I don’t really do gift guides. I love gifts, and giving gifts, but I try to give gifts all the time, not just on “holidays.” And I find most blogger gift guides to be redundant, and in-authentic (they’re “easy” money-makers) so I avoid doing them.
Also, my husband and I don’t celebrate Christmas (or Hanukah) and we’re not usually around a lot of family during that time, so I just don’t think as much about gifts this time of the year as others do. I’m not a scrooge though…and I always give something to my family and friends who do celebrate Christmas, but the gifts are always very practical and sort of boring. Amazon gift cards, Everlane…random beauty gifts…
But this time of year I do like to mention some things I’ve bought and loved that I think would make great gifts, and the gift guides rather interesting, and unique.
Ecocult’s eco-friendly gift guide is a very good sustainable gifting resource.
Goop’s gift guide, goes without saying, is excellent. I ordered The Thinker Game by The School of Life from Amazon after seeing it there – it should be fun to play with my step-son while he’s here for his break.
Also, I enjoyed Elizabeth Suzann‘s gift guide and the thoughtfulness that went into to each selection. She seems very much enamored with Aesop’s Resurrection hand balm, which I might try when I’m finished with my current favorite, by Osmia Organics. I’m actually using Aesop’s hand sanitizer in the resurrection scent right now and I LOVE IT. It would make a great gift, incidentally – it falls in the wouldn’t-buy-for-yourself category, because $10 for hand sanitizer (I bought mine to try when I was buying one for my fragrance-obsessed friend)?? But those are the types of things that are wonderful gifts I think – thoughtful, and just a little splurgy – something she wouldn’t buy for herself, but you know she would love.
Some things I bought this year that I love and think would make great gifts –
Bonavita temperature control electric kettle : I got to use with my Chemex pour over coffee maker (with these organic cotton filters) earlier this year. I’ve been drinking french press coffee for 20+ years but read that using a filter could help reduce the cholesterol-raising effects of coffee and I need all the help I can get, so decided to try the pour over. And I really love it. The electric kettle though…I’ve used an electric kettle forever, but just a basic one, and didn’t think I needed a temperature control kettle until I tried this. I use it at 200 degrees for coffee, 208 degrees for herbal tea and 176 degrees for green tea, and IT REALLY MAKES A DIFFERENCE. Also, it will hold the temperature pretty steady for multiple refills of hot tea. Anyway, this is another great splurgy she-didn’t-know-she-needed-it-until-she-got-it gift that should be a treasure for many years.
Lindsay Hampton mugs : I have two of her square handle mugs (sold out – but the angle handle mug is available) and have my eye on one of these tumblers – I get mine via Garmentory (if you use my referral link you’ll get a $20 account credit and so will I). I love them because they hold a lot of coffee, and they’re heavy, but really easy to hold; I like a really substantial mug. And they’re nice to look at. Oh, and you know how much I love supporting female independent designers.
Nutribullet : I use this every day to make my CLEAN “smoothie” (I use the vanilla daily shake + 1/2 cup coconut water + 1/2 cup water + 3/4 cup frozen blueberries + two giant handfuls of spinach) and have done for more than a year. It’s easy, easy, easy, and doesn’t take up too much room on the countertop.
Soma sustainable carafe and plant-based water filter : I got this early this year, or late last year, I can’t remember, but I like it a lot. I don’t like the cold water that comes from the refrigerator, and I wanted a water filter that looked “nice” to sit out on the counter, so decided to try this one. I love the way it looks, and the water tastes good. Of course, I also appreciate that the filter is made from coconut shell carbon and plant-based casing instead of plastic.
Boy Smells candles (Gardener & Petal) : I have been burning my “petal” candle morning and evening since I got it recently and I’m obsessed. The scent lingers, and it so beautiful, but not overwhelming. The candles are hand poured and made from a beeswax and coconut wax blend. (And the Gardener scent is 20% of at Urban Outfitters online)
Osmia linden rose hand cream : I got this with my latest Integrity Botanicals order and I really love it. I’ve been trying all sorts of hand creams lately, to find one that is not greasy and absorbs quickly and so far, this is my favorite. And it’s 86% organic.
Tenoverten nail polish: I’ve tried to switch all my beauty products over to natural/organic versions, and nail care has been one of the last holdouts. I was happy to try Tenoverten recently, and love the colors and the way it goes on – this gift set is a nice idea for someone who’s interested, or maybe not yet, in trying non-toxic nail color.
Also, the Amour Vert gift box would make a great gift. The gift box is $100 and includes a striped shirt, chocolate, and some skincare gifts, which is a wonderful introduction to the brand and the company’s ethos I think. They’re also offering 15% off with code HOLIDAYS (through 12/11). I doubt the 15% off is good on the gift box, but aside from that, nearly anything at Amour Vert would make a great gift for the friend, sister, or mother who’s not quite on board with more eco-friendly fashion yet, or don’t have any experience with it, because they have basic-but-interesting styles – in colors – that are quite affordable; they’re a good gateway sustainable brand.
What are you giving for gifts this year???