Sustainable Gift Guide

Stack+of+gifts+on+golden+bokeh.

Courtesy of Marco Verch via Flickr

Stack of gifts on golden bokeh.

Callie Pippert, Columnist

Subscriptions and Experiences

  • Any subscription service
    • Paying for a few months of a Netflix, Hulu, Spotify premium, Patreon, Youtube Premium or Disney plus subscription. This is a great gift because these are things that they will use all of the time and there is no waste involved! With Netflix, Hulu, and Spotify you can buy a gift card and email it to the person.
  • Concert or Event Tickets
    • Concert tickets or event tickets are a great gift, especially if you got to the concert with the person. Tickets can range in price a lot so if it is too expensive to buy the whole ticket you can get them a t-shirt or something at the show.
  • Charity Donation
    • Go climate – is a website where you can offset your carbon footprint. Price varies on how much emissions you create a month but you can pay $50 to offset a couple months worth of emissions. This money will go to renewable energy projects in different countries around the world.
    • SOIL – This is an organization that works in Haiti to help provide toilets to 6,500 people in Haiti. They take the waste from these toilets and use it to make compost. Their services benefit some of the people most impacted by climate change and by composting the waste and reusing it, they are providing solutions to climate change as well.
    • Ten tree – Ten tree is a clothing company but they also have a plan called Climate+ where you can buy small carbon offsets in the form of planting trees. They have a bunch of different offsets that I think would be a cute addition to a gift such as a $5 offset for shipping or a $12 offset for taking long showers.

Clothes and Beauty

  • Painted Clothes
    • Pips Pants – Is a very cute instagram shop that has cute pants hand painted by my sister. She has painted tote bags and pants for sale, and you can also get custom designs on totes, pants, and shoes.
  • Socks
    • Conscious Step – This is a sock company that has a bunch of different socks that support a wide range of social causes like saving LGBTQ+ lives, supporting mental health, and protecting different animals. These socks are on the expensive side but they make great gifts because they are super cute sustainably made socks and you can choose a pair that supports a cause the recipient is passionate about. When you buy their socks, they donate money to the specific cause tied to the sock. On their website, they have a graph where they break down how much money they have donated to every organization to show their transparency.
  • Athletic Clothes
    • Girlfriend Collective – this brand has the cutest and most colorful activewear that is made from post – consumer recycled plastic water bottles. They are a size exclusive brand that has sizes XXS to 6XL and they ethically manufacture everything in Taiwan. I have the skort and compressive cami on my Christmas wishlist this year. Their shipping can take a while so if you want it for Christmas buy it ASAP.
  • Shoes
    • All Birds – is a cute sneaker brand and they have a new store in Old Town. They are a very innovative company that makes their shoes out of wool and they have a full section on their website talking about all of their sustainability initiatives.
    • Veja – These sneakers are very trendy and sustainable. Some of the models are made out of leather but on their website they have interactive maps showing where all of their factories are. These sneakers are on the pricier side but they make up for it in quality and transparency in their manufacturing.
  • Beauty Gift Basket
    • If you know someone who is interested in sustainable beauty but they don’t know where to start, a beauty gift basket is a perfect solution. There are many different things to add so I will list off some of my favorite beauty products.
    • Ethique Trial Packs – Ethique is a beauty brand that only sells products in bar form. This is more sustainable because they do not have to be packaged in plastic bottles and since they don’t contain water they are much lighter and easier to ship. They have a lot of trial packs so the person you are gifting it to can try out all of the shampoo bars before having to commit to a full sized bar.
    • Hey Humans – Hey Humans is an affordable beauty care brand that is only available at Target. They only have a few products such as body wash, lotion, and deodorant but all of those products are sustainably packaged and range between $4 – $6. Their toothpaste is my favorite and it is so much more affordable than all of the other ones I have tried. I also really like their lotion because it is very lightweight and not greasy.
    • Bamboo toothbrush – These toothbrushes are very popular in the zero waste world because of their simple aesthetic but since the bamboo is compostable they are worth the hype.
    • Pyt Beauty – is a sustainable makeup brand with cute eyeshadow palettes.ll of their products are vegan and have sustainable packaging.
    • Native deodorant is the best natural deodorant and is packaged in a cardboard tube. Native is now sold in Target and they have lots of fun scents, my favorite are Rose and Lavender and Lilac and White Tea.
    • Another addition to this gift could be a soap bag exfoliator for them to put their soap scraps in and a soap shelf to make their bars last longer. Both of these are available at Re Grocery on York blvd.

