father's day 2023

The Cheapest, Nicest Gifts for Dads From the Most Expensive Brands

Photo-Illustration: Courtesy of the retailer.

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Dads don’t have to be label fanatics to appreciate the finer things. But for those who do care about designer goods, there’s a certain pleasure to unwrapping a gift, no matter how small, that bears the name of a fancy brand. Whether that’s a luxe candle or a pair of socks, even the little things can impress a father who demands only the best. Ahead of Father’s Day — June 18 this year — we sniffed out the most inexpensive, giftable things from the fanciest brands and designers that are certain to please even the pickiest of dads. (Yes, some may not be cheap cheap, but remember we’re talking about Gucci and Saint Laurent here.)

$50 and under

Dads deserve a little TLC for their hands, and this cream from Dries Van Noten not only comes handsomely packaged but smells nice with top notes of bergamot and blackcurrant.

Here’s a handmade styling comb from British company Mason Pearson, whose bristle-boar brushes go for a lot more.

To touch up any dry spots, this fragrance-free salve features a blend of shea butter, jojoba, and black-rose oil.

Even if his cupboards are full of All-Clad pots and pans, a foodie dad might be loath to spend more than he needs to on accessories like measuring cups. Surprising him with this stainless-steel set would be a very thoughtful way to say thank you for all those meals over the years.

This planter, made from Le Creuset’s legendary (and colorful) ceramic, doubles as a DIY project for the handyman dad. Watch out for a few sprouts on your next visit.

Does he still swear by graphite instead of ink? Then he’ll get a kick out of writing with these tricolor-striped Thom Browne pencils that are like a grown-up version of Ticonderogas.

Grumbling about smudged lenses and too-tight frames could be his way of hinting that an adjustment is in order, so treat him to this stylish care kit from Oliver Peoples that will give him the tools to DIY some optical improvement.

Improve his two-in-one habit with this Burberry wash that is blended with bergamot, juniper, and black pepper.

If Dad’s still using Barbasol, this foaming Aesop shaving serum will upgrade his grooming routine without breaking the bank. It smells of sandalwood and neroli blossom, according to the brand, so it might even double as his new favorite cologne.

The dad who always has a candle burning will appreciate this one from Byredo; it has a scent that the brand says is inspired by a tree house in Tokyo. That fragrance includes sandal and cedarwood scents with top notes of pimento and bamboo.

$100 and under

Though a Tumi suitcase can set you back the price of an airplane ticket, this pouch for electronics and toiletries is just under $100.

These towels that feature Missoni’s signature zigzag print will heighten his post-shave experience.

And to make sure his just-shaven face stays smooth and soothed, this aftershave is blended with anti-inflammatory cactus extract and infused with Dior’s Sauvage fragrance.

Whether it’s water, kombucha, or a cocktail with dinner, these lead crystal glasses will stay firmly in his grip thanks to the Elsa Peretti thumbprint design that’s as functional as it is recognizable.

Strategist contributor David Eardley recently wrote about the coaster boom, in which the surface protectors are becoming more than just “bulk-bin afterthoughts.” With their provocative graphic prints and ten-karat gilded rims, these coasters from Jonathan Adler fit right into this new class of designer coasters.

When we say Georg Jensen makes museum-quality home goods, we’re not kidding. Another set of the designer’s salt-and-pepper shakers is part of Cooper Hewitt’s collection of 20th-century design objects. For the price, Dad not only gets what could become a family heirloom but the ability to brag about the set every time he uses it.

The Paris-based atelier handcrafts ceramics from black terra cotta clay finished in a glossy white glaze, ensuring that each piece is unique. This rustic, daisy-shaped dish is technically an ashtray, but it could function as a bedside catchall.

Who says dads can’t get in on the clog trend? These rubber mules from British heritage brand Barbour are lined in the company’s signature tartan print and would be great for gardening and rainy-day puddles alike.

Scandalous, maybe, but if you’re going in on one tiny thing from Versace, you really must go with a pair of these boxer briefs to get your money’s worth.

For the dad who exercises in tank tops (or just likes to show off his pecs), this cotton ribbed tank from Tom Ford will make him feel like an international style icon every time he slips it on.

Everyone knows a dad whose favorite outfit is a T-shirt and jeans. If that sounds like yours, we suggest this classic tee in an unexpected heather lavender from A.P.C. that has the tiniest of logos to make it a bit more interesting.

The Ralph Lauren teddy bear has its fair share of devoted fans, and if your dad counts himself among them, he’ll be delighted by this customizable beanie. Emblazon it with his initials and choose the teddy that reminds you most of him (options include Golf Bear, Martini Bear, and Trench Coat Bear).

For the minimalist dad who prefers a wallet with a coin holder, this is the only Comme des Garçons item worth having (at least according to our editors).

