The best 2018 Christmas presents for your favourite scientist

Author: Inez Cornell
Date: Dec 07, 2018

W8 Christmas jumper

What do you get a scientist for Christmas?

If you can’t afford to treat them to a complete set of state-of-the-art laboratory equipment, you might struggle to find the perfect gift for the chemist, physicist or biologist in your life.

To help Christmas gift-givers everywhere solve this festive conundrum, a few years ago we put together a gift guide for scientists.

Here’s an up to date version for 2018 – the best scientific Christmas presents we could find.

Happy shopping!

Elementary, my dear

What sort of self-respecting scientist hasn’t spent countless hours obsessively memorising the periodic table? This Christmas, there are hundreds of ways to indulge your favourite scientist’s love of all things elemental.

Take a look at this clock, hand-crafted from an old vinyl record, with an outer-rim 24-hour clock that lets the atomic numbers of the relevant elements stand in for the hours in the day. Alternatively, here’s a chemistry clock that’s a little less clever but a lot more ornate. Never has a Petri dish looked more fabulous!

Continuing with the elements theme, this clever Christmas card reveals Holmium to be the most festive of all elements. And if your beloved scientist enjoys cooking (periodically), treat them to this customisable chopping block, or these unique herb plant markers.

Christmas Gifts for Scientists 1 - Elementary My Dear


It’s a mug’s game

As any veteran scientist will tell you, the most important equipment in any laboratory is the tea and coffee making facilities. If you want to get your favourite scientist a gift they’ll use again and again, get them a mug.

There are quite a few scientist-friendly mugs to choose from. This one’s good for scientists of all stripes, as it pokes fun at the three main disciplines. For chemists, you can spell out their name in chemical elements, or you can appeal to their nerdier side with the chemical molecule of caffeine.

This mug offers advice that’s good for everyone. But if you want a receptacle for a slightly-stronger drink, here’s a charming reminder that, according to chemistry, wine is a solution.

Christmas Gifts for Scientists 2 - It's a Mug's Game

You wear it well

There are plenty of charming science t-shirts and jumpers out there, every single one of which would make for an ideal Christmas gift. Here are a couple of our favourites:

We love this one, which plays on “Oh Chemistree”, to be sung to the tune of “Oh Christmas Tree.” The tree is the periodic table! The three presents are Holmium! The golden star is Ag!

We’re also partial to this one - a tribute to an infectious 80’s synthpop epic AND a fantastic overview of some of the leading ladies of science.

Christmas Gifts for Scientists 3 - You Wear It Well


Scientific stocking fillers

We all love stocking fillers – those fun little things that are hilarious for a minute or so, but ultimately rather useless. So in the spirit of the Ig Nobel Prize, here’s some of the best pointless yet fascinating scientific stocking fillers we could find.

Ever fancied your very own Blakes 7 teleport bracelet? You can get one! Some assembly may be required. Or how about your very own Shrödinger’s Cat thought experiment? Just open the box to split the universe!

Many of the gifts in this guide have made hilarious use of scientific puns. We found a bag that is itself a tribute to scientific puns. We also found this little print, on which we counted no fewer than three chemistry puns.

Finally, we found oodles of items that strive to make biology cute and cuddly, like this pancreas plushy, and this fuzzy felt human anatomy set!

Christmas Gifts For Scientists 4 - Scientific Stocking Fillers

Science gifts for kids

But what about the scientists of tomorrow? What sort of gift can you get for a child with a burgeoning interest in science?

We have some ideas. Look at this Letterbox Lab. It provides “everything you need to play with science straight through your letterbox!” It’s designed for younger children, and it features lots of fun and safe experiments involving light and colour.

Or how about a few issues of OKIDO magazine? Since 2007, these guys have been putting together colourful, fun and informative science magazines for children aged 3-8. Each issue focuses on a different topic, from coding, to music, to breathing, to the time and space continuum.

Through the wonders of science your child can own their very own rainbow. Or if a rainbow doesn’t do anything for them, how about a robot?

Finally, if you give a child the gift of LEGO, they could enter our build-a-lab LEGO competition next year…

Christmas Gifts for Scientists 5 - Science Gifts for Kids


Now it’s your turn
– what do you plan on getting your favourite scientist for Christmas this year? Why not tweet us @Radleys and let us know?

Want more?

You might also enjoy our blog "Brilliant science books for Christmas 2018"

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