10 Gifts You Shouldn’t Give to Your Loved One

Thai people are grown up with superstitious beliefs and taboos. Some are still believed to be true, and some are now used to tease friends. Giving a gift is a nice gesture but some items have negative meaning especially to your relationship. Here are 10 presents some Thai people might consider bringing bad luck;

1. Shoes รองเท้า /rawng – táao/

If you buy shoes for your girlfriend or boyfriend, it is believed that it will cause the break up because shoes need to be in pair, a couple who are dating but not living together could be cursed to go different ways.

 2. Black clothes เสื้อผ้าสีดำ /sûea-pâa sǐi dam/

This item is frightening. Do not give black clothing because ancient Thai people consider black as the colour of pain and sadness used for mourning. If you give a black cloth to someone, you will go to that person’s funeral.

3. Watch / Clock นาฬิกา /naa-lí-gaa/

It is believed that if your loved one gives you a watch or clock, your relationship might be over like the clock stops ticking.

4. Perfume น้ำหอม /náam-hăwm/

As Thai people like to say if you don’t believe it, don’t disparage it. Many Thai think giving perfume to your partner could make your love lessen like the scent of the perfume that is fade away over time.

 5. Photograph of Yourself รูปถ่าย /rûup-tàai/

Another thing that you absolutely don’t want to give to your darling is the photo of yourself because giving a photo for memory when you are apart.

 6. Handkerchief ผ้าเช็ดหน้า /pâa-chét-nâa/

Thai believe that handkerchief is used for wiping tears, so someone who receives a handkerchief as a gift will lose their tears. If you don’t want your beloved to cry, avoid giving this item.

7. Sharp objects ของมีคม /kăwng mii kom/

It is believed that giving sharp objects as a gift will bring the receiver danger, bad luck.

 8. Comb หวี /wǐi/

Thai people compare relationship to the teeth of a comb, you don’t want to go apart like the comb’s teeth.

9. Brooch เข็มกลัด /kĕm-glàt/

A brooch is a beautiful accessory but Thai believe that giving a brooch is like stabbing that person’s heart, creating pain and argument.

 10. Glassware เครื่องแก้ว /krûeang gâew/

It is a common gift. Superstition has it that if the glassware is broken it means the relationship is also destroyed.

Some Thai people give a small amount of money like one Baht or ten Baht to a person who gives the present as if they purchase it, so it doesn’t bring them bad luck.

Gift Giving Tips:

  • If you are given a gift, it is considered rude to rip the wrapping paper. Carefully remove the wrapping, fold and set aside.
  • Flowers is appropriate gift. Avoid marigolds or carnations as they are associated with funerals or lotus as it is used for worship Buddha image.

Many male readers ask about my gift ideas for a special someone. Here are some suggestions what ladies like;

  • Diamonds are a girl’s best friends! If you look for a special gift, a pair of small diamond earrings or a necklace with a diamond pendant is a lovely way to express your eternal love to your significant other.

  • Good quality beauty products such as Tom Ford lipstick, Dior eyeshadow palette,  Chanel powder blush etc. It is nice to embrace natural beauty but makeup is fun!

  •  A pretty handbag. For women, purses are like friends, you can’t have too many!

  • Roses are always sweet thing. Whether you give the full dozen or just a single stem, roses say “I Love You” like no other flower.
  • Lastly I would like to note that love doesn’t equal expensive gifts, the price tag on the gift you buy doesn’t matter for a recipient. Just show your love by making everyday special – cooking a nice meal for them, giving a compliment how beautiful they look, ask “how are you – really?”, saying magical words “thank you”, “I’m sorry” and forgive their mistakes.

 I wish you all the best ,joy ,happiness and love!


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84 Responses to 10 Gifts You Shouldn’t Give to Your Loved One

  1. jake 01/02/2018 at 15:41 #

    i have given her a black dress so is there a way out of it???

