Redditors Reveal the Most Useless Gifts They've Received, and Some Are Pretty Awful



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Gifting Fails

Everyone's received a gift that's fallen short of expectations (or was just plain awful, insulting, or worse). Redditors are no different. Here are some of the most useless gifts they've received (and if you recognize any of them as gifts you've given, next time include a gift receipt).

Looking for gifts that aren't useless? Check out our gift guides for everyone on your list.

Green real growth cactus plant in pot and fake ceramic cactus decoration on wooden shelf on white wall background with copy space.
Techa Tungateja/istockphoto

The Cactus Lamp That Lit Up ... Sort of

Redditor @knightsbridge- received something they never expected. Or wanted. Th small fake cactus looked like a candle (and was covered in wax) but had a battery compartment. The ugly cactus had a secret. A bad one. 

"The 'cactus' part of the thing lit up. But really faintly. Like "this is barely bright enough to be a child's nightlight" faintly — if the lights were on, you could barely see that it was on at all. I still have no idea where she got it from. Or why she thought I'd want it. Or what it was for. Or why it was so shoddily made. But the waxy cactus lamp went straight in the bin and I learned my new low bar for gifts."

Related: Frugal Redditors Share Their Favorite 'Cheap Gift' Ideas

Grow a Pug

A 'Grow Your Own Pug' That Didn't Grow

According to @Hdis_miss, gifts that invite you to grow your own greenery aren't exactly gifts that keep on giving, unless you like giving the lasting gift of mold. "I got a grow your own pug once and after 3 days of it sitting in water i was left with a slimy, slightly disfigured gross little nightmare."

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Carrot Sharpener

A Carrot Sharpener

What's worse than giving a pencil sharpener as a gift? Maybe what @broadarrow39 received: "I was given a carrot sharpener as a work leaving present once." Wondering what that is? "Quite literally what it says on the tin. Essentially a large pencil sharpener for sharpening carrots, you know, as you do."

Zombie Hand Halloween Graveyard Night Monster Scary

Creepy Zombie Plant

Maybe you want to give something memorable, or maybe you just want to give a gift that would be a stalker if it was a person. But Redditor @Affectionate_Tap6416 admits he gave a gift with all the creepy qualities of a zombie. "I brought my brother a resurrection plant. He got fed up with it, buried it in the rockery, dug it up again, put it in water, and it lived again." Yay?


A Marriage Misstep (Twice)

We don't know what to say about the marriage of Redditor @KosstheBoss123, except that better communication should be on the to-do list. Still, they're pretty forgiving given their wife seems to be slightly out to lunch when it comes to giving gifts. "My wife has a heart of gold, has good intentions & means well but has missed the mark twice:

  1. I was on a diet & she got me a spiralizer cook-book, but I didn't own a spiralizer.
  2. I passed my driving exam and she bought me a dashcam. (I still don't have a car 4 years since passing)." 
Another question: Are you sure you're married to this person?

Baked Potato Isolated on White

A Potato. Just a Potato.

We're not sure if this was a prank, an insult, or just a gift of carbs to someone suffering on keto, but @SomewhereOutside9832 admitted, "I sent someone a potato as a gift once." Well, it's only useless if you can't cook, admittedly.

Philips Pasta and Noodle Maker | $250

A Pasta-Maker Turned Shredder

Hand it to @dy1anb for making the best of a bad gift situation. "My mum bought me a pasta making machine. I live alone so am never gonna go to the bother of using it. It is rather useful as a document shredder though."

The Bodyguard VHS

A Double Fail

Grandparents aren't known for nailing the gift game, but @KingKhram got two gifts from his grandmother that were equally stinky (in one case literally so). "About 10 years ago I got a copy of 'The Bodyguard' on VHS from my granny for my birthday. I don't have a VHS player. It also came with a bottle of 'Noir' aftershave and that was awful"

Horizontal photo of single glass bulb placed in the socket on light background. The grey smoke inside was caused by burning wire. The glass is dirty after the flames and fire.

A Broken Lightbulb

While this one inspires a lot of questions, @sythingtackle simple states their worst gift was "a broken (Filament) lightbulb."

Cooking timer as chicken on the wooden table

The Worst Souvenirs Ever

Most people don't look to their in-laws for great gifts, but @bethelns got some doozies for a past birthday. You would think a recent trip to France would result in some inspired gifts, but guess again. "I got an egg timer, a packet of stale biscuits and a hideous whiskey glass for my birthday once. In-laws had been to France so it seems I got the finest junk they found in the reduced section of Carrefour. Husband stopped them getting me cheap mustard as well."