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The best self-care gifts for graduates

These are some of the things we turn to when we need some "me" time.

Oleg Elkov via Getty Images

Graduates have spent the past couple of years hustling. Between coursework, jobs, family responsibilities and, of course, the pandemic, they likely haven't had a ton of time to devote to themselves. Now that they've donned their cap and gown, it's time for them to enjoy some well deserved rest and relaxation. If you want to get the grad in your life a treat that can help them do that, we at Engadget have some ideas based on how we like to treat ourselves when we need a break.

Quick Overview

Theragun Mini

With many gyms and exercise facilities still closed, you might be dabbling in some workouts from home alongside working from home. You might also have overextended yourself, leading to tender shoulders, thighs and calves. I may have done just that (several times over) but have been able to ease some of the soreness — or at least make myself feel better — with my trusty Theragun Mini.

We’ve already covered Theragun’s flagship percussive therapy “gun,” the Elite, but you might find the Theragun Mini does almost as much for far less. It’s also less bulky. The $200 gun is a solid triangle but is small enough to grasp with a single hand, directing the vibrations to that one part of your hammies that needs some TLC. There are three speed settings, and the Mini benefits from Theragun’s quieter motors so it doesn’t sound like you’re drilling a shelf to anyone nearby. It’s definitely not quiet, but you can still hear the TV or hold a conversation over the massaging.


If you’re looking to upgrade, Theragun also offers a peripheral that doubles the number of heads on any of its massage guns. The Duo Adapter offers a wider spread, meaning it feels like it takes me less time to hammer out the aches. It does reduce the sheer force of a single massage head, but if you have any particularly knotty areas, you can easily take the adapter off to really hammer it out. This all being said, these devices aren’t a panacea to everything that aches after physical exertion. Don’t forget hydration, sleep and nutrition, which are all, sadly, sold separately. — Mat Smith, U.K. Bureau Chief

Bearaby weighted blanket

Weighted blankets have been proven to reduce anxiety-causing cortisol while increasing sleep-friendly serotonin, but most of them are filled with tiny glass beads. Not only did that scare me off, but I’ve also heard that the beads might shift over time, which could lead to uneven weight distribution down the road. Plus, most weighted blankets have a bland design.

The Bearaby weighted blankets are different. Instead of filling a duvet with micropellets or beads, Bearaby blankets are handmade from a gorgeous chunky-knit material that’s more reminiscent of a cozy sweater than a comforter. It also comes in beautifully luscious colors like Cloud White to Evening Rose. After weeks of using one, I’ve found that I’m nodding off faster and staying asleep longer, which is a big deal for someone plagued by chronic insomnia. — Nicole Lee, Commerce Writer

Cosori Electric Kettle