Eco-Friendly & Sustainable Gifts for Everyone on Your List

Susannah Shmurak

by | Updated: November 29th, 2022 | Read time: 4 minutes

Looking for some amazing gifts that also protect the planet? Holiday shopping doesn’t have to mean giving up your green ideals. In fact, eco-friendly gifts are a fantastic way to outfit others with the tools they need to make their lives a little gentler on the environment.

Here are give ways to give a little greener this year.

Assorted Sustainable Gifts Wrapped in Brown Paper with Orange Slices and Greenery

1. Purchase from companies doing right by the planet

Whatever you choose to give, you can put your dollars to work for the good of the environment by purchasing from companies focusing on sustainability. Look for certified B corporations, which have undergone a vetting process to certify that their operations adhere to standards for social and environmental responsibility.

Badger is one of the ever-growing number of B corporations. They make an array of healing salves packaged in reusable tins, like their hardworking hands salve or delicious-smelling organic sleep balm. Who wouldn’t love to find some in their stocking this year?

Organic India and Pukka Teas are B corporations whose fair-trade organic teas and herbs make wonderful gifts for the health enthusiast on your list. Pick a variety of their incredible teas to create your own tasty tea sampler.

In addition to seeking out B corporation status, look for organic, fair trade and plastic-free products to help ensure your gifts are eco-friendly.

2. Help someone zero in on waste

Super helpful tools to support a zero waste lifestyle make terrific gifts. Think eco-friendly containers for drinks and food, products that help eliminate waste in their cleaning routines, and other zero waste essentials.

In the kitchen:

Help someone cut waste in their kitchen stylishly with reusable food wraps or a water bottle with a built-in infuser. Add in some delicious organic loose-leaf tea and you have a thoughtful, useful eco-friendly present they’ll love.

For the coffee drinker on your list, help them trim the impact of their daily java with an attractive travel mug wrapped together with some delicious organic coffee or herbal coffee alternative. Or introduce them to Four Sigmatic’s delicious coffees enhanced with beneficial mushrooms.

If they haven’t yet figured out how to ditch single-use plastic bags, consider an attractive reusable bag or give some multipurpose containers filled with yummy holiday cookies.

For a greener cleaning routine:

Get a selection of beautiful unpackaged soaps, shampoo bars (or even make your own) and zero waste dish soap bars and let them discover the pleasures of using less plastic in their cleaning routine. Wrap the bars in a pretty cleaning cloth and your wrapping becomes a zero waste gift as well.

Even the laundry room can get greener with some fun eco-friendly essentials like long-lasting scented dryer balls, which serve the dual purpose of eliminating wasteful and chemical-laden dryer sheets and helping save energy during the drying cycle.

3. Dazzle with DIY gifts

DIY gifts let you give something useful and homemade, while often helping to keep costs down as well. If you’ve never given DIY gifts before, don’t be intimidated. Many are incredibly simple and require virtually no skill. Some super easy homemade gifts to consider include bath salts, sugar scrubs and homemade chocolates.

Below are a bunch of easy and fun DIY gift projects to try this season:

Homemade chocolates are surprisingly easy to make and are far more fool-proof than the more commonplace holiday cookies. Chocolate bark looks impressive, but really is as simple as melting some chocolate and adding toppings like nuts and fruit. Use delicious dairy-free chocolate, and any vegans on your list will be over the moon.

Try cashew ginger bark or cranberry coconut bark, or raid your pantry for other creative chocolate bark toppings.

You could also try making chocolates from scratch, such as vegan homemade chocolate or cacao peppermint fudge.

Bath salts and sugar scrubs are a snap to make with simple ingredients, many of which you’ve likely already got in your kitchen. Try these easy recipes for indulgent homemade body products:

DIY Relaxing Lavender Chamomile Mineral Bath

Homemade Peppermint Sugar Scrub

Homemade Cacao Mint Sugar Scrub

DIY Lip Scrub for Winter

DIY Whipped Body Butter

Homemade Herbal Soap

DIY Bath Fizzies

DIY Muscle Recovery Rub

4. Give eco edibles

Thoughtful food gifts can be especially eco-friendly since unlike so many gadgets and doodads, everyone needs food! Choose food gifts that come in minimal or reusable packaging and look for eco-friendly certifications like fair trade, organic and B corporation status.

Some ideas to consider:

5. Think outside the box

Looking to trim holiday spending this year — and give the most eco-friendly presents possible? You don’t need to forego gifts. The ultimate eco-friendly gift isn’t a thing, and it doesn’t have to cost anything at all if you give the gift of your time and skill. Give certificates for a home-cooked meal, help with household chores, or a movie night.

If it’s in the budget, you could also consider getting a subscription to an online newspaper, theater tickets, or making a donation in someone’s name to a cause they care about.

While you’re going all out on gifting green, give some thought to other ways to reduce the impact of your holiday. Be mindful of food waste, plan low-impact gatherings and wrap your presents in reusable gift wrap.

When the holidays end, try some of these creative ways to upcycle your Christmas tree.

Have a happy and eco-friendly holiday season!