Cool tech. Silly cartoons. Food! The interests and hobbies of a teenage boy can be quite diverse, especially when they’ve just entered teendom and are still shaking off the remnants of childhood.
Here are just a few gifts for 13-year-old boys that cover all angles.
Constructive Destruction: Wreck This Journal Paper Bag Edition
This isn’t a precious library book that he has to treat like glass. Wreck This Journal lives up to its name with fun, creative instructions such as “rub here with dirt,” “throw paint at this page” and “smash the book’s spine against the wall.
” Every page encourages activity, and every page allows for self-expression through things like color and motion. There’s a reason why this journal has become such a massively successful project worldwide.
A Snap Decision: LEGO Marvel Infinity Gauntlet Building Kit
LEGO building kits are fun for all ages, but at 13, he’s probably ready to move on from the kid stuff. How about buying him something that’s a bit more challenging? This kit has almost 600 pieces, so it requires focus and dedication to put it all together, and the final product will be a high-quality model of Thanos’s gauntlet.
It’s perfect for Marvel fans as well as any boy who likes creating things with his own hands.
For Naruto Runs to the Microwave: Rapid Ramen Cooker
It’s never too early to prepare for college, and this rapid ramen cooker will get him ready for making his own meals without mom around. It’s completely safe, and what’s more, it requires nothing more than ramen, water and a microwave to use.
He can stay fueled during late-night marathons of Death Note and Attack on Titan under his own power. One day, if he’s feeling like a real Gordan Ramsay, he can crack an egg over his noodles.
To Protect Those Little Ears: Rotibox Bluetooth Beanie Hat With Wireless Headphones
If he’s the athletic type, this beanie will become one of his favorite winter accessories. It has built-in wireless headphones that will allow him to listen to music, shows, podcasts and even livestreams while he works out.
He can also use it for things like walks to school in cold weather. Never again will he have to juggle oversized headphones with hoodies! This beanie is both fashionable and functional, so it ticks off all the boxes.
For the Boy Scout: Emergency Survival Kit
If you and your family go on a lot of camping trips, this emergency survival kit will be both awesome and sensible. It contains all kinds of necessities, including compasses, flashlights and fire starters, in addition to emergency items like whistles and thermal blankets.
There are blades as well, so your 13-year-old will need to be responsible with outdoor equipment to be entrusted with this kit, but it’ll make an awesome and grown-up present otherwise.
For the Gamer Guy: I Paused My Game to Be Here T-Shirt
If he’s anything like other teens, he’s obsessed with games like Call of Duty and Persona 5. Buying game-related merch can be tricky, however, if you don’t know what he plays or why he likes it.
A safer option is to get something like this t-shirt with its “I Paused My Game to Be Here” slogan. It’s specific enough to his interests to be personal while also being generic enough that you don’t need to know the difference between orcs, spawns and minions.
To Create a Killer Home Theater: PVO Portable Mini Projector
It might be small, but this mini projector is also quite mighty. It’s compatible with many different ports, including HDMI, USB and AV, and it can project high-definition video on walls, ceilings, fences, tent roofs and more.
It’s also designed specifically for kids, so it’s portable and lightweight, and it doesn’t have a lot of complex user controls. It’ll be great as a beginner’s projector for a young teen who loves the big-screen experience.
For Something a Little Different: Shashino Shape Shifting Box
Utterly mesmerizing, this “magic cube” can be folded into a number of eye- and mind-bending shapes. It’s a visual spectacle with all kinds of colors and patterns layered over special earth magnets. Half of the fun is figuring out which shapes were intended by the manufacturers; the other half is creating brand-new forms and figures powered by nothing but imagination and your own two hands.
For His Highness the Birthday Boy: Wekapo Inflatable Lounger
A good lounger can make you feel like royalty, and this one has the extra benefit of being inflatable without a pump. Its super-simple design makes it useful and versatile for all age groups. Your 13-year-old can use it for camping in the wilderness or just laying around the house watching TV and playing video games; the choice is his, and the seat is marvelous.
You can also purchase it with multiple patterns depending on which that he’d like the most.
Move Over, Harry Potter: Percy Jackson 5-Book Collection
Does he like to read? If so, count your lucky stars, and then buy this five-book collection of Percy Jackson and the Olympians. It’s one of the most popular middle grade series of all time, and if he likes it, there are countless movies, games, comics and other merch that can follow.
In addition, these particular books have cool covers that are not unlike adult fantasy novels, so he should be proud to display them on his bookshelf.
The Way to a Boy’s Heart: Healthy Snacks Care Package Snack Box
At 13 years old, his stomach probably resembles a bottomless pit more than anything human, so the gift of food will be quite welcome. This snack box has all kinds of portable treats that he can tuck into his backpack while on the go.
