Eco-friendly gift ideas in Atlanta
Whether the holidays, birthdays, anniversaries, or congratulations are in order, if you’re anything like us, we are in a constant standoff with the gifting dilemma: we want to send acknowledgment, love, and support, but we also want to avoid thrusting another thing onto the giftee that will just find itself among the waste weeks or months later.
That kind of lifespan doesn’t feel good for us or the recipient of our well-intentioned offering. A lot of this discontentment comes from the fact that many people don’t actually need more things, and many gifts don’t quite hit the nail on the head in terms of things they do need.
And while the key to much of our waste-reduction can just be consuming less, consuming smarter can certainly be a step in the right direction. The thought behind a gift is what we all focus on. And thinking about the impact of gifts long after that initial box opening can make that thought all the more valued.
Charnell says, “Of course, this isn’t all altruism. We want the giftee to feel our support, but sometimes we can also use the celebratory moment as an opportunity to share some of the feel-good that comes with better-for-the-world products.
We may not be able to get our parents to stop using Keurig cups to brew their morning coffee on their own, but we can send a subtle (or not so subtle) message with the sustainable gift they open up that will get them involved in the global efforts to preserve the livelihood of this planet we call home.”
And so, we at Clean Corp Atlanta wanted to equip you with a wonderfully eco-friendly and sustainable gift guide that will help you show your loved ones, friends, and colleagues you care and simultaneously give a much-needed nod to our planet.
Our list of eco-friendly products and gifts curated (and commented on) by our team and survey from our environmental-aware customers will hopefully lead you to the perfect gift that will make the recipient excited to see your name in their mailbox.
1. Seed Cards to grow at home or in the garden
Usually, gifts come with a thoughtful card. And this can often be the most meaningful part of the gift! That’s why we love saving the messages our friends and family send us commemorating each event in our lives.
The reality though, is that those cards ultimately either end up in the recycling bin or in a bag in our living room closet…and then later into the recycling bin. We love them, but we just can’t keep moving with pounds of cards from the past 10 years! And apparently, we aren’t the only ones with luggage-full of cards: 2.5 million trees are cut down every year to make greeting cards.
That’s why we love seed cards. It’s an innovation that takes our usual greeting cards into recycled post-consumer paper where the recipient can plant the card after they’ve enjoyed your message. It’s a great reminder of your celebration that will grow with time!
We love giving and also receiving seed cards from our friends and family. These cards are extremely easy to plant—you just soak the card, cover it lightly with soil, and water it, and you’ll see sprouts within a few days!
Oh, and one tree will be planted on behalf of the card recipient. The card itself makes for one of the best eco-friendly gifts we can think of!
2. Stainless Straw makes your straw reusable, hygienic and plastic-free
Americans use 500 million straws every single day. That’s why we believe in one of the best manufacturers of eco-straws, Klean Kanteen. They are fully committed to offering a solution away from plastic straws with their stainless steel straw packs. They offer them in packs of 2, 3, 4, and 5.
One thing we really like about these specifically is their silicone flex tip. These prevent all steel-to-teeth combat common with metal straws, the colors mark which is yours when you’re in a multi-person household, and they are removable for cleaning! These straws also fit nicely in the tumblers they sell, which makes for a great sip on the road.
We encourage you to make your gift actionable too: Get these stainless steel reusable straws for that friend who loves the ocean and the planet as much as you do.
3. Reusable Cups for reduced styrofoam and plastic wastage
KeepCup originally created the first ‘barista standard’ reusable cup and has since taken that to the next level with the recent release of their thermal cups—built to reduce splash and keep your drinks warm.
We love our KeepCup, especially for travel as the 12 oz is small and easy to pack. Of course, they are BPA-Free, made from 18/8 food grade stainless steel.
This is a great option for those java hounds or tea lovers in your life. When stopping by the local cafe is a staple in your friends’ lives, this is the gift that keeps on giving (for them and the planet)!
