The 24 Best Eco-Friendly Gifts of 2022

Send all the love with a smaller environmental footprint.

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Best eco-friendly gifts include vodka and a coffee maker photo composite

Treehugger / Lecia Landis

One of the greatest joys in life is sending (and let’s be real, receiving) gifts, whether it’s for the winter holidays, a birthday, anniversary, graduation, or even a simple “thinking of you” gift. While non-material gifts like experiences, classes, and acts of service are all great gifts, sometimes we still feel the need to send a physical gift.

For the eco-conscious, however, gift giving can be tough with all of the single-use plastics, paper waste, and throwaway products associated with gift-giving. Here, we’ve rounded up our favorite eco-friendly gifts so you can send some love on any occasion with less worrying about the environmental impact.

Here are the best eco-friendly gifts:

Blue Stiggy Personalized Notebook

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Blue Stiggy Personalised Eco friendly Notebook

Courtesy of Etsy

Whether your loved one is a writer or not, this customizable journal is a great gift to jot down notes, use as a daily journal, or as a place to keep recipes, travel memories, or even grocery lists. The cover has multiple color options, and you can add whatever text you want to the cover as well for a personal touch.

Each customizable front is typed by a 1950s Hermes typewriter and then hand-stitched and hand painted to the color of your choosing. The cover is made from eco-friendly heavy cotton paper made from textile industry waste. The band is made from recycled paper, and the pages are recycled cartridge paper that’s perfect for fountain pens and ink as well as other media. Orders are sent in plastic-free packaging, for a sustainable gift made with love.

Price at time of publication: $11

Coyuchi Full Circle Recycled Cotton Blanket

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Coyuchi Full Circle Recycled Cotton Blanket

Coyuchi

This wonderful blanket from Coyuchi highlights the possibilities of circular manufacturing. Since 2017, Coyuchi has collected 112,408 pounds of its used products through the 2nd Home program. Some of those items were repaired and re-sold, while others were cleaned and recycled into the fibers to make items like this blanket. The fabric is a blend of recycled cotton and new organic cotton, resulting in a soft off-white color. Available as a throw or as a king size blanket. 

Price at time of publication: $148

Davids Tea Organic Cream of Earl Grey Tea

4.9
Organic Cream of Earl Grey Tea

Courtesy of Davids Tea

This delicate black tea is smoother than traditional Earl Gray teas, thanks to a touch of vanilla. Cornflower and marigold petals add a slightly floral finish. It's certified organic and Fair Trade, and despite having "cream" in the name, this tea is vegan and suitable for people with dairy intolerance. A loose-leaf tea offers a lower-waste route to caffeination than individually wrapped tea bags, and if you're lucky enough to live near one of Davids Tea's locations in Canada, you can get a zero-waste tin to refill again and again.

"This Early Grey is a wonderful way to start the morning. As the name suggests, it has a lightly creamy taste, and I like to add a spoonful of honey." ~ Margaret Badore, Treehugger Associate Editorial Director

Price at time of publication: $9 to $45

Little Gold Fox Designs Wood Bookmarks with Tassels

4.9
Little Gold Fox Designs Wood Bookmarks with Tassels

Courtesy of Etsy

Teachers often like to hand out small gifts to students at the end of the year, and this set of wooden bookmarks is a sustainable, affordable way to let students know you care. (Plus, they’re a great reminder to read over holiday breaks!) Each bookmark in this set is a print from an original design by artist Arrowyn Craban Lauer, printed on sustainably-harvested wood.

The bookmarks come with colorful tassels as well, making it easy to mark your place while reading. This artist has multiple design options available, and you can choose which designs you like while ordering, or choose to get a random assortment.

Price at time of publication: $26

Greener Chef Extra Large Bamboo Cutting Board

4.7
Bamboo Cutting Board

This bamboo cutting board from Greener Chef is naturally bacteria- and microbe resistant and made from 100% Moso bamboo that’s grown in organic, chemical-free soil and finished without harsh lacquers, stains, or chemicals. It shouldn't crack, separate, or split, but if by chance you have any problems, the company will replace it for life.

One side of the board has a deep juice-catching groove that’s perfect for capturing sauces, juices, gravies, and glazes that seep out as you cut. After cutting, simply flip the board to the other side for a beautiful presentation large enough for elaborate veggie arrangements, watermelon, and more.