This pocket-size Smythson notebook is filled with gilt-edged paper bound in a textured lambskin leather that will stand the test of constant use. That leather will only get better with time, so when the notebook’s pages are full, Dad can keep it on a shelf for posterity.

He’ll need a pen to go with the Panama. Swiss stationer Caran d’Ache and British designer Paul Smith have teamed up to create a collection of the former’s 849 ballpoint in bold two-tone color combinations complete with matching metal case.

If Dad’s looking for a new scent, he might like this one from YSL that has notes of bergamot, sage, and cedarwood. According to the brand, it’s inspired by the iconic YSL white T-shirt and black jacket.

Or, guide him to his signature scent with this Cartier set, which includes three travel sprays whose notes range from cedarwood and cardamom to citrus and amber.

This fringed jacquard belt from Isabel Marant would look great on Dad’s annual seaside vacation.

Stargazing, bird-watching, and just plain nosy dads will love this binocular sport strap from Leica. He won’t have to worry about straining his neck because the neoprene harness hooks over his shoulders and wraps around the upper back.

When our colleagues at the Strategist UK went searching for the next status candle, Loewe’s scents topped the list. But if you want to go with something a little more unexpected than the usual sandalwood, try this oregano bar soap featuring woody and amber notes along with a rope cord for slippery fingers.

To keep his coiffure in its best shape, consider this Balmain spray. After a few spritzes, it gives Strategist contributor Nolan Feeney “the easy, swoop-y volume and definition to live up to my high-school graduation superlative (Most Likely to Join a Boy Band).”

From centuries-old Germany knife-maker Zwilling J.A. Henckels, this sleek travel set includes everything to keep his nails in tip-top shape, including a trimmer that Strategist junior writer Kitty Guo calls the Goldilocks of nail clippers. “There’s no extraneous force, no high-pitched squeak, just a satisfying snick as they cut a clean, sharp line through your nail,” Guo says.

$200 and under

The design-loving dad will appreciate this “perfect block of light,” a table lamp — that’s as much a work of art — made of washi paper and bamboo ribbing by sculptor Isamu Noguchi. (For dozens more ideas, check out our catalog of stylish folks and their own Akari light sculptures.)

Tekla makes some of our favorite, cool-people-approved towels, and this set includes a bath, guest, and hand towel in a bold, blue-stripe pattern. According to Laura Reilly of shopping newsletter Magasin, the towels have “a great bounciness, almost like a marshmallow,” and I am inclined to agree.

If he’s more of a robe guy, consider this extra-plush one from Matouk, a brand that not only makes the softest towels but also some of our favorite sheets. Made in Turkey of zero-twist cotton, it has a GSM of 420 — meaning it has great absorbency, allowing Dad to get on with his day more quickly.

This cap embroidered with French designer Alexandre Mattiussi’s brand logo cap is a safe bet and understated enough to go with anything he wears.

Or get the hypebeast at heart a bucket hat with can’t-miss logo hardware. (Notably, the letters are in silver, rather than the gold Jacquemus uses for its dollhouse-size purses.) Raw edges and adjustable chin drawstring make it a little bit gorpcore, too.

If he’s always losing his AirPods Pro, consider this cross-body, grained goatskin case from Maison Margiela that doubles as the tiniest bag.

Upgrade his beat-up Hydro Flask to this statusy stainless-steel Prada bottle. The Cut’s senior fashion writer Emilia Petrarca describes it as having “the proper balance of plain and simple functionality and yeah-I-know-what’s-up pretentiousness.”

Keep his newest iPhone safe with this silicone case in a preppy pink and a woven texture not unlike the fashion house’s popular padded Cassette bag.

For the minimalist dad who doesn’t want to fuss with a wallet.

Two decks of silver-edged cards are just what Dad needs to fully commit to weekly bridge games. When they’re not in use, he can store them in the orange Hermès box that makes for a fashionable side-table accessory.

This intriguing vessel from heritage crystal maker Waterford is actually made up of a decanter and two tumblers, all of which conveniently stack together.

Fornasetti tableware is for those with eclectic tastes, making this plate more than fitting for the life-of-the-party dad.

Kick-start his skin-care routine with this six-piece kit of sample-size products from Dr. Barbara Sturm, which includes a scrub, an eye cream, and a cleanser. It’s a Very Good Deal when you consider the set is the same price as a single serum from the statusy brand.

And finally, nothing says luxury quite like a pair of cashmere socks from noted purveyor of high-end textiles Loro Piana.

The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best women’s jeans, rolling luggage, bed sheets, coffee makers, and bath towels. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.

Every editorial product is independently selected. If you buy something through our links, New York may earn an affiliate commission.

The Cheapest, Nicest Gifts for Dads From Designer Brands