Gift ideas for dads & boyfriends

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It’s that time of year again, Christmas is just around the corner and you’ve probably begun making your way through your gifting list.

If, like a great many of us, you’re leaving the men in your life for last on account of having no idea what to get them, allow us to point you in the right direction.
Here are our picks for best Christmas gifts for him – dad, boyfriend, husband, son – no matter his lifestyle or interests.

FOR THE ADVENTURER
LifeStraw Go Water Filter Bottle, Amazon, $80.11

If your man likes to get out and about in the wild as often as possible, gift this brilliant water bottle with filtering straw, which will allow him to safely hydrate from the creeks and streams he encounters. A hollow fibre membrane filter removes bacteria and protozoa; while a two-stage carbon filter reduces carbon and odour. As if the promise of hydration no matter where in the rainforest he wanders wasn’t good enough of a gift, LifeStraw gives a child from a developing country safe drinking water for an entire school year with every one purchased.

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FOR THE SNEAKERHEAD
Nike By You, Nike, $160 – $410

Nike By You allows sneakerheads to customise some of Nike’s most iconic sneaker styles, from across lifestyle, running, basketball, training and beyond. Customise everything from the silhouette to colours of the sole, trim and all – no doubt he’ll love that there’ll be no one else in the workd with the exact same kicks as him.

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FOR THE LUXURY LOVER
Aesop Seasonal Gift Kits, Aesop, $67

No doubt you’re already a devotee of Aesop’s range of luxious, native-infused, vegan skincare and home products. Allow the man in your life to indulge in some self-care – which, let’s face it, considering the year it’s been, we could all do with – and gift him one of these five special gift packs.

Choose from kits like the skin balance-restoring The Metaphysical Voyager, to the elevated daily skincare in The Lore Collector. Each gift pack comes with complimentary literary works through a QR code – he need only scan it to read or listen to works from writers such as Joaquim Maria Machado de Assis to Lafcadio Hearn. Truly, these decadent products and complimentary literature discoveries are the ideal gift for the luxury-loving men in your life.

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FOR THE STYLE-CONSCIOUS

Smart Watch Stainless Steel Wristband, Amazon, $37.50+

If he’s still wearing the silicone band that came with his Apple Watch, and it clearly looks out of place with the rest of his personal style, give him the aesthetic of his old analog watches (without the need to sacrifice the convenience of his smart one) with this stainless steel chain watch strap. Compatible with a range

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‘Don’t Do Your Boyfriend’s Laundry’

Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty

Equality starts at home — especially the laundry room, according to Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg.

“I’ve been saying this forever, and I’m going to keep saying this: we need a better balance of work in the home,” Sandberg, 51, told PEOPLE Digital Deputy Editor Charlotte Triggs. “For any young women, if you have a boyfriend, and you’re about to go do your boyfriend’s laundry: don’t do it! You’re going to be doing that guy’s laundry for the next five decades.”

Sandberg spoke about the new challenges and stressors working women are facing amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic with Triggs during the virtual launch event for #StraightTalk, a new interview series organized by the employee resource group Women @ Meredith. Meredith is PEOPLE’s parent corporation.

One in four women are contemplating downshifting or leaving the workforce, and among mothers who reported thinking of those options, a majority cite childcare responsibilities as the primary reason, according to this year’s annual Women in the Workplace report from Sandberg’s Lean In and McKinsey & Co.

Before the coronavirus pandemic hit, Sandberg said, many women worked a “double shift” — first at work and then another while attending to their family’s needs at home. Now, while working from home, balancing their kids’ online classes, caring for sick relatives and doing housework, they’re working a  “double double shift,” Sandberg said.

The report found that the average woman is doing about 70 hours of housework and childcare per week, while the average man completes 50 hours of the same work.

RELATED: 1 in 4 Women Are Considering Career Shifts — Including Leaving Workforce — Over Burnout: Study

“Women are getting crushed by the workload at work and the workload at home,” Sandberg noted. “This is a crisis, and we need to pick our heads up and see it before it erodes all the gains we’ve made over the past decade.”

Lauren Melillo Sheryl Sandberg (bottom) with Women @ Meredith co-chairs Charlotte Triggs (left) and Vicki Brakl (left)

The report also found that women — in particular women of color — were more likely to have been laid off or furloughed during the crisis. Additionally, many Black women said they did not feel they had sufficient allies in the workplace, and fewer than one in three Black women reported having a manager check in on them in light of recent racial violence.

Sandberg called the disparity “totally unacceptable.”

“The way bias works, we have gender bias and we have race bias, which is why women of color face both,” she added. “[A promotion] becomes even more challenging.”

The report called on Black women’s workplaces to address the distinct challenges Black women face head-on, and foster a culture that supports and values Black women.

RELATED: How to Manage Anxiety and Loneliness During the Coronavirus Pandemic

Meanwhile, their findings state that for every 100 men promoted to a managerial role, 80 white women, 58 Black women and 71 Latinas received similar promotions.

Sandberg attributed this

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‘I brought my cat to a wedding and now my boyfriend’s pals won’t speak to me’

The stress of organising a wedding can leave many couples at breaking point.

From guest list arguments, to rows over what to serve your picky uncle, it’s rare that the run-up to the big day runs smoothly.

But one couple had the shock of a lifetime after a woman turned up with a cat, because it was her emotional support animal 

Now, that guest has asked whether she was wrong to bring her moggie along to the big day.

While some were divided, many were shocked to learn that the couple didn’t know she was specifically bringing a cat until she arrived.

Instead, her boyfriend has just said she wanted to bring her ‘support animal.’

Emotional support animals are commonly used to help calm the nerves of people with anxiety.

They differ to professionally trained service animals which are regulated by law.

The couple didn’t realise she was bringing a cat along to their big day

A year on from the big day, the woman has told how some of the wedding guests don’t want to socialise with her, as they didn’t think she should have brought the moggie along.

She explains: “So last year I went to a wedding with my boyfriend and brought my emotional support animal (approved by medical professionals) with me because I can get very bad panic attacks at crowded events like weddings.

“I didn’t know the bride or groom really well since they were my bf’s school friends, but he did ask beforehand on my behalf if I could bring my support animal, and they said yes.

“Anyways, so my animal is just my cat of 8 years. She’s a big Maine coon and a real sweetie, so I had her in a leash (for cats) and a small soft crate.

“But since I started feeling “off” the minute we got there, she was out of her crate and in my lap the entire time.

The cat is an emotional support animal

“So the wedding goes fine except for two small instances.

“During the ceremony, my cat at one point wanted to groom herself and made light “tinkling” sounds because of the leash she had on and her fidgeting.

“Some people looked in our direction in annoyance but I quickly unzipped her so the noise would stop.

“Second, during the dinner and dancing, I had her on a leash and at one point she disappeared beneath the table.

“When I finally checked on her I realized she had scratched a little bit of the table legs and some of the overhanging cloth.

“I immediately told my bf and we both made a mental note to tell the bride/groom afterwards and compensate them.

“Long story short, I didn’t think much of it for a while until this year.

“My bf and I are temporarily back in his hometown for a while and he wanted to hang

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