Top 5 awesome advent calendar ideas for teens

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Why is a Mum of older children writing about advent calendar ideas for teens? Well, for those of you with children under 10 years of age, I have an announcement for you:


Advent calendar ideas for teens

How disappointed was I when I discovered that? I’ve always found them a bit of a faff. When our girls were young, I seemed to end up with too many or none at all. When I was superbly organised and bought all three girls a calendar in early November, various members of the family and friends also sent them! This resulted in a very unhealthy intake of chocolate before leaving for school. Alternatively, it would be 11.45pm on 30th November, no calendars had been forthcoming from relatives and I ended up dashing to the 24hr supermarket where there was a limited supply of what I will generously term ‘less than popular items’ left.

Advent calendars have resulted in hum dingers of arguments when I failed to label them clearly with each girl’s name and ‘someone’ had eaten another person’s chocolate treat. This is almost a capital offence in my house.

Yet, it seems that the agony will be ongoing because they show no sign of growing out of them. I have suggested that this was a family tradition that we could, perhaps, let go of. I was asked if I had taken leave of my senses (or words to that effect).  So, why not go with the flow?!

Here is a quick guide to advent calendars that you may like to buy for your tween or teen. I have to warn you that there is a huge range in price. Obviously, the more expensive ones are more of a Christmas present in themselves rather than a precursor to the big day!

If you have a student who is away from home for the first (or second or third) time in the lead up to Christmas, I guarantee that they will LOVE receiving an advent calendar from home. Here are my advent calendar ideas for teens.

Oh, and if you have more than one child, for goodness sake don’t forget to label them!

5 advent calendar ideas for teens

The student advent calendar

Most of the young adults in university right now will have been raised on the glorious Grufallo books. I still have them all as I cannot bear to part with them. This calendar only costs £6 so it’s the cheapest of the advent calendar ideas for teens. What student could resist a Gruffallo advent calendar? They will love it!


Advent calendar ideas for teens
The luxury advent calendar

You can give teen girls a real treat with a luxury advent calendar packed with gorgeous cosmetics. It costs £90 but the products in here will last a lot longer than a month! I have yet to find a teen boy equivalent so if you know of one please do let me know in the comments!

Advent calendar ideas for teens

The environmentally friendly advent calendar

To get around the excess packaging in advent calendars you can make your own that you can use year after year. Many years ago I purchased some small boxes and the girls decorated them. I still drag them out every year and it is one of my favourite advent calendar ideas for teens.

Advent calendar ideas for teens

Or check out these cute boxes from the Amazon US site.

You can get a selection of small gifts, sweets and chocolates to put in the boxes and it can cost as much or as little as you want. Wrap them in un-coated recycled paper and printed using environmentally friendly vegetable inks just like this:

I have found some gorgeous candidates for this year’s boxes at Lush.

Advent calendar ideas for teens

If you are super creative, you can have a go at making your own boxes using the guide in this video:


The tweens advent calendar

If tweens don’t like the idea of a chocolate calendar, you could try the Smiggle Advent Calendar which contains little items of stationery.

You could try the Topps Match Attax Premier League 2018 Christmas Advent Calendar for £20 or a Lego Calendar or a Haynes Build your own FM Radio Calendar Kit
Advent calendar ideas for teens

Young adults advent calendar

Strictly for the over 18’s and little touch of luxury for your young adults. This Edinburgh Gin Advent Calendar (£100) of 25 mini 5cl gin bottles. Enjoy a variety of tastes including clean, fresh and spicy on-the-nose gin. Delighting the palate of gin connoisseurs, hints of juniper, pine, floral, lavender, soft spice and citrus wait behind each calendar window!


Advent calendars for teens


I’ve got some awesome Christmas gift ideas for students and young adults for under £10 for you to check out here.

Do your teens still like an advent calendar and which one do they prefer?

This post contains affiliate links. If you click and buy a product I get a small amount of money towards the costs of running my blog at no extra cost to you. 

Some further alternatives are a Cheese Advent Calendar from Asda,and a Pork Scratching Calendar!




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  20 comments for “Top 5 awesome advent calendar ideas for teens

  1. October 29, 2017 at 6:23 pm

    These are sooo cute. You can’t really lose the child in you. For me, advent calendars provide excitement to young and old alike. Imagine your teen anticipating to open a new one each day. That’s 24 days of “good mood” and happiness. Unless you didn’t label them, like what happened to yours, LOL! I can already imagine the chaos. Kidding aside, I’m also interested in an advent calendar for a teen boy. As for myself, an Aldi’s wine advent calendar would be nice.

