Cancer statistics are grim. Many of those diagnosed with cancer will lose their lives to the disease, even in some cases where the cancer was detected at an early stage. If you’re lucky enough to know someone who beat cancer, we’re here to help celebrate their victory. Our gift guide is packed with unique and thoughtful gift ideas for any cancer survivor. Whether they just got the all clear this week, or they’ve been in remission for years, these gifts are the perfect way to celebrate a second chance at life. Read on to get inspired gift ideas for a cancer survivor’s birthday, a major holiday, or a “just because” gift. Need a gift for someone who is still fighting their battle with cancer? You should visit our guide to the best gifts for cancer patients. You may also be interested in our guide to get well soon gifts.
1. ‘It Came. We Fought. I Won.’ Cancer Survivor Necklace
Playing off Julius Caesar’s famous “I came, I saw, I conquered” quote, this cute necklace from Fight Like a Girl is perfect for any cancer survivor in your life. The pendant measures about 1.75 inches, and is rhodium-plated. The chain is made from stainless steel. The chain measures 17 inches, but includes a two inch extender for those who like a little extra length. The pink ribbon design makes this a particularly apt choice for a breast cancer survivor. In addition to the pink ribbon style pictured above, you can also get this necklace with a blue ribbon (colon cancer), orange ribbon (leukemia), or purple ribbon (pancreatic cancer) design. Overall, this an affordable gift idea for female cancer survivors.
Price: $14.99 (25 percent off MSRP)
2. Burton and Burton I’m A Survivor, What’s Your Superpower Coffee Mug
Surviving cancer gives you a sense of your own mortality, but it also makes you feel invincible. Give this survivor’s mug to any superhero in your life. It’s dishwasher and microwave safe, and holds 12 ounces of coffee or tea. This is another affordable gift idea that won’t break the bank. Another fun gift idea to consider? These “F$%! Cancer” socks are perfect for anyone who likes statement clothing.
3. Alex and Ani Womens Charity By Design ‘Celebrate Today’ American Cancer Society Bracelet
We love Alex and Ani’s line of statement bangles. You can wear them alone, or stacked. They’re a great way to tell the world who you are, what you’ve been through, and what you believe in. This particular “Charity By Design” piece supports the American Cancer Society. Between the positive message and the great cause, this is a stellar gift idea for the fashionable cancer survivor in your life. This bangle is available in gold-tone or silver-tone finishes, and reminds the wearer to celebrate today, because life is short and they’ve been brave. Another bracelet from Alex and Ani, the “Thankful & Grateful” cord bracelet, is another nice option to consider.
Buy the Alex and Ani Womens Charity By Design “Celebrate Today” American Cancer Society Bracelet here.
4. Southwest Gift Card
Cancer forces you to face your own mortality, and contemplate all of the items on your “bucket list” that you never got a chance to complete. If you know a cancer survivor who is committed to traveling more, a Southwest gift card can help them afford to travel, even as they pay off medical bills. With tons of destinations in the continental US, as well as routine flights to international locations like Aruba, Mexico, Cuba, Costa Rica, and the Bahamas, Southwest is a great carrier for those who want to visit some of the most beautiful places in the world. Consider adding in an AirBnb gift card so they can stay in a nice place while traveling. Whether they’re bound for international adventure, or just want to visit family in the US, this gift card will be very appreciated.
