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18 Best Gifts for Physicists in 2023

8 min read

Physicists are tough to find gifts for. They tend to want things that are practical yet unique and a little nerdy. Being a huge physics fan myself, I wanted to assemble this list of gifts my physicist friends would love. This collection will show them that you understand their love of physics and support them in their passions. 

This list is a compilation of my favorites from around the internet. Some are our own Genius Lab Gear inventions and some we’re just jealous we didn’t think of first! Some external links in this page are from affiliates, which means that any purchase of the items after clicking the link will result in a small monetary referral fee paid back to Genius Lab Gear at no cost to you. We appreciate your support which allows us to continue inventing and testing the best tools for scientists on the planet!

1. The Pocket Physicist wallet ruler and equation reference

The first words from your physicists' mouth will be "Where did you find this?!" They will never forget you or this unique gift. They will carry this credit card-sized physics pocket tool with them every day for a lifetime. We even laser-engraved the backside full of fundamental physics equations, physical constants, and unit conversions. See the product page for a full list of features we've packed in!

You can also add a custom logo to this for events, networking, or promotional giveaways! Custom orders start at 100 pieces - just email us for more info.

Available from our website or from Amazon.

The Pocket Physicist wallet ruler tool

The Pocket Physicist at Genius Lab Gear

The Pocket Physicist from Amazon

P.S. We also have versions specifically for Chemists and Engineers if those are a better fit for the person you have in mind! 

2. Novium Hoverpen 2.0

You guessed it: this floating pen is controlled by magnets, something only physicists truly understand! The pen's magnetized ring construction suspends it in place, giving it a "floating in space" effect. The body of the Hoverpen 2.0 is made from a single piece of aircraft-grade aluminum, imbuing it with a sense of high-end craftsmanship that is uncommon in pens. It's the ideal geek present for both home and office!

Novium-Hoverpen-2.0

Check the price on Amazon.

3. Physics Word Magnets for the fridge or office

Science-themed gifts are rarely as entertaining and enduring as our science-themed word magnet sets! We recently launched these to encourage creativity and self-expression in labs, classrooms and offices. Each specialty pack comes with 144 tiles carefully designed by a PhD in that field for technical accuracy and tacit absurdity.

The Physics Word Magnet set was designed with help from professional physicists, who chose words to make it both science-y and humorous. These are just plain fun!

Also now available on Amazon.

Physics-Word-Magnets-for-the-fridge-or-fume-hood-1

Physics-Word-Magnets-for-the-fridge-or-fume-hood-2

4. Space Base Board Game

The Space Base Board Game is a simple space-themed family game with a focus on numerical strategy and probabilities where only one Space Base commodore gets promoted to U.E.S. Admiral of the Fleet! The job is to draft new ships into your fleet so they can patrol the 12 sectors you oversee. Gain enough influence and you might even get promoted to Admiral! Space Base is a terrific space game that is exciting for the whole family, combining science and math aficionados with board game enthusiasts.

Space-Base-Board-Game

Check the price on Amazon.

5. Periodic Table of Elements Lanyard

Take your lanyard to the next level with this colorful and fun element theme! The lanyard's black background lets the periodic table of elements pop on each side. It's a little sciencey splash for your next conference or keeping your badge safe around the office.

Check the price on Amazon.

Periodic Table of Elements Lanyard

6. Newton’s Cradle

What could be a better gift for a physicist than a device that shows physics' awesomeness? Newton's Cradle is a well-known physics demonstration that is an iconic desk ornament. In a fairly elastic collision, this demonstration uses four or more suspended balls to show conservation of energy and momentum. It's a cool gift to help them show some character and express their love for science and physics!

Newton’s-Cradle

Check the price on Amazon.

7. Rocketbook Matrix cloud-connected reusable paper notebook

Physicists do a lot of work both on paper and with software. Rocketbook finally solved the problem of merging your hand-written notes into your favorite digital services. You simply use their app to take a photo of your pages of notes and the QR code and marked symbols on each page trigger the app to send the digitized page to any of the 9 pre-set digital destinations you choose. This includes OneNote, Evernote, Google Drive, Dropbox, and even specific emails. Want a shortcut to send notes via email straight to your colleague or boss? This is what you’re looking for.

The Rocketbook Matrix is my personal favorite because it's designed for more technical work. It's got 30 pages of graphing paper and one regular lined page for taking notes, plus a built-in ruler on the inside cover. Did I mention they are reusable? Use their "Pilot Frixion" pens and then wipe the page with a damp cloth after uploading your notes to use it all over again (and win one for the environment!).

If it's sold out on their website (it's very popular) - you can also get it on Amazon.

Rocketbook-Matrix-cloud-connected-reusable-paper-notebook-1Rocketbook-Matrix-cloud-connected-reusable-paper-notebook-2

8. Physics Necktie

This physics necktie is the ideal finishing touch for a work outfit, and it gives your favorite physicist the unique blend of physics and fashion that they've been dying for. This fun gift for physics lovers has physics equations and can be worn for nearly any occasion. Crafted in 100% microfiber, you can be certain that this physics necktie will impress no matter where they go.

Physics-Necktie

Check the price on Amazon.

