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34 best gifts for dads who are (almost) impossible to buy for

If you’re searching for thoughtful present ideas for the father figure in your life, look no further

Eva Waite-Taylor
Friday 26 January 2024 09:10 GMT
Enlisting the help of the IndyBest elves, we considered price, quality and how we would feel if we were to unwrap each one
Enlisting the help of the IndyBest elves, we considered price, quality and how we would feel if we were to unwrap each one (iStock/The Independent)
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There really is no better time than a birthday to show your appreciation for your father figure. With dads often considered the most difficult people to buy for, you’re probably not alone if you’re struggling to think of present ideas for him this year. But that’s where this gift guide comes in.

When it comes to buying for him, our main recommendation is always to stay away from cliché presents that will likely collect dust. Instead, consider his hobbies and the things he already loves. Perhaps he’s a keen cyclist and would appreciate a new bit of kit, or he’s in need of a new aftershave to leave him smelling fresh. If all else fails, opt for an experience, so you can spend some quality time together.

From high-ticket tech to grooming products we think any man would love to receive, below is a carefully curated edit of the best gifts for dad.

How we tested the best gifts for dads

As with all of our gift guides, this one has very much been a team effort. Enlisting the help of the IndyBest elves, we’ve reviewed every possible gift idea. In making this final round-up, we considered price, quality and how we would feel if we were to unwrap each one.

The best gifts for dads in 2024 are:

  • Best gift for dad overall – Creed green silver mountain water shower gel: £85,
  • Best for fashionable fathers – P&Co wayfare waxed jacket: £170,
  • Best wallet – Bellroy flip case: £85,
  • Best wine subscription – Perfect Cellar tasting box: £20,
  • Best for cycling enthusiasts – Rapha men’s core winter jacket: £100,
  • Best for home cooks – Marcato atlas 150 pasta maker: £70,

Creed green silver mountain water shower gel

Creed Bath Gel.jpg
  • Best: Overall

Give an indulgent gift to your dad with this silver mountain water fragranced shower gel from Creed. Richly scented, the shower gel also lathers quickly – a must for some of us – leaving skin clean and smelling great. With top notes of bergamot, blackcurrant, galbanum and orange and base notes of sandalwood and musk, this refreshing shower gel comes in a shatterproof bottle, making it the perfect addition to any bathroom.

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P&Co wayfare waxed jacket

  • Best: For fashionable fathers

Buying clothing for your dad may seem like risky business, but trust us when we say that any fashionable father will be very pleased to unwrap and indeed wear (on repeat) this waxed jacket from P&Co. The brand specialises in high-quality pieces that are made to last, which is apparent with this outerwear hero.

The fit is spot-on, but of course, there are plenty of other details to shout about, including the heavy, structured design that gives a luxe look to any outfit. The water-repellent canvas almost looks vintage, and we think it’ll get even better with more wear and tear. An investment piece that he’ll be sure to enjoy wearing time and again.

  1. £170 from
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Bellroy flip case

  • Best: Wallet

A wallet with a difference. The Bellroy flip case will give your dad ninja-like access to cards, and it helps that it looks super sleek too. With a hard shell, it’s been designed with security in mind – it’ll keep his cash secure thanks to magnetic trapdoors that open and close with a satisfying click and it also features RFID protection, which will block the signals emitted from cards, preventing any data leaks. What makes this wallet different to most others though is that it has two sections – one that has bulk storage for stacked cards and notes, and one that allows you to quickly slide out your most-used cards with a simple flick of your thumb.

  1. £85 from
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Jo Malone whisky and cedarwood cologne

  • Best: For updating his fragrance

When it comes to gifting a new fragrance, it can be difficult. But this sweet and musky cologne is bound to be a winner. We couldn’t help but spritz this all day long, as it’s our favourite in the Huntsman Savile Row x Jo Malone collection. The two brands have created four fragrances that are brooding and autumnal, perfect for this time of year. This will keep dapper dads smelling sharp for cocktail parties, date nights and office commutes.

