The holidays are upon us, and so is our holiday shopping! I love giving gifts - it's one of my favorite things about the holiday season. What's not my favorite, though? The enormous amount of waste that often accompanies the season. In the US alone, from Thanksgiving to New Year's, we'll generate 25-30% more trash, equalling 1 million tons of extra weekly waste! Finding ways to make your holiday season more sustainable (without sacrificing joy & festivities, of course) is a decisive step in living a more eco-conscious lifestyle, and you may even encourage your friends & family to do as well.
This year, I'm expanding my gift guide to include gifts for her, him, home, and some epic sustainable beauty gifts. I have vetted everything on this list for sustainability & ethical practices, and many of these brands are owned by female entrepreneurs I know and love! You'll be able to find something for everyone on this list, but remember that the best gift is one that your loved ones will use. So, in addition to these items, ask them what they need and think about some fun experiences. For instance, my best friend and I often just take each other out for a nice dinner for holidays, Christmas, or a weekend trip. There are many ways to gift sustainably, and I hope this list inspires you to conscious gifting this holiday season & beyond.
Beauty & Self Care
Everyone on my list is getting an Everyday Glo Oil for Christmas! This oil is the first beauty product I launched with Glotanicals and has been a favorite with our customers ever since. Luxurious & extraordinary for all skin types, this oil is perfect for dry winter skin. It is an excellent introduction to sustainable beauty thanks to its ethically sourced ingredients and easy-to-refill bottle.
B-Organic Soap, $7
Beautiful handmade soaps make the best low-waste gifts (especially for stocking stuffers!). I love the B-Organic soaps I found on one of my favorite sustainable online marketplaces, Verte Mode. They've got simple organic ingredients, smell great, are hydrating (not sticky and tacky like cheap soaps), and I love that they come in these beautiful printed canvas bags - no gift wrap required!
Hair oils are a great addition to anyone’s hair care routine - use them to tame flyaways or leave them on overnight as a mask for hydrated and nourished locks. I love the eco-friendly glass packaging and natural ingredients in this one.
A dry brush is a must-have for any self-care queen. This one from SugarSugar is made from sustainably sourced wood and all-natural bristles for a gorgeous, sustainable self-care ritual.
These make the perfect little stocking stuffers and are great for everyone. I like them because they have a great texture, give long-lasting hydration, and are 100% plastic-free, which is SO hard to find for lip products.
Kimono style wrap dresses have been a staple in my wardrobe for years. I find them so elegant, easy to throw on, and unexpected. This year, I’m crushing hard on this gorgeous red version from Zerobarracento, who designs garments to minimize fabric waste.
This sleek pair of sunnies in an excellent rectangular shape is perfect for any fashionista on your list next year. What's even better is that they're stylish AND plastic-free, instead of plastic, they're made from plants! Now, that is chic sustainability.
Who doesn’t love a great bag? I think a nice bright-colored bag is the best way to brighten up any outfit, and right now, red is my favorite! This chic crossbody from Allegorie ticks all the boxes for its timeless, versatile style + sustainable materials. Don’t let the leather look fool you - this bag is made from a plant-based material from upcycled apple peels.
Scarves are one of my favorite items to gift. They’re so versatile and work on everyone. This one is even more special because it’s made from bio-certified regenerative silk and a custom design by Jane Goodall!
These beautiful raw diamond + gold earrings do more than add sparkle to your holiday looks, they support 6 certified UN Climate Change projects.
Keep him warm and stylish with these beanies made with upcycled luxury Italian yarn. Made with high-quality, deadstock Italian yarns, this wool beanie is the perfect knit hat to keep your man cozy and help curb climate change by keeping waste out of landfills.
Men need self-care, too, but they sometimes need help finding the right products. Give him the gift of an epic + sustainable self-care routine with this gorgeous set from Lizush.
Upgrade his Apple watch with a stylish & sustainable upcycled leather band. This one is made from premium upcycled leather scraps to prevent them from ending in landfills. I love the classic cognac brown color.
Every guy needs a pair of stylish & comfy pants for traveling or just chilling at home. This is an excellent option because it looks great and is made from 80% recycled ocean plastic.
My husband swears by these phone wallets because it makes it so easy to grab your phone & go without having a bulky wallet in your pocket. I love this option from Hyer Goods because of the classic style & colors, they are made from scrap cuts of leather that otherwise could have become waste.
For The Home
Darzah Half Apron, $29
This is an excellent gift for your favorite home chef. It’s a chic, timeless style made with upcycled natural fabric. It’s also a gift that gives back and supports women artisans from the West Bank in Gaza.
These gorgeous desk organizers are so multi-purpose. You can use them to clear up space on your desk, hold utensils in the kitchen, or even house a houseplant.
Sustainably chic on the go! These cute reusable straws in a nice carrying case make the perfect stocking stuffer for everyone on your list.
If you’re celebrating at a distance this year and can’t hug your loved ones, send them a warm cup of tea instead! I love pairing a cute mug with a lovely tea box as a cozy + practical gift.
Candles make a great gift, but an even better one if you include the complete package! This toxin-free candle from Orchid + Ash has a cute gold candle wick trimmer and matches.
FLIKR Personal Fireplace, $125
No fireplace? No problem. These small + portable fireplaces bring a warm ambiance to any space, indoor or outdoor. So perfect for cozy winter nights & some s'mores!
Sustainability expert Aalia Mauro founded Verte Mode with the mission of making sustainable living not just a choice but an easily achievable and impactful lifestyle. We bring this vision to life by providing greater access to environmentally friendly products from purpose-driven brands, carefully curated through our exclusive sustainability rating system.
Verte Mode takes care of the vetting process, allowing our customers to indulge in stress-free shopping for a diverse array of genuinely sustainable products, all conveniently housed in one place. As the pioneering tech platform globally to assess products based on sustainability, our entire team's efforts align with the UN Sustainability Goals.
Contributor: Kat Scarlett
Kat Scarlett is a San Francisco Bay Area environmental activist, podcast host, and brand founder. After witnessing the devastation of the 2019 bushfires while living in Australia, she began getting involved in environmental activism work and living a more conscious, low-waste lifestyle. Inspired by this work, she launched sustainable skincare brand Glotanicals in 2021.
The brand prioritizes creating high-quality skincare that appeals to both beauty lovers and eco-warriors alike. In 2023, Kat expanded her advocacy through the Glo Eco podcast, featuring conversations with sustainability experts and entrepreneurs to educate and inspire modern women to live a more sustainable but no less joyful or luxurious lifestyle. She is passionate about a greener future and encourages others to join her in making positive changes for the planet.