Even better, they aren’t your usual Oreos and Cheetos; they’re healthy snacks like Veggie Straws, Welch’s Fruit Snacks and Nature Valley Granola Bars. You’ll sneak some nutrients into his diet even as he happily munches between classes.
To Gaze Into Infinity and Beyond: Gskyer AZ70400 Astronomical Refracting Telescope
One of the bestselling telescopes on Amazon, the Gskyer AZ70400 is ideal for kids and teens who are just getting interested in astronomy. It has enough high-tech capabilities to wow them, including an optic lens with adjustable aperture and magnification settings, but it’s still user-friendly for young folks.
It isn’t a crazily sophisticated telescope meant for professionals. It’s an amateur tool, but it’ll still offer crystal-clear images of the night sky.
For the Mini Frank Miller: Blank Comic Book Sketchpad
Is he an artist? Does he dream of creating the next Justice League or Clone Saga? If so, he might like this blank comic book. It offers more than 150 pages with pre-drawn panels that include things like speech bubbles and delineated lines for action.
They’re templates that will allow him to focus on the cool stuff like characters and backgrounds rather than the tedious work of arranging comic book proportions. Those skills can be built with time; for now, just let him have fun.
For Family Fun: One Night Ultimate Werewolf Game
Perfect for siblings, this game can keep your kids occupied for hours at a time. It involves sussing out the werewolves in a group of seers, robbers, tanners, troublemakers and other villagers. Players follow instructions according to their roles while trying to figure out which of their number secretly howls at the moon.
It’s a ton of fun, and it even includes an app with music and narration for added ambiance!
To Light Up His Life: Interactive Glow in the Dark T-Shirt
There are t-shirts, and there are t-shirts. This one is definitely a cut above the rest since it’s made with an illuminated, glow-in-the-dark center that its wearer can write and draw on with their finger.
Not only is it a cool piece of technology, but since the scribbles fade within 5 – 10 minutes, it’s a gift that can be used over and over again. There are no messes to clean up and no buttons or switches to break.
It’s just a fun, unusual gift that can unleash a little creativity when used.
To Get Him Off the Couch: Throw Throw Burrito Dodgeball Card Game
Games don’t have to be played in front of the luminescent glow of a computer screen. If you want to encourage more physical activity during their downtime, consider gifting your 13-year-old with Throw Throw Burrito.
It’s from the makers of Exploding Kittens, so you already know that it’ll be a hoot, but it’s even more engaging as an outdoor game with lots of energy and motion. He’ll probably forget that he’s exercising at all!
For Gifts of Cool Hard Cash: Puzzle Box Money and Gift Card Holder
Let’s be honest: Most kids just want money for their birthdays. Rather than slipping them some bills in a greeting card, however, you can take your monetary gift to the next level with this wooden puzzle box.
He’ll have to solve its mysteries before he can reach the bounty within. As a bonus, once he’s figured it out, he can re-use the whole thing as his own personal strongbox! It’ll be a gift that keeps on giving.
To Make Him Giggle Snort: Colorful Custom Face Socks
Novelty socks are always a hoot, and these can be customized with the photos of your choice to make them even funnier. You can put his face on them, for example, or the faces of his parents and siblings.
You could even put a photo of his dog. The sillier the image, the more hilarious that it’ll be to see it in a patterned print on a neon colored sock! You can also check out other customizable sock suppliers if this one isn’t to your liking.
To Mark a New Era: Vaultskin Slim Zip Wallet With RFID Protection
Getting a leather wallet is a rite of passage in a young man’s life as he transitions from boyhood to adulthood. This particular wallet isn’t your only option, but it’s one of the best. It offers space for cash, cards and other essentials as well as RFID protection embedded under the stitching.
The exterior is made from a handsome and finely-made leather available in black, brown and cognac. He’ll definitely feel like a man with a quality wallet to replace his flimsy kid’s wallet.
To Soar Down Memory Lane: Klutz Book of Paper Airplanes Craft Kit
This gift is a bit old school, but maybe you’re a dad looking to pass along time-honored traditions to your son. If so, you can’t get more nostalgic than paper airplanes. This kit gives you colorful and patterned paper to make almost a dozen high-quality models, and an instruction manual ensures that you always know which steps to follow next.
It’ll be a nice way to bond with your son as well as a sneaky way to encourage some good old-fashioned childhood mischief in the classroom.
Because Flatulence Never Stops Being Funny: Kids Against Maturity Card Game
Kids Against Maturity is the kid-friendly version of Cards Against Humanity, and like its name suggests, it’s filled with funny and just-slightly-raunchy humor that flies in the face of all things mature.
Young teens will have a blast as they make their way through fart jokes and gross-out gags. Mom and dad might not approve, but that’s half of the appeal of the game in the first place!
