Buying the right gift can be tricky, and buying a gift for a sometimes temperamental 13-year-old girl is doubly so. What do you buy for someone who is longer a child, but not quite a grown-up?
To help alleviate the dilemma, we asked the 13-year-old girls in our lives what gifts they would like and, just as importantly, which ones to avoid. Then we filtered that information, made sure everything was age-appropriate and came up with our ultimate guide to the best gifts for 13-year-old girls.
- Written by a psychologist
- Fun and engaging guide
- Comes with 30 true stories
- Visually compelling illustrations
- 8 designs available
- Comes with matching coin purse
- Has a built-in microphone
- Removable speakers
- Comes with 24 craft boxes
- Includes 36 inspirational quotes
- Contains 150 LEDs
- Comes with 2 phone holders & 2 stands
- Cordless marquee
- Galvanized metal finish
- Handmade from natural ingredients
- Therapeutic & moisturizing
- Double knit construction
- Has printed messages
- Has 3 scratch-off posters
- Stylized graphics
What Should I Get a 13-Year-Old For Her Birthday?
The first thing to do is ask. Find out what she is into, what music, sports, books, games, or other hobbies she enjoys. Then you’ll have a fighting chance of choosing a gift she’ll appreciate.
If you are considering a game or an accessory for her electronics, double-check to make sure the item you choose is compatible with the hardware she has. Few things are as disappointing as receiving a fantastic gift and then discovering you can’t use it.
You may want to run the idea of electronics past the teen’s parents before buying the gift, in case they are trying to reduce the screen time their children have (1). You don’t want to cause more friction by giving a gift that will cause a parental-child war.
You should also consider which gifts are age-appropriate. With tweens and teens in my home, I know from experience that what they ask for and what I think they should have at their age can be two entirely different things.
If all else fails, you can go for a gift card. But if you do, choose one for a store with a wide range of items.
It also wouldn’t hurt to make sure the store has a nearby brick-and-mortar location the teen can visit. Otherwise, they’ll likely have to spend some of their gift card money on shipping.
The Best Gifts For 13-Year-Old Girls of 2021
Using all our research, we’ve come up with some excellent gift options for girls getting their first taste of the teen years. Here is our guide to the best gifts for a 13-year-old girl.
1. The Teen Girl's Survival Guide
It’s difficult enough, at the best of times, to navigate friendship and other social connections, but the teenage years are the worst. The Teen Girl’s Survival Guide is written by a psychologist with lots of additional input from older teens who have recently been there and done that.
At the start, the book helps teenage girls discover a sense of who they are and their best personal qualities. It then moves on to interacting in social circles, being a good friend, choosing their friends wisely, and remaining true to who they are.
2. Teen Trailblazers
If you want to inspire a 13-year-old-girl, then this book, Teen Trailblazers, is the way to do it. With 30 true stories about girls who achieved great things while still in their teens, this book proves that just because you haven’t hit 20 yet, it doesn’t mean you can’t do something world-changing.
3. Kemy’s Snow Purses
With eight designs to choose from, these bags can be worn either across the body or over the shoulder. They are big enough to keep a phone, wallet, and a few other items safe without being too bulky. Each bag comes with a matching coin purse.
We particularly like the inner pouches for keeping your things organized.
4. Levin Bluetooth Beanie Hat
Great for those times when your headphones are too bulky, and earbuds could easily be lost, this Bluetooth beanie from Levin pipes music through your headwear.
The speaker component is tiny and removable, so there’s no problem washing the hat if it gets dirty. Meanwhile, you can also use voice controls and even talk on your phone via the built-in microphone.
The kit includes everything your teen needs to make a fantastic 3-D poster, or they can add other items they already have to make theirs a true one-of-a-kind display.
There are 24 boxes to make and decorate and 36 inspirational quotes that you cut out and use either in the craft or to decorate journals, school books, and more.
Not just for selfies, this selfie ring light from RGB has 11 brightness levels, six color modes, and two cycling flash modes. There are also white, natural, and warm light options from this ring that contains 150 LEDs.