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Perfect Cellar tasting box wine subscription

  • Best: Wine subscription

Shopping for an amateur sommelier? Perfect Cellar has the ideal present. This tasting box serves up three Michelin Star-level wines through their letterbox every month. Plus, they’ll have the opportunity to join master sommelier Christopher Delalonde for a live online wine tasting at home via Alexa. You can choose to gift it as a one-off or as a subscription with either three or six wines. The perfect introduction to world-class wines and expansion of their vino knowledge, simply pick the frequency and the brand will do the rest.

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Lego Ideas Vincent Van Gogh ‘The Starry Night'

  • Best: For Lego lovers

Perfect for admirers of Vincent Van Gogh’s work or dads who like to stretch their creative muscles, Lego’s The Starry Night set recreates the famous 19th century painting. It contains 2,316 pieces, it’s a challenging but thoroughly rewarding build – particularly when displayed thanks to the built-in mounting hook (it measures 30cm high and 38cm wide when fully assembled).

Loaded with realistic detailing like the colour palette, swishes, swirls and buildings, the set is even complete with an adjustable display arm for a mini Van Gogh figure with an easel.

For more recommendations, read the review of the best Lego sets for adults

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Uniqlo cashmere jumper

  • Best: Cashmere jumper

A cashmere jumper is a linchpin in a winter wardrobe, so any dad is sure to be pleased unwrap one. Should you be looking for the perfect design, Uniqlo is a reliable destination. When we gave this one to our dad to test, he was particularly pleased with it and has worn it countless times, which is a sign of a great gift.

Depending on your dad’s preference, there are a range of different colours to choose from, but black and navy are bound to be crowdpleasers. As for fit, it’s true to size and there’s a full range available, from XXS to 3XL.

  1. £99 from
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CleanCo clean G non-alcoholic gin

best-gifts-for-dad-indybest-cleanco-gin- .jpg
  • Best: For teetotal dads

Founded by Spencer Matthews (yes, that ex-lothario from Made In Chelsea), CleanCo is inspired by his journey to sobriety. The brand’s non-alcoholic replacements span tequila, rum, and gin with the concoctions tasting impressively close to the real deal. Its classic gin is deliciously smooth and refreshing with citrus, spicy and herbaceous notes.

Made using real juniper, the classic flavour serves as the perfect teetotal alternative for G&T’s, mocktails and more. Plus, it’s vegan, contains no sugar and comes in a decadent bottle that feels like a real treat. Whether your dad is embracing a newly alcohol-free lifestyle or has long since been off the booze, CleanCo’s gin is a failsafe gift.

For more recommendations, read the review of the best non-alcoholic spirits

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Ember mug²

best-gifts-for-dad-indybest-ember-mug 2 .jpg
  • Best: For tea lovers

Any tea or coffee aficionado will agree that there’s nothing worse than your brew getting cold before you’ve had a chance to enjoy it fully. Sure, you can pop it in the microwave but it never tastes the same as a freshly made hot drink. Enter Ember’s temperature control mugs. The ideal gift for any brew-loving dad, this innovative mug allows you to set an exact drinking temperature and maintain it for up to 90 minutes.

This means your drink is never too hot or too cold – and ensures you’ve still got the perfect cuppa waiting for them if they get distracted from your desk. Other nifty features include Bluetooth connectivity to the Ember app for customisation, a smart LED light to indicate temperatures and a charging coaster that allows for all-day battery life. Plus, the sleek, black matte design doesn’t scrimp on style either.

Read the full Ember mug² review

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Aarke carbonator 3

  • Best: Kitchen gadget

If your dad is partial to a glass of sparkling water then this fancy carbonator deserves a spot in their kitchen. With the ability to fizz water in an instant, the snazzy gadget boasts serious style and sustainability credentials as it not only looks like a sleek piece of barware but also promises to help you cut your plastic bottle consumption.

