27 Mugs for Any Coffee-Lover In Your Life
One of the only redeeming qualities of a cold, blustery winter snowstorm is curling up in a big, comfy armchair with a roaring fireplace and a piping hot, seasonal drink—whether it's a steaming hot chocolate (see our favorite hot chocolate hacks), a perfectly steeped tea (see the best bagged varieties), or a classic cup of freshly made coffee. (Side note: If you still can’t figure out what the right ratio of grounds to water is, check out this barista’s best secrets for mastering the at-home brew.) And, although you could serve that delicious drink in a paper to-go cup or that plain ol’ mug you’ve had on your shelf for years, something with a little more character will only enhance the experience—plus, it makes for a fun conversation starter at the office. Stock your own kitchen cabinets with your favorite ones (you deserve a little present this holiday season, too!), or treat a caffeine-loving friend or family member to a mug that’s just right for them. Totally stumped about what to get that coworker you barely know for the annual secret Santa exchange? A mug is always a practical and affordable choice. Does she love cats? Or maybe he buys himself a doughnut for breakfast every day? Choosing a mug that features a design or saying that reflects their interests is an easy way to show you’ve actually been listening. And, as any true office worker knows, a cup of coffee is an absolute necessity every single day of the week.
I’m Silently Correcting Your Grammar Mug
For the grammar perfectionist in your life, we found a snarky mug that reminds everyone of her intentions in neat, jaunty script. No matter whether she’s a righty or a lefty, everyone can read the message because it’s printed on both sides. Each mug is heat pressed by hand in a small home studio in LA, but don’t worry, it is microwave and dishwasher safe. If you need the gift to arrive in a jiffy, you’re in luck, because they’re shipped by priority mail and will arrive in no more than three business days.
To buy: $18, prettycollected.etsy.com.
There’s a Chance This Is Wine Mug
It’s 5pm somewhere, right? This classic glossy white ceramic mug, made in southern California, is fancied up with hand-lettered font. It makes a fantastic gift for the recent college grad in your life who has yet to see the purpose of breakable, dust-gathering sets of wine glasses. Or, go ahead and give it to your cheeky best friend. Mugs are dishwasher and microwave safe. They’re ready to ship in five to seven days, and take an additional five days in the mail, so be sure to plan ahead (this tongue-in-cheek gem is worth it).
To buy: $16, madelinevyandco.etsy.com.
Library Card Mug
No need to keep browsing: bookworms will never want to return this bright yellow, shiny coffee cup. It’s made to look like a vintage paper library card. You can actually write on it with Magic or dry erase markers (all ages will enjoy)—it’ll wash right off in the dishwasher. Perfect for your must-read book list! At just over $10, the inexpensive, charming mug makes a thoughtful gift for your children’s teachers or librarians. It also looks stylish sitting on a desk, either for drinking coffee and tea, or filled up with pens and pencils. It’s microwave safe.
To buy: $12, uncommongoods.com.
Coffee Chart Mug
Coffee lovers and science geeks alike will be jittery with excitement when they set eyes on this mug because it’s printed with an expansive chart of coffee information. The chart includes various methods for making coffee (like pour over), the branded gadgets for each method (like a Chemex), the varieties of coffee each gadget produces, and the coffee derivatives that can be made by adding ice cubes, cold water, milk, sugar, etc. There’s so much information that one could continue learning about coffee for weeks. However, the chart, created by two New York designers, is also graphically beautiful.
To buy: $15, uncommongoods.com.
French Bulldog Icon Mug
Yes, the painterly French bulldog on this mug is absolutely irresistible, with its alert ears and puppy dog eyes. But that’s not the mug’s only appeal. The slightly flared stoneware sides make an elegant shape that adds a touch of sophistication to any kitchen. Give this mug individually, or include several others from the collection, too. The other mugs have different images (including a unicorn, dachshund, corgi, llama, Eiffel tower, and narwhal), in slightly varied shapes so they’re charmingly mismatched, but all are painted with the same blue ink. The charming mugs are classic enough for anyone on your gift list.
