It’s Earth Day! And what would a gift-giving blog be without a few eco-friendly gift ideas for the occasion? I know…technically Earth Day isn’t a traditional present-exchanging holiday, and there is something sanctimonious about dedicating one mere day to the place that’s nice enough to let us be long-term house guests, but here’s a cool way to approach it. Use Earth Day as an opportunity to encourage green-minded thinking well past April 22nd. Pick up a gift and share it with a friend, neighbour, coworker, or even your kid, and you’ll be one step closer to thanking Ms Earth well past ‘her day’.
To assist you in your green-giving needs both today and in the long-term, I’m putting the spotlight on Edmonton-based Carbon Environmental Boutique. I’m actually kind of in love with owners / married couple Allison & Marc’s philosophy when it comes to the way they stock and manage their store. In a nutshell, when they became parents, they took a long, hard look at the things that filled their home, and began to ask those pesky questions most of us are content to tuck in the dark recesses of our brain. Questions like – just what’s in this paint? Is what we’re using to clean our home actually harmful to our bodies? What our indoor air quality like as a result of the products in our home?
Their approach was actually pretty straightforward: find non-toxic, non-harmful products for their home, which in turn leads to a sort of reverse, simple environmentalism – after all, if you’re not buying toxic products, you’re not encouraging their development either. It’s a really smart way to think about ‘green living’, in that you can take the small area you actually control – your home – and not only have an impact on the environment, but make a better life for your family. With that in mind, here are five of my fave finds for Earth Day (and beyond) gift-giving for you guys today!
Ever Bamboo Room Deodorizer – $11.95
How’s this for nifty? These handy satchels are packed with quick-growing, odour & moisture-absorbing bamboo charcoal pieces that tuck into dark, dank corners in your home – like the coat room, basement, bathrooms, or pet areas – to keep it smelling fresh for up to a year. Consider the end-to-end green factor here: the bamboo charcoal the packets are stocked with can grow two feet in a single day, so rest assured you aren’t consuming a non-renewable resource, and once it loses its potency, simply recycle or compost it. Great option if you have a friend that’s moved into a new home, gotten a new pet, plays sports, or has a diaper-wearing baby. Check out the full collection of deodorizers here.
Q Collection Crib Bedding Set – $450
Well okay, this is a leap up price wise, but consider it if you’re a doting grandparent, or organizing a baby shower for a sister or love-you-like-a-sister best friend and want to do a group gift. Available in lush watermelon and soothing sky blue, these mix & match reversible sheet sets manage to mix modern, adult design sensibilities with kid-friendly theming. Organic cotton and a reusable cotton gift tote pretty much guarantee any new little arrival a head start on being green.
The Laundress Collection – $11.95+
A lot has been said about the harmful toxins, phosphates, and chemicals in commercially-produced laundry detergent that are not only harmful to our skin and bodies, but the waterways they eventually filter into. Enter the two women that created The Laundress, a line of specialty products that are, naturally, biodegradable, recyclable, filled with natural essential oils, and free from dyes, additives, allergens, phosphates, and parabens. Oh, and they’ve pretty much eliminated the need for dry cleaning in 99% of cases. In other words, they’ve basically made cleanliness officially next to (green) godliness. To cap it off, the products are simply more effective and concentrated. Each formula is specially designed for a specific type of fabric – meaning you use less to keep your darks in the dark and your whites in the light. With Mother’s Day sneaking up on us, consider topping up mom’s gift of a new sweater or luxury blanket with a bottle of top-shelf detergent.
I Am Not A Paper Cup – $24.95
I have actually wanted to feature this very gift idea for quite some time, so I was psyched to see it on the Carbon Boutique website. Although it may look like a classic take-out coffee cup, this porcelain cup with a silicone lid is certainly a step above your average throwaway coffee holder. The double-walled structure keeps your favourite hot beverage at the temperature it’s meant to be sipped at, and the durability factor means you may never have to buy (and toss) another post-morning cuppa into the landfill again.
John Masters Organics Shaving Bar – $11.20
Yes kids, even your body care products need an evaluation (or maybe that was an obvious one?), the good news being Carbon Boutique stocks a ton of options to take care of everything from your teeth to your hair to your skin. One particularly versatile pick is this 2-in-1 cleansing & shaving bar that gives you a rich, foamy lather so you can get rid of excess hair – both men and women. Infused with moisturizing organic oils and natural ingredients like musky birch and cedar wood oils, this is a great pick as a houseguest gift, stocking stuffer, or even a birthday gift.
See what I mean? It really isn’t all that hard to be green when you approach it from a product-based perspective, and make better choices. All you lucky Edmonton residents should pop down to Carbon yourself to get a full sense of their vast collection of products. The rest of you should take a peek at the store’s website. Oh, and all of you can enter to win a gift basket from Carbon Boutique valued at over $120, including:
- Bambu Coasters
- Bambu Appetizer Tray
- Bedol Water Clock
- John Masters Organics Skincare Sample Gift Set
- Simplicity Soy Tealights 12-Pack
- 4 packages from The Laundress
- Cashmere Shampoo
- Ever Bamboo Room Deodorizer
Lovely right? So here’s how to enter:
1) Tell me which of the awesome gift ideas featured in this post you’d give the green light to – and why. Leave a comment on this post by May 14th and you’ll be entered!
2) Entries are limited to one per person / per email address / per household (or more if you score bonus entries). A random draw will be conducted on or around May 15th to select the winner, who will have 48 hours to respond before another winner is chosen in their place.
3) Entries are limited to Canadians that have reached the age of majority in their province. Quebec is not eligible to participate in this promotion.
4) Bonus Entry: ‘Like’ Carbon Boutique on Facebook. Come back here and report you’ve done so, along with the username you use on FB so I can verify you actually did it!