20+ Cancer Survivor Gift Ideas for a Loved One

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A cancer diagnosis is not a death sentence. Innovative therapies are increasing the survival rates for many types of cancer. There are many documentaries about people overcoming cancer thanks to these new treatments. This news is worth celebrating. If you know someone whose cancer has gone into remission, it’s time to have a party. And what’s a party without gifts? 

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Here are some great gift ideas for someone who fought cancer and survived. Just like your mom always told you, it’s not the gift that matters. The sentiment is what is important. Your loved one will appreciate that you took the time to commemorate this moment. 

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Gift Ideas for a Breast, Ovarian, or Uterine Cancer Survivor

It’s possible that your loved one who survived breast, ovarian, or uterine cancer has some scars. These could be physical or emotional scars. A gift can help as they recover. Here are some gift ideas to help celebrate a good report from the doctor.

1. Clothes

Weight loss is a common side effect of cancer treatment. Your loved one may have lost weight, but may not have the energy to shop for clothes to fit their new body. Consider purchasing a gift card to their favorite local clothing store.

That way they can splurge on a couple of new outfits. Go shopping with your friend and encourage them to push their style and color boundaries. 

2. Bras 

If your loved one had breast cancer and underwent a lumpectomy or mastectomy, she may need new bras. Since she will likely wear a new size, purchasing a gift card is probably the best option. It can be difficult to determine the correct size garment on your own and sizing can differ between brands.

If you are planning to go with them call ahead to make sure the shop can accommodate your loved one’s needs. You may need to go to a specialty shop if they are wearing a prosthesis. 

3. A makeover

Pamper your loved one by giving them a gift certificate for a makeover. Your friend or family member may have a new lease on life. Help give them a fresh look to go with their new attitude! And don’t forget, a makeover includes lots of things. New makeup or a trip to the salon are wonderful gifts for someone in remission.

4. House cleaning service

Scrubbing the shower and disinfecting the fridge were probably not high priority during your loved one’s illness. Even though they have the “all clear,” they may not have the energy to tackle cleaning projects. They would likely appreciate a one-time deep clean from professional cleaners. 

5. Survivor jewelry

It is so important to maintain hope while undergoing cancer treatments. Your loved one may be eager to share their stories of survival with people who are currently struggling. Special jewelry or clothing items can identify them as a survivor. They can be recognized as a resource for others dealing with their cancer diagnosis.

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Gift Ideas for a Prostate Cancer Survivor 

Prostate cancer survivors may be slow to recover from cancer treatments. Even if your loved one’s cancer is in remission, it may take time before they get back all their strength. Here are some gift ideas to assist your loved one while at the same time celebrating their remission. 

6. Gym membership

One of the best ways to build up strength is to test your endurance every day. Encourage your loved one to build up their stamina by purchasing them a gym membership. Go to the gym with them for a bit of extra encouragement.

Before purchasing this gift make sure your loved one has permission from their doctor to exercise. 

7. Restaurant gift cards

Even though your loved one has been given the all-clear from their doctor, they may not be back to normal. They may be more tired than usual. Especially if they have returned to work and increased their responsibilities at home. If your loved one is the chef of the family, consider providing meals for the family.

A gift card to their favorite restaurant would be an appreciated gift. If you’d rather cook for them consider dropping off a prepared meal once a week until your friend has transitioned back into daily life. 

8. Work-out clothes

Your loved one’s body probably changed as a result of undergoing cancer treatment. Purchasing workout clothes can encourage them to get back into shape.

Since many cancer survivors lose a lot of weight during their treatment work-out clothes are a good option. Because they are made of stretchy materials, they are more forgiving during weight fluctuation. 

9. Night out

Your friend might be tired of seeing the inside of doctors’ offices and waiting rooms. And they are likely sick of staring at the walls of their bedroom. Take your friend out for a night on the town to give them a change of scenery. 

10. Participate in ZERO Prostate Cancer

Most cities have a race each year to raise money to fight prostate cancer. One such event, ZERO Prostate Cancer, may happen in a town near you this year. Walk or run on behalf of your friend.

You could even form a team and ask your friend to participate as well.

Gift Ideas for Someone Celebrating 1 Year Cancer-Free

Your friend’s doctor may ask them to follow-up in one year. This yearly checkup may be stressful for your friend. If you pray for people with cancer, consider adding this person to your prayer list each day. You can search online for prayers for cancer patients. 

Here are some gift ideas to let your loved one know that you are thinking of them.

11. Movie tickets

Take your friend to a movie or give them a movie theater gift card if they are worried about an upcoming appointment. Seeing a silly comedy can provide some light-hearted distraction. 

12. Board games

 Spending time with your loved one is one of the best gifts you can give. Especially if they are worried about an upcoming appointment. You don’t need to plan anything big. You could buy a new game to occupy their time or play an old favorite, like Monopoly or UNO

13. Spa gift certificate

Show your loved ones that they deserve a bit of pampering by getting them a gift certificate to a local spa. Better yet, go on the spa day with them. Enjoy a facial and a message. Drink cucumber water as you spend the day in a plush robe. 

14. Journal

Your loved one has undergone a lot within the last year. They are probably reeling with thoughts and emotions that need sorting out.

A customized journal they can use to write down their feelings is a considerate gift. If your loved one is not a writer there are journals with prompts to help get them started. 

15. A bucket-list item

After a year, your loved one may be feeling back to normal. They may be ready to go on a trip or attend a concert. Encourage them to check the items off their bucket list by going with them. 

Gift Ideas for Someone Celebrating 5 Years Cancer-Free

Five years of being cancer-free is undoubtedly worth celebrating. Make sure you commemorate this event for your loved one, even if it’s only with a small token. Here are some gift ideas for celebrating this milestone. 

16. A letter

Why do we wait for people to die before we celebrate their lives? Writing a letter to a living person telling them how awesome they are is much better than sharing it in a sympathy message they’ll never read. Wouldn’t you rather write “well wishes” instead of condolences?

Write a card or letter to your friend or family member telling them what they mean to you. List their wonderful qualities and tell them why they are important to you. 

17. A party

Life is short. We need to celebrate every chance we get! Use this milestone as an excuse to pick up some decorations and have a massive party with lots of food, beer, and good friends. 

18. An ornament

Even the smallest of tokens will be appreciated when commemorating the fifth anniversary of a loved one’s remission. A Christmas tree ornament would be a beautiful way to celebrate this anniversary. 

If you can’t find an appropriate ornament, buy a spool of thick ribbon the appropriate color for your loved one’s cancer. Make a simple loop to hang on the tree.

You can also consider ordering a customized ornament or purchasing glass ornaments and decorating them yourself.

19. Flowers 

Don’t wait for your loved one’s funeral to buy flowers. Show that you remembered this important anniversary by giving them a beautiful bouquet.  

20. Plant a tree

Celebrate your loved one by planting a tree to commemorate their five years of remission. You can choose from a variety of saplings on Amazon. If you don’t have a spot to plant a tree, contact your local park department.

Many cities have tree-planting programs that you can participate in. Some park departments allow you to add a plaque to an already mature tree in honor of someone. This gift is especially lovely as it will remain for many years.  

Show Your Loved One That You're Proud

One of the best gifts you can give a cancer survivor is to remain friends with them. People fighting cancer often drop out of society for a while during their treatment. Visit, text, call and let them know that you haven’t forgotten about them even if you don’t see them daily. 

Fighting cancer can be a lonely experience. Spend time with your struggling loved ones to show them you care. 

If you're looking for more ways to support someone diagnosed with cancer, check out our picks for the best chemo care packages and gifts for terminal cancer patients

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