To buy: $14, anthropologie.com.
“Do Your Best” Crowned Leaf Mug
Here’s to a warm beverage served up with a reassuring message. Crafted by a Massachusetts-based artist and ceramicist, each of the dishwasher-safe china mugs in this collection has a nice phrase painted on it: “something good,” “hello there,” “make it happen,” or “do your best.” And inside are cheery colorful patterns like stripes or large polka dots. With their thick durable walls and comfortable, interesting handles, these mugs feel like they’re high quality, despite their low price point. The cheery, handsome, and totally innocent mugs make fabulous gifts for bosses and work contacts or even stuffed with candy and stuffed in a stocking.
To buy: $12, anthropologie.com.
The Boss Mug
If your boss has a sense of humor, this mug will be a huge hit. No matter who’s on the receiving end of this gift, they will appreciate the instant confidence boost every time they drink a warm beverage. The fun, metallic lettering will add a touch of trendy style to any desk or countertop. The mug holds 12 ounces, which is about the size of a medium cup of coffee or tea (or hot chocolate, for that matter), and a large rounded handle makes cupping the glass with your whole hand easy. Hand wash only.
To buy: $14, bloomingdales.com.
Wake Up Heat-Sensitive Mug
It may look like a white porcelain mug with a sleepy cartoon face on the front. It is cute, and oh-so-expressive, right down to the under-eye circles and creased forehead. But fill it with hot liquid (preferably strong black coffee, or hot cocoa will do, too), and that sad, sleepy face will magically perk up into two round, wide-awake eyes. Even the under-eye circles and creased forehead disappear (if only coffee worked that way in real life). Heat-sensitive ink works the magic, and it needs to be treated a bit gently, so hand wash only.
To buy: $13, bloomingdales.com.
Snap Happy Lips Mug
Instead of watching the latest local news with your morning brew, why not take a moment instead to analyze the shape of your mouth? This lip-smacked mug from Kate Spade New York will tell you if you’re a “cupid’s bow,” which means you’re quick and to the point, or a wise “lavish lips.” Fill it with some spicy cinnamon candy or bite-sized cookies as a gift for your sweetheart, or give it along with a pound of your favorite coffee or loose tea. Whomever receives this clever mug will be smiling from ear to ear.
To buy: $20, bedbathandbeyond.com.
Black Cat Mugs
Here kitty, kitty! These adorable cat-shaped mugs are a wonderfully whimsical gift for feline-loving friends and relatives. Extra wide on the bottom means more coffee (or tea) in every serving and extra stability—great if you’re a little wobbly in the morning like us. These come in sets of two, so you’ll always have a clean mug in rotation—they’re dishwasher safe, too. Here’s a smart gift idea: print out our Chocolate Chunk Hot Cocoa Mix Recipe or design your own blend and package it alongside the mugs. It’s a purrfectly sweet way to say Happy Holidays.
To buy: $14 for two, worldmarket.com.
‘Carpe Caffeine’ Mug
Who can think about seizing the day when you haven’t had your daily caffeine fix? These mugs help you get a handle on the morning, and with an 18-ounce capacity, you can sip your way to bravery all the way through lunchtime. Why not wrap these mugs—they come in a set of two—with a bag of coffee-flavored treats? We like cola-flavored gummies or espresso-infused caramels. Or, how about packing these up with our recipe for Brown Sugar Pecan Coffee Cake? Alongside a steaming mug of high-test brew, we’ll be ready for battle any day.
To buy: $12 for two, worldmarket.com.
Whole Latte Love
West Elm teamed up with New York City’s famous Fishs Eddy—the beloved kitchen supply store full of useful tools and charming kitchen collectibles—to bring you these double-handled latte mugs. They’re ideal for filling with a shot (or two) of rich espresso and warm frothy milk. Or make it a mocha and add a drizzle of chocolate syrup. Picture yourself under a cozy blanket, with two hands wrapped around a blonde coffee, with nothing ahead but the paper to read and the day to contemplate. Pack these with a bag of chocolate-covered espresso beans and a battery-powered milk frother.
