Everyone loves gifts. Whether it’s for a holiday, birthday or as a wish of congratulations, it is a sign of acknowledgement, love and support. However, more things inevitably mean that there will be more waste, more plastic and more pollution from manufacturing. We also want to avoid giving something that will not turn to waste a few weeks later or months later.
A gift that has a short lifespan is not a feel good factor for us or the environment. Thinking of the impact of gifts after the initial unwrapping and unboxing can make that gift more valuable.
So what can you use as a gift that is gentler on the environment? This is our list of ecofriendly products and gifts that we’ve curated.
25 eco-friendly gift ideas
1. Cork wallet
Made from regenerative cork and eco-friendly materials, cork wallets are becoming a rage nowadays. They can come in a variety of styles and colours to fit different peoples’ needs and preferences.
2. Cotton t-shirts
There are many organic cotton tees that are made from eco-friendly and all natural products. Unlike polyester and rayon, cotton comes from a plant and is not created in a lab or from crude oil.
Both organic and conventional production systems have the benefit of providing manufacturers natural fiber. Conventional cotton yields tend to be higher than organic yields but both are environmentally friendly.
3. Hemp underwear
U-la-la! This is a perfect gift for couples. Even if you’re single, you can choose to gift yourself hemp underwear.
The hemp plant is known for its antibacterial properties and hemp textiles provide natural odor protection. The fabric is also breathable and comfortable when worn. Some have claimed that once they tried hemp underwear, they never went back to what they previously used.
Not only is hemp underwear comfortable, it is long lasting and sustainable type of fabric which makes it perfect for your partner’s eco-friendly lifestyle.
4. Compostable phone case
Almost everyone has a phone case. Instead of purchasing a case made of plastic, there are now completely biodegradable cases in the market.
Compostable phone cases come in many styles and colours to fit phone models so check out your giftee’s phone model before you purchase one.
Audiobooks have practically zero waste. You can give your friend a gift of adventure, romance, magic, mystery or whatever they are into at the moment.
Plus point for audiobooks – your friend can listen to it on the go and it is not necessary to find a quiet corner to read.
6. Compostable cutlery sets
This is perfect for the foodie friend. Cutlery sets now come in compostable forms and are ideal for the food loving and environmentally conscious friend. Just throw it into a compost pot after use.
Inspire a writer with not just a new notebook but one that is made from recycled paper. Many are beautifully designed, sustainable and offer a smooth writing experience on each page.
8. Compostable tableware
No more ziploc! Start giving gifts of compostable tableware to your friends and family. Instead of storing leftover food in ziploc bags made of plastic, you can store in this eco-friendly tableware and containers alike.
It’s great to bring along to parties as well as leftover food is sure to be in abundance.
9. Cork yoga mats
This would definitely be an ideal gift for yogaholics! The majority yoga enthusiasts, also known as yogis, are not aware that yoga mats are usually made from polyvinyl chloride (PVC). PVC is a highly toxic plastic that can be hazardous to the environment.
Introduce cork yoga mats to yogis by giving them These sustainable mats are made from cork that is harvested from the regenerative bark of cork oak trees. This means no trees are harmed during the production of the yoga mats!
10. Cloth diapers
If your friend is a new mom or soon to be mom, replace diaper hampers with cloth diapers as a gift.
We all know that diapers cannot be recycled and goes straight to the trash and landfills. This is when reusable cloth diapers come in. Not only does it help to save your friend a significant amount of money, this one-size-fits-all cloth diaper is environmentally friendly.
11. Bamboo toothbrush
This biodegradable toothbrush would be a perfect eco friendly gift for your friends as everyone needs a toothbrush.
The problem with conventional toothbrushes is that they are made of different types of plastics that cannot be recycled and it takes more than 400 years to decompose!
Unlike conventional toothbrushes, bamboo toothbrushes help a person to lead a healthy, natural lifestyle and at the same time take care of the environment.