The slimline and cordless design makes it easy to store, and it comes in a choice of six colours including stainless steel, black, blue or copper. It’s also incredibly easy to use, simply screw the clear Aarke bottle into the device, push down the lever until you hear a loud buzzing sound, and sparkling water is ready to enjoy. Cheers!

  1. £179 from
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Henry Holland green and white mug

  • Best: Mug

A mug that stands out from the rest, this one-of-a-kind handmade cup is the perfect gift for any caffeine fiend. Courtesy of homeware designer and artist Henry Holland, it’s created using a slab building technique with earthenware clay and finished with a high gloss glaze that really helps to bring out the distinctive pattern. Truly unique, it has a stylised semi-circular handle and wide mouth that makes it ideal for sipping on everything from a creamy cappuccino to a builder’s brew.

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M&S pure cotton oxford shirt

  • Best: Clothing gift

Is your dad stuck in a style rut of slogan T-shirts and check shirts? Then we’d recommend that you do your old man a favour and gently help him find his fashion mojo again. This smart casual cotton shirt is a great place to start. The classic navy shade is not too bold or adventurous, but it’s well-fitted for a smarter look, and the narrowing at the waist and shoulders has a slimming effect. It’s made from pure cotton, making it soft against the skin and breathable. Even better, it comes in at under £30.

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Thule aion black sling bag

  • Best: Practical fashion accessory

If your dad’s bum bag is in need of an upgrade, this modern hip pack, which doubles up as a small crossbody bag, is a great choice. He’ll be able to keep his coins, cards, keys and phone safe while still having room for hiking and camping essentials such as a torch, matches and a bottle opener. Inside the bag, you’ll find pockets and compartments so he can keep his sunglasses separate from his survival skill must-haves. It’s a planet-friendly choice, too since the shell fabric, mesh and lining are made from recycled materials.

  1. £45 from
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Black Lines negroni bottled cocktail

  • Best: For Negroni drinkers

Negronis are an acquired taste for some people, but once the taste is acquired, there’s no going back. Sweet vermouth is paired with bitter orange liqueur and a splash of gin for a warming cocktail in the autumn and winter. If your dad’s a fan of the Italian cocktail, Black Lines’ version is exquisite and beautifully balanced. The label is quirky and fun, which will delight dads upon opening and one bottle is five servings.

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On Running men’s hoodie

  • Best: For runners

It can be hard for even the most dedicated of dads to find the willpower to go to the gym or play football when it’s cold and blustery outside, so a gift that boosts his motivation is guaranteed to be well-received. Made from a mix of recycled fabrics, the On hoodie combines softness and sustainability into one classically stylish combination. Whether it’s being worn for a warm-up or to keep the muscles toasty when he’s recovering from a vigorous session, the hoodie is cut above the rest thanks to some unique details that are both practical and eye-catching. A lace guard keeps the drawstrings in place, which means your dad will never end up with one string longer than the other or one end swallowed up by the hoodie. Our tester loved the supersized front pocket, which proved to be a practical place to stow away valuables.

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Hot Pottery salad bowl

  • Best: For dads who like to host

Salad can be anything but boring, particularly when it’s showcased in a bowl as good-looking as this one. If your dad is a keen host, he’s certainly going to appreciate this new piece of tableware. Handmade and painted, it’s fun and unique and sure to offer something slightly different on the dinner table. Depending on his preference, it’s also available in a blueberry, pistachio, burnt orange, or cranberry splatter.

While we love this bowl, if you’re looking for other gifts, Hot Pottery is a fantastic one to know. The brand curates gorgeous tableware from independent ceramists from around the world, with each item being wonderful to unwrap.

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London Sock Co. the Warwickshire, 3-pair box

best Christmas gifts for dad London Sock C. the Warwickshire
  • Best: Colourful socks

While something of a cliché, socks are a reliably well-received gift – but not every pair is created equal. When it comes to elevating his sock drawer, London Sock Co covers understated and patterned styles (£36, as well as colourful pairs – these will no doubt appeal to dads who want a bit of personality, rather than novelty, from their socks. We loved the bright electric-blue pair in this Warwickshire set, which comes with two other pairs: one in navy blue and one in a wonderful mustard yellow hue (there’s no shying away from colour here). Knitted predominantly from Scottish Lisle cotton, the material feels breathable and soft against the skin. Plus, the socks offer ample stretch while staying securely around the mid-calf area, which, to us, indicates quality.