Price at time of publication: $97

Free Mountain Designs Seed Bombs

Free Mountain Designs Seed Bombs

Courtesy of Etsy

For those who love to garden or have a green thumb, seed bombs—individual discs filled with plantable seeds—are a great gift. These seed bomb sets from Free Mountain Designs are biodegradable heart-shaped discs containing various wildflower or herb seeds like cilantro, basil, dill, mint, baby’s breath, poppies, bluebonnets, coneflowers, zinnias, marigolds, verbena, and more.

Just plant them in loose soil, soak with water a bit, and you’ll have sprouts in just a few days. Every seed species used is GMO-free and organic, and many sets come in cute boxes perfect for gifting.

Price at time of publication: $2 to $35

Tikiri Lion Natural Rubber Baby Rattle & Bath Toy

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Lion Toy

Courtesy of Tikiri

We love these all-natural rubber toys, available as a menagerie of adorable land and sea creatures. A sweet octopus, crab, whale, or seahorse is sure to make bath time more fun. They're made without any concerning chemicals, from 100% pure natural rubber sustainably harvested. The certified organic, plant-based material will eventually biodegrade. Just note that it's not suitable for people with latex allergies.

Price at time of publication: $18

Bodum Chambord French Press Coffee Maker

3.6
Bodum Chambord French Press Coffee Maker

Courtesy of Amazon

A coffee makers is a great gift for graduates or housewarming present. A French press is one of the most eco-friendly options, as it doesn’t use electricity (only to heat the water) or need paper coffee filters or single-use K-cup pods.

Bodum’s French press can make your morning java in only four minutes and can make up to 8 cups at one time. The press is BPA-free and non-plastic parts are made from stainless steel and glass from one of France’s finest French press makers.

Price at time of publication: $40

Parks Project Tee

Parks Project Yosemite Tee

Parks Project

For anyone who like green spaces and a retro vibe, a tee from the Parks Project is sure to please. Made from 100% cotton, the sale of each shirt benefits a park. Check out vintage-inspired designs for the some of the country’s most beloved national parks, including Yosemite, Yellowstone, Catskills, Joshua Tree, Big Sur, Zion, and more. 

Price at time of publication: $38 to $42

Stabilo Woody 3 in 1 Pencil Set

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Stabilo Woody 3 in 1 Pencil Set

Dick Blick

This colored pencil set is a great gift for artistic adults and creative kids alike. The “3 in 1” pencils can be used as wax crayons or watercolors, and won a Treehugger Best of Green award. They’re made from Forest Stewardship Council certified wood, which means it was responsibly harvested and doesn’t contribute to deforestation. The manufacturer, Stabilo, uses renewable energy and is working towards climate neutrality by 2025.

Price at time of publication: $19

The USB Lighter Company The Molti Light

The USB Lighter Company Soft-Touch USB Rechargeable Lighter

USB Lighter Company

This flameless electric lighter replaces disposable lighters (and the associated plastic trash and lighter fluid), and also serves as flashlight in case of emergency. The elegant design is nice enough to leave out next to decorative candles, and comes in several different color options. It charges via the included USB cable. It's a great gift for the candle lover in your life. 

Price at time of publication: $45

Apple Park Sloth Plush Teething Toy

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Apple Park Sloth Plush Teething Toy

Earth Hero

It’s hard to keep things out of baby’s mouth, so a teething toy that’s made with natural and eco-friendly materials can give parents a little more peace of mind. This cute sloth is sewn from certified organic cotton and a corn fiber filling, and uses low-impact dyes. It comes in recycled packaging. 

Price at time of publication: $18

Cooking with Plant-Based Meat: 75 Satisfying Recipes Using Next-Generation Meat Alternatives

"Cooking with Plant Based Meat" Cookbook Cover

Bookshop.org

For anyone ready to branch out from veggie burgers, there’s a whole world of new plant-based meats from Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat. But how do you use these new vegetarian ingredients? America’s Test Kitchen offers this guide. Treehugger’s Katherine Martinko writes that the 75 recipes are easy, diverse, and mouth-watering. Many are plant-based takes on typically meat-based recipes, like Jamaican meat patties, grilled kofte wraps, stroganoff, and tamale pie.