Gather some KeepCups for the friends who loathe those to-go cup plastic containers but still love themselves a coconut milk latte.
4. Plastic-Free Shopping Bag for a more chic and conscious way to shopping
If you’re gifting for someone who does the grocery shopping in their house, up their zero-waste game with EcoBags. Support this women-owned & run Certified B Corporation and encourage your giftee to kick the plastic grocery bags to the curb.
These reusable bags are made from recycled canvas. Their tots are durable and fold up easy, while also retaining that classic tote look we all know and love. Their selection will satisfy all of your bag needs from totes to produce bags, and you can always opt for a zero-waste kit to cover all your bases!
For your farmers’ market friends, check out their recycled cotton tote bag with the magnetic snap that will keep their goods in hand even when they have a seat for a coffee break. The string bags also make a great option for your beachy friends who are tired of the heavy, wet, and stinky bags their beach towels leave them with after a day in the sun!
We like their organic cotton lunch bag for the sustainable worker bee. Their woven bag is also great for a picturesque picnic, and nobody’s mad when a bottle of wine is delivered in a recycled wine tote.
5. Subscription-type Candles for sustainable wax control and better intimate candles
Candles are often a highly-coveted household staple that really make or break the home vibe. Once the burn-life is up though, you’re stuck with a container that almost always ends up in the trash.
That’s why Keap Candles created their Zero-Waste candles. When your candle burns out, you just return them, and Keap will repurpose and reuse them, keeping them out of landfills.
Each scent is crafted by a master perfumer (didn’t know that was a thing to be honest, but I’m also happy about it). These candles are a bit on the pricier side, but if you’re able to swing it, it’s a great gift to treat the giftee who really needs a thoughtfully crafted energy into their home. They also have their “Sent-to-Home” sampler as a good option for only $12.
Their subscription option is a good choice if you are sending support to someone embarking on a shorter-term endeavor—a candle each month can add much needed calm and comfort during a last trimester or during intense exam prep!
6. Beer Pancakes, Yup, Beer Pancakes
These pancakes come from waste that results from beer production!
Grain4Grain, a San Antonio based company, takes used grains from microbreweries to recycle them and turn them into a low-carb flour. To date, these folks have been responsible for upcycling over 60,000 lbs of grain and feeding over 2250 families in the San Antonio area through their donation program.
Their low-carb flour is ready to be turned into delectable creations by the chef in your life: sustainable, socially impactful, and delicious. This is a great potential Christmas gift especially if you’re going to be whipping up pancakes for everyone in the morning.
7. Silicone Dishwasher-safe Bags
Down with Ziploc!
Charnell shares, “I used to cringe when my mom would rinse out plastic bags and keep them on the sink faucet to dry. For some reason, there was something that didn’t sit right with me with those dirty plastic bags. But maybe, it was my mom’s OG attempt at using a little less…touché, mom.”
Anyways, Stashers will help a friend not worry about dirty plastic bags on their sink faucet anymore (they are dishwasher safe!), and maybe more importantly save them a dozen grocery store runs to JUST pick up plastic baggies!
And these puppies aren’t just for the pantry. Yes, they are great for bin purchases and veggies, but they can be freezer bags, snack bags, or sandwich bags for lunch sacks. They can even venture into your purse or gym bag, making sure your must-haves are always within reach.
Gifts need not be the same thoughtless piece of plastics over and over again. In fact, we can do more by looking at what’s already in the market and making a change for the better.
Bonus Gift Idea!
A thoughtful gift that anyone would love is the gift of a clean home. Just imagine how happy your friends and family would been when they receive a gift card to use towards cleaning services.
Cleaning gift cards can be purchased towards a one time cleaning or recurring services. The busy person in your life would love to receive cleaning services for an entire year. Gift cards can be purchased in increments as low as $25. It’s the perfect gift for a busy mom and working professional who doesn’t have much time to thoroughly clean their home