If you’re looking to spoil the father figure in your life this year, you may want to plump for a larger selection of socks, as the brand also sells styles in sets of six (£88, and more.

You can sign up for restock notifications.

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Finisterre fisherman's beanie

best Christmas gifts for dad Finisterre fisherman’s beanie
  • Best: Winter accessory

If your dad’s winter accessories are in need of an update, this beanie from Finisterre will go down a treat. The traditional fisherman’s rib stitch has been knitted with traceable British merino wool and feels top quality, with a soft feel against the skin. Our tester found there was no itchiness from the wool to deal with, and while it’s a one-size-fits-all design, it has decent stretch for a comfortable fit. Importantly, our tester found it large enough to pull down over their ears, which is a non-negotiable when the weather’s especially fierce. Depending on your dad’s preference, there are other colourways too, including black and a bright golden yellow.

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Charles Tyrwhitt cashmere scarf

Best Christmas gift for dad Charles Tyrwhitt cashmere scarf
  • Best: Winter must-have

Cashmere and luxury go hand in hand, so it’s an easy way to wow. This design is made with pure cashmere, making it buttery soft against the skin. What’s more, the pared-back design is both timeless and versatile. The navy blue colourway is now out of stock, but there’s a smart camel colourway and red too, which could slot just as easily into their winter wardrobe. Don’t be fooled by the fact it feels fair slim, it’s still deceptively snuggly and means it’s not too bulky.

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Thermos stainless steel king flask

best christmas gifts for dad Thermos stainless steel king flask
  • Best: For outdoorsy dads

If their perfect weekend sounds like marching around the countryside, camping in the great outdoors, or spending hours at the beach, then a flask is bound to be a winner. Thermos is synonymous with great flasks and this stainless steel design is excellent. It has a cup, a twist-and-pour stopper and a space-saving collapsible handle. The capacity of this flask is perfect for group adventures, not to mention its excellent temperature preservation abilities which kept our drink piping hot for 24 hours. It’s worth noting that the cup can get quite hot in your hands.

For more recommendations, read our review of the best travel mugs and vacuum flasks

  1. £20 from
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Marcato atlas 150 pasta maker

best christmas gifts for dad Marcato atlas 150 pasta maker
  • Best: For home cooks

Whether your dad has MasterChef ambitions or is just a keen home cook, this kitchen gadget will help him take his culinary skills to the next level. It’s easy to set up, use and clean – simply clamp the pasta maker onto a kitchen counter or table, add dough and get rolling. It feels robust in use and comes with 10 thickness settings, as well as a cutting attachment to create strands of tagliatelle or fettuccine (other cutting attachments are available to buy separately). With recipes included along with full instructions and a 10-year guarantee, you can’t go wrong when gifting this gizmo.

For more recommendations, read our review of the best pasta makers

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Rockett St George ‘bottoms up’ glass decanter

best christmas gifts for dad Rockett St George ‘bottoms up’ glass decanter
  • Best: For dads who like a tipple

We love the hip flask shape of this smart decanter, which bears the words ‘bottoms up’ in relief across the front, giving it a fun, modern twist. With no shortage of parties, family get-togethers and chances to raise a glass over the festive season, this gift will make sure your dad can enjoy his favourite tipples in style.

An antique gold coloured band adds extra interest to the neck of the decanter, while the glass ball stopper fits nice and snuggly. Our only gripe is that the pour finished with a slight dribble (no one likes to waste a drop of the good stuff), but it still makes a great gift and would look the part on any drinks trolley or festive dinner table.   