  2. Priya 30/01/2018 at 03:30 #

    Hi , I taught to gift my bf a wrist watch as a valentine gift ,,, but after reading ur article I am bit confused. Or shall I give him money n ask him to purchase a gift of his own ? Or buy a watch fr himself?? Will that have any effect on these superstition ?? Because I Believe in superstition… so plz help me in this

    • Mod 01/02/2018 at 15:38 #

      Hi Priya, if you are worried you could explain to your boyfriend and ask for 1 or 2 Baht from him just to pretend that he bought the gift from you. 🙂

  3. Nikki 04/01/2018 at 04:21 #

    I believe on this article. I have experiences already. My bf gave me a watch and both of us lost love and separate ways then after. Also, my best friend gave me a comb because she knew i was searching on this. I accepted but without any reasons i felt boring staying with her. Now i came to this article for such reasons. Thanks for this. I can avoid accepting or giving unnecessary gifts in the future.

  4. Mars 12/12/2017 at 07:37 #

    I gave a perfume and a watch on my Fiancée as a present , hopefully it won’t break up our relationship

    • Mod 28/12/2017 at 18:54 #

      Those are nice gifts. Don’t worry about it. These are just superstitions. 🙂

  5. Akshay Singh 29/11/2017 at 15:31 #

    I don’t have any girlfriend 😞😞

  6. Poonsm 16/11/2017 at 07:30 #

    Hello.. Thnx for the lovely article.. I was thinking of gifting my bf a pen but does pen come under a sharp objects.. Coz I did gift my earlier two bf with pens And aftertht bad luck did came to them.. After reading ur article I realised tht.. Kindly guide wht can I gift my bf?

  7. misi 27/10/2017 at 13:32 #

    hi my boyfriend give me perfume and we suddenly brkup I don’t know why . suddenly he got new girlfriend . and everything happen just in a month . now what I did 🙁 please could you help me . if there’s any idea tell me please

  8. Lisa 12/10/2017 at 03:02 #

    Can you do a post on Thai ghosts/spirits. Like gumanthong,Khwai Thanu, Nang mai,Nang Tani ,Phi ma bong, phi ka etc.

    • Mod 16/10/2017 at 11:07 #

      Thank you for your suggestions. I don’t have much knowledge about Thai ghosts. I will try to do a research and make a post about it.

      • Sanny 24/11/2017 at 14:02 #

        We are engaged and soon to be married I give necklace to my fiancee

      • lily 04/12/2017 at 13:30 #

        I have given a handkercheif to my bf and now our relationship is becoming complecated. What should i do any suggestion

  9. Meghna lama 11/10/2017 at 19:23 #

    hlo ….I’m very worried right now…actually i don’t have idea even i didn’t read this article before actually i gift my boyfriend a black shirts on his birthday. im very much tens about this backluck after reading this article… so please suggest me something.

    • tosh 03/01/2018 at 16:12 #

      give white shirt to balance the luck … 😉 . these are just superstitions …

  10. Saraswati Rai 13/09/2017 at 22:36 #

    My life my boyfriend gifted me mirror because I demanded of it,but when I read this article I felt sad,what should I do??should it empact negatively in our relationship??…….what should I do with this mirror??

    • Mod 25/09/2017 at 17:44 #

      Hi Saraswati, please don’t worry about it. These are superstitions but if you are worried you can give them a small amount of money like 10 Baht to your boyfriend to make it like you bought it from him.

  11. Harsh 30/07/2017 at 23:14 #

    I received a handkerchief from my girlfriend but not as a gift… Will it be bad for our relationship…

    • Mod 30/09/2017 at 16:08 #

      Believing in superstitions is an individual thing. I think you can be relax if you find it irrational. Best wishes! 🙂

  12. anonymous 10/07/2017 at 07:32 #

    Um, hello. I had recieved a handkerchief as gift from my guy many months ago, follwing which our relationship started deteriorating. So, when I heard about this superstition I decided to throw the handky away. Could it possibly be like will there be any effect for me having done so? I mean I just want the things to work, It’s been so stressful with all the constant fighting.

    • Mod 10/07/2017 at 10:05 #

      I am sorry to hear about your relationship not going well. I wrote this article to share some of the Thai superstitions. Personally I don’t think giving and receiving any gift cause a problem in a relationship. I wish things will work well for you.

