • A favorite clothing item in a new color

Get tips for other gift-appreciation types