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Is It Okay To Regift?


Every gift is actually an act of consideration and thoughtfulness, and so to regift is essentially dishonest and inauthentic


CAT: Do you think Oprah Winfrey can ever be wrong?


MS. DEMEANOUR: In a word, no. Why?


CAT: I once saw her say on her show that she didn't think there was anything wrong with regifting! I just couldn't believe my ears.


MS DEMEANOUR: So there are absolutely no situations that you would regift?


CAT: Well, if there were an immediate need; for example, if you were hosting a dinner and your coffeemaker broke down, and I had an extra one, I would give it to you, but I would make it clear that I also received it as a gift.


MS DEMEANOUR: Hmm, funny, that you should mention it; my coffeemaker did break down!


CAT: Well, we’ll just have to wait for Christmas before I actually go out and buy one just for you!



1. Each gift comes with an untold message: I chose this for you and I hope it makes you happy. So to pass on a gift to a friend is a form of lying. At the heart of good manners is honesty and consideration, and that’s why regifting is bad form.

2. The biggest no-no, of course, is to regift an object with a monogram or any kind of personalization.

3. If you do believe that a friend will really love something that was given to you, come clean and admit that you are regifting.

4. And make sure that you regift to someone from a different circle of friends, so that you don’t hurt anyone’s feelings.


Illustration by Arlene Sy