  13. Palak 09/05/2017 at 12:43 #

    I am not sure what to gift my parents on their wedding anniversary. Any suggestions?

    • Mod 06/06/2017 at 10:47 #

      Congratulations to your parents wedding anniversary. What about a nice set of tableware or a high quality bedding set? My parents would appreciate that. 🙂

  14. Sree 01/05/2017 at 15:25 #

    I was planning to gift a wrist watch to my boyfrnd on his bday.
    Is it bad?

    • Mod 10/07/2017 at 17:27 #

      It is a good gift!

  15. Xavi 10/04/2017 at 23:05 #

    May I give a keychain to.my GF as gift? And Ms. Moderator I gave her a watch in our early days of our relationship. We are going strong together as the times goes by. But reading your article gives me some chills 🙁

    • Mod 24/04/2017 at 15:25 #

      Keychain is good. 🙂 Don’t worry about the watch, it is also a good gift if you don’t believe in superstitions.

  16. Pk 21/03/2017 at 00:35 #

    Can we gift couple ring to each other before wedding

    • Mod 21/03/2017 at 16:03 #

      I believe that it is fine and sweet. 🙂

  17. Mai 03/03/2017 at 02:36 #

    I once bought a pair of shoes for my ex-husband to wear on our wedding’s day, after 6 years we divorced. I exchanged perfume gift with my ex-boyfriend, we broke up after 4 months. When I visited my current boyfriend city before I left I didn’t have flip flop to wear so he gave me his slipper to wear it and keep it till he comes to my city. I told him I don’t want to do that because I am scared that we both will end up with breaking up. He told me, don’t be stupid and don’t trust on those. You are going to keep it, I am not giving you as a gift.When I got back home I was about to mail it after a couple but somehow I was busy. After a week we fought and cut off contact for over a week. Yesterday he told me I am done with you. Even though I called him many times he never returns my phone call, I think it because of his slipper. Should I send him back or like you said should I send him the small amount of money and consider as I bought it. Please, advice.

    • Mod 09/04/2017 at 10:57 #

      I am sorry to hear about you and your ex break up. I am afraid I can’t give any advice on this matter. These bad gifts are just superstitions. I wish you all the best.

  18. Nayan 24/02/2017 at 15:25 #

    I gave my Girlfriend a pen and headphones is it good ??

    • Mod 09/04/2017 at 11:01 #

      They are lovely gifts. 🙂

      • Lovely 29/11/2017 at 14:11 #

        Can i gift my boyfriend a key chain..it consisting of both of our photos in that keychain photo frame key chain..can i give to him..

  19. Piyu 21/02/2017 at 01:19 #

    I am about to give a wrist watch to my bf can I?? Cz after reading this article I m scared??

    • Mod 09/04/2017 at 11:03 #

      It is fine. Wrist watch is a good gift. I am sure he will like it. 🙂

      • Lykz 26/05/2017 at 21:41 #

        Can i give my bf a wrist watch on his birthday

        • Mod 06/06/2017 at 09:57 #

          Wrist watch makes a lovely gift. 🙂

  20. Charchit 02/11/2016 at 11:30 #

    I had received perfume as a gift from my gf and after then we broke up
    Is that because of perfume ??
    If so what I should do then ??

    • Mod 06/12/2016 at 15:21 #

      I am sorry to hear that. Personally I don’t think it has something to do with the perfume. These are just superstitions.

    • misi 29/10/2017 at 01:00 #

      hi same incident with me 🙁

  21. Mike 10/10/2016 at 00:30 #

    I think this is absolute superstitious bullshit.

    • Darcy 16/12/2016 at 04:24 #

      It might be but you have to respect people’s cultures…

  22. Aung Khant 17/06/2016 at 10:25 #

    I bought a perfume and a pair of black T shirt for my girlfriend and me. I want to give perfume to my gf to use every day. How should i give? I afraid…

  23. Srri Saran 09/05/2016 at 16:13 #

    I gave my girlfriend a handkey is It gud??

