Small, fun and perfect for Christmas? Why, yes. It’s possible to do that. Easily as it turns out.
Actually, the hard part was narrowing it down to just a few novelty gear items to suggest. (I fell into a serious black hole shopping around. You can kill a ton of time browsing around cycling websites. Including this one!)
A small taste is all I’m offering here. A very small taste. There are a ton of cute options for cycling stocking stuffers. Cool options. Unique options. I didn’t want to overwhelm you, just give you my picks for great stocking stuffers.
The tricky thing here is picking things that will be fun without being … well, not useful. (Even though I love the novelty aspect, I have a very practical side.) This means that while getting someone new gloves or a seat or a helmet might sound like a great idea, those are really things a person needs and wants to pick out for themselves. But, the fact that they bike – competitively or just for fun – makes it a prime area for gift giving.
Which is why there are so many “stocking stuffers for cyclists” lists out there. But they all are either novelty items that feature bicycles – pasta, stationery, shirts – or serious gear that I’m saying you shouldn’t be getting for them unless they told specifically what they want. None of the lists I found, though, hit exactly what this site is about – fun novelty designs for practical cycling gear.
So what to give? I’ve picked out just five items that offer a ton of choices within them – so you can find a design just right for the cyclist in your life – and that most cyclists can always do with more of. Perfect!
1. Head thingie
Like my technical term? Ha. Most people call these a buff, but actually, that’s kind of like calling a photocopy a Xerox. Since the biggest brand of these is Buff. And those come in a ton of colors and patterns including somewhat generic ones like the aqua and gray stripes below. ScudoPro has just come out with theirs as well, so the designs coordinate with the rest of their cycling gear. (Makes it easy to pick if your biker already has a jersey from them.) The third one I have below as an example is from Kloud, but there are a lot of different brands and options out there. And they’re relatively inexpensive at $10-$20.
Anyway, these things are awesome in their versatility, as you can see from the image at the right. Mine comes out on the motorcycle to keep my neck and chin warm when the weather cools down, but also to go under my helmet on the bicycle. They’re thin, so they fit easily under the helmet and do a good job of knocking the chill off your ears and head. (Not to mention cover up your helmet hair when you stop for some reason.) Given how great they are at dealing with sweat as well as cold, you can never have too many since they’re likely to be in the wash many times.
2. Valve caps
I’ve included these a few times in posts this year when the theme was appropriate. It’s really a great place to have a little fun on any bike. No worries about adding weight or too much silliness for the serious racers, even. And they definitely will fit in a stocking!
As you might expect, there are several different brands available, although most of the fun ones I could find were only over on Amazon. If you have a sports fan, check out the Stockdale ones for tons of professional and NCAA teams. (Although not the Steelers. How can they not have the Steelers?) I did see some unhappy reviews, but all from car owners with issues that didn’t seem relevant for bikes.
Trik Topz delivers with lots of skulls and dice as well as smily faces and stars. Kind of a weird mix of gangster and Pollyanna. Electra‘s big design is the bubble cap (design with owl shown below), which gives them real estate to add a design to the same white stem. Designs that generally coordinate with their bells. Cruiser Candy pretty much has just one design of valve cap, but it comes in a ton of colors and is just to pretty to not include. Love them!
I know – who gives socks for Christmas? Lots of people, actually. My mother-in-law included. But we’re talking fun cycling socks here. And while all the biking brands offer socks, there are only a few to look to for the fun stuff.
Unlike some of the other novelty stuff, these cycling sock brands can actually be found multiple places online. DeFeet comes in lots of fun designs and can be found in just about all of them between BikeSomewhere and Amazon. SockGuy is the other really extensive brand with crew and short socks for men and women, also available at BikeSomewhere and Amazon.
Bikemania carries the other three brands I found, although none of them have quite the number of designs as the big guys. Gizmo Gear actually has quite a few bike-related designs as well as major colleges, while NLZ goes for fun and child-like a lot. Then there’s SOS, which stands for Save Our Soles. Actually, you can find those on Amazon as well, but the mix of designs was different in each place, so you might want to check out both.
4. Reflective tape
This is a fairly broad area in terms of lights and reflectors. I am all for lights for safety; I have blinking ones on the front and back of my bike. But you can only put so many on your bike and there is a bit of weight involved.
So, I’ve been checking out reflective tape for adding to my bike. I can add some decorative touches that brighten up my snooze-fest gray during the day and turn me into a Christmas tree at night. I actually have stars all over my car, so I’m no stranger to decorating up with decals.
The Lightweights reflector tape is a good place to start. At 100 feet per roll, there’s a lot you can do to add color and safety to your bike. (Or you. They make stick-ons specifically for clothing as well.) Wrap it, cut out shapes, whatever works. I also ran into some helmet decals, which run a lot cheaper, but are in some pre-cut shapes and limited colors. Oh, and there are some very specific reflective wheel stripes available. Some are on rolls like regular tape, others precut and curved like the set in the picture below.
Oh – you would never give a serious cyclist one of these, would you? Well, maybe not. Most people on the trail are pretty comfortable with just yelling to warn you where they are.
But, for the average person, a bell is actually a nice idea since let’s you send out a warning without having to yell. I hear people ringing to let you know they’re coming around a blind curve so you won’t run into them on a narrow path or to let a runner know they’re about to get passed. And if you’re new to trail riding, knowing just what to say can get confusing at times. Bells fall under general safety gear, which I am all for. Kind of like the reflective tape, it’s about ensuring those around you are aware of your presence at all times.
I like the Dimension brand quite a bit since their bells are often in non-traditional shapes like the chile pepper below. Skye Supply takes a plain round silver bell and dresses it up with everything from smilie faces to cows. Kikkerland Dring Dring bells are the familiar round shape, but painted in all kinds of fun designs, some most appropriate for the child inside. I also included a squeeze horn from Pyramid just because they are fun!
Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission, probably enough to get a cup of coffee. I generally only recommend products or services on this blog I would wear personally and believe you will find cool as well. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”