33 answers

Goodies Bags for 12 Yrs Olds? What Should I Do?

My daughter decided she just wanted a few friends over for a birthday party.Her birthday was last month but due to a death and I had to go out state we had to wait.So this Saturday is the party and I just don't know what I should put in a goodie bag for the kids to take home.I don't want anything expensive.I have mini candy bars but what else for 12 yr olds? Help!!

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Thanks ladies for your good advice!.I picked up some different candy bags and asked my daughter what else is a good idea.She said just go with the candy bars/suckers.I let the kids pick what they wanted bagged it and they were all happy with that.It turned out to be a good party.Thanks again ladies.

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I really miss those days! Hair ribbons, mini nail polish, headbands, barets, cute glittery pens, pencils. Have a great time!


I recently saw on a craft show where they made lip gloss for the girls at a slumber party, when it was done they packed it into an empty film container (that had been previously washed and dried) and the girls could take it home. The recipe was super easy and super cheap! White crisco and an unsweetened Kool-Aid packet. Mix the two together and thats it! The girls could pick their own flavor, and you could add it to a goodie bag (one less thing to buy) Plus it would make a good activity.

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I think its cool when they do a craft together and then take what they made home as a goodie. You can do bracelets/necklaces with beads. Craft stores have all sorts of little canvas bags that the girls could paint and decorate or even do a shirt. They could tye dye shirts too. If you go to a craft store you'll find tons of options.

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When my daughters have parties, I burn copies of their favorite CDs and use that as a party favor. The girls love it and the parents think it's pretty cool too. You can get the multi-colored CDs and put them in a clear goodie bag with shredded foil or wrap and put a ribbon on it. It's easy and doesn't rot the teeth!
Have fun whatever you decide!

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How about lip gloss and nail polish? At Wal-mart there are tubs in the makeup area full of small bottles of nail polish in great shades for young girls. I got my daughter some in the summer and they were around $1.
Inexpensive jewelry might be good too. It seems that preteens wear alot of "costume" type jewelry. You could check either target or wal-mart for that too.
You could always give gift certificates for McDonalds...They should be selling the halloween books now. Last year it was coupons for free ice cream, fries and drinks for around $5 or $10 dollars for a book of them.
Well, that's all I've got! Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

My favorite 'older kid' party idea is this:

Buy microwave popcorn packs (1 individually wrapped pack for each kid) and get $5 gift cards from Blockbuster for each kid. Put the gift card on top of the popcorn pack and wrap them together with some cute ribbon. They LOVE it! Good luck

what about a gift certificate to claires or limited too

Check out Target. They have a dollar section (usually as you are going in) and I saw some great girly stuff in that section just last week.

Any kind of cheap jewelry is good. Lip gloss, nail polish, hair accessories. ALSO, if you are into crosstitching, set them up with a tiny square and some thread and a easy pattern. 12 year olds love to be creative.

I have 4 children in their 20's ... 2 girls 2 boys.

Here is a good craft, that you could make and the girls could take them home as part of their goodie bags. With it being the end of the summer season, you maybe able to find some cheap flip flops. Take some ribbon and wrap them around the plastic part of the flip flop and then buy different types of beads and jewels and have them glue them on the ribbon. Picture frames from the dollar store are good to, if you can find some that are black wood or metal, you can have the girls decorate them with beads and jewels as well.

In my opinion 12 is to old for goodie bags, just skip it at that age they wont notice. The party will be fun enough..plus those can get pricey. Have fun!

How about little bottles of nail polish, lip gloss, and sugarfree gum. Your daughter can even make some friendship bracelets to put in the bags. The nail polish and lip gloss you can usually find at Wal-mart (Bon-Bon brand) for 88 cents each. The gum you can purchase in the value packs of 5 packs for under $3. Good luck!! My daughters are 22, 16 and 14. They loved it when we did that for their parties. And with the weather getting colder, you could even purchase some polar fleece ( pattern of your daughter's choice, of course) and have her make scarves. The options can be endless once you start brainstorming. Anything from gloves to socks. LOL.

I really miss those days! Hair ribbons, mini nail polish, headbands, barets, cute glittery pens, pencils. Have a great time!

I'm a Girl Scout leader and the girls in my troop are this age. I do a birthday box where they get to pick out an item around their birthday. Target has some great things for a $1 that the girls this age love - flowers in a can (grow your own), body wash, body lotion, manicure/pedicure sets, magnetic note pads.

How about some lip balm, hair things or bath products? At that age all the girlie stuff works....

I have done $5 gift cards for Borders or what ever their favorite store happens to be. That is about what you spend anyhow when you pick out 3 or 4 of those dollar things. Or I have done a couple of the Mc D $1 gift certificates. At least we know they use them. Plus they are older and more independ and like to pick their own stuff now.