    • Mod 10/05/2016 at 12:09 #

      That is fine. 🙂

      • michelle 18/11/2016 at 19:17 #

        hello i im alma and i already give a wrist watch gift for my bf?before i read this consequences.so what can you say about it.

        • Mod 06/12/2016 at 09:53 #

          Sawatdii ka Michelle, please don’t worry about it. These are just superstitions. 🙂

  24. Sam 13/02/2016 at 02:18 #

    I had purchased clock (Wrist Watch) for my friend on 21 may 2015.
    I put it in front of her as an gift on 26 may 2015, but she didn’t accepted it on that time.
    Later I moved on journey but we had big quarrel on phone on 6 June 2015.
    From that day of quarrel she is not willing to talk with me.
    I haven’t gifted her the clock but purchasing clock for her is the reason behind this?

    • Mod 16/02/2016 at 10:31 #

      My personal opinion is that this is just a superstition. 🙂

  25. BhaVi 11/01/2016 at 16:02 #

    I have gifted my boyfriend a pair of shoe.But we are still together .This year also i have ordered a pair of shoe. … i am afraid now…. is there any remedy for that?

    • Mod 13/01/2016 at 21:27 #

      Personally I think it is just a superstition. If you would like to do something, some people say you can ask the gift receiver to give you a small amount of money like 5 Baht or 10 Baht to make it like he bought it from you. 🙂

  26. Benny 29/12/2015 at 16:17 #

    I bought my Thai GF several pairs of shoes and she was as happy as can be.

    She said nobody ever bought shoes for her before. Perhaps because of the superstition?.

    I also bought her some lingerie. Was that appropriate? She wore it the next day and she looked most lovely, so I guess/hope it was OK. 🙂

    • Mod 13/01/2016 at 21:49 #

      As long as she loves the gift, you have nothing to worry. 🙂

  27. sylvain 29/12/2015 at 13:39 #

    Offering a bottle of champagne is also another good idea isn’t it?

    There seem to be lots of taboos about shoes in Thaï and people like to photography them no?

    Thank you for this useful information Mod

    • Mod 13/01/2016 at 21:50 #

      A bottle of champagne is very nice! Thank you for reading my article. 🙂

  28. Eric 29/12/2015 at 12:37 #

    Great information, Ajarn Mod. I gave my wife shoes after a trip to Bali. She was polite enough not to make a big deal about it.

    Have you done a story on Thai beliefs as they relate to symbolism in dreams? If not, that’s usually a fun topic.

  29. warren 12/12/2015 at 18:22 #

    I am totally lost on what to give now. These things you list Mod are my standard gifts I always give.

    • Mod 18/12/2015 at 22:33 #

      Perhaps your Thai female friends would like cosmetics, earrings, a bag, a fruit basket, a nice dress etc.

  30. Fabiola 14/10/2015 at 20:39 #

    I live in Thailand now I need learn,this thinks help me a lot.thank you.

    • Mod 14/10/2015 at 22:50 #

      I am happy to hear that you found my article useful. Thank you for your comment. 🙂

      • Jamira 05/12/2015 at 01:08 #

        The older people in my family share these same beliefs with the younger generation and in most cases they have been true oddly. However I’ve never heard about the black clothing. Does a black winter hat count as clothing?

        • Mod 07/12/2015 at 09:23 #

          A black hat is fine. 🙂

  31. vinod 02/10/2015 at 23:31 #

    Hi Mod,

    Just 1 week ago my GF gifted me shoes & Hanky

    after 1 week our relationship had ended. I don’t think it was a result of the gift of the shoes or Hanky

  32. Mitch 20/09/2015 at 04:53 #

    Hi Kru Mod,
    I once gave a girlfriend a pair of shoes and within 3 months our relationship had ended. I don’t think it was a result of the gift of the shoes, I think it was the result of the gift of an Isuzu D-max by her new boyfriend that was the cause, lol.

    • Mod 24/09/2015 at 21:50 #

      I am sorry to hear that.

