Whether you have decided to do your part to make the holidays a little "greener", or if you are having a hard time finding something that you eco-conscious friends or family members will appreciate, we are here for you.
As purveyors of an ecostore, every year we get people coming through our doors, explaining that they are looking for something for their colleague, friend, parent, child, or sibling. They want to get something useful, unique, sustainable, and most importantly, valued by the recipient.
"What would you recommend"?
Well we thought you would never ask!
Actually we did.
And that's why we have this handy dandy list ready for you to peruse and help with your holiday shopping needs. Consider it a map to the "greenest Christmas list" you have ever had.
1. Wooden Toys
Let's start with the easy ones: kids. Yes, it is true, kids love toys. However, a lot of today's toys are made with various toxic chemicals and out of unsustainable materials. We love the natural beauty of wood. It's durable, non-toxic, and the companies that we stock produce their toys from ecologically harvested trees and often with a social initiatives to boot! Though they might seem simple compared to modern, battery-powered toys, they stimulate kids and their imaginations in a healthy way. Wooden toys also grow with the little owners, starting off as a healthy chew toy and eventually become the enabler of a wildly adventurous game. We suggest companies like Holztiger Wooden Toys, Plan Toys, Hape Toys, Grimm's Toys, and Tegu Blocks.
2. Soy Candle
Candles make wonderfully versatile gifts. They are consumable, don't expire, and add some "magic" to even the most mundane days. Soy based candles are much healthier than paraffin wax ones, and better for the environment as well. Choose ones that are naturally scented and give off an aroma that you think your gift recipient will like. It's a lovely gift for coworkers, teachers, mother-in-laws, and more.
3. Holiday Gift Basket
Sometimes you just need some of the guesswork taken out of the gifting equation. In that case, you can't go wrong with a Holiday Gift Basket. Pre-assembled gift packages full of wonderful goodies like soaps, lip balms, candles, salts, and more are perfect for your special someone. We carry a variety with different themes and price points so that you can find one for almost everyone on your list!
4. Salts & West Sweater
Does your Secret Santa love Canadian fashion? Salts & West is a West Coast brand that makes comfortable but stylish staples from organic bamboo. Our top pick is the super soft wrap sweater.It's a cozy look that you can wear to the office or over your pajamas during Christmas Day breakfast.
5. Lemon Lily Tea
Tea is always the answer. It's what you want to drink on a cold day, a hard day, a relaxing day- basically everyday. Lemon Lily tea is a very high quality, all- natural, organic tea mixed in Toronto that comes in beautiful tins, perfect for gift giving. Get an assortment of holiday flavours and your kind thoughtfulness will live on for as long as the tea lasts.
6. WWF Swell Bottle
Have an animal lover on your Christmas list? Get them one of these limited edition WWF S'well bottles. Every bottle purchased helps to reduce the amount of plastic in our landfills and waterways, while also supporting urgently needed programs to protect our oceans. And if you don't know firsthand, we are sure that you have heard of the great quality and longevity of S'well bottles. It's a gift they will use for years and years, hopefully on a daily basis.
7. NEOB Lavender Products
This photo of NEOB Lavender - Niagara Essential Oils & Blends is courtesy of TripAdvisor
We are lucky to have some local lavender farms, one of which supplies their all-natural fare to our store. From soaps, hand creams, mists and more, all the products are based on the natural oils that the farm extracts from their harvested lavender. If you have a lavender lover in the family (I certainly do!), you could really score some points with them by giving something so local and natural.
8. Vegan Leather Accessories
Real leather might not align with your eco-values, but there are many vegan leather alternatives out there. We love getting new accessories in from Pixie Mood and Mat & Nat. Their purses and wallets have been a hit with our customers every year, as they are super stylish, durable, and are a safe bet with everyone, whether they like leather or not. Oh, have a mom-to-be on the list? We just got Matt & Nat's diaper bags in and don't think that anyone would every suspect that there could be diapers in there. So chic and sophisticated.
9. Blanket Scarf
An oversized scarf is like a hug on a cold day. It can be worn inside with a sweater, outside on a coat, double up as a blanket, shawl, or anything you want, really. To keep our options "green", we stock Canadian made brands like Buttercream as well as fair-trade alpaca ones from Highland Trading Co. It's a wonderful winter-themed gift that will certainly get a lot of use right away.
10. Gift Card
And of course, the humble gift card. How could we go this far without mentioning the reusable plastic card that requires little if any wrapping and essentially ensures that your recipient likes and uses their gift? Show that you know them a little more intimately by aligning the card of your choice with their values, taste, and style. But since we are talking about Eco conscious people here, we can't help but mention our own ecostore, but no matter which gift card you choose, the chances are that you will minimize waste and improve your gift-giving ranking.
Christmas is about sharing the love. Don't forget to show the earth a little love as well ;)