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Ethical Christmas Gift Ideas For All!

ethical christmas gift ideas

Looking for ethical Christmas gift ideas? You’ve come to the right place – let me share with you my top gift ideas for 2021.

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I was wondering if it was a bit too early to share my ethical Christmas gift ideas with you.  However, during my trip to the Cairngorms last week I hung about with some reindeer, saw snow, and even came across a pop-up Christmas shop at the top of the Cairn Gorm mountain of all places.  It all left me feeling, dare I say it, a little bit festive, so I thought why not!

I’ve rounded up 37 beautiful and affordable ethical Christmas gift ideas, starting from just £3 and not exceeding £55.  I like to keep things budget-friendly because it really is the thought that counts, which can easily be forgotten at this time of year.  Despite what other gift guides say I always feel that it’s ok to spend only a small amount of money on a well-thought-out ethical gift for your partner or your friends or family.  As such I’ve sourced a range of gifts from a range of independent shops and makers to suit a range of people within a small budget.

Enjoy!

Ethical Christmas Gift Ideas For Her

ethical gift ideas for her

1. This incredibly cute little oak shelf from Etsy is only £10 and made from old rulers.  I’m in love.  You can also purchase the little house in the glass dome too for £16!

2.  These hidden message mittens (£35) are vegan friendly, and are sure to warm anyone’s heart on a cold day.

3. A Nasty Feminist brooch (£15) from Folksy because why not?

4.  These brass and resin panther earrings (£32) from Etsy are sure to make a statement.

5.  Beeswax Candles (£10) from The Future Kept.

6. I am a little bit obsessed with this embroidered succulent terrarium wall garden hanging (£22.99) from Ovo Bloom.  On my Christmas list for sure!

7.  A pretty handmade necklace (£15) from the talented Beth Pegler.

8.  A ‘Chia Me Up’ organic cotton jumper (£45) to bring a small to her face.

9.  The concrete planter making kit (£15) from Sandy Leaf Farm contains everything you need to make a stylish plant pot holder.

10.  A weaving kit from Wool Couture (£15) for wannabe weavers.

11.  Sea Salt Spray (£24) by Herbivore Botanicals, the cult natural beauty favourite.

12.  A pretty triangle hair clip (£10) from Etsy.

13. This Pomegranate Soy Candle (£8) from Olive Soy Candles, is handmade and comes in a sweet cotton bag, ready for gifting.

Ethical Christmas Gift Ideas For Him

ethical christmas gifts for men

I’ve said for him here arbitrarily, but actually, with the exception of the shirt and t-shirt I’d be pretty pleased to receive any of these lovely ethical gifts, so do feel free to disregard these gender labels.

1. An inspiring vegetarian cookbook – Green Kitchen Stories At Home (£15.42) – to help inspire future feasts.

2. A handmade classic bicycle bell (£17.99) from Etsy to help bling his/her bike.

3.  A stylish mug (£32) from The Future Kept to hold the morning’s rocket fuel.  Get 10% off if you sign up to the Future Kept mailing list.

4.  A cycling t-shirt from Not On The High Street (£20), hand printed in Cambridge.

5.  A bee and bug boudoir (£30) for any budding entomologists.

6.  Loose leaf breakfast tea (£3) in a brown paper bag, because thoughtful gifts don’t have to be pricey.

7.  A Starling lino print (£12) from Etsy, for bird lovers.

8.  Elephant Gin (£29.25) – really tasty gin that donates proceeds from the sale of each bottle towards elephant conservation charities.

9.  A cosy hat (£30) from Finisterre.

10.  A check shirt from Thought Clothing (£49.90) because can you ever have too many check shirts?  I think not.

11.  Finally, a chicken-themed enamel mug (£10) from Etsy, for gardening, allotmenteering, camping, and all-round outdoor adventuring.

Eco-Friendly Gift Ideas For Kids

ethical gift ideas for kids

1. Ethical and organic unisex pyjamas (£30) from The Bright Company.  Pyjamas (and books) and my number one to go gift for kids.  They rarely go wrong.

2.  A set of 3 wooden elephants (£16.50) from Sarah and Bendrix, for a kids toy that’s easy on the eyes but still lots of fun for little kids.

3. The cutest t-shirt with an important message (£19.72).  Also available in grown-up sizes, if you’re as smitten as I am.  PS: this item ships from the States, so allow postage time.

4.  A sweet dolls house (£55) from Olli Ella.

5.  The sweetest animal mittens (£19.50) from Not On The High Street.

6.  An Explorers Atlas (£15.91) for inquisitive minds.

7.  Bright ethical wellies made in France (£30) for puddle jumping adventures.

8.  A book to inspire – Emmeline Pankhurst for kids (£10.42). There are heaps of other inspiring women in the Little People, Big Dreams series to choose from too. These include Ada Lovelace, Rosa Parks, Marie Curie, Maya Angelou, Frida Kahlo, Ella Fitzgerald, and more!

9.  A cat cushion (£20) that’s purr-fect for relaxing on.

10.  A colour in cardboard igloo (£12) from Hobbycraft.  Kids can draw on it, play in it, and when they are done it can be dismantled and placed in the recycling.  I got one for my kids in the October holidays and it was an instant hit!