To buy: $12, westelm.com.
‘Chambord Classic’ Glass Mugs
Francophiles will love these sophisticated coffee glasses from Bodum. Named after the French village famous for its Renaissance architecture, these would make an elegant addition to any kitchen. The copper-colored detail means these fit right in on a bespoke bar cart as well. Use them alongside your tried-and-true French press as part of a refined coffee service or fill them with a warming batch of hot toddies or mulled wine. Bodum actually makes a whole line of copper-colored coffee- and tea-related pieces: a great group gift the whole family can go in on.
To buy: $30 for two, nordstrom.com.
This adorable earthenware mug is just right for anyone who lives in a more rural area (or wishes they could get out of the urban jungle every once in awhile). The woodland creatures—choose from a raccoon, a fox, a squirrel, or an owl—come in both adult (eight ounces) and child (four ounces) sizes, so hot chocolate drinkers of all ages can enjoy a cup of their very own. Know a family of four? Buy the whole set, so each person gets one and can easily pick out his or her mug among the others.
To buy: From $10 each, surlatable.com.
‘You are the Best’ Ceramic Mug
When state lines separate you from someone extra special (like your best friend, your mom, or even a long-distance significant other), let this graphic mug say what you might not be able to express each and every morning. The gorgeous gold-glazed ceramic mug reads, “you are the best” in big, shiny gold lettering. So if that coffee she whipped up wasn’t quite enough to add a extra little pep in her step, the thought of you doling out such a nice compliment will certainly help get her through a long, hard day at the office.
To buy: $16, nordstrom.com.
‘Coffee, Coffee, Coffee’ Mug
Nothing gets between a Gilmore girl (who’s also your friend) and her cup of morning joe. Have a friend who is both a Gilmore Girls fan and a caffeine addict? This mug will be her favorite. It’s emblazoned with the classic Lorelai Gilmore saying, “Coffee, coffee, coffee,” that any fan will appreciate. Plus, with the premiere of new episodes of the beloved series on Netflix, this gift is extra timely so your friend can show off her love of Gilmore Girls at home, or even at the office. You can also order the design as stainless steel travel mug, or in a larger mug version.
To buy: $10, cafepress.com.
Hogwarts Castle Mug
For fans of the popular Harry Potter franchise, this mug is, hands down, one of the coolest pieces of Hogwarts memorabilia. Any Muggle (who’s a wizard at heart) will appreciate this one—they can use it to enjoy their favorite brew (or even Butterbeer). Plus, you’ve never seen Hogwarts Castle look like this before. The watercolor recreation of the famous castle’s silhouette is so uniquely designed, with such vibrant colors, it seems as if it were actually done by magic. The beautiful colors make for a standout piece in the kitchen cupboard among the other ordinary cups—they’ll always know which mug is theirs.
To buy: $10, artsprint.etsy.com.
‘Good Morning Sunshine’ Mug
This simple, affordable mug is a great stocking stuffer or token of gratitude for a friend or family member who brings sunshine into your life. Put a little pep in her step each morning when she reaches for a cup of coffee (or if she’s off caffeine, a favorite blend of tea). The cheerful, bright colors will be sure to wake her up—it’s especially helpful if your friend isn’t necessarily a morning person and needs about three servings of caffeine to wake her up. Whether she uses it at home or as her office mug, this charming cup will make her smile.
To buy: $18, doodlegirldesigns.etsy.com.
There are a few classic breakfast combinations that everybody loves: eggs and bacon, pancakes and maple syrup—and, of course, donuts and coffee. This is a clever and unique spin on the beloved pairing. The fun, creative mug is the ideal quirky secret santa gift for your coworker, or for the friend who’s not exactly a morning person and might need a cheerful wake-up call every day. Of course, the actual donut is (unfortunately) sold separately. But just think—you can take a bite (er, sip) out of this donut without the extra calories and sugar rush.
To buy: $10, dormify.com.
