Rules / Etiquette

15 Unique Military Gifts That’ll Never Disappoint

Gift giving can be challenging for so many reasons. When considering what military service members and family members want and need, the list of options can be overwhelming.

Not everyone is interested in a military-centric gift, but for those that are, we have a list of 15 unique military gifts — for him, for her, and for the whole family.

Military Gift Ideas for Him

Gifts for the male service member in your life, there are tons of options. Ranging from gifts made from military surplus to those from companies that support military service organizations, you can find something for everyone. Here are a few of our favorites.

1. Bell’s Old Glory Shop Shadow Boxes

If you’re looking for a gift to commemorate or honor someone’s service, the shadow boxes from Bell’s Old Glory Shop are a great place to start.

Shadow box with military uniform, photo and medals and custom engraved name, unit.

2. Shell Shots USA Military-Inspired Glasses

Shell Shots USA – This company creates custom-engraved military-inspired shot glasses and more. Their most popular item, the 30MM shot glass or the “Hog Shot” has proven to be a fan favorite. Custom engrave it to honor your military husband’s fallen friend. They promise your service member will appreciate being able to “drink with his brother” again.

custom engraved shot classes from 30 MM replica

3. Zippos

Zippos are fun to collect and display, even if your service member doesn’t smoke. From classy logo designs to fun sayings, these lighters are an affordable and fun gift.

Marine theme lighter with "Yut!"

4. Sword & Plough Money Clip

We love everything from veteran-owned Sword & Plough, but the men’s collection is really fun. Shaving kits to money clips to leather belts, everything is made from military surplus material. And it looks great!

50 caliber money clip as a gift

5. BearArms Bracelets

Jewelry is one of those “hard to shop for” things, and most things designed for men aren’t compatible with the military lifestyle, but these bracelets from BearArms are perfect. Made from bullet casings and recycled shell casings, these bracelets are unique and handmade.

bracelet Made from bullet casings and recycled shell casings

6. Battle Rattle Chillers

If your service member is a whiskey drinker and has enough glasses, consider these customizable whiskey chillers from Battle Rattle. They’re made from food-safe aluminum and can be laser engraved.

whiskey chillers that look like bullets, grenades

Military Gifts for Her

Female service members are fun to shop for! They are such strong, fiercely independent women, and some have a soft side, too. Remember, gifts for your favorite female service members don’t have to be all about their military service.

One thing we must remember is that not every gift needs to scream military. Sometimes, service members just want a useful, or cute, product.

1. Feeding the Frasers

These tea towels from Feeding the Frasers are a great mix. Useful for around the house, stylish, and durable, the flour sack tea towels are the perfect housewarming or PCS gift.

tea towels hanging on oven door handle

2. Sword & Plough Jewelry

Treat your favorite female service member with a gorgeous piece of jewelry from Sword & Plough. Just like their men’s collection, they have necklaces, rings, and earrings made from .50 caliber shells. Handcrafted in the U.S. by a female veteran, these have extra meaning for those who wear them.

.50 caliber shell used to make bar necklace. woman is wearing bar necklace - gold color

3. Unique Graphic Tees.

Female service members frequently spend time defending their veteran or active duty status. Eliminate that need with this awesome shirt from OhGloryTeeCo. The “Not Every GI is a Joe” graphic tee is available in several colors and t-shirt styles. Grab one for you’re your favorite female service member today.

Blue graphic tee that says "not every G.I. is a Joe." in white lettering. With a silhouette of a female service member with a gun.

4. Unique Journals

Military life is a roller coaster for sure, and there’s always something to write home about. With these awesome move journals from Juliet + Echo, you can give your female service member a place to document her duty stations and memories throughout the years.

Photo of a journal on a white surface. Cover reads "that military life"

5. Ranger Up T-Shirts

Ranger Up has been in the veteran and military space making t-shirts for years. And they have always had great options for female service members and veterans. Their new destination line may make for the perfect gift.

Grey graphic tee with mountains and "afghanistan" in text

Unique Military Gift Ideas for Families

If you’re looking for the perfect gift for your favorite military family, here are some great options. Just like your family, they have favorite things and memories to keep. For occasions ranging from moving to deployment to “we miss you,” these gifts are a great idea.

1. Rustic Decor

Everyone loves rustic, wooden décor, especially the items they don’t have to make. There are many options, but we love this simple, rustic, blue star deployment flag.

Each flag is burned to make it unique, and each one is customizable to include the number of blue stars you’d like displayed. If you’re not sure a deployment flag is the right gift, check out the other options from this Etsy shop.

Deployment flag: rustic rectangle with red on the outside, neutral beige in the middle and blue star in the center.

2. Personalized Necklaces for Military Kids

Military kids are sometimes overlooked when gifts for the service member and spouse come rolling in during deployments and moves. Treat the military kid in the family with a beautiful, hand-stamped dandelion necklace from Hope Designs, Ltd. They can also be personalized and make a great promotion or change of command gift.

hand-stamped dandelion necklace for military kids who are known as dandelions

3. Unique Board Games.

Spending more time with family is a common theme, especially in the military community. Help your favorite family spend more time together with a board game. Ticket to Ride is a strategic game perfect for a military family. Gather cards, connect cities by train and enjoy the time together. For families heading overseas, there are several other maps available, like Germany, Asia, and Europe.

Board game ticket to ride laid out with all the pieces.

4. Experiences.

If you’re looking for something to say “welcome to the area” – which makes a great PCS gift – consider a membership to the local zoo, children’s museum, or even a local play place if the kids are small. Experiences are often preferred over gifts, and they are a great way to treat the entire family.

Picture of tigers that you may see at a zoo

Gift giving is a fun way to show your appreciation. There are many reasons to give gifts and many people who deserve them. This list of unique military gifts is a great place to start. What are your favorite gifts to give military friends?

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  1. Hi Rebecca, I really enjoyed reading your post. My boyfriend is in the army and we will soon be getting engaged. I love your blog as it helps me to get prepared for this big change in life. Thanks for sharing your journey with us.

  2. I find it helpful when you said I should consider getting a shadow box to commemorate or honor a military person’s service. My husband is retiring from the military soon, and I want to give him something special. Perhaps I’ll get a shadow box and some insignia pins soon. Thanks for the idea!

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