  33. Nicole 05/09/2015 at 04:47 #

    This is very helpful. Thanks for the blog. More Power!

    • Mod 08/09/2015 at 09:00 #

      Thank you for your kind comments. I am happy to hear that you found my post helpful. 🙂

  34. Nelson 31/03/2015 at 16:53 #

    Sawatdee krap Mod, I would like to ask if it is suitable to give a set of earring as present ?

    • Mod 08/04/2015 at 22:35 #

      Yes! I also like earrings and I am sure most girls do too. 🙂

  35. Richard 21/03/2015 at 19:36 #

    khun pen puuying tii suay tii sut till pom kneey jer.

    • Mod 08/04/2015 at 22:45 #

      Thank you for your kind words. 🙂

  36. Richard 14/02/2015 at 18:34 #

    thank you, you are a great teacher.pom choop khun maak^^

  37. Isaac 14/02/2015 at 12:55 #

    Interesting article! Thanks for sharing. Some of the superstitions are very similar to those of the Chinese especially the first one about shoes.

    Just to share-the clock/watch superstition arises because the phrase ‘giving a clock’ in Chinese sounds very similar to a phrase used for funerals so that is why it’s considered taboo for us Chinese. Who knows? We may share similar superstitions because of our shared ancestry with the Chinese-Thais.

    Also, the italicised paragraph about the recipients of such taboo gifts handing over token amounts of money to ward off the superstition is common practice for us as well!

    Happy Valentine’s Day to Kru Mod and to my learners of the beautiful Thai language!

  38. Simon 13/02/2015 at 06:59 #

    If I had a Thai GF, I definitely wouldn’t be giving her a sharp object !

  39. Mark 13/02/2015 at 02:37 #

    🙂 Interesting so now I have just thrown all those lovely gifts I bought for you lets see ?

    Ferrari as that is a car that will take you away very fast

    Gold bracelet as that will tarnish and fade away

    Mansion as that will eventually fall down too

    So I decided for you Mod a cup of tea as its nice and warm and not expensive

    Keep up the good work Kru Mod you are super lovely na ka

    Say hi to MBK for me



  40. Joy B 12/02/2015 at 23:40 #

    ha! good post Mod! I think I gave my husband three of those in the past ten years! We’re still together because it’s LOVE! But you’re right I won’t push it for a next time. I like your site, and I hope you come see mine. 🙂 Choke Dee na ka! Joy B (JoysThaiFood)

    • Mod 04/03/2015 at 23:11 #

      Thank you for reading my post. I am happy to hear that you enjoyed it:)
      Your website looks good! I will use some of your food recipe. Thank you for sharing.

  41. Gerhard 11/02/2015 at 21:18 #

    Hello, dear Mod,

    that’s really most interesting. I did not know any one of these items.
    A suggestion: could you tell us WHAT to give to Thai people?
    After this article I am absolutely lost.

    I once bought a pair of shoes for a lady – not too long after that I never saw her again.
    I once bought some perfume for a lady – not too long after that I never saw her again.
    A lady once gave me a photo of herself – not too long after that I never saw her again.
    I once gave a beautiful blue lotus to a lady – she was not pleased at all, and I was confused, I did not know why.

    Thank you so much for your article.
    I am not superstitious, really, but I will be more clever from now on.


    • Mod 04/03/2015 at 23:18 #

      Sawatdee ka Gerhard, I am sorry to hear about that.
      There are many things women like, it depends on her character. Here are some ideas; most girls like cosmetics so you could give a good lipstick or an eyeshadow palette, or a set of facial treatment. Jewellery is also lovely, perhaps a necklace or bracelet. Good luck 🙂

  42. Tim Cowick 11/02/2015 at 02:04 #

    Hello Mod , As Marilyn Monroe sang many years ago , ” Diamonds Are a Girls Best Friend .” Are diamonds or jewelry an appropriate gift for a lady ? tim c

    • Mod 04/03/2015 at 23:19 #

      Marilyn Monroe was right. I think jewelry is a nice gift 🙂


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