This light also comes with two phone holders and two stands — one desktop and one for the floor.
7. Darice Silver Marquee Letter
A sturdy metal letter that’s almost 10 inches tall, this gift for teenage girls doesn’t require any knowledge about what electronics or hardware your teen owns. Instead, all you need to know is their initial letter, and you’re all set.
Choose either an initial letter or give a series of letters spelling out a specific word.
8. LifeAround2Angels Bath Bombs Gift Set
Handmade in California from ingredients sourced in the U.S., these bath bombs by LifeAround2Angels are not only beautifully packaged, but they also look and smell fabulous.
Each one is approximately 2.5 ounces and 2 inches in diameter. Every bomb is individually wrapped, and 12 bath bombs are shipped together in a presentation box.
9. Cavertin Women's Novelty Socks with Gift Box
Made from 76 percent cotton, 21 percent nylon, and 3 percent spandex, this super cute pair of socks are machine washable and won’t shrink when you put them into the dryer. The double knit construction keeps your feet warm, and the comfort heel will stop them from wandering around your foot and becoming uncomfortable.
Your teen may especially love the messages printed on the bottom of the socks.
10. Scratch-Off Posters for Movies
Even teens are a fan of bucket lists. These three scratch-off “Top 100” posters from Enno Vatti are a wall decoration, a list of goals, and a record of achievements all in one fun, scratch-off package.
Each square represents a movie and producer, book and author, or album and artist. Your teen can hang the poster and then plan what to watch, read, or listen to next.
When you have seen the movie, read the book, or listened to the album, scratch off the square, and you’ll reveal a stylized graphic to remind you of your experience.
11. Nintendo Switch
The Nintendo Switch offers three types of gaming experience.
First, you can set the central unit into the dock, which connects to a TV, and then play like you would with a larger game console. Second, you can stand the screen up on the table and use it as a portable system.
Finally, you can slide the controllers onto the unit and play as you do with any other handheld console.
12. MINGER Led Strip Lights Kit
Every 13-year-old girl I know wants LED lighting for their room.
This kit has everything you need to run strips of LEDs anywhere you like. As a bonus, there is a sticky backing so they can be removed and repositioned when your mood changes.
You can adjust the color of the lights and the brightness with the handy remote. You can also program light sequences, set the LEDs to chase mode, change the speed of the chase, and much more.
13. Personalized Charm Necklace
Jewelry can be a tricky thing to buy for someone. Everyone has their taste, and necklaces with big personalities may not hit the right note.
This simple, classic pendant is a straight silver bar, with sculpted edges, a gemstone, and the option of having a name of your choice engraved into the face. You can also choose from a variety of chain styles and lengths.
14. Lucky Feather Fearless Thirteen
With 13 delicate beads strung along an adjustable cord, this bracelet from Lucky Feather is both pretty and meaningful. It’s so lovely the 13-year-old girl you buy it for may want to buy them for her friends too. Each bead designates one year of the life the teen you’re buying it for has led.
Choose between silver-plated or gold-plated beads on a gray cord, or rose gold-plated beads on a dusky pink cord.
15. Capture the Flag REDUX
For girls who enjoy sports, consider this glow-in-the-dark version of capturing the flag.
Two shining orbs replace the flags while marker lights replace the territory markers and outer edges of the “jail.” This game kit also includes two sets of five LED bands, one color for each team.
It also includes a set of instructions and a set of gameplay variation cards, as well as the batteries for each item.
16. Volleyball Star Training Equipment
It can be challenging trying to train for a team sport on your own, but for lone volleyball players, there is this training equipment set from Volleyball Star.
The ball rebounder will allow you to practice serving without retrieving the ball every time, and the setting straps will help keep hands in the perfect position for setting drills. It comes with a volleyball sports bag, training e-book, and a volleyball bracelet for time off the court.
17. My Cinema Lightbox
Lightboxes have been popular for a few years, but this one gives a new spin on what is becoming a classic staple of teen bedrooms.
