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The Art of Regifting: Ethical and Thoughtful Approaches

This article explores the nuanced etiquette and ethical considerations of regifting. Discover how to thoughtfully and respectfully pass on gifts that aren’t quite right for you but could bring joy to others, without committing a social faux pas.

A crafted visual representation of the ethical act of regifting. Depict tastefully wrapped gift boxes being passed from one pair of hands to another, all set against a backdrop of a homely and warm environment. The color scheme should be soothing and indicative of a positive, guilt-free act. The second pair of hands signify the act of regifting but no full human figures are shown in the image. Details of the gift boxes should indicate they are meaningful and thoughtfully selected gifts, rather than haphazardly chosen ones.

Understanding Regifting

Regifting, the act of giving someone a gift that was originally given to you, is often seen as taboo. However, when done correctly and thoughtfully, regifting can be a wonderful way to pass on items that are meaningful and useful, without the stigma of being inconsiderate. Regifting is not about offloading unwanted items; it’s about rehoming a gift where it can be valued and appreciated.

The Ethics of Regifting

When considering regifting, the ethical implications should be at the forefront of your decision. The key is to ensure that the gift is appropriate for the recipient and that the original giver would not be offended if they discovered their gift was passed on. It’s also crucial to make sure the gift is in its original condition and free from any personalization that would indicate it was not purchased for the intended recipient.

Thoughtful Presentation

The presentation of a regifted item is just as important as the gift itself. It should be given with the same care and consideration as one you’ve selected and purchased specifically. A thoughtful note explaining why this item is perfect for the recipient can add a personal touch that helps to remove any stigma from regifting.

Regifting Done Right

There are certain items that are more suitable for regifting than others. Kitchen gadgets still in their original packaging, unopened luxury consumables, and timeless home decorations are all examples of gifts that can be regifted thoughtfully. Always consider the likes, needs, and tastes of the person you are regifting to before you pass along an item.

When Not to Regift

There are situations where regifting is not advisable. Avoid regifting personalized items, outdated technology, or anything that has a clear sign of being used. In addition, if there is a high likelihood that the original giver will find out and be hurt, it’s better to avoid regifting to maintain your relationship.

Regifting with Intent

To regift responsibly, you must do it with intent. If an item does not serve a useful purpose in your life but could bring joy or utility to someone else, then regifting can be the right choice. Always regift with the recipient’s happiness in mind, and never simply to get rid of something you don’t want.


Regifting, when done ethically and thoughtfully, can enhance relationships and reduce waste. It’s a practice that can be embraced if you take the time to do it with care, making sure that the gift is suitable and appreciated. As long as the act is done with generosity and good intentions, the art of regifting can be a meaningful and eco-conscious approach to giving. Just remember the golden rules: regift items in excellent condition, consider the receiver’s interests, and present the gift with the same affection as if it were bought new.

Avery Ingram

Avery Ingram


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