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Horsham Coffee Roaster coffee selection box

best Christmas gifts for dad Horsham Coffee Roaster coffee selection box
  • Best: For coffee lovers

If your dad can’t start the day without his morning cup of Joe, this selection box may be what he needs to help him get through January. Based in Sussex, Horsham Coffee Roaster aims to provide ethically traded coffees that see farmers “paid well” for the quality beans they produce. From single origin to organic and even decaf offerings, the company sells a range of coffee beans sourced from Africa and Central and South America. However, we think the selection box, which contains five different 100g bags of beans, chosen from the company’s current collection, makes for the perfect gift for any coffee-lover. Although you can’t pick and choose which coffees are included, the assortment of different flavour profiles is bound to help your dad find his new favourite caffeine fix.

For more recommendations, read our review of the best coffee subscription services

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Sophie Allport Highland stag loafer slippers

best christmas gifts for dads Sophie Allport Highland stag loafer slippers
  • Best: Slippers

OK, gifting slippers may be a bit of a cliché, but when they’re as stylish as these classic suede loafers, we don’t think you’ll get any complaints from your dad. Incredibly comfortable, and adorned with a subtle stag design at the toe, the slippers feature a super soft sheepskin lining that will keep his feet cosy this winter and beyond. The loafers are available in sizes small, medium and large, with a thermoplastic rubber outsole to prevent any slipping. If you’re looking for a traditional gift for dad, these slippers are ideal. 

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SunGod renegades sunglasses

best christmas gifts for dads SunGod renegades
  • Best: For sporty dads

An ideal gift for a sporty dad, whether he’s a cyclist, runner, skier or water sports fan, SunGod sunglasses stand out both for their design and their impressive tech specs. The classic style of the Renegades makes them perfect for gifting – it’s hard to find a face shape that these don’t suit – and you can choose from a range of frames and lens colours. The lens quality really is superior with crystal clear visibility even in very bright conditions or challenging weather. For the quality, they’re an incredibly good price, and we’ve found that they’re pretty much indestructible, too.

  1. £70 from
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PerfectDraft pro beer dispenser

PerfectDraft Pro.jpg
  • Best: For beer lovers

If you’re shopping for a beer lover consider gifting them an at-home dispenser, which will allow them to enjoy their favourite, foamy cold one from the comfort of their home. The PerfectDraft pro is incredibly easy to use and can even be controlled via an app, which allows you to choose the optimal temperature for your beer of choice, monitor how much is left and how many days are remaining for beer freshness. There’s plenty of beer to choose from too, with everything from IPAs to lagers and well-known names including Stella Artois and Camden Hells on offer. It is, however, pretty pricey but, if your budget allows, or you want to club together with other family members, it’s sure to be enjoyed by your dad throughout the festive period and beyond.

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The Ordinary the clear set

best christmas gifts for dads The Ordinary the clear set
  • Best: Skincare bundle

If you’re looking to introduce some new skincare into your dad’s morning and evening routine, this set from The Ordinary is a great starting point. The bundle includes three of the brand’s most popular tinctures: the brand’s glucoside foaming cleanser, a salicylic acid serum, and its natural moisturising factors with beta glucan. The regimen targets blemish-prone skin to improve clarity and texture. Even better, it comes in at less than £15, making it an affordable choice.

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Philips VoiceTracer pen

best christmas gifts for dad Philips VoiceTracer pen
  • Best: For the office

Looking to give the gift of feeling like James Bond? If James Bond were a fastidious notetaker, he’d certainly have the Philips VoiceTracer pen. It’s a functioning pen, obviously enough, as well as a 360-degree dictaphone with 32GB of memory. Your dad will be able to use it to thwart an evil nemesis by having them admit their world domination plans on tape, or just to keep meeting minutes. Automatic transcription software is included, with support for multiple speakers.

  1. £69 from
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Go Travel packing cubes

best christmas gifts for dad Go Travel packing cubes
  • Best: For a frequent traveller

Is your dad a frequent traveller? If he’s not using packing cubes to organise his carry-on luggage, then he’s not travelling right. This three-piece set from Go Travel landed a spot in our review of the best packing cubes, where our expert says they strike “the perfect balance of toughness and transparency”. If your dad’s particulars are disorganised, or he’s forever arriving at his destination with schmutz on his white shirt, these will make his day.

