A 21st birthday is an especially memorable event — cake, friends, family, party, and maybe an alcoholic beverage (or two). Most of us will remember our 21st birthday celebrations fondly, although some of those memories might be a bit hazy.

If you’re looking for some fun 21st birthday gift ideas, we’ve rounded up our top 21 picks that will work for your sister, brother, girlfriend, boyfriend, niece, nephew, or best friend.

21 unique gift ideas for a 21st birthday

From amusing to meaningful, these personalized gift ideas will put a smile on the face of any young person who is entering adulthood.

21st birthday gift ideas diy booze cake

DIY booze cake

One of our favorite 21st birthday gift ideas is a homemade booze cake or booze gift basket. Instead of a typical cake or gift basket filled with sweets, you can surprise the brand new 21-year-old with a lovely assortment of drinks, mixers, beer, and whatever else you think the birthday guy or gal will enjoy. There are plenty of photos of DIY booze cakes on Pinterest, if you’re looking for ideas on how to put something like this together.

21st birthday gift ideas shot glass

Funny birthday shot glass

If you’re planning on birthday gift No. 1, then you’ll definitely need a funny, personalized shot glass to go along with your booze cake or gift basket. This shot glass can be personalized with up to three lines of text of your choice. Add their name and a fun message to make this one shot glass they’ll keep around as a fond memory of their 21st birthday.

21st birthday gift ideas Funny Quote Flask

Custom Flask

Instead of a shot glass (or in addition to one), you can customize a pocket flask. These party quotes custom flasks come in your choice of 10 funny quotes, and you can add a name in the banner at the bottom.

21st birthday gift ideas Personalized Beer Mug

Special Birthday Beer Mug

Life is too short to drink beer from a plastic cup, and this personalized beer mug says it all. Designed to celebrate special birthdays, such as the momentous 21st birthday, the glass mug is deep etched with a unique design that you get to customize from top to bottom. The traditional style mug holds 25 ounces and makes a great addition to a six pack of celebratory beer.

21st birthday gift ideas Whole Bottle Oversized Wine Glass

Whole Bottle Wine Glass

If wine is more their thing, personalize the Big Vino wine glass, which can fit an entire bottle of wine, holding an impressive 750 milliliters! Add their name and a short two-line message, or choose a funny wine quote.

21st birthday gift ideas hangover kit

DIY Hangover Kit

If you know they’ll be spending their birthday celebrating with a bang (and a few drinks), you can put together a simple hangover kit to help them recover from the night’s festivities. A bottle of water, some Advil or Tylenol, eye drops, mints, mouthwash, and a quick snack that will help them recover is all you need. It might not be a gift they think too much of at first, but once they’re finally up the next morning, they’ll definitely appreciate it.

21st birthday gift ideas Beer Cap Shadow Box

Bottle Cap or Wine Cork Shadow Box

Now that they’re legal, let them show off their drinking accomplishments with a personalized beer cap or wine cork shadow box. Each shadow box has a hole on top so beer caps or wine corks can be easily added, and it opens from the back, so they’ll be able to empty the contents once they’ve filled the boxes up. Of course, you can personalize the shadow box with a funny quote or message and their names.

21st birthday gift ideas 21st Birthday Personalized Adult Shirt

Birthday T-Shirt

Create a custom T-shirt, tank top, or hoodie that they can wear to celebrate their milestone birthday. Use this fun 21 beer bottle design and add their name, or create your own unique design for the birthday guy or gal.

21st birthday gift ideas Personalized Picture Frame

Personalized Picture Frame or Photo Album

Help them remember their big birthday celebrations with a personalized picture frame or photo album. These days, we tend to let our photos go forgotten on our phones and computers, but with a custom photo frame or album, they’ll be able to proudly display their fun memories of these once-in-a-lifetime celebrations.

21st birthday gift ideas Birthday History Canvas

Custom Birthday Canvas Print

If you’re looking for more of a keepsake gift, this custom history canvas print offers a fun and unique option. Simply add their name and birth date, and the canvas print will include all the interesting and important events for that specific date, including the major events of the month, the most popular songs and movies, and memorable sports results. The print also lists other famous birthdays along with a comparison chart of the cost of living between then and now.