Price at time of publication: $26

Solight Design QWNN Solar Lantern and Mobile Charger

Solight Design Qwnn light with power bank and mobile charger

Courtesy of Solight Design

The QWNN Solar Lantern’s unique shape is inspired by origami, and its built-in battery pack can charge your phone or other USB devices. It features 10 volt, 3.6 watt solar panels, and five lighting modes (candle, low, medium, high, and blinking). It folds completely flat for travel and has flexible handles. This light is a gift that’s both beautiful and functional—our editors have even seen it cleverly used as the star at the top of a Christmas tree! 

Price at time of publication: $110

Good Vodka

Good Vodka Bottle

Good Vodka

While coffee beans get all the love, too often the coffee fruit is discarded. Instead, Good Vodka is distilled from this overlooked part of the plant, making for a delicious spirit. It doesn't taste like coffee, but it does lower a coffee grower’s carbon emissions and provides a new revenue stream to farmers. The coffee fruit comes from farms in Colombia and is distilled in upstate New York. 

Price at time of publication: $30

Kozakh Belle Earrings

Kozakh Belle Earrings in Gold

Kozakh

Kozakh is a jewelry maker that crafts all of its pieces by hand in the United States. A delicate shell cups an irregular pearl to create these pretty earrings, which are available in either gold or sterling sliver. Each piece of jewelry is made to order, reducing waste, and the emissions associated with making and shipping every item is offset through credits from Gold Standard. Just note that some vegans prefer not to wear pearls. 

Price at time of publication: $78

Cozy Earth Short Sleeve Bamboo Pajama Set

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Cozy Earth Short Sleeve Bamboo Pajama Set

Cozy Earth 

Stylish pjs make for an indulgent gift, and these are still sustainable thanks to bamboo viscose. Although they’re not certified, a representative from Cozy Earth says the fiber is sourced from a farm that follows USDA Organic practices. 

“I recently got these pajamas, and I just adore them,” says Treehugger’s Margaret Badore. “They’re so soft that it’s a treat to put them on.” The set is available in grey, black, white, pink, navy, or white.

Price at time of publication: $132 sale ($165 regular)

Toad & Co. Sespe Sherpa Zip Jacket

Toad & Co. Sespe Sherpa Zip Jacket

Toad & Co.

Giving someone a fuzzy zip-up is a little bit like giving them a hug they can wear all day. This one from eco-friendly clothing brand Toad & Co. is made primarily from recycled wool, plus a blend of recycled polyester and nylon. It comes in four colors: light heather grey, glacier blue, beetle dark green, and bright cactus green. However, that it does need to be hand washed and laid flat to dry. 

Price at time of publication: $119 sale ($160 regular)

Cariuma IBI Knit Sneaker

Cariuma IBI Knit Sneaker

Cariuma

Cariuma’s sneakers are made from an innovative mix of sustainable vegan materials, including regenerative bamboo, sugarcane-based foam, cork, and recycled plastic. Both both men and women’s sizes are available in a rainbow of over 12 colors. Plus, they’re machine washable. For every purchase, the company plants two trees, and Cariuma is a Certified B Corp. 

Price at time of publication: $98

Terra Kids Cork Boat DIY Activity Kit

Terra Kids Cork Boat DIY Activity Kit

Haba

This kit lets kids build their own boat and pick their own sail before shipping out to play in at nearest pond, shore, or bathtub. Another Best of Green winner, the boat’s body is made from compressed cork and comes with wooden clips and mast parts, plus a sisal cord. Kids can get creative with the endless ways to decorate, modify, or upgrade their tiny vessel. 

Price at time of publication: $20

True Natured Co. Reusable Produce Bags

True Natured Co. Reusable Bags

Courtesy of Amazon

You might be thinking: reusable grocery bags for a gift? But when you consider that Americans alone use 100 billion plastic bags a year, and that only about 1% of those bags are returned for recycling, this is a handy and helpful item for anyone who wants start living a greener lifestyle.

