The gesture of a gift was appreciated by many but that "ugly sweater" just didn't fit, and that's why many packed the malls today.
Fashion Fair Mall was busy with shoppers and people looking to exchange gifts.
Dora Lopez needed a different pair of jeans because the ones she got just weren't her style.
"Some Levis, some jeans, that I got, I returned. Why return them? Because I don't wear those kind of jeans."
Marshal Cohen, Retail Analyst: "When you stretch to guess what the right gift to give is, inevitably, you're giving the wrong gift. That means returns."
Some stores offered as much as 80% off specially marked items.
Other stores like sports station were just so busy with returns, that they actually ran out of items people were hoping to exchange for.
Jill Crecelius, Sports Station GM: "It's not nearly as busy as before christmas but there's a lot of people out there with their gift cards coming in that want to spend them."
Retailers were hoping for a boost, after what many say, has been a disappointing holiday shopping season.
Early numbers show the lowest growth in years...
But the National Retail Federation predicts the day after christmas will remain among the year's top 5 shopping days.
So what were the popular gifts this year?
Well, the last few years it's been technology...
But this year, it was about practicality...
Shoes and other footwear were big hits this year.
Cohen: "Running shoes did really well. Classic sneakers did really well."
Usually electronics and other technological gadgets are at the top of everyone's list...
But aside from shoes, home furnishings and small appliances were also big this year.
While the day after Christmas is one of the busiest shopping days of the year, many retailers are hoping more shoppers will be coming in over the next few days.
Many refer to this as "the second season."