21st birthday gift ideas with Bullet Beer Bottle Opener

Bullet Beer Bottle Opener

When it comes to opening beer bottles, they’ll always be locked and loaded as long as they have this bullet-shaped tool on them. Engravable with any name, this opener may not be a real bullet (it’s made of zinc alloy), but it’s still sturdy enough to pop open any brew of your 21-year old’s choosing.

21st birthday gift ideas with photo beer bottle labels

Photo Beer Bottle Labels & Six Pack Carrier

Make their first official six pack of beer extra special with custom photo beer bottle labels and bottle carrier. This set of six beer bottle labels can be customized with any three photos and text (meaning you get two labels with each photo), while the six pack holder is customized separately. Find memorable, funny, or embarrassing photos from their childhood and have fun creating a six pack they will never forget!

21st birthday gift ideas with photo wine bottle labels

Photo Wine Bottle Label

You can do the same with their first official wine bottle. Customize this photo wine bottle label with any photo, text, and colors to create a fun and unique birthday gift they can enjoy and remember for many birthdays to come.

21st birthday gift ideas with 21st birthday socks

Custom Birthday Socks

Custom socks are all the rage these days, and these fun birthday socks won’t disappoint. Customize photo socks of the happy birthday gal or guy, or personalize birthday socks with a fun message they can enjoy wearing during their birthday celebrations and beyond.

21st birthday gift ideas with mini photo book

Mini Photo Book

Turn those awesome Instagram friend photos into a mini photo book for the birthday friend in your life for a memorable and truly special 21st birthday gift. Upload 21 photos and add your favorite quotes, fun memories, inside jokes, hashtags, your friend’s best sayings, and anything else to make this mini photo book extra special.

21st birthday gift ideas with birthday necklace

Birthday Necklace

Surprise the birthday girl with a delicate 21st birthday necklace she’ll cherish for years as she celebrates her official entry into adulthood. Choose a heart or infinity necklace in gold or silver, and customize the message card with her name and a special birthday wish just for her.

21st birthday gift ideas with pocket knife

Engraved Pocket Knife

Commemorate his milestone birthday with a gift he can remember for many years to come, such as this custom engraved pocket knife that includes his monogram or name and the date he’ll turn 21. This is an especially great gift for someone who loves hunting, fishing, camping, and the great outdoors.

21st birthday gift ideas with gift bucket

Custom Birthday Gift (or Beer) Bucket

Fill this birthday gift bucket with all their favorites for a fun, personalized birthday gift basket. This metal bucket comes in a variety of colors and can be customized with your own text and colors for him or her. Turn it into a spa gift basket with lush bath essentials, a sweet treat bucket with their favorite confections, or a beer bucket with a sampling of brews they can enjoy now that they are officially 21.

21st birthday gift ideas with hangover mug

Giant Hangover Mug

This giant birthday hangover mug will not only help them recover the morning after a big party with a good amount of coffee, but it also serves as the perfect container for a variety of small gifts and treats. Fill it with a mini hangover kit that includes aspirin, Alka-Seltzer, eye drops, mints or gum, lip balm, a granola bar, and other snacks. Or simply fill it with mini-liquor bottles, candy, or other treats you know they’ll enjoy on their 21st.

21st birthday gift ideas with wine glass

Custom 21st Birthday Glass

Let them say cheers in style with their very own custom 21st birthday wine glass. This is more than just an ordinary wine glass — it’s a memento of their coming-of-age celebrations, whether it’s a wild party or a simple get-together with family and friends. As each year goes by, this personalized gift will help them remember this very special day.

21st birthday gift ideas with birthday postcard

Engraved 21st Birthday Postcard

This heartfelt gift might make the newly minted adult swell with love and joy as he or she realizes the significance of this very special birthday. Customize this engraved birthday postcard with a loving message to create a memorable gift they’ll hold dear for years to come.

Bonus: Birthday banner

Surprise them with a big birthday banner hanging in front of the house as they arrive or inside the home as they wake up on their 21st birthday. Add a baby photo to the banner to make it fun along with a special message that will make it memorable for them.


Kasia Lorenc is a writer and editor at Personalization Mall, covering gifting, home decorating and more.

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