Your Ultimate Guide to Chic, Ethically-Conscious Gifts This Christmas
Cruelty-Free, Vegan Perfume – Lima, Basil & Mandarina Perfume – £18.00
First up, we have my favourite eco-perfumery Eden Perfumes in Brighton, England. Every fragrance is handcrafted in the UK and made from vegan essential oils. It is also way more affordable than mainstreams perfumes AND it’s better for the planet! The scents are divine and they have the handiest tool on their website that lets you type in any of your favourite designer perfumes of your choosing (think Tom Ford, Missoni, Isabel Miyaki) and it will give you the Eden, ethical equivalent of that scent! Try it here on the home page of their website.
My personal favourite is the Lima, Basil & Mandarina, which is Unisex. It is the freshest scent.
- Handmade in the UK
- Eau du Parfum, NOT eau de toilette (more intensity, purer perfume)
- 100 % vegan essential oils
- Both perfumes and aftershaves cater for men and women – something for everyone
Philanthropic, Eco-friendly Samanata Yogi Dark Coral Leggings – £29.50
I am BEYOND EXCITED to tell you about these leggings. Samanata Yogi (‘Samanata’ means ‘equality’ in Hindi) is an ethical yoga-wear brand that has philanthropy and minimising activewear’s impact on the environment at its core – they choose recycled and eco-friendly fabrics to craft their leggings, and the donate 10% of profits to PROJECT FUTURES, a not-for-profit organisation that works towards the eradication of human trafficking and empowerment for its survivors. Plus, their designs are gorgeous and they are AFF.ORD.AB.LE. And that’s what we love.
- Supports local suppliers
- Made from recycled and eco-friendly fabrics
- 1o% of profits go to Project Futures
- Printed and manufactured in the UK (or Australia) by well-established, family-run businesses
Bags Made From Recycled Materials – Matt & Nat Mitsuko Chilli Bowling Bag – £120
How gorgeous is this? I’ve just chosen my favourite from the collection, there are loads more. Matt & Nat are an environmentally-friendly accessories designer who are making as much of their products as possible from recycled cork, nylon, plastic bottles, and even bicycle tyres. All designed in Canada and produced in China in small factories that they have long-standing relationships with, ensuring transparency at each part of the supply chain.
Biodynamic, Family-Farmed Ingredients for Luxurious Hair Care – Oway Glossy Nectar Spray – £12.50 – £17.50
Okay, so this might be a little weird to put on a Christmas gift list, but I promise that whoever you buy this for will LOVE you and thank you for it loads. Oway is a family business that creates hair products from natural, ethically-sourced ingredients, most of which is grown on their biodynamic farm in Bologna, Italy. They do hair care for every hair type, so check out their website for all their luxurious products.
5. Kitsch Garden-Inspired & Up-cycled Vintage Furniture
Bring the Garden To Your Home with these Botanically-Inspired Upcycled Pieces – £145 – £350
Who gives furniture for Christmas? I mean, I would if I wasn’t so bad at wrapping , also if I could afford them. But STILL, this might give you an idea for a little up-cycling you’d like to do in your own home for Christmas or for a loved one’s Christmas present – re-vamping their favourite piece of furniture? That sounds like an unusual and inexpensive way to give a gift. Plus, you’re recycling some furniture – win, win!
Here’s another little idea below!
The Perfect Gift for Those That ‘Do’ – National Trust or English Heritage Membership 1 Year Subscription – From £3.95 – £5.40 a month
The National Trust is committed to preserving and restoring our gorgeous countryside and historic buildings. I am very lucky to already have one of these – this is a total staple of any explorer’s diet – you’ll see that many of my posts in ‘Come Away With Me’ are inspired by trips I’ve made to National Trust properties around the country! Perfect for those that like to get out and about.
You can also go for the English Heritage Members Pack, which is next on my list! £3.75 per month.
100% Natural, Vegan and cruelty free lip gloss with Organic & Fair Trade Shea Butter & Jojoba oil to moisturise and protect lips – £12.95
I’m really having such a moment with lip gloss right now, it’s very wintry and glossy, but also makes me feel as though I’m 15 again. Still, PHB Ethical Beauty’s Beauty and Skincare range is FOREVER CHIC, and I love that it is a family-run business with 15% of all profits being donated to charity. Proof that eco-friendly beauty and skincare products are both stylish and affordable. They also do a great skincare range for men.
Rose & Camellia ‘Nourish’ Skincare Beauty Box – Handmade in rural England. 100% natural. 87% organic ingredients. – £48
Okay, so I have a little secret to let you in on. Botanicals Organic Skincare is the best decision I ever made for my skin. Seriously, I have been using it for about 7 years and I have never found anything that could match it. I’m putting my favourite go-to product of theirs on the Ethical Girl Christmas Gift List because, out of every amazing product on the Botanicals range, I find it is the most important and the most versatile for my skin. The ‘Nourish and Cleanse Melt: Rose and Camellia’ not only removes make-up by just rubbing it directly onto the skin (and eyes), it also acts as a cleanser, a moisturiser, a repair and care ointment, an overnight balm, AND I have successfully used it to reduce the appearance of scars.
Can you tell I’m a little bit obsessed?!
Trainers made from organic cotton, wild rubber from the Amazon and vegetable-tanned leather – £125
So I never usually wear trainers, but these are hands-down my first choice if I did. My only problem would be to choose from their many, many pairs of gorgeous shoes! AND they’ve started doing bags! All made with vegetable-tanned leather by small producers, the cotton is organic and comes from a co-operative of cotton farmers in North-East Brazil, and the rubber is natural rubber from the Amazonian rainforest, the only place in the world where rubber trees grow wild. Veja’s mission by buying through premium-paid ‘rubber tappers’ is to help discourage land clearance leading to deforestation. Read more about Veja here.