‘You Got This’ Floral Mug
These three words are a nice little reminder that all she has to do is press “Brew” on the coffee maker in the morning and it’s all uphill from there. Well, until she steps outside and into the freezing cold, of course. It’s a mug, not a magic wand. But the encouraging phrase might provide just enough motivation for her to power through that big presentation or report at work, or ace that test at school. And don’t worry if she’s left- or right-handed—the design is on both sides of the mug so she can display the uplifting phrase to coworkers or classmates, too.
To buy: $20, printablewisdom.etsy.com.
Mornings don’t have to be too serious—in fact, it might be better to start the day with a smile. This silly jungle find is for that friend who is constantly goofing off and making the group laugh. The playful coffee cup is right up his alley, with the monkey’s arm filling in as the handle of the mug. Plus, if he uses it at the office, it will most definitely be a great conversation starter when he’s chatting with his boss in the office pantry, or used to lighten the mood in a tense meeting.
To buy: $8, worldmarket.com.
Human Squad Goals Mug
This illustrated mug is perfect for a history or politics buff, your lawyer friend who loves to geek out over the Supreme Court, or your niece who’s currently working hard at law school. The charming mug features illustrations of the three female justices on the Supreme Court: Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan. There’s no doubt that these three smart and accomplished women are the definition of squad goals. And this mug will provide a little bit of feminist inspiration every time it’s used, giving the owner enough motivation to get things done.
To buy: $15, amazon.com.
‘Eat Cake For Breakfast’ Mug
Everyone should take the chance to indulge a little during the holidays—and this mug encourages you to do just that. Choose this mug for the friend who is all about ditching the rules, and doing whatever makes her happy. What could make a person happier than a slice of cake before noon? The porcelain mug comes in a color-block pink and white palette, so she’ll always be able to spot which one is hers. We picture her filling this cup every morning with coffee or tea and reminding herself to embrace the spontaneity in life.
To buy: $20, katespade.com.
Grammar Rules Mug
This is a gift for the friend who is always correcting your grammar (and everyone else’s!), and gets excited to point out typos in print. Any grammar geek will be happy to have her passion front and center every morning when she reaches for the coffee pot or kettle. This series of mugs covers many of the most-forgotten or misused rules of the English language. It’s a grammar lesson added to your next coffee date. A cup of coffee with your friend will now double as an educational opportunity—you decide if that’s a good thing.
To buy: $14, grammarstuff.etsy.com.
‘You Can Do It!’ Mug
Emily McDowell’s hilarious, creative mugs are a must-have for any coffee addict. This one, in particular, is great desk décor for the friend who is tackling a challenging project at work, or has a big test or assignment looming in the near future. It’s a great way to let your friend know you’re always cheering her on and want her to succeed. And yes, you read that right: It also says, “Shut up, Mug.” It’s just keeping things real. As McDowell explains: “We all need a little encouragement…But not, like, too much encouragement, because that’s just annoying.”
To buy: $18, emilymcdowell.com.
Banned Books Mug
The bookworm in your life needs to add this mug to their collection. It is decorated with the titles of 24 famous, important banned books—including The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Satanic Verses, To Kill a Mockingbird, Lady Chatterly’s Lover, Nineteen Eighty-Four, and more. If you want to go the extra mile when gifting this mug, you can even pair one of the books with it. Now, they can enjoy a cup of tea while curled up on the couch reading any of these previously forbidden titles. It’s a very meta gift, don’t you think?
To buy: $15, amazon.com.
Mathematical Formulas Mug
Nerd alert—but with this mug it’s definitely not a bad thing. The math geek in your life will have fun spotting the 20 formulas emblazoned around the cup. Plus, it’s not just for mathematicians, even a physics nerd will get a kick out of this one. The ceramic mug is full of the most famous mathematical formulas—from the ever-popular E = mc2, the timeless Hubble’s Law, Newton’s Second Law, and more, they are all there. You might not really understand all of the numbers, but the mathematicians in your life will, and that’s all that matters.
To buy: $13, amazon.com.