If, like us, you haven’t quite finished all your Christmas shopping then panic not because we have the ultimate ethical Christmas gift guide right here. Keep reading for gift ideas to win over even the most hard to buy for vegans and ethically-aware loved ones.
For the Foodie
Oh She Glows Cookbook
We all know someone who’d rather settle down with a recipe book than a novel, or whose idea of a great day out is a trip to the local farmer’s market. If someone close to you spends more time in the kitchen than any other room in the house then try this gorgeous vegan cookbook. If you’re in need of something a little more low key, then Yotam Ottolenghi’s Plenty More is available in all good book shops. Packed with toe-curlingly delicious vegetarian recipes, it makes the ideal gift for meat-free friends.
For the Stressed-Out City Dweller
Jiva Healing Rejuvenating Retreats, from £425
The stresses and strains of city living can get on top of even the most zen-minded of us, particularly at this time of year. If you have a partner, family member or really close (and lucky) friend who is looking a little frazzled then a course with Jiva Healing’s team of nutritionists, yoga teachers, massage therapists and consciousness experts is probably the best gift they’ll ever receive. All the retreats, from Devon to Goa, are based on a toxin-free vegan diet supported by a range of therapeutic sessions.
For a more purse-friendly gift you could always book a treatment or pick up a gift voucher at a local spa. Uniquely Organic in Brighton uses only certified organic products and tries to be environmentally sound in all other areas of its business.
For the Fashion Conscious
Beyond Skin – Ellen, £130
There’s nothing more daunting than buying clothing for a fashion maven. The unfathomable idiosyncrasies of another person’s style are usually too much to take on at this time of year. Take it from us, though; every girl needs a pair of Christmassy shoes to festivise (it’s a word) their most reliable black dress. Our Ellen shoes in red are even tied up with a big red bow, to make them unquestionably gift-ready. Sneak into your loved one’s shoe closet to figure out their size and trust in our beautiful vegan suede to win over even the fussiest fashionista.
For the Creative Type
Embroidery and Printmaking Books, £12.99 each
Friends who hand-make gifts rather than panic-buying gift sets in the Boots 3-for-2 offers are the best kind. Help out your crafty companions with a book (or two) from crafting superstars, Super+Super. These creative geniuses are big on upcycling and personalizing, making their books perfect for your eco-conscious friends. Head over to www.missamyphipps.blogspot.co.uk for co-owner Amy Phipps’ dreamy vegan recipes – her vegan banoffee pie is a favourite over here at Beyond Skin HQ.
For the Animal Lover
Whether you’re shopping for a cat person, a dog person or anything in-between, the people behind Ethical Pets will have something to tickle their (or their pet’s) fancy. From vegan dog chews to organic cat food, their online shop strives to make sure that all products are ethically-minded. Many items even have an ‘Ethical Stats’ section detailing what’s great (and sometimes not-so-great) about the product.
For the Decadent Darling
Booja Booja – Gourmet Selection, £16.99
Maintaining a strict vegan lifestyle doesn’t mean missing out on life’s naughtiest pleasures. If you have a vegan friend who loves to indulge their sweet tooth then a box of Booja Booja’s devilishly decadent truffles is an absolute must. Their Gourmet Selection contains 20 truffles to delight any palate – our favourite is the Almond and Sea Salt Caramel truffle.
To make a temptingly indulgent hamper, you could add a bottle (or six) of vegan wine. Seek out http://veganwinesonline.co.uk/ or ask at your local wine merchant.
For the Kids
Buying clothes for kids can be an ethical minefield. Let Frugi take the stress out of it all with their certified organic collections which are made to last and designed to fit over reusable nappies. Their colourful designs are also cheerfully indignant about the increasingly tiresome ‘blue for boys, pink for girls’ tendency that other retailers can’t seem to shake. I defy anyone to leave their website without desperately trying to think of someone to buy the Twinkle Toe Reindeer Tights for.
For the Boys
Citizen watch Chrono Time A-T £479
I think it’s fair to say that boys are a bona fide nightmare when it comes to gifts, so if you want to avoid the umpteenth bicycle accessory/golf equipment/bottle of whisky then why not try hunting down an ethical timepiece? A lot of watch companies are stepping up to the plate when it comes to ethical issues, from the toxicity of materials to sustainable power sources, but if you want to opt for true luxe then head to your nearest Citizen dealer. Citizen is a Japanese brand that began working on eco watches 30 years ago, using a solar conversion panel to create an energy storage cell instead of a battery in the Citizen Eco-Drive. We think that all watches should be solar powered, it makes sense surely!
For the Yoga Bunny
Patagonia Yoga Range, from £32
Here at Beyond Skin Towers we love a bit of yoga, and we’d be extra delighted if we found something from Patagonia’s dreamy yoga range under our trees this Christmas. Since starting up as an ordinary fitness brand, Patagonia soon realized that their environmental footprint was too important to ignore. They are committed to understanding all the many ways in which their business impacts the environment, as well as the workers involved in their supply chain and the health implications of the fabrics they use. Their website is packed with information about what they’re doing already and what they have yet to address.
For the Fragrance Fans
Staying ethically minded when shopping for fragrance can be a minefield, to say the least. The animal testing, questionably sourced ingredients and the impact of packaging and chemicals on the environment are all a concern. The answer is to shop with companies whose raison d’etre is to address these concerns with style and undeniably yummy products. One such company is Eden Perfumes, who are based in Brighton and committed to producing divine fragrances using naturally sourced, non-bunny-tested ingredients and methods.
If your giftee is more of a skincare freak then head over to the Ren website and seek out their gift sets. We are in love with the Morocco Rose Otto range.
Good luck with your ethical Christmas shopping!