A fairtrade, handwoven pashmina shawl from likemary, 100% merino wool with frayed fringing at each end – £50
I’ve had my eye on likemary ever since I started this blog back in 2015, and I’ve coveted one of her Handwoven Blanket Scarfs for just as long. All their blanket scarves are handwoven using traditional methods and their weavers are part of a cooperative society that has been going since 1944 in an effort to keep the handloom industry alive. A lot of likemary clothes are made from excess fabric too, which means that every item you buy will be unique. AND likemary is based in my favourite part of London, Home away from home, Brick Lane. What more could you want?!
Organic Haircare Products, Soya and H20 Colour Treatments – Prices range – 10 % student discount
Gosh, I’m giving away my beauty tips today! Well, it’s worth it. I’ve been coming to this salon for three years now and anyone who knows me knows that my hair means A LOT to me, even if I move I’m still coming back here! Natural Colour Works specialises in using organic, H20 and Soya based products to care for, groom and colour your hair – I’ve had my own highlights and cuts done here and I can honestly say that it is affordable, even for a student like me. Incidentally, it’s also where I heard about the magnificent Oway products mentioned above!
Natural Colour Works can be found at:
46 Berwick Street, London
Everything the aspiring ethical consumer needs to know – essential reading for anyone who is interested in transparent business practices – £29.95
Comprehensive product guides, environmental ratings for over 40,000 companies, fascinating editorial content on everything from the best leggings to buy to where the metals in your camera phone are mined – AND every Gift subscription includes sponsorship of an organic olive sapling in Palestine! I mean…
Social enterprise-inspired shirt made in the USA – £40
To go with your Samanata Yogi Leggings perhaps? goodhYOUman. manufactures all of its products in the United States and shirt designs are a collaborative project via social media – the design that wins gets produced and a portion of the sales goes towards the cause of the collaborators’ choice. A little social enterprise to dust off this cheeky little shirt.
100% ethically sourced essential oils and soy wax candle – ‘Inspire’ from AromaWorks (Bergamot, Black pepper, Geranium, and Lime) – £32
Mine is currently happily burning away in my room as I write this, giving off its divine smell. All candles are handmade in England with soy wax and 100% essential oils sourced here in the UK, with the exception of the more exotic scents, where the oils are sourced ethically in their home countries. There are no synthetic chemicals or pesticides used, no products are tested on animals and all are safe for the environment. AromaWorks have expanded to include a full skincare, Bath & Body, and home fragrance range.
Perfect stocking gifts – GUILT-FREE, SNACKABLY-SIZED RAW CHOCOLATE PIES! – £2.35 per bar, or select from their amazing gift options
These are actually diet-friendly raw chocolate bars that have none of the nasties and loads of nutrients, so you can indulge in them even if you’re trying to lose weight. This is perfect for me because it is nigh-on impossible to get me out of bed unless there is chocolate somewhere in the house, which isn’t exactly a great strategy for weight loss. I first came across these in a tiny local produce shop in Cornwall whilst on holiday a few years ago and I’ve been hooked ever since! All are handmade by the family and their helpers in their studio in the little hamlet of Trencom, Cornwall. They do loads of amazing flavours, whilst staying gluten-, sugar- and dairy-free. Yum.
Cruelty-Free, Vegan, Naturally Coloured Nail Polishes from SpaRitual – £10.95
The perfect winter warmer nail colour and with all the added benefits of being one of the most environmentally-friendly nail polishes on the market – all SpaRitual nail elixirs are 100% DBP-, toluene- and formaldahyde-free. All ingredients are vegan and cruelty-free, naturally coloured and free of synthetic dyes. The last I heard, a significant quantity of their packaging is manufactured using recycled products. Even better.
Sheer black English Lace bra and sheer lace knickers with vintage velvet flowers and soft sheer tulle drape. Handmade in Hackney, London. – £176
Lingerie of the goddesses – this luxury, handmade underwear and swimwear brand is ‘Made in England’ underwear at its very finest. Located in an old Turkish Delight factory in Hackney, North London, Buttress & Snatch don’t hold stock – everything is made to order, cutting out mass production and ensuring high quality and craftsmanship that you can actually trace. They also buy all their material from UK suppliers and state that they try to aid the UK manufacturing industry as much as they can. The first flat I ever lived in in London was in Hackney and that was 8 years ago, so I feel even more of an affinity with this local London lingerie brand!
Also, can we just take a moment to note that not only is this brand transparent in its manufacturing and sourcing practices, and bringing lingerie craftsmanship back to the UK rather than outsourcing cheap labour abroad, it is also THE MOST GORGEOUS, SEXY UNDERWEAR I HAVE EVER SEEN IN MY LIFE??!!! Hats off you, Buttress & Snatch! Check out their full range here and I guarantee you will not leave their site without bookmarking 3 things you want!
‘Angel Shark’ vegan, hand-blended, chunky biodegradable glitter with 10% of all profits donated to ocean sustainability charity, Oceans.Care – £5.99
I am a total glitter-fiend, but recently glitter has come under attack by scientists who say that it should be banned on environmental grounds. So you can imagine my delight when The Mermaid Cave popped up on my feed as a glitter boutique that is conscious of the need for glitter to be biodegradable and thus safe for the environment. The Mermaid Cave are also particularly active as a company in terms of ocean conservation, explicitly aligning themselves with green business practices and eco-friendly products, with 10% of all profits donated to Oceans.Care, who are leading the movement to prevent plastic pollution and clean up our oceans. Read about their proud sustainability efforts and the difference they are making in our world here.
Now to get on with my own Christmas shopping!