The Teenage Version of a Swaddle: Double Sided Giant Flour Tortilla Throw Blanket
He might be growing up, but he’s still a kid at heart, and this novelty item will speak to his inner child with its hilarious design. It’s basically a giant round blanket that looks like a tortilla. You can also order prints that look like pies, pizzas and waffles.
The next time that everyone’s piled on the couch or the floor for family movie night, he can wrap himself up in his favorite food and be content.
For the Boy Who Loves Memes: Deadpool Riding a Unicorn in Space Poster Tank Top
With a description like “Deadpool riding a unicorn in space,” you know that this tank top is going to be hilarious! It depicts everyone’s favorite merc with tacos in both hands as he rides a pink unicorn through a star-studded galaxy.
It’s just as ridiculous as it sounds, but that’s the appeal of Deadpool. He’s the very best of modern Internet humor distilled into a single superhero.
Up, Up and Away: ATTOP W10 Flying Drone
With a wide-angle, high-definition camera that covers a full 120° degrees, this drone will deliver amazing photos and videos from the air. It also has cool and advanced features like the ability to control its movements via remote or voice technology.
Despite all this, it’s still great for kids; it’s even marketed as a drone for beginners. If you’re willing to spend a little money on your favorite 13-year-old, this is definitely a gift that he’ll treasure.
A Blast From the Past: Retro Handheld Game Console
Before there was the Switch, there was the GameBoy. While this model isn’t the exact same as the handheld consoles of yesteryear, it’s a pretty good replica, and it comes pre-loaded with a lot of classic ’90s games such as Mario.
Your kid can marvel at the old school graphics even as he gets sucked into the gameplay and makes his way through the entire back catalogue. If you sneak in a few rounds yourself when he’s asleep, who has to know?
Hulk Smash: Protocol Punching Bag and Boxing Training Set
If he’s already showing signs of being a gym rat, he might like this punching bag and boxing training set. It comes with an inflatable red “punching ball” that rests atop a metal stand, and the stand can be adjusted to different heights, so it can grow with your little Hulk Hogan even as he gets bigger and buffer.
A pair of padded boxing gloves are included to protect his hands. This will be a good gift if he’s interested in fitness but doesn’t want or need full-fledged professional gym equipment at adult sizes.
Rest Well, You Will: 3D Star Wars Baby Yoda Night Light
With its eerie green glow, this “Baby Yoda” lamp definitely looks like something from a galaxy far, far away. At the same time, however, it’ll provide enough luminescence to keep the darkness at bay for a 13-year-old who isn’t quite ready to let go of his night light.
It’ll be a way for him to save some dignity while also getting him the tools that he needs for a good night’s sleep.
For Michael Jordan Moves: Indoor Mini Basketball Hoop Set
Is he quarantining? Is he just easily bored when stuck at home babysittting or doing homework? Either way, he should find some entertainment value in this mini basketball hoop. It can be attached to any kind of door or wall-mounted blackboard, so it’ll be perfect for shooting some hoops whenever the mood strikes him.
It even comes with two rubber basketballs so that he can invite friends and siblings into the fun.
Eat Your Heart Out, Wall-E: Sphero SPRK+ App-Enabled Robot Ball
With any luck, your teen will be inspired to learn programming from the ground up!
Boys are already hard to shop for, and when they’re at the strange, amorphous age of 13, finding the right gift for them can seem downright impossible. Here are just a few tips for figuring out what will get you a fist bump instead of an eye roll!
Identify His Unique Hobbies and Interests
This might sound obvious, but every kid is different, and what thrills one middle schooler might be totally lame to another. You should also beware stereotypes about teen boys. For example, while it’s a true that 84 percent of teenage boys play video games, that still leaves 16 percent who wouldn’t know GTA from God of War. You don’t want to be the old fogey buying clueless gifts based on “what kids are into these days.”
If he does have specific hobbies that you’d like to shop for, make sure that you don’t fall in the trap of buying something overly generic. For example, if he likes skateboarding, don’t just get him a random skateboard to add to his collection; he probably has very specific preferences for things like concave and deck length. If he’s a fan of a specific franchise such as Marvel or Pokemon, don’t buy him merchandise just because it has the right logo on it; he’ll have favorite and least-favorite characters.
Consider His Developmental Level
Again, since 13 is such a weird age, there can be a lot of variation in the maturity levels of specific kids. Some are still children who like playing with toys, and they’ll be bored with anything overly “adult.” Others are already small teenagers with developed interests and attitudes, and they might turn up their noses at anything they deem “childish.” You’ll have to consider the individual boy to figure out where he falls on the spectrum.
These are just a few tips for buying gifts for 13-year-old boys. It might not be easy, but just think about the way that his face will light up if you manage to land on the perfect gift! That’s worth the effort, don’t you think?