This pack of seven reusable bags from True Natured Co. are plastic free and made from 100% biodegradable cotton, with muslin drawstrings and wooden closures. The set includes one cotton net bag, three mesh produce bags, and three bulk bin food bags for things like coffee, nuts, grains, and heavy items. Double stitching and durable seams mean these bags are built to last, and they’re machine washable for easy cleaning.

Price at time of publication: $22

Be Green Bath + Body Balm Duo Gift Set

Be Green Balm Duo Gift Set

Be Green Bath + Body

Dry winter air can be harsh on skin and lips, but this set offers a soothing salve. Both the Miracle Balm and Peppermint Lip Balm from Be Green Bath and Body are Environmental Working Group Verified, meaning they meet the nonprofit’s highest standards for ingredient safety. The Miracle Balm’s blend uses organic shea butter, organic coconut oil, and beeswax, while the lip balm’s key ingredients include beeswax, castor oil, and organic sunflower oil. 

Price at time of publication: $23

Nimble WALLY Pro Portable Wall Charger

Nimble WALLY Pro Portable Wall Charger

Nimble

Electronics are notoriously unsustainable, but the tech brand Nimble is trying to change that with products that use recycled materials and a system for sending in your old tech for recycling. This portable wall charger/backup battery is a great gift for travelers and students, with the ability to charge two devices at once. Compact and TSA compliant, it weights 0.6 pounds (less than comparable batteries) and is free of PVC and BPA. It’s backed by a two year warranty. 

Price at time of publication: $125

Happy Earth Flora Joggers

Happy Earth Flora Joggers

Happy Earth

These super comfy joggers have a pretty floral touch, with small plants parading down the side of each leg. They’re made with certified organic cotton that was irrigated with rainwater. Our tester noted that a wide waistband adds structure without being restrictive, and that the fleecy lining is cozy and comforting.

We also love that Happy Earth is committed to sustainability on multiple levels, as Certified B Corp, a 1% for the Planet member, and a certified carbon neutral company through CarbonFund. 

Price at time of publication: $68

What to Consider When Shopping for Eco-Friendly Gifts

The term “eco-friendly” is pretty broad and can be interpreted many different ways. Here are some tips for approaching sustainability when it comes to gift-giving. 

Is It Useful to Your Recipient?

An item made from the most sustainable materials is still a waste if the person receiving the gift has no use for it. This can be one of the most challenging things about giving an eco-friendly gift. Consider your recipient’s taste and circumstances, and don't be embarrassed to ask them about what they like. It might sound counterintuitive, but research shows that recipients actually value gifts they can use long-term more than items that might be “valuable” but aren’t practical.

It may seem less personal, but for weddings, baby showers, and in many other occasions, cash is a welcome gift that lets your recipient get what they truly want or need. You could also consider a gift certificate to a sustainable retailer, like EarthHero or Made Trade

Materials

Generally speaking, eco-friendly products should be durable and don’t require single use items (like a coffee makers that uses disposable pods). As a rule of thumb, look for plant-based natural materials, like wood, cork, and cotton, instead of materials that are synthetic or derived from fossil fuels, like plastic, or animal-derived materials like leather. Recycled materials can also make a gift more sustainable. 

Certifications 

Sustainability certifications are an easy short-hand for spotting products that are more eco-friendly. Some examples of certifications that you'll find on this list of gifts include the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS), Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), and Environmental Working Group Verified. 

Companies that care about sustainability may also buy carbon offsets, be Certified B Corporations, or are members of 1% for the Planet. 

Packaging 

Whenever possible, look for goods that are sold with minimal packaging, or make sure that packaging is easily recyclable or compostable—like packaging that’s exclusively cardboard and paper. 

Why Trust Treehugger?

Treehugger is committed to help our readers reduce the environmental impact of our day-to-day lives. Author Amanda Ogle is a veteran reporter who loves writing about sustainability and believes it is important that we all strive to be as environmentally friendly as we can. She loves sending her friends and family sustainable gifts in order to educate more people on the endless possibilities of green gift giving.

View Article Sources
  1. The Problem with Plastic Bags.Center for Biological Diversity. 

  2. Galak, J., Givi, J., & Williams, E. F. “Why Certain Gifts Are Great to Give but Not to Get: A Framework for Understanding Errors in Gift Giving.” Current Directions in Psychological Science. DOI:10.1177/0963721416656937