12. Organic sun lotion
This eco-friendly type of sunscreen does not contain ingredients that are harmful to the environment as it is formulated to be reef safe.
You could get this gift for your friends that love to travel.
13. Bamboo thermal flask
This thermal flask is suitable and makes a wonderful gift for family, peers and relatives.
This eco-friendly flask can be washed daily as the bamboo wrapping is covered by waterproof wax, therefore preventing mold from growing.
14. Waterproof bluetooth speakers
Nowadays, there are bluetooth speakers designed with FSC certified wood and recyclable aluminium housing. It comes in various sizes and some are small enough to be carried anywhere.
It is definitely an ideal gift for people from all walks of life as it is built with the outdoors in mind and is waterproof.
15. Eco-friendly scrunchies
A perfect gift for your fellow girl friends. Eco friendly scrunchies are less likely to damage hair follicles and are made from cotton fibres, natural rubber and natural dyes. This makes them sustainable and compostable!
16. Magic botanical paper
Usually, cards that are made out of paper are thrown out into the recycling pile or into the rubbish bin. Did you know that 2.5 million trees are cut down every year just to make greeting cards?
A greeting card is just as important as the gift in some cases and instead of using normal paper, try using botanical paper for your greeting cards instead. Do not encourage deforestation as normal paper has been made from wooden trees for centuries.
Botanical papers are made into a beautiful handmade paper that encourage less paper waste and serves its purpose of giving a heartfelt and touching greeting card.
17. Reusable snack bags
For those who love going on roadtrips, receiving this gift would be really appreciated. These are dishwasher-safe bags and come in tonnes of colours and patterns.
As it is reusable, you would reduce the number of plastic containers used.
18. Sustainable sneakers
It is high time to introduce innovative and sustainable gifts that are manufactured completely from recycled materials. Sneakers that are made from recycled materials can be reused or adapted for another purpose when the shoes get worn out.
This gift is suitable for anyone! After all, everyone uses shoes.
19. Recycled crayons
Made entirely from 100 percent recycled crayons, non-toxic crayons are a suitable gift for children. Not only does it give room to spark creativity and imagination for kids, it also spreads awareness on saving the environment and loving on the planet.
20. Eco-Friendly watches
Watches that are made of wood and steel can potentially increase the durability and longevity of the watch.
Unique and environmentally friendly watches come in various designs and can be a beautiful gift for your friends, loved ones and family. Although it is quite a new trend, this is a fashionable and sustainable gift idea.
21. Canvas gift tote bag
Particularly during festive seasons, use a canvas gift tote bag instead of the typical paper gift bags. Canvas bags are usually made of organic cotton that is friendly to the environment and can be used over and over again.
22. Stainless steel water bottles
Stainless steel water bottles are more sustainable as compared to plastic water bottles. Although a fancy, well-decorated plastic bottle is easy to use as they are more lightweight and affordable, it takes a long time to decompose. Invest a little more in stainless steel material to protect everyone from harmful chemicals.
Stainless steel can also be customized according to preferences so you can grab a design that you love and suits the style of your friend.
23. Eco-friendly cookware
Gifting your mother a cookware set will definitely go far in making her happy, especially if she loves working in the kitchen. There are so many aspects to take into account when it comes to cooking, whether the pots and pans are toxic, plastic-free and easy to clean or not is just a few aspects.
Eco-friendly cookware sets are usually made of porcelain, recycled glass or natural sand.
24. Collapsible coffee cup
Coffee lovers celebrate! There are now collapsible, reusable coffee cups that are great as gifts. They are usually designed with a spill-proof lid and have a sturdy base.
25. Eco-friendly coconut shell bowl
This can be a gift for your family. A handmade, eco-friendly coconut shell bowl is the perfect size for breakfast bowls, desserts and soup. Not only is it sustainable due to it being made from coconut husks, it looks pretty beautiful too.
We hope this list is helpful when you purchase a gift. These gifts are not just sustainable, it builds awareness towards the environment and are thoughtful enough to be appreciated.