The set contains 100 letters, numbers, and characters, and the light itself is an A5 size box that can stand on the tabletop or be wall-mounted via the pre-drilled holes in the back.
Choose from a classic white light, a multi-color cycling mode, or stop the box on a specific color.
18. Fujifilm Instax Mini 11 Instant Camera
While phone cameras have taken over as the primary way to record our memories, the mini-9 instant camera from Fujifilm provides an instant print of your fun moments.
Available in five color options, the camera has a built-in flash and comes with a matching wrist strap, two batteries, and a built-in selfie-mirror.
Prints are 2.44 x 1.81 inches, and you get ten self-developing images on each film.
19. 3Doodler Create
Why restrict yourself to creating flat drawings when now you can doodle in 3-D?
This pen comes with 15 colors of, made in the U.S., plastic refill filaments, a getting started guide, and stencils to help you learn the 3D Doodler techniques. You can also download an app that is packed with step-by-step instructions for hundreds of projects, awards electronic badges for activities you complete, and allows you to share creations on your social media channels.
20. Mosaiz HairChalks
This set of 12 hair chalks from Mosaiz is not truly chalk at all. Instead, they are a dozen water-based rich, creamy crayons that can be applied without the dusty mess made by traditional chalks.
Hypoallergenic, cruelty-free, and FDA compliant, this is the gift of choice for girls who would like to dye their hair, but have parents who do not want them to do so.
21. BeKind Good Vibes 6 Scented Candles
This is a set of six, clean-burning, smokeless candles, each of which comes presented in a reusable metal container. The beauty of these candles is that the scents are light and not so strong your entire home is overwhelmed with fragrance.
Each of the candles is under 2 and a half ounces. They measure 1.6 inches high, 2.5 inches across, and are made from 95 percent soy wax and 5 percent essential oils. They come packed in a fun and funky gift box.
22. Sphero BOLT
The Sphero Bolt is a deceptive little piece of tech. About the size of a baseball, it is a transparent sphere packed full of everything you need to learn basic programming.
Discover how to program the LED matrix to display vector graphics or characters. Then teach the Bolt how to navigate using the internal compass, gyroscope, and sensors.
If you don’t want to program the Bolt, you can download pre-programmed games to your smart device to play.
23. Gratitude Finder
This spiral-bound, undated, 52-week gratitude journal is designed to help your teen evaluate their day and highlight the positive elements of their experiences.
It includes questions and prompts to help kickstart the thought processes on even the most difficult days. It also has laminated quarterly tabs resplendent with inspirational quotes and 165 stickers with hand-drawn illustrations.
24. Official Teenager T-Shirt
Most kids are excited to reach the “I am a teenager” milestone. What better way to share the news with the world than with this cute, but not cutesy “Keep Calm” t-shirt?
It’s available in five colors and, as 13-year-olds are of a notoriously wide range of sizes and shapes, the shirts come in everything from kiddie sizes right through to adult 3XL. You can also choose from a women’s, men’s, or youth fit, depending on your teen’s taste.
25. Sochow Glow in The Dark Throw Blanket
These super soft throw blankets from Sochow are 5 feet by 7 ½ feet of warm and snuggly machine washable loveliness.
They are great for curling up on your bed, wrapping yourself up, and settling down for an evening of serious binge-watching,. And if you lay the blanket out flat in the sunshine, the stars will glow in the dark.
26. Amazon.com Gift Card in a Cupcake Tin
If you can’t decide what gift to buy your 13-year-old girl, then the next best thing might be an Amazon gift card. This particular example can be shipped directly to the recipient in a cute little cupcake tin. They can then choose from millions of items on Amazon and be sure to receive something they want.
27. Easehold Makeup Mirror with Lights
Save the rest of the family from the trauma of teenage bathroom hogging and get your budding make-up artist a cosmetics mirror.
This mirror from Easehold has four different panels that can be set at different angles, and 1 times, 2 times, and 3 times magnification. There are 21 LED lights that can be dimmed or brightened, and they can be powered by batteries or via a USB cable.
28. On a Scale of One to T-Rex
There are no turns in this game, so nobody sits around getting bored.
