It’s that time of year again and whilst consumerism is increasingly on the rise and materialism is frequently being pushed by huge corporations through the saturation of media, I feel that, as the founder of Sincerely Essie, I have a responsibility to educate and inform my audience about supporting smaller businesses and shopping for an ethical gift this Christmas; especially with the current uncertain circumstances.
Here at Sincerely Essie, we have a commitment to championing women entrepreneurs and ensuring that this little community can come together for the good of our planet. So, this year, we’ve worked closely with a few women-owned businesses again to create this ethical gift guide; products sold not only help to establish the business further, but they also support charitable causes, use sustainable materials or back vulnerable groups making a huge difference with just one purchase!
M & J Ethical Luxury creates a stylish range of candles where ethical practices, sustainability and quality play a major role in the business; from sourcing of materials to design and production. The unique scents are inspired by travels around the world in the hope that they conjure favourite memories of wonderful places and shared moments. M & J Ethical Luxury also donates a portion of proceeds from every sale to Nia, a UK-based women’s charity, which provides services to end violence against women and children.
EarthBits offer a range of eco-friendly alternatives to everyday products in a bid to promote recycling and live a plastic-free life. From vegan deodorants and reusable sanitary towels to natural toothpaste and organic soap nuts, all products from EarthBits are fully investigated to ensure they are sustainable in order to minimise damage to the environment and protect the planet. The plastic-free shaving sets would make the perfect gift for those who are looking to lead a zero waste life.
Creative Nails is a small female-owned business which started off by demonstrating nail art tutorials online and gradually expanding to providing a bespoke service offering luxurious hand painted, press-on false nail sets with options to choose nail shapes and lengths. The 24-set false nails make the perfect gift for beauty lovers, however if it’s a custom design you’re looking for, Creative Nails are happy to help. Gift sets come in 100% recyclable boxes with eco-friendly inserts as well.
Nightire was born to create sleepwear which aids sleep and is beautiful enough to wear out and about with limited edition prints and styles. Made of 100% organic bamboo, Nightire sleepwear is soft, durable and luxuriously comfortable making it extremely sustainable. The bamboo material also gives the PJs a moisture wicking, antibacterial and non-irritant quality perfect to wear in all temperatures. Nightire have also pledged 10% of their profits from their sleepwear sets to fund bed kits for kids in need through SCAW charity.
Edible Museum specialises in beautifully recreating museum artefacts using high-quality Belgian couverture chocolate. Each and every item is handmade and hand painted making them unique, edible artwork which is sure to blow your recipient’s mind and wow their taste buds. Edible Museum has worked with many high profile brands in the past such as Hamleys, Paramount Pictures, Sega, The Odeon and more. Every purchase from the Edible Museum helps reinvest funds in sustainable cocoa farming making it an ethical gift to give this festive period.
Coffee & Kin has a simple mission; to recreate the coffee shop experience at home. However, in a bid to prevent waste, it offers compostable and eco-friendly coffee capsules as well as a range of freshly roasted coffee beans. Coffee & Kin has also proudly partnered with The Blurt Foundation, a charity which helps young people and adults affected by depression, in order to support their work through donating a portion of their profits. The Coffee & Chocolate Box is the perfect gift for any caffeine addict who also likes to indulge in high-quality artisan chocolate.
Lauren Marie Studio is a self-titled small business specialising in illustration and calligraphy inspired by the natural world, décor and the Arts. From notebooks to letter writing sets as well as one-off art pieces, there is bound to be an item to make a special gift this festive period. Wherever possible, recycled, cruelty-free, eco-friendly and vegan materials are used in the production and delivery of items making it a great sustainable gifting option.
Good Things seeks out ethical and sustainable toys that support charities, empower people and protect the planet. The handmade Toy Cooking Set created by Weaving Hope makes the perfect gift for little chefs and is Fairtrade-certified, both vegan-friendly and eco-friendly as well as coloured with non-toxic dyes. The Green Toys Train is another eco-friendly gift option, made from recycled water bottles and coloured with bright mineral based dyes, making it fun, safe and durable. Good Things also offer the Natural Earth Paint Kit Experience for budding artists which includes eco-friendly natural paints certified organic and non-toxic as well as a bamboo-handled paintbrush with corn fibre bristles and recycled aluminium ferules.
Neve’s Bees creates all its products from 100% natural ingredients – premium local beeswax, organic, sustainably-sourced butters and oils as well as natural essential oils. The Dog Products Gift Box is perfect to pamper your pooch with a ‘lick-safe’ paw and nose balm to soothe dry/cracked pads and give the snout a little TLC. Plus they’re packaged in recyclable tins, card and linen packaging making them eco-friendly too.
Gus and Bella are a UK subscription and gift box to treat both cats and their humans with a shared experience. They include two to four fun, tasteful and on-trend gifts such as cat themed home décor and self care products as well as a chocolate treat alongside quality, handmade cat toys from independent brands and natural, grain-free cat food samples making the box a sustainable and ethical option this festive period. Gus and Bella also aim to donate a portion of proceeds to support cat charities – preorder the ‘Santa Paws’ box now!
To conclude this gift guide, I hope you consider buying from one of the aforementioned brands this Christmas, because not only will you be supporting a small business but you will also be helping the environment, advocating ethical practices and aiding various charities with your purchase.