January 27, 2021


This story is part of Holiday Gift Guide 2020, CNET’s gift picks with expert advice, reviews and recommendations for the latest tech gifts for you and your family.

It’s hard to believe, but the holidays are here, and that means it’s time to start racking your brain on what to gift the special people in your life. Well, if you’re here, you know we like cars — a lot. We also like keeping our cars as clean as possible and practicing the best car care habits.

Maybe you know someone just like us, or maybe you want to treat yourself. We don’t judge. If either are the case, we compiled a list of affordable gifts all about car care. Everything from our favorite products to useful gear is listed right down below. All the picks cost under $50, and most are far more affordable than that, even.


This one is for the person who needs to reset their basic supplies. Or maybe they starting to take interest in keeping their car clean. Mofeez sells a wonderful starter kit that includes a lot of great basics for the interior and exterior of the car. There’s a sponge, towels, car duster, tire and wheel brushes all included for the price. Plus it all fits neatly back into the box when you’re done. Organization of essentials is never a bad thing.


A bestseller on Amazon, the ThisWorx portable car vacuum doesn’t have to live in your garage because it plugs into any 12-volt outlet in the car. It’s perfect for spills that happen away from or at home just for that reason. For the price, it comes with plenty of attachments and has pretty good suction. Just be sure to have the car running while it’s in use since it sucks up power while sucking up debris.


If you’re looking for a gift to get the detailer in your life into a new part of detailing, a clay mitt is a great option. The better-known steps of car care, washing and waxing, are prevalent. Claying is not. A clay mitt drags surface contaminates out of the paint and really helps paint shine. Actual clay bars are available, too, but nothing beats a clay mitt. It makes it so much easier, and Adam’s mitt is a great product.

Chemical Guys

This product is familiar if you’ve looked at our best waxes piece. Chemical Guys’ Butter Wet Wax is truly a great wax and makes a wonderful gift for anyone in need of a fresh supply of chemicals. It applies incredibly well and buffs off just as easily. Plus, the results speak for themselves. Whether it’s someone who’s never waxed a car before, or someone experienced, Butter Wet Wax is the bomb.


Detailers need to re-gear after a period of time. You can only clean buffing and polishing pads so many times before it’s time for new ones. If you’re looking for what will be a very appreciated gift, this