  2. October 31, 2017 at 2:52 pm

    I was thinking what?? Really??
    Then I saw the cosmetics ones…..yes my daughter would love that one!! Fun post
    Oldhouseintheshires recently posted…5 reasons why doing nothing is important.My Profile

    • November 6, 2017 at 12:41 pm

      Oh yes really …there is no sign of them outgrowing them. I could be doing this when they are in their forties at this rate! xx

  3. October 31, 2017 at 4:45 pm

    These are pretty cool! I too am thinking what my teenage boy would like. I think possibly some stationary. My girl would love the Lush goodies! In face she was treated to some this weekend. I think either way, you can’t go wrong. We all love surprises!

  4. October 31, 2017 at 4:47 pm

    Forgot to add the linky hashtag to my previous comment!
    Nadia recently posted…Finding Your Way – As Your Kids Grow UpMy Profile

  5. October 31, 2017 at 7:04 pm

    My two teen boys still have Advent calendars. Two each actually lol! I buy them the usual cardboard ones filled with chocolate, and I also fill the ones that my mum made them both when they were very young. One has a Christmas tree with 24 individual pouches, and one has a string of 24 individual stockings. There’s no way they’d be prepared to let either of them go, and I’m happy with that 🙂 ‘TweensTeensBeyond
    Midlife Dramas in Pyjamas recently posted…Happy Halloween!My Profile

  6. October 31, 2017 at 7:50 pm

    We have an old home-made advent calendar – a wooden ‘tree’ shape with small bags filled with goodies hung from coloured nails. As each bag is removed, it gets replaced by a small tree decoration, so by Christmas eve we have a bright decorated tree. One of the advantages is that each year the gifts can be different – chocolate coins are still a favourite but we’ve also hidden anything from gig tickets to small toiletries in them. I wonder if we’ll have to get it out again, this year? Maybe I could copy one of the ideas above and fill each bag with a gin miniature … #tweensteensbeyond
    Mary Mayfield recently posted…De-clutteringMy Profile

  7. November 1, 2017 at 12:11 pm

    Some great ideas here!!! I think I’m going to try make some individual advent calendars for the teens ,put their fave little things in…because no , they certainly do not grow out of them!!! #TweensTeensBeyond
    daydreams of a mum recently posted…I haven’t forgotten and I certainly do not forgiveMy Profile

  8. November 2, 2017 at 12:14 pm

    sod spending that much money on the kids for advent calendars, but last year i treated myself to the L’occitaine one, i’m still deciding what i’ll have this year. i’ve bought the kids a £1 chocolate one each from the pound shops, as per the norm, they always say ‘mum we’re too old for this’ but i know they’d be upset if i didn’t #tweenteensbeyond
    chickenruby recently posted…They don’t do Halloween in Dubai.My Profile

  9. November 2, 2017 at 2:16 pm

    We have something similiar to your boxes which I have dragged out for years and fill with a variety of different treats – samples of skincare items, stationery, coins and of course sweets. I hadn’t thought about what to do this year for my eldest now that he is away. Time to put my thinking cap on. Some great ideas here Sharon. #TweensTeensBeyond
    Jo – Mother of Teenagers recently posted…Tweens, Teens & Beyond #26My Profile

  10. November 6, 2017 at 12:48 pm

    You’ll have to send him a Gruffalo one Jo! xx

  11. Janiemae
    November 12, 2017 at 11:43 am

    Last year I told my kids, 23 and 24, no more stockings. On Christmas Eve my son said “Mum , I hope you were joking, because ( daughter ). Is really upset. “. So on Christmas Day morning I got up early and ran to the asian corner shop ( may they be blessed for ever) to get some small make-do gifts. It was totally worth it to see the smile that spread over her face when she woke up to see her stocking. So no, they don’t grow out of it!

  12. November 25, 2017 at 3:18 pm

    I love that when they go to uni you can get away with a cheapy chocolate calendar again by virtue of it being retro! I’ve made a rod for my own back by creating what I thought was genius idea at the time. I tie a line of card string along the bannister, then peg Christmas paper cups along it, and fill the cups with items for each day. Originally it was a chocolate and a small Christmas tree bauble, but each year I’ve had to get more inventive, and it’s getting harder and harder. Mine love them so much there is no chance of them giving up. I’ll be doing the damn things till I’m 90!

  13. November 29, 2017 at 12:41 am

    My teen girl has told me in no uncertain terms that she wants to continue the advent calendar tradition until she moves out (she’s currently 16 so a few more years).

    We have one of these with little cupboards to place goodies. It is definitely getting harder and harder to come up with ideas that are affordable and fun.

    This year we are doing fun socks, cosmetics, snacks, candy, cash, gas cards, and anything else that I can think of to fill 2 days of surprises.

    Merry Christmas!

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