Hi J., I like Chelle's idea's and think you may hit the jackpot at your local dollar store. The dollar stores these days have SOOO many items to offer - almost always for a buck or maybe a little more - and its not totally cheap stuff that you (or your daughter) would be embarrassed to give. You can probably pick up the lipgloss and nail polish that Chelle mentioned, in additional to all of the following, which most 12 y.o. girls would enjoy (take your daughter along, and ask her to help pick out items SHE would enjoy receiving if she were the one getting the goodie bag): Gum, mints, lifesavers, loofa sponges or other bath accessories, manicure/pedicure items (toe separators for polishing, nail files, etc.), pocket/purse mirrors, photo frames for their bedrooms, fuzzy "footsie" socks (some contain aloe vera now!), hair accessories (head bands, clips, pony tail holders, brushes, etc.) Also, since its so close to Halloween, you can probably pick up some pretty cool seasonal items that they'd enjoy as well. I always use the dollar store when I doing my goodie bags. You can get so much stuff without spending a fortune (unless you end up going overboard - like a generally do. LOL!) I'll bet you can put together a "kick-butt" bag for less than $10/apiece, or you can adjust accordingly, based on how many girls are coming to the party. Good Luck - I'm sure the girls (and you!) will have a great time. Keep us posted. Lastly, I'm sorry for your loss last month.

For a girls birthday, how about hair bands, covered rubber bands, funky pencils, lip gloss or flavored lip balms? Alot of these can be found at dollar stores or discount stores. You could even get little bottles of scented hand lotions. Girls are starting to get "girly" at this age and things that make them feel pretty might be a good idea.

Go to Clair's or Icing. I'm not sure where you live but there is one that I know of on Michigan Ave. and there are always two in the malls. They have a sales area in the back of the store. They have bracelets, earings, purses and all sorts of girly things. You could do one color theme for each bag. Its cute and creative and your daughter will love it.

Good Luck!

Not sure how much you want to spend, but my niece went to the dollar store and the dollar section at Target and got some little lotions and pens and stuff there.

Go to one of the dollar stores and buy sparkly lip gloss, glittery body lotion, nail polish and the like. The girly stuff that all girls like. You could also pick some cool earrings depending what you wanted to spend. The great thing is all is very cost effective and you can split packages up making a nice little bag of goodies for not much $$$.

go to the dollar store and pick up little items like hair accessories, finger nail care supplies, etc... My daughter is that age and it seems to be what the girls are into. Otherwise, my daughter went to a party and they had craft supplies and made a project which they brought home instead of a goody bag. If you have a digital camera and can print from home - take a picture of your daughter with each of her friends and have them make some sort of friendship frame. good luck.

A great idea that I use for my sons is go to the party store and get the packets of multables. You could get the ones with the jewerly, stickers, pencils, lipgloss, easers, all the girlie stuff. I have also done fruit snacks, granola, and mini trail mix bag.

Good luck and have fun...

Good morning J.,
When my daughter was 12-13 yrs old we went to the dollar store and picked up nail polish, cotton balls, file, etc. Fill the bottom of the bag with the cotton balls and then put everything else on top.
On a different note, if you are in need of material for your quilting contact me ASAP. I work for a fabric store and may have some expired sample books for you.
Have a great day,


I recently saw on a craft show where they made lip gloss for the girls at a slumber party, when it was done they packed it into an empty film container (that had been previously washed and dried) and the girls could take it home. The recipe was super easy and super cheap! White crisco and an unsweetened Kool-Aid packet. Mix the two together and thats it! The girls could pick their own flavor, and you could add it to a goodie bag (one less thing to buy) Plus it would make a good activity.

How about flavored chapstick or lipgloss? mini nail polish? Earrings? Bookmarks? Hair thing? Fun pens or packpack clips. Go to a $ store and you will find lots of fun stuff. Dollar Tree is great is you have one close.

Have Fun!!!!

I put in little notebooks (flup top, reporter style, think "Columbo") into goodie bags this summer for my 11 year old's party, along with gel pens to write with. I got them at a warehouse club in bulk, and an office supply store would probably have them in bulk, too. I bought a bulk package of ring pops, too.

My 12 year old son just went to a party last week and they received $5 gift cards to Subway or Blockbuster or AMC theatres. He thought it was pretty cool

I had a similar situation for my 3 y/o's bd b/c she had several older cousins attend. Rather than doing goodie 'bags' with lots of junkie, dollar store stuff, for example, I purchased a bigger item from Walmart - they have items in the toy section that are $5, $10 & $15. I know I would have spent a minimum of $5 per bag, anyway so this way I was able to purchase something bigger that they were able to use & really enjoyed - a glass checker set, for example. As well, Target has those dollar bins that usually have some great things - hair pieces, journals, etc. Even a journal with a cool looking pen might be a nice, inexpensive idea - or since Halloween is around the corner, maybe some fall items...

Something I have done in the past with a party for girls is this:

1. clay flower pots and trays for them to sit on
2. potting soil
3. seeds
4. different colors of paints

Allow the girls to paint their flower pots, do something for a bit and when the paint dries, they plant the seeds in the pots. They then get to take their "projects" home with them!

We have enjoyed doing this and the girls get to have fun and take home something they can be proud of.

Good Luck!!


For 12 year old girls maybe some mini nail polish or the wet and wild line is pretty inexpensive. Maybe some lip gloss. Some cute hair accessories. I hope this helps.

hit the dollar store...get cheap nail polish, lip gloss and little note pads or something...
they are "tweens" they ought to like that stuff

maybe you could get lip gloss and lotions some nail polish/stuff.

I'd check the dollar store for jewelry making kits. Cheap and fun!


Why do you think at 12 they need a "goodie" bag? At what age does it stop. I think making something together or sending a group picture is better than small token items.

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