mother's day 2022

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

Photo-Illustration: From the retailers.

What do you get for the mom whose taste for the finer things means she’s only ever filling her closets and shelves with designer goods? Oftentimes, for nearly impossible-to-please mothers, size doesn’t matter — but a fancy brand name does. And the nice thing about many fancy brands is that unwrapping their less expensive stuff offers the same thrill as unwrapping any of their pricier things. Below, we’ve rounded up 30 of the most affordable gifts — that are still really thoughtful — from the nicest brands, any of which we think would impress the very picky mother (or mother figure) in your life.

This mini makeup case from Longchamp will fit a preppy mother’s toiletries — and fit inside her larger Longchamp weekender.

This sweet little honey pot from Le Creuset comes with a silicone dipper and will remind Mom of her favorite busy bee (you) whenever she drizzles a bit of golden syrup over her breakfast.

For the mother who does her own nails, this long-lasting, understated mauve polish from Chanel would complement her spring outfits.

A petite pocket-size notebook with lined, gilt-edged pages and a lambskin cover from English stationer Smythson that Mom can keep with her at all times for whenever inspiration hits. The brand packages its stationery in smart blue boxes, so wrapping would be taken care of, too.

An azalea-print silk face mask from the ever-elegant Caroline Herrera for the stylish mother who’s staying safe.

In this sample-size bottle, the culty cream said to be the secret behind “rich-person skin” is priced closer to a normal person’s budget.

Mom will appreciate the bold color-blocking of these mid-calf, made-in-Italy socks from Marni.

Even for the hippest mom, lots of Acne stuff can be a bit too trendy. But there’s something very timeless about this slim Italian-leather cardholder that can be easily slipped into a pocket or fanny pack.

She can use this very fancy bar of soap to bathe herself in the luxurious scent of Dior’s J’adore fragrance, which is infused with notes of ylang-ylang essence, damask rose, and sambac-jasmine absolute.

Staub’s larger Dutch ovens go for a couple hundred bucks, but this set of three mini-cocottes in a vibrant cherry red would be just as useful if she’s cooking for one (or two).

These ice-cream-cone studs are just as charming as the designer’s crystal-encrusted clutches.

If she’s more of a hoops kind of girl, consider these mini brass earrings from Laura Lombardi that have a sculptural dome shape.

This is technically a notebook insert meant to be slipped inside a leather notebook cover. But with a springy green cover stamped with the Hermès seal, we think it’s impressive enough to use on its own. (Also impressive: finding something for under $50 from Hermès!) The notebook’s pages are unlined, allowing for more free-form scribbling, and it comes in a few other colors beyond green if that’s not Mom’s style.

Here’s a subtle nod to the knitwear label St. John’s signature bouclé slub knit in the form of a scrunchie — perfect for accessorizing her bun or ponytail.

Or for the mom who likes to throw her hair into a simple French twist, here’s an elegant barrette from jewelry designer Sophie Buhai.

If she prefers a slim bifold to a chunky purse, this compact Comme des Garçons card case comes in neon orange leather with exciting bright blue and green interior accents.

These Gucci incense sticks are scented with tomato leaf, basil, and lemongrass leaf, an aroma that interior designer Rayman Boozer calls “sensual and invigorating.” We think any overworked mother might agree.

Mom could use this tiny, most delicate Astier de Villatte vessel to burn that Gucci (or any other) incense or as a special place to keep sentimental jewelry like her wedding ring.

You truly can’t go wrong with anything that comes wrapped in a Tiffany-blue package, but we don’t know any mom who would refuse this crystal catchall that can hold even more of her baubles.

These gorgeous wax tablets from centuries-old Italian apothecary Santa Maria Novella are decorated with dried rosebuds and would smell amazing hanging in a closet (or anywhere else, for that matter).

She’ll love the bright, zigzag pattern on this (full-size) bath towel from Missoni, which can double as a décor in her bathroom thanks to its graphic print.

Strategist beauty writer Rio Viera-Newton and celebs including Brooke Shields love Dr. Barbara Sturm’s typically expensive skin care. This face mist — which is not sample size and falls at the less expensive end of the line — contains super-moisturizing hyaluronic acid, making it a great thing to give just as warm weather heats up.

With all the handwashing she’s been doing, Mom will surely appreciate having this rich vetiver- and bergamot-scented hand balm with almond oil and shea butter.

If she’s got a nightly happy-hour ritual, Mom’s gin fizz will look a lot nicer sipped from this Christofle crystal highball glass. (Bookmark it for Father’s Day, and come June, your parents will have a matching set.)

Diptyque candles are covetable at any size, and opting for a mini one means you could even get her two!

If she’s more of a Le Labo person, this gel wash with a fresh citrusy scent is more affordable than the brand’s candles.

Our beauty writer Rio swears by this “wonderfully smooth and long-lasting” lipstick. It would be the perfect beauty pick-me-up for a mom who loves looking glam — even when she’s just staying home.

For the no-makeup makeup mom, this moisturizing lip balm from La Mer would be a luxurious lip product that’s more subtle.

Lots of famous people — from actress Felicity Jones to accessories designer Lele Sadoughi — tell us they swear by Clé de Peau’s (often very pricey) products. So if Mom’s a beauty obsessive, she’ll likely be impressed to unwrap this concealer for the eyes.

The Strategist is a new site 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 notebook, black T-shirts, fashion-editor-approved jeans, toothbrush, and apartment décor. Note that all prices are subject to change.

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The Cheapest, Nicest Gifts for Mom From Expensive Brands