Any gift that requires work is a bad idea, a snow shovel, a vacuum cleaner, or Costco sized cleaning supplies - yes it is cool that they make Tide in a box that big, we just don't want it for Christmas.
Gift baskets with generic scented lotions from drugstore endcaps. I personally have gotten way too many of these and I always smile and say thank you and then I give it to Goodwill, or put it in the basement and end up re-gifting it to someone I don't know very well. We women do like lotions, but we are very particular about what we put on our skin and how we smell, so do a little detective work, find out what the woman in your life likes and buy her that instead
Engraved ipods or engraved 'anything else that could be upgraded in a year', also a good idea to avoid. When the new version comes out, we won't be able to re-sell it and how could we after you declared your undying love on the back of it. So, while you may be giving me a new engraved iPod this year, what you are really dooming me to is old technology for the rest of my life. If you really want to engrave something, choose a classic, like a Tiffany bracelet.
Homemade coupons for things you should be doing anyways!!! Do we really need to have a coupon to get you to take out the trash??
Self-help ANYTHING! I understand it's confusing when you see how excited we get over beauty products, but i promise you - we really don't want you to buy us the latest anti-aging cream. And no matter how much we complain about our weight - we do not want a gift certificate to Weight Watchers or Jenny Craig. Not from you. Not for Christmas. We want to know that you, the man in our life, thinks we're beautiful exactly the way we are.