11.  A lovely unisex wool jumper from Tootsa (£38) available in a range of colours.  I have bought a couple of jumpers from Tootsa over the years, and they have now been handed down to my youngest.  They wash so well and are so durable.

12.  A sweet little wooden bunny necklace (£12) from Etsy.

13.  Finally, a Botanicum Activity Book (£6.92) for a fun look at plants.  The illustrations in this are something else.

More Christmas Gift Ideas

I have more Christmas gift ideas from my archives:

I also have some non gift Christmas ideas if gifts aren’t your things, and some homemade Christmas gift ideas if you’re after something a little less commercial.

Home, Home and Garden

Ten Ways to Reduce Plastic Waste & Help The Environment

easy ways to reduce plastic waste

Looking for some tips to reduce plastic waste?  Right this way, my friend!

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Plastic and plastic waste is pervasive.  Just this week it was reported that scientists have found plastic particles in tap water around the world.  This is a pretty horrible thought, don’t you think?

If you’re looking to cut down on the amount of single-use plastic in your life then I’ve put together ten easy ways to reduce plastic waste.  These action points can be done without too much thought or effort.  

Ten Easy Ways to Reduce Plastic Waste

As with anything, reducing plastic waste is about changing habits.  Therefore it can take time for those habits to stick.  My best advice is to go easy on yourself and take things at a comfortable pace:

1. Ditch the straws

british gins to try

I’m personally not a massive straw user, but my kids love a straw.  What I have found they are more likely to drink a cup of water if they have a straw.  Kid logic!  We have managed to switch to stainless steel straws* without complaint.  If you are drinking something a little thicker than water or juice (or gin!) – say a smoothie – you might want to invest in a little brush to keep your straws clean.  Otherwise, you can just pop them in the dishwasher or hand wash in the sink.  Easy peasy!

2. Switch to reusable sanitary protections

There are heaps of great reusable sanitary protection out there, allowing you to find the right option for you.  I have been trying to get to grips with Intimina’s Lily Cup*, but if cups aren’t for you there are a plethora of options, from washable sanitary towels to sponges.  If this swap isn’t for you, then there are more accessible eco-friendly period products that you can try.

3. Say no to plastic bags

With the 5p carrier bag charge already seeing impressive results it seems so many people are ditching the carrier bags.  I admit it can be tricky to always remember to keep a bag on you.  I try and keep a small foldable shopping bag in my regular bag, and also keep shopping bags in the boot of my car so that I’m less likely to be caught out.

4. Skip the disposable coffee cup

Disposable coffee cups are notoriously difficult to recycle so if you’re a regular coffee on-the-go drinker consider investing in a reusable coffee cup.  There are heaps of great options out there – from glass cups* to foldable cups*.  Many coffee shops also offer a discount if you bring your own cup, meaning your reusable cup will eventually pay for itself.

5. Carry a bottle of water

zero waste lunch supplies

One of the easiest ways to reduce single-use plastic is to switch to a reusable water bottle.  It doesn’t have to be anything expensive or fancy, any old bottle will do.  I was sent a Jerry Bottle which I loved so much that I bought one for my partner too.   But pretty much every supermarket and high street sell reusable bottles.  Whilst it is an easy swap, like reusable bags, the biggest challenge is all about remembering to refill your bottle and put it in your bag every day!

6. Make your own cleaning products

best green cleaning recipes

A lot of our plastic waste came from cleaning product bottles.  However, now that we make our own cleaning products, that plastic waste has reduced.  I’ve got a lots of recipes in my archives, and I’ve even written a book on the subject!

7. Green your beauty routine

Ten easy ways to reduce single use plastic waste

There are a few articles in my archives on how to reduce the plastic from your beauty routine.  This post is a great starting point as is this more up-to-date post.  This post on how to make your own reusable cotton wool pads is also pretty handy when you are cutting out the use of disposable wipes or cotton rounds.

8. If you have kids, give reusable nappies a go

washable nappies

Reusable nappies are the most amazing thing ever.  Gone are the days of folding and pinning. Washable nappies are so easy to use and cut down on waste big time.  While the upfront investment can be high – around £200 for a full set) at around £5 for a pack of disposable nappies at a time, savings are soon made.  This is especially true if you go on to have another child.

My youngest is now 20 months old and as this is the second time we’ve used the nappies we recouped our investment quite some time ago.  In fact, we are well into the saving money stage.

The important thing to remember is it doesn’t have to be all or nothing with reusable nappies.  If you don’t want to use them when you go out or when you go on holiday then no worries – just supplement them with disposable nappies and you are still reducing your plastic waste.  We use a disposable at night time, and if we go away overnight and I don’t consider that a failure by any means.

9. Consider your food storage

beeswax food wrap diy

There are heaps of eco-friendly alternatives to cling film from using what you have in your kitchen (from jars to Tupperware, to plates and even saucepan lids!).  You can even make beeswax wraps (or buy them online*) for a true alternative to cling film.

10. Skip the disposable cutlery

Lastly, it’s a great idea to get in the habit of carrying some cutlery in your bag with you for when you’re having lunch on the go.  A simple camping set is handy to carry and inexpensive to pick up. Or there are some lovely bamboo options available online if you’re looking for something a bit more lightweight.

Any tips on how you reduce plastic waste in your home?  

ps: check out this book on How To Go Plastic Free for easy actionable tips.