Skiing can be an expensive sport. Even with nabbing deals at ski swaps, resort collaborative passes, or buying a touring rig to avoid the masses, the dollars inevitably add up. Luckily there are still a few accessories you can get for under $50. The below are perfect holiday gifts for skiers that won't break the bank. Not only will they keep some change in your pocket, but they're also incredibly useful and efficient.
Zojirushi is a Japanese company that has been making vacuum flasks for close to 90 years. Their Vacuum Thermos holds around 17 ounces and blocks heat from transferring out through conduction. It also uses an aluminum outer to keep your drink hot the entire day. I've had mine for close to five years and it's still going strong without any leaks. Often times I'm driving home after a full day and my coffee or hot chocolate is still piping hot. Adding to the appeal it is also incredibly lightweight and stealthily packs away in my backpack.
These small portable electric boot dryers should be obligatory for every skier. Using convection heat, the DryGuy allows you to dry out your liners after a day of skiing, and never have to bang your knuckles again while ripping the liner out of the shell to place over a heater or next to the fireplace. Just slide the heaters into your boots, plug them into the wall, and forget about it till morning. So simple. So easy. So useful.
Sunscreen as a gift? Indeed, especially if your loved one is the sort to always forget applying sunscreen before they head out into the mountains. Badger’s Clear Zinc has broad spectrum coverage as well as zinc oxide, the most useful application for blocking both UVA and UVB rays. The problem with most sunscreens with zinc oxide is that they are often goopy and leave an oily residue. This one is certainly thicker than normal sunscreen, but it goes on much easier and won’t leave you feeling (or looking) like you just put frosting on your face.
Any sock from Dissent is going to be great. I've actually tried them all through various POWDER boot tests. However, my personal favorite is the Nano Tour. The compression keeps my feet warm and wicks away sweat and moisture better than any other wool sock I've had. It also eliminates any hot spots. The thin nature of the Nano Tour is perfect for those who appreciate a tight performance fit with their ski boot, be it alpine or touring. If your boot shell fit is a little bigger, try the GFX Compression Hybrid or GFX Compression Wool.
Your man wants good underwear. Get him these. This relaxed fit boxer brief with Merino wool construction is incredibly comfortable and has impressive thermoregulation and moisture-wicking qualities. They're also perfect for long travel days.
If you've ever been on a backcountry tour and wished you brought along your skin crampons, then these are for you. Skeats use a large plastic strap equipped with a stainless steel plate with spikes. The strap is akin to a Voile strap that buckles around your ski (under your boot works best) and can be secured with your skis on. They are perfect for mid-winter when you're not necessarily in need of skin crampons, like you would when you're touring on a completely frozen surface, but you know your day may encounter some icy wind-swept ridges or refrozen south-facing exposure. Since they weigh practically nothing I keep them in my bag at all times.
A solid beanie is a must and usually on permanently during the winter for many of us. The Doyonator is Discrete's flagship model, dating back to when pro shredder Julian Carr launched the brand in 2004. The OG reservoir tip style has a nice soft feel to it, and is my personal favorite since I like to wear my hat proud (i.e. standing up tall). It's perfect for around town, tucked under a ski helmet, or for shredding around the hill.