Ah, the holidays. They can be a heartwarming time full of old friends, cozy fun and family. But they can also be a terrible time full of old acquaintances you actively choose not to keep up with for 11/12ths of the year, trips to the movie theater to see the Tom Cruise movie yet another time because it’s 2 degrees outside and the bars here close too early, and family still. All I’m saying is: There are ups, but there are also some very real downs. But thank gosh for holiday playlists, am I right?
The holidays can be a crazy emotional time, where you’re left to find—with surgeon-like accuracy—the perfect balance between reuniting with your loved ones and seeing just a little too much of your loved ones. There are presents to buy, people to see, nostalgic trips to the Aeropostale where you used to work.
December is a lot. Thank God it comes with maybe the best inherent soundtrack of any season around.
StyleCaster has done you a holiday solid and assembled a pack of playlists to help you through everything from white Christmases and blue Christmases to whatever color of Christmas “having to share a bathroom with your brother again” is. Good luck, godspeed and happy holidays.
“I Forgot to Buy Anyone Anything Until the 23rd, So Now I’ll Be Spending 8 Hours in a Wrapping Frenzy”
Well, shit. While you’re busy trying to recall how to do those nice wrapping folds your mom somehow pulls off with wizard-like efficiency, listen to these actually good Christmas bops from Ariana Grande, Tyler the Creator and Kelly Clarkson.
“The Ol’ 6 Blanket Snug Sesh”
The only thing better than having someone to cuddle with is having someone to cuddle with when you are also in desperate need of body heat in order to survive the frigid winter. What’s more romantic than survival?
Celebrate the concept of coziness with these warm tracks from artists like She & Him and The Head and the Heart.
“I Want Everyone to Know That I’m So Good at Music That Even My Christmas Tunes Are Indie as Fuck”
For those fierce indie proponents the world over, this playlist is stocked to the brim with covers and originals from artists. Pro tip: This playlist is sure to silence your one friend Derek who never stops talking about how Kings of Leon is from his hometown and how they’re actually really cool. (Yeah right, Derek.)
“I’m Getting Really Sick of All These Christmas Movies with Folks Smooching in Them”
This is for anyone who hated the above Snugs playlist. Being single on Christmas can occasionally suck the big one, what with the Love Actually reruns hitting you in the face and the creepily persistent mistletoe trend that refuses to go extinct.
What you do have in your corner, though, is about two dozen of the best Christmas songs ever written, all specifically devoted to being self-pitying while it’s snowing outside. Go nuts!
“Hiding in the Bathroom at Grandma’s House”
Look, you made it a good eight minutes at this function before your aunt pointed out how many of your other cousins managed to get engaged this year and your grandma made a weird comment that seemed to imply both that you were grossly skinny but also a little overfed.
So you’re just gonna take a minute to see what the internet’s up to, as the Dean Martin classics blast through the walls thanks to the new surround sound your uncle just gifted your grandpa. (This playlist also includes a little Bublé because your grandma definitely definitely has a
low-key high-key crush on that man for some reason.)
“All These Inconveniences Would Be Far More Palatable If I Were in a Hallmark Movie RN”
Running into your ex from high school in line at Harris Teeter when you’re just trying to buy some potatoes for your mom might be amusing if it happened to Katherine Heigl, but it’s definitely not when it is IRL happening to you.
This playlist has all the classics that would be playing if you were safely inside a formulaic holiday rom-com. Unfortunately, you’re not, so you’ll have to cue the soundtrack yourself.
“You Were Supposed to Go Ice Skating with Your Family, but Now You’re Super Invested in Rewatching GLOW”
Look, you definitely were game to put on a scarf and go outside three hours ago when ice-skating was brought up, but while your dad took 85 years to “get to a good stopping point” in Red Dead Redemption you got kind of cozy—and honestly, doesn’t the sun set in like 45 minutes anyway?
Plus, you know there’s a fight coming up between Ruth and Debbie and you can’t quite remember what it was about, but you know it’s gonna be good.
“Overly Confident New Year’s Resolution”
Maybe you end up feeling really fucking confident this New Year’s. Maybe an inspirational Will Smith movie comes on AMC when you’re doing the dishes, or you happen to be sipping a bit of Prosecco while a commercial is on where Matthew McConaughey talks about greatness, or something.
And maybe, while you’re all jazzed up on champagne and McConaughey and the big silver ball that’s about to drop, you’ll end up thinking that running five miles a day sounds not just doable but easy. This is the playlist for that cold, cold day of reckoning when your January self has to cash that December check.