If there's one thing we know about teens, it's that they have very specific tastes and preferences. So for this holiday gift guide, we asked parents what teens actually want. Some of the suggestions were tried and true: popular sneakers, gaming consoles, quality headphones, a trendy makeup subscription. But there was also a lot of love for craft kits, fuzzy blankets and flattering selfie lights that can be adapted for use during video classes. We added a few wild cards, including a clever little projector that will throw a sky full of stars onto your teen's bedroom ceiling and a surprisingly popular string instrument.
1. Eddie Bauer fleece throw. It's official: Teens need their fuzzy blankets. And this highly rated reversible sherpa fleece option is there for them with fresh patterns, rugged plaids and frost-white polar bears. $75, eddiebauer.com
2. Beats Solo3 wireless headphones. Apple AirPods are high on a lot of teen wish lists. But if the hardcore music lover in your life prefers the sound quality of on-ear headphones, Beats has you covered with this popular option in a range of fresh hues. $199.95, amazon.com
3. Ipsy Glam Bag. The teen in your life takes an online beauty quiz and gets five deluxe-size samples a month, tailored to her needs and desires. Products can include makeup, skin and hair care products, and nail polish. $12 a month, ipsy.com
4. Mitchell MU40 soprano ukulele. Once seen as a kitschy relic, the ukulele is back — as a gateway instrument, a quirky style statement and a reason for YouTube tutorials. It also looks good displayed on your wall. $44.99, guitarcenter.com
5. Bower flexible 24-inch LED ring light. Selfie lights aren't just for selfies anymore. They also provide flattering light for teens taking online classes. This selfie-style ring light gets great customer reviews, and it's the right height for laptops. $29.99, bestbuy.com
6. Aviator Nation pullover hoodie. The vintage surfer chic of Los Angeles-based Aviator Nation is on a lot of wish lists this year. Think rainbow stripes, tie-dye and distressed, hand-sewn hoodies that practically scream "day at the beach." $168, nordstrom.com
7. KiwiCo Maker Crate art subscription box. Teens 14 and older can explore crafts such as paper marbling and macrame with these enticing crates of tools, supplies and instructions. Starting at $24.95 a month, with a liberal cancellation policy, kiwico.com
8. Nintendo Switch. Video game consoles like the Nintendo Switch, the new PlayStation 5 and new Xbox Series X are on a lot of wish lists. Teens have strong preferences, so check before buying. The Switch, which isn't new this season, will probably be the easiest to snatch up. $299 for the Switch, amazon.com
9. BlissLights Sky Lite laser galaxy projector. Give the gift of the night sky with this clever projector that sends stars drifting across the ceiling. We love this fresh twist on the bedroom lighting trend that has teens affixing LED strip lights to their walls. $49.99, guitarcenter.com
10. Nike Air Force 1. There are a lot of sneakers making waves this holiday season, but the vintage appeal of Air Force 1s remains strong. They're casual, versatile and desired by a wide range of teens. $90, nike.com
11. Nike LeBron James Swingman jersey. Sports jerseys cover a lot of bases: fashion, fandom and comfort. Obvious choices include this glowing tribute to basketball star LeBron James. $110, nike.com
12. Spotify subscription. Give the teen in your life access to over 50 million songs with a premium subscription to the digital music giant Spotify. $9.99 a month, spotify.com
13. Victrola Bluetooth stereo turntable. Record players are hot among some teen music fans, and this suitcase Victrola makes a retro style statement in colors such as black, red and turquoise. $59.99, bestbuy.com
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