Available in denominations up to $200
5. The Magic Weighted Blanket
Is there a better gift than the gift of a great night’s sleep? Weighted blankets are a huge trend this year, and many people are using these blankets to get a better quality of sleep. These special blankets have been used in hospital settings for quite some time, but it’s only been quite recently that ordinary folks have realized the health benefits of sleeping under a weighted blanket. These types of blankets are ideal for insomniacs or anyone suffering from anxiety. There are quite a few companies making these type of blankets, but this one really stands out for its use of soft chenille. Between health scares, piling medical bills, and general stress, many cancer patients face anxiety even after getting the all-clear from their doctor. Sleeping with a weighted blanket is like sleeping while getting a hug, all night long. Whether you’re shopping for a cancer survivor with anxiety, or someone who just became accustomed to sleeping under these types of blankets while in hospital care, this is an extremely thoughtful gift idea. Make sure to select a weight that’s right for the person you’re shopping for. The general rule of thumb is to pick a blanket that weighs about 10 percent of the recipient’s body weight, so you’d want to get a 10-lb blanket for a 100 lb person, for example. The style pictured above is a 14 lb blanket that measures 54×78 inches, but other sizes and weights are available to browse via the link below.
6. ‘Picture Your Life After Cancer’
This photo book from the New York Times is a fascinating look at the many faces of cancer survivors. In 2010, the New York Times asked readers who had survived cancer to send in their photos and answer the question, “How is your life different after cancer?” and the resulting images and essays became this book. The stories are frank, funny, and sometimes sad, but this book will help any cancer survivor feel that they are not alone. If the person you’re shopping for prefers graphic novels, another option to consider is Cancer Vixen, an autobiographical graphic novel about surviving breast cancer.
Price: $17.06 for a hardcover copy (14 percent off MSRP)
7. Cancer Slayer T Shirt
Available in cuts for men, women, and kids, this shirt tells the world that the bearer is one stone cold cancer killer. Sizes run from a teeny-tiny Youth size 4 to a men’s 2XL. With lots of color options and a cool design, this simple gift is the perfect way to show your support for a friend or family member who beat cancer this year. If you like the sentiment but want something without the word “cancer” on it, we also like this “Tough Cookie” tee. You might also be interested in some of the recommendations featured in our post on the best breast cancer survivor gifts.
8. White + Warren Women’s Luxe Cashmere Robe
After months of pain and discomfort, the a cancer survivor is likely to develop a deep appreciation for things that are soft, comfy, and safe. This luxury cashmere robe for women is the perfect piece of lounge wear for a cancer survivor, especially one who is determined to enjoy the finer things in life after a brush with death. This long robe is 100 percent cashmere, and totally luxurious. Need a male-friendly alternative? This men’s cashmere robe is worth checking out.
9. ‘The Cancer-Fighting Kitchen, Second Edition: Nourishing, Big-Flavor Recipes for Cancer Treatment and Recovery’
Many cancer survivors are careful about what they eat, believing that a healthy diet will help reduce the risks of cancer’s return. This cancer-fighting cookbook is packed with healthy recipes that will tantalize tastebuds. Packed with 150 recipes, this is a great book for survivors, as well as current cancer patients. In fact, several recipes in the book are tailored to combat known cancer treatment side effects, such as fatigue, nausea, dehydration, mouth and throat soreness, tastebud changes, and weight loss. Want more background on the science of cancer-fighting foods, and how a healthy lifestyle can help prevent cancer? Check out the book Anticancer: A New Way of Life by Dr. David Servan-Schreiber, which is a great companion to this cookbook.
Price: $22.09 (35 percent off MSRP)
Buy The Cancer-Fighting Kitchen, Second Edition: Nourishing, Big-Flavor Recipes for Cancer Treatment and Recovery here.
10. Tig Notaro Live
Laughter is the best medicine, so we think any gift that can get a cancer survivor laughing again is awesome. This CD features comedian Tig Notaro’s infamous “Tig Has Friends” show where she did an entire set about her recent cancer diagnosis. Notaro was diagnosed with breast cancer the day before this set was recorded, and it quickly became one of the most famous stand-up comedy sets of all time. Cancer is no laughing matter, but this comedian’s blend of raw emotion and humor really make this performance a must-listen for any cancer survivor. If you end up creating a new Tig Notaro fan by giving this gift, make sure to point your favorite cancer survivor in the direction of Notaro’s other projects, including her autobiographical Amazon series One Mississippi and her book I’m Just a Person.