Home

  • Cute Thrifted Mugs
    • Everybody loves a cute mug and if you pair this with some loose leaf tea or their favorite type of coffee they will love it.
  • Sheets / Duvet cover
    • Sheets and Giggles – These sheets are expensive but the softest sheets I’ve ever felt. They are made from eucalyptus that is grown on sustainably managed farms that are biodiverse and don’t use pesticides or insecticides. Also you can use the code ‘BrightlyEco’ to get a discount at checkout.
  • Plants and pots
    • Terracotta pot tutorial–customize a thrift store vase or one that you already have and fill with dried flowers or leave it empty for some very chic decor. Or take a plant pot, decorate it, then fill it with a propagated cutting from one of your own plants.
  • Upcycled decor
    • Take a frame or a chair from the thrift store and customize it to fit the person’s house or personality. Also look at their pinterest boards to get inspiration. If you are doing a frame you can also print a photo of you and the person or a photo of any memory you shared with them.
  • Swedish Dishcloths
    • Ecologie Swedish Dishcloths are perfect for the paper towel lover because they are in between a towel and a sponge. They can be placed in the dishwasher or the washing machine and can pick up more liquid than a dish towel. I like to use these for wiping down the counter or picking up messy spills like cupcake batter.
    • Three Bluebirds Swedish Dishcloths is another brand of dishcloths that are a little bit smaller and come with cute patterns and designs.
  • Locally made candles
    • Made Trade – These candles are expensive but they smell amazing. This summer I went to a farmers market in Portland and I got to meet one of the people who owns the company–they were so sweet. My favorite scents are Rainwater and Sandalwood Rose.
  • Printed photo of memory
    • This can be a polaroid, film photo, or any other printed photo. You can write a note on the back about when it was taken and maybe thrift a frame to put it in. Personalized picture frames, a scrapbook or a collage would all be very cute personalized gifts.

Food

  • Coffee Lover Kit
    • If you have a friend who is in love with coffee then get them a cute thrifted or handmade mug, their favorite coffee or a fair trade coffee, and depending on the coffee maker, they have a reusable thing. For regular coffee machines, they have reusable coffee filters they also have the same for pour over coffee and for keurigs. (Note the keurig ones are from amazon and might not work will all keurig machines)
    • Café Mam is a coffee company based in Eugene, Oregon and their coffee is Fair Trade Certified, USDA certified organic, shade grown, and they have biodegradable packaging and they support indigenous farmers in Mexican co-ops. This coffee can be bought online or in certain stores in Oregon.
  • Tea Lovers Kit
    • Like the coffee lovers kit you can get the person a cute mug then a reusable tea strainer. Then, you can get them a sampler kit of David’s loose leaf tea or some bulk tea from Tare.
    • Arbor Teas is a tea company based out of Ann Arbor Michigan and they have lots of loose leaf tea in compostable packaging. I would recommend getting a tea sampler pack for a friend.

Technology

  • Phone Case
    • Pela case has lots of compostable phone cases, air pods cases, and apple watch bands with lots of third party certifications. 

Places to Shop

  • Local Businesses
    • Ten thousand villages have a storefront on Lake and all of their products are handmade by people in small villages from Kenya to India.
    • Re grocery is a Zero waste bulk shop in Highland park and they have over 400 items in bulk and other sustainable items. 
  • Etsy Gift card
  • General places to shop
    • Made trade – they have a gift for everyone and they have a very good way to search through everything using code: ‘Shelbizleee’ to save $15 off on a purchase of $100.
    • Earth hero – Has a bunch of different eco friendly brands and there is a gift for everyone.
    • Package free shop – Has many different zero waste and sustainable brands.
    • Blk + Grn – A marketplace for Black artesians with many different beauty products and zero waste essentials.