Shop ethical – do good, feel good
Every couple of years I bring you a list of ethical gifts to buy your loved ones, or treat yourself to at Christmas. This year, I visited two gift fairs to do my research – the Christmas in July Festival and Spirit of Christmas.
Here is a handpicked selection of gifts, which are made or sourced by companies using sustainable resources, leaving a minimal carbon footprint, or giving money back to worthy causes.
They’ve been selected for their high quality as well as high morals. So you can feel good about your festive shopping and shop with a clear conscience.
So Just Shop sells beautiful hand-made products from women artisans in developing countries. The company works directly with women to help them gain financial independence. The company provides training and support for their businesses, gives the artisans a higher percentage of the profit and allows them to sell direct to consumers around the world.
When you buy from the So Just Shop website, you’re helping some of the world’s most vulnerable communities build better lives for themselves.
The products are unique and beautiful. This is the Kavita Necklace made in Jaipur.
Sourced by Oxfam sells brand new ethical and sustainable products. From hand-crafted homewares and jewellery, to beeswax wraps and reusable coffee cups, they are created by artisans across the world. 100% of the profit from the range goes to Oxfam’s work worldwide, helping more people overcome poverty.
The Den Kit Co was started by Kay and Jo, passionate advocates of outdoor and creative play and both Forest School practitioners. Den Kits encourage children to play outside. There are kits for bug spotters, tree planters, pirates and den makers, with prices ranging from £5 to £60. They’re made without plastic, batteries, or complicated instructions. This is just simple, creative, outdoor fun.
Perkypants are pants for men and women, made from trees. Austrian beech trees to be precise. Contrary to what you might think, these pants are really soft. The manufacturing process is kinder to the planet than traditional materials, using 20 times less water to produce than cotton.
Perkypants’ factories limit the negative impact on the environment, as well as being happy and positive places to work.
Origin is an organic cotton clothing company which sends 100% of its profits to Africa. Their t-shirts and sweatshirts are made in wind-powered factories, using water-based dyes. Fabrics are hand-woven and hand-dyed in Africa.
The company’s profits fund community projects, supporting tribes living where the fabric originated. Projects range from sanitation and healthcare training, to female empowerment through education.
Luxtra bags are made from vegan and sustainable materials, using some of the most innovative leather alternatives on the market. Materials include pineapple leaf fibres and apples. This cruelty-free brand as confirmed by PETA, endorses slow fashion by creating timeless products. They donate 1% of total sales to environmental causes, whether they make a profit or not. These are seriously beautiful bags.
Rhodes Skincare has an excellent ethical pedigree. Their packaging is 100% sustainable and renewable, using carbon negative sugar cane in their bottles and tubes. The products are vegan and use Plant Cell Technology, so that only a few millimetres of an original plant species is used, to produce thousands more.
Arthouse Unlimited is a charitable collective of artists living with complex epilepsy and learning disabilities. The artists work with instructors to create unique art. Arthouse Unlimited turns the art into product packaging and gifts for sale. Offering a sense of purpose lies at the heart of the charity’s philosophy.
Beautiful products include cards, soaps, chocolate, mugs and tea towels. 100% of sales revenue sustains the enterprise, enabling it to expand and evolve.
Arena Flowers sells ethical flowers from Fairtrade certified farms. Every time you order from Arena, they will plant a tree in a country experiencing deforestation. They will also plant a tree if you subscribe to their mailing list, to restore and grow healthy forests and help combat climate change. Arena works exclusively with partners who help improve workers’ welfare and their environment.
They have removed single-use plastics from their whole supply chain, using only organic and compostable materials.
This is Leo’s box, a subscription box started by 16 year old Lysander, who has a passion for helping the environment. He has developed two boxes – home and beauty – full of eco-friendly, plastic free and mostly plant based products.
We all know there is so much waste at Christmas. It’s worth shopping around for companies putting something back into their communities and the environment.
If you have a favourite ethical brand which you would like me to include, please comment below. I hope you’ll check out these wonderful companies, doing great things for the planet.
Happy ethical shopping!
Much love, Vx
[Disclosure: I have worked with Leo’s Box in the past to run a competition on Instagram. I feature So Just Shop every year, having received a lovely necklace from them four years ago. No payment or any other gifts were received for this post.]