An “action” card is turned for all players to see. Then each player is given an “intensity” card, which they keep secret. The intensity card tells a player how intensely to act out the action.
Then everyone performs, and you try to work out which players are performing at the same intensity as you. If you pick a match, you both get points.
29. Amazon Halo Health and Wellness Tracker
The Halo from Amazon is a screen-free health and fitness tracker that monitors aspects of your health and offers expert-backed advice.
The sleep tracker monitors how much sleep you get and how often you wake in the night, while the activity tracker monitors the intensity of your movements throughout the day.
A body composition monitor tracks your body’s fat percentage, which is a better measurement than weight or BMI, and the voice tone analyzer lets you know how you sound to others.
30. Amberetech Knitted CAT Kitty Ears Hat
You don’t need to be an old cat lady to wear and love this hat.
The chunky cable-knit body ends in a gently elastic-style cuff, which ensures this hat fits snugly on most people no matter how much hair they have.
The hat is topped off with a pair of pointy cat-like ears, giving it a touch of feline style. You may even end up having to get one for every family member, so it’s lucky they come in four different colors.
31. Magnoloran 50 LED Fairy Twinkle Light String
Wanting to make your space your own is one of the rites of passage we all experience.
This twinkle light string is a string of plastic clips, each of which has an LED inside.
The clips can be used to hold photos, other images, or any other small, light item your teen might want to display. It comes with a remote control to dim, brighten, or turn off the lights.
32. Heroic Girls in Books Poster
Whether your teenage girl is a book fan or not, this poster, which depicts 100 heroic girls in young adult novels, is a fabulous addition to their wall.
Hand-drawn illustrations of female protagonists are printed on FSC certified, museum-quality paper in Madison, Wisconsin. Each picture is accompanied by the title of the book in which she can be found and a brief description of who she is.
33. Lego Dots Desk Organizer
This handy-dandy desk organizer from LEGO is from their newer Dots line.
The build itself is basic, but the fun is in decorating your finished organizer. The set is full of pieces with which you can create your own designs. Then, when you feel like a change, take them off and start again.
34. Romwe Cat Print Sweatshirt
If, like us, you are fed up with your teenage girl stealing your sweatshirts because they like them oversized, give her one of these.
This casual cat print sweatshirt is made from a soft 65 percent polyester/30 percent cotton/5 percent spandex mix material and is available in sizes XS to 4XL. There are also 14 basic colors to choose from, plus one with a full cat face and another with a cat sipping on a drink.
35. Cell Phone Screen Magnifier
Staring at a phone screen to watch a movie, binge a show, or even rewatch the same Tic-Tok video for hours so you can get your dance moves right can strain your eyes.
The solution? A cell phone screen magnifier.
This one is highly rated, lightweight, portable, and is designed to be compatible with most cell phones.
36. Bluetooth Speaker And Night Light
This versatile night light, speaker, and alarm clock is a three-in-one marvel that will help your reluctant-to-wake teen rise and shine in the morning.
The alarm can be set to wake you with music via the SD cardholder or USB, and the light has three levels of brightness as well as 48 color options. Meanwhile, the Bluetooth speaker can stream music from a compatible device and allow you to take hands-free calls.
37. Purple Ladybug Scratch-Off Mini Art Notes
This pack of 3.5×3.5-inch square note cards has a secret. The black surface can be scratched off to reveal the rainbow color holograph beneath.
The pack contains 150 notecards and two styluses to make your scratch-off note writing a breeze, and the box itself is designed to be used as a desk-top note cardholder.
38. Echo Dot
With the Echo Dot, your teen can ask Alexa to play music, help with homework questions, set alarms, play games, and more.
When paired with other suitable smart home devices, the Dot can also be used to control lights, temperature, take hands-free calls, speak with other people in the home and lock the doors. It can control any compatible smart device.
39. Magnificent101 Vision Board Kit
A vision board can help you focus on where you want to go in life. This allows you to identify the practical steps you need to take to get there.