For more recommendations, read our review of the best packing cubes

  1. £16 from
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Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K max

best Christmas gifts for dad Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K max
  • Best: For TV fans

The Fire TV stick 4K max is the best stick-style streaming device Amazon makes. The device fits neatly into a TV’s HDMI port and delivers access to all of the best streaming services in ultra-high-definition, effectively turning any television into a smart television. If your dad is a TV fan, he’s going to love this nifty device. He can speak into the remote to control his TV and launch programmes and movies with his voice. Of course, he’ll be able to watch normal telly on it too, through the built-in TV player app.

For more recommendations, read our review of the best streaming devices

  1. £64 from
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Sandqvist Ruben 2.0

sandvist .jpg
  • Best: Commuting dads

Stockholm label Sandqvist marries functionality and design in its bag collections. Crafted with sustainable materials, its sleek weekender holdalls, wallets, totes and backpacks are just as equipped for the great outdoors as they are for the city. A bestseller, the Ruben comes in six sleek colourways – from matte black and sage to multi green and beige.

Commuter-friendly, a nifty compartment fits a 15in laptop, while the roomy 27l capacity leaves ample space for essentials. Made from recycled polyester, the waterproof TPU coating protects belongings from sudden downpours, while the webbing is reflective – making it a stellar option for cycling commuters. This is a practical yet stylish replacement for your dad’s old work bag, so you’ll score top points.

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Le Chameau men's Artemis leather boots

Le Chameau Artemis boots
  • Best: Footwear gift

We feel as though dads are always repairing their shoes, convinced they can make them last longer. While this is an admirable trait, sustainability wise, when it’s time for a new pair, these Artemis leather boots from Le Chameau come in this gorgeous, timeless brown with brogue detailing.

They’re 100 per cent waterproof, with durable sympatex lining, grippy soles and Le Chameau’s onSteam comfort insoles, for extra foot support. Whether worn at work or during country walks, these will soon become a staple.

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M&S waterproof anorak with Stormwear

marks and spencer waterproof anorak.jpg
  • Best: Waterproof coat

This waterproof anorak from Marks & Spencer has served dad well this winter while walking the dogs. Extremely comfortable and breathable, with adjustable cuffs and a fleece lining, it’s kept him dry even in the biggest of downpours. He’s been wearing the short version, which fits him just right and true to size, although it’s a tiny bit tight around the armpits (if you don’t mind that). It looks modern, trendy and there is a range of really nice colours to choose from.

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Triumph heritage circuit crew sweat

Triumph circuit crew sweat.jpg
  • Best: Comfy sweat

This classic sweat is available in both black and grey and it features a crew neck and ribbed cuffs. An ideal pick, whatever fashion style he favours, the piece from famous motorcycle brand Triumph’s heritage collection is made from a soft and comfy cotton twill material. We also like that while the logo is visible, it isn’t too overpowering. Our tester has been wearing it teamed with jeans or joggers and has found the sweat to be a useful layer for everyday wear. You can shop it in sizes S-XXL.

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The verdict: Best gifts for dad

Buying a gift for a man that has everything is difficult. But with any luck this gift guide has provided you with ample inspiration. For a gift he’ll use every day, yet still feels special, we recommend Creed’s shower gel, which will make the the perfect addition to his daily routine. If he’s partial to a bit of luxury, you can’t go wrong with a Uniqlo cashmere sweater or a new cologne in the name of Jo Malone. Home cooks will appreciate a brand-new pasta maker as well as Hot Pottery’s tableware. For sporty dads, SunGod renegades sunglasses will make sure he’s kitted out.

Wines featured are chosen on merit by our writers but The Independent works with Perfect Cellar to offer readers wine choices and will earn commission if readers choose to buy their wines via a link from this article.

Looking for more present inspiration for the man in your life? Read our review of the best gifts for him

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