Lili Reinhart is one of us. By that, I mean she also loves Target. “Target is great,” she tells me over the phone. “It’s like a winter wonderland during the holidays.” The actress made a career of being the relatable girl next door as Betty Cooper in Riverdale—which she swiftly dismantled in 2020’s Hustlers—but the actress’s likability directly ties into Reinhart’s personal life, with fans attaching themselves to her on and off-screen romance with her now ex-boyfriend and current co-star, Cole Sprouse. She’s an example of today’s cohort of young Hollywood who speaks openly about and advocates for mental health awareness. Again, she’s one of us.
“This is my second Christmas being single and it took me a while to feel okay with that, but now I feel very okay with it,” Reinhart says in reference to her quarantine breakup. “I think a lot of people feel quite lonely around the holidays because it’s a time that’s so emphasized on togetherness. If you don’t have a partner, you don’t have a great family situation, it can feel very isolating. I don’t really look at the holidays as anything more than like an opportunity for me to almost take a moment and feel a lot of gratitude for what I do have and not focus on the things that I don’t have that other people do.”
Reinhart’s gentle thoughtfulness is the spirit to take into the holiday season of shopping (which extends into her brand partnerships—she recently partnered with Affirm, which can be seen as Gen Z’s version of layaway, and its new Debit+ card launch). So it only makes sense that the things she likes to give and get err on the side of wellness, including everything from crystals to Theraguns. And to make things easier as you enter the last stretch of holiday shopping, we probed her about all things gifting, below.
Do you have a gift-giving strategy?
As a rule, I try to give more practical gifts that I know will be very useful and already fit into their lives, even though I’m going against that with my Tiffany’s gift this year, but whatever. I usually go for more practical gifts. Like, I’d get my mom a gift card at her favorite massage place. And last year, maybe the year before, I got my dad a Theragun. So, yeah, I try to help out and give gifts that I know are going to be very useful.
My friends and I don’t really exchange gifts. Maybe silly little things that we find on Etsy or Target, things that we can do together. We all like to paint. We like puzzles. We like to cook together in my kitchen. I think the hardest part for me about gift-giving is I just shop for myself. I end up spending more money on myself, which sounds awful, but it’s true. I’m like, “Oh, look at all these sales, look at all these things that I want.”
What are you gifting yourself this year?
My interior designer fee. I just bought a house last year. That was the biggest payment I’ve ever made. So, I got my mortgage, which is my nice little monthly payment. I think, honestly, the biggest expense I have for myself around the holidays is flights. That is my biggest expense.
You walk into Target and you have a $30 budget for a gift for your best friend. What are you getting?
We’re going to get his or her favorite snack, maybe a super cheap bottle of wine. I’m talking, like, a $12 bottle. And then let’s say $5 for the snack. And then I’m going to go to the craft section, I think, and maybe getting a really cheap little craft set that we could do together, like a painting thing. They have those weird little things at Target. Something along those lines. Then let’s give them one of their favorite candles or something, and then something else on top of it.
You wrote a selection of poems last year and you’re an avid reader. Do you have any books you’d recommend as gifts?
This sounds really maybe a little depressing, but I feel like there’s a lot of people who’ve been going through shit this year, just because of COVID. A lot of people are just dealing with some tough things right now as a collective. And so, I’ve recommended the book When Things Fall Apart by Pema Chödrön to a couple of my friends. It’s heartfelt advice for difficult times. And I read the book last year and found it really beautiful and comforting. I really love self-help books and I love to talk about spiritual stuff and my own spiritual journey with my friends. I was gifted it by a friend as well, so I like to pass it along because it helped me and it’s really beautifully written.
What’s your favorite home gift to give?
I enjoy giving beautiful crystals and I have them all around my house. And I love candles. I think you can never go wrong giving someone a candle. They’re always going to use it. I just finished off my candle from Target. It’s called “The Intention Candle.” It’s palo santo and thyme. I love the smell of palo santo. So, that was a good one. I’m going to have to get another one of those.
What’s your favorite food-related gift?
My mom asked me this because she needed a suggestion. I told her to get me a cast iron skillet because I don’t have one. But other than that, I mean, food-related, I want to make food with my friends and with my family so we have that opportunity to gather for the holidays.
What’s the best gift you’ve ever received?
My goddaughter was two months old and my aunt had sent me a video of her because she’s my cousin. In the video my aunt was saying, “Do you want to be my godmother?” And that was the best gift ever. I was so over the moon.
What’s the weirdest gift you’ve ever received?
Dang, I feel like I’ve gotten some weird ones. Last year my friend Nick got me a mushroom pillow for some reason. And it was very weirdly realistic-looking and my dog tore it apart a little bit. But yeah, I was like, “Okay, whatever floats your boat, Nick. Thank you for this really weirdly realistic mushroom pillow.”
That brings me to my last question: I know you have a little puppy named Milo, what is he getting for the holidays?
I’m going to go to Target when I’m in North Carolina. I’ll find something for him there. I really like small business-owned pet shops and supporting them too. He loves bully sticks and he loves toys. He has so many of them. So, maybe another toy to add to the collection.