That’s why this is such an excellent gift for a 13-year-old girl. It’s an open-ended “dare to dream” type of gift that also has practical applications. Who knows, she may use this kit and discover her true calling.
40. Monochef DIY Charm Bracelet Kit
This charm bracelet kit contains two bracelets, three necklaces, 36 beads, and 18 dangling charms.
You can make and remake your charm jewelry as many times as you like. We especially liked the multiple base items so, if you feel so inclined, you can make one for yourself and make one for a friend.
41. BENGOO G9000 Gaming Headset
For girls who game, these noise-canceling headphones from Bengoo are both extraordinarily comfortable and compatible with multiple consoles and systems.
The noise-isolating microphone is adjustable through 120 degrees, and the cable is over four feet long, so you’re unlikely to get tangled. There is also a volume control and a mute button on the cable.
42. The Original Buddha Board Relaxing Water Painting
The Buddha Board is a rectangular “canvas” that sits in a square pot-like stand. You fill the stand with water and, when the mood takes you, dip the bamboo brush in and draw on your board.
As the water evaporates from your board, your image slowly fades, giving you the opportunity to learn to let go. This gives the recipient the ability to practice their art without making a mess and without constantly needing new supplies.
43. Graphic T-Shirt
Choosing a t-shirt for a 13-year-old girl can be fraught with missteps, but you are unlikely to go wrong with this pithy phrase that appeals to almost every teenager in existence.
Available in six color options, this shirt is 95 percent cotton with 5 percent spandex, giving it a comfortable, relaxed fit that is machine washable and keeps its shape.
44. Aria Star Dead Sea Mud Mask
For some reason that I am unable to fathom, every 13-year-old girl in our family and social circles, and there are a lot of them, is obsessed with face masks.
This jar from Aria Star is a paraben-free, alcohol-free, cruelty-free, vegan mask that is popular with many of the young teens I surveyed. It is especially useful for clearing blackheads and is gentle enough for dry skin.
45. Summer Pajamas for Girls
We love these shorts pajamas because they are light enough to wear in the warmer summer months but modest enough for your teen to wear around the home all day if they so wish.
The shorts have pockets, which is essential for your phone-loving teen. The fabric is soft, and they hold their size and shape in the washing machine and dryer.
46. Paint Pens
Paint pens give more control than a paintbrush, so they are excellent for crafts such as rock painting or adding designs to kids journals. This set has 15 brightly colored oil-based paint pens, two of which are shiny metallics.
The set also comes with an e-book of 25 designs to get your teen started.
47. Shany Gift Surprise
I have never met a teen girl who hasn’t had at least a curiosity about make-up. Some try it once or twice and lose interest, some embrace the made-up look, and others fall somewhere in between.
This box of cosmetics from Shany is a mixed random pack, but every item is of good quality. That makes it an excellent option for make-up beginners or if you’re not sure exactly which make-up items to get.
48. Tee Hee Socks
Choose from 14 different mixed packs of ankle-length socks, some of which have 12 pairs, while others have 18.
The women’s sizes are suitable for feet up to a size 11, so even if you are from a family with giant feet, like ours, these are likely to fit well and be comfortable.
49. 3D Galaxy Moon Lamp
These beautiful globe lamps are printed with images that replicate those caught by NASA telescopes.
The lamp is 4 and a half inches across and is charged via a USB cable that is included with the light. There are 16 internal glow colors, five brightness levels, and you can control them all via the remote or through touch control.
50. Good Luck Puzzle Box Secret
If you want to give money, gift cards, concert tickets, or something similar, then consider getting one of these cute puzzle boxes in which to deliver your gift.
Not only is it a fun way to present your present, but after your gift has been used, your teenager will also have a puzzle box to remind them of your generosity.
Choosing a gift for a 13-year-old girl is tricky, even when you know her well, so we hope our list has helped you zero in on something suitable.
Unfortunately, my own 13 year-old girl saw me researching this article and now wants almost everything on this list. Which is a good thing in that it means this list was spot on, but a bad thing in that, I think I just wrote her Christmas gift list for her.