9. Seven Brief Lessons on Physics

Seven Brief Lessons on Physics is a wonderful, brief book about physics' most captivating wonders. It explains the basic concepts of physics and major breakthroughs in the field over the years in such an effortlessly poetic way. And it's written by a renowned theoretical physicist, Carlo Rovelli. Although this book is created for a general audience, it is a book about the thrill of discovery that will excite the physicists in your life.

Seven-Brief-Lessons-on-Physics

Check the price on Amazon.

10. Breakfast with Einstein: The Exotic Physics of Everyday Objects

This interesting book about quantum physics will give the brainiac in your life something fun to chew on. Chad Orzel took a topic that most people find difficult to engage with and turned it into an informative and entertaining book. Breakfast with Einstein provides a thorough grasp of quantum physics and physics concepts, along with real-life examples that illustrate the concepts in unique ways that will help you remember them and communicate them to other young physicists.

Breakfast-with-Einstein

Check the price on Amazon.

11. The Quantum Astrologer's Handbook

The style of this book is entirely unique and a perfect match for a physicist. The Quantum Astrologer's Handbook combines history and science into an excellent introduction to quantum physics and the life of Jerome Cardano, a Renaissance genius who spanned many professions from medicine to mathematics. As a science book, this is as strange as it is beautiful and captivating. It's a biography, a science history, a quantum theory explanation, and a gripping story all rolled into one!

The-Quantum-Astrologer's-Handbook

Check the price on Amazon.

12. Observatories set

A subtle nerdy touch to a physicist's Christmas Tree, this 4-ornament set of four influential orbiting observatories makes for an excellent holiday-themed gift. The Hubble, Chandra, Compton and Spitzer telescopes have changed the way we view our solar system. Let them orbit your tree this Christmas!

 

13. Albert Einstein Bobblehead

Albert Einstein, widely regarded as the greatest scientist of the twentieth century, transformed science with his revolutionary theories of space, time, mass, motion, and gravitation. This Einstein bobblehead stands over 8 inches tall and is made of high-quality, heavyweight polyresin; each one is hand-painted, making each unique. Let this bobblehead give inspiration to the physicist in your life as it stands on their desk, table, counter, or dresser.

Albert-Einstein-Bobblehead

Check the price on Amazon.

14. Scientific American Magazine Subscription

Physicists must continually stay up to date on what is happening in their field as well as across all of science. To do so, they'll need access to a variety of resources, including a lot of magazines. Although many other, more specialized magazines may be substituted here, Scientific American is one of the best because it covers such a wide range of topics. The most significant advancements come from applying principles of one field to another and keeping up with these topics may just spark a great idea.

Scientific-American-Magazine-Subscription

Check the price on Amazon.

15. Atomic Symbol Lapel Pin

This atomic symbol lapel pin is a unique gift for your favorite physicist to showcase their passion for what they do. Made from high-quality metal, this pin lends a whimsical touch to lab coats, professional attire at conferences, and even everyday wear.

Atomic-Symbol-Lapel-Pin

Check the price on Amazon.

16. rOtring or Staedtler Mechanical Pencil

Mechanical pencils are considered a daily essential for physicists. They let you precisely draw diagrams for homework or professional work with the option to make fine adjustments with the eraser. In the new digital age, mechanical pencils are still required but physicists often find themselves using touch screens as well. 

That’s why my new favorite is the rOtring 800 Retractable Mechanical Pencil, (0.5 mm). This one turns from a pencil to a stylus on the fly, and also ensures the tip isn’t poking holes in your pocket all day like most other models. This is truly the top-end mechanical pencil and will make a special gift. 

Check price on Amazon

rOtring-or-Staedtler-Mechanical-Pencil

Staedtler is another brand much-loved by physicists. This model is cheaper and will last a long time, but just isn’t convertible to a stylus. You can’t go wrong with either one.

17. JSWT Earrings

The recently launched James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) is dazzling astronomers with gorgeous images of the galaxy. The key to its sharpness is it's gold-plated hexagonal mirror array. These beautiful mini-versions of the mirror from Science Socks also make for dazzling earrings for any physicist.

18. Physics Gift Bundle

If you can't decide by now, just get them all! Seriously, we put together a Physics Gift Bundle just to make it easy for you. It includes the Pocket tool and Word Magnets from above, plus a fun Marie Curie sticker. You'll save over 20% by bundling them together, so consider this decision made!

Physics gift box

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

What is the best gift for a physicist?

Anything that's practical, functional or can help them show their love for physics. Here are our favorites:

More gift collections for specific types of scientists:

We've further curated several collections of our own inventions depending on the type of scientist you're looking for. See these more niche collections below for more ideas!

Science Gifts

Astrophysics Gifts

Biology Gifts

Geology Gifts

Geneticist Gifts

Immunology Gifts

Neuroscience Gifts

Mathematician Gifts

Microbiology Gifts

Biochemistry Gifts

Biology Teacher Gifts

Pharmacy Student Gifts

Physics Teacher Gifts

Chemistry Teacher Gifts

Science Teacher Gifts

Scientist Holiday Gifts

Professor and Grad School Gifts

Graduate and PhD Student Gifts

Ecology Student or Professional Gifts

Chemist and Chemistry Student Gifts


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