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Top 20 Eco-Friendly Gift Ideas for Your Friends and Family

Ally Nelson |

We discussed sustainability and eco-friendliness many times before, emphasizing that we can teach such values at home or set a powerful personal example so that others can follow. Today, however, we will approach the matter of eco-friendliness from a different angle: the gifts you can and should offer to your friends and family who already embraced a green and eco-conscious lifestyle.

Why is it Important to Give Course to Eco-Friendly Gift Ideas for Your Eco-Aware Loved Ones?

It is a sign of respect for their values, life principles, and lifestyle choices. Moreover, offering eco-mindful presents to your dear ones will teach you a lot about this world. You may not know about huge or discrete issues regarding the current state of affairs in sustainability, and even if you do, you can always learn more.

Therefore, without further ado, let’s talk about our top picks of fun, practical, and thoughtful, eco-friendly gift ideas for you eco-conscious friends and family!

Eco-Friendly Gift Ideas for Women

No matter their age, status, or your relationship with them, the eco-conscious women in your life will always appreciate your eco-friendly gift ideas, no matter the occasion. Here are some of the best picks!

1. Cork Coasters for your Stain-Obsessed Friend

Women who care about etiquette and the preservation of their furniture will always slide a coaster under your coffee mug or wine glass, no matter the context. Most coasters come in paper or cardboard, but if you want to surprise her with an eco-friendly gift, present her with a set of cork coasters.

Cork is one of the most sustainable materials on the planet and a real revelation in many industries, so you cannot go wrong with them.

2. Potted Herbs and Spices for the Cooking Buff


It would be unfair to men to assume that only women love to cook with fresh herbs and spices they cut and pick from their pots – look at Jamie Oliver – but our friends and colleagues insisted this would be a fantastic gift for a woman, no matter the occasion.

They say potted herbs and spices is one of those eco-friendly gift ideas that do not fail. If you plan such a gift soon, make sure you get the herbs your wife, friend, or family member enjoys the most. We did not mention this item on our guide to best Valentine’s Day gift ideas for your girlfriend, but you can put it on your list!

3. An Eco-Friendly Cosmetic Pouch for the Avid Traveler

We all know traveling in almost all its forms takes a significant toll on the environment, but people make genuine efforts to reduce their impact. In other words, if your friend or co-worker is a travel buff, an eco-friendly zippered cosmetic pouch (which can work as a day stylish clutch as well) is the best gift to surprise her with this year.

4. Recycled Polyester Beanie for the Fashionista in the House


We have to admit that women know a bit more about ethical fashion, and the significant issues regarding the current textile industry. The eco-conscious ones also know plenty about the new fabrics and materials used in the sustainable fashion department, but you can surprise them still.

Meet an innovative winter accessory – yet another perfect Valentine’s Day gift: the recycled polyester beanie. You cannot tell the difference, and it will keep her warm while making her look like a style trendsetter. She will appreciate it.

5. Organic Cosmetics and Self Care Products for Any Woman


Select such products from one of the dozens of brands that pledged their resources into offering quality without harming the environment.

Women with sensitive skin appreciate organic care and cosmetics, as the goods do not contain the common chemicals and preservatives. These products may be a bit expensive, but they are worth it, especially if you gift them to a woman actively fighting against the issues in the cosmetic industry (animal cruelty, the use of toxic dyes and chemicals, and many more).

6. A Set of Canvas Tote Bags for the Perpetual Grocery Shopper

She probably shops at the market or the organic department of the supermarket, but this does not matter – she needs reusable, resilient, and trustworthy shopping bags. A handful of heavy canvas tote bags with full gusset is the way to go in this case.

You can pick a few in different colors so she can use them for each type of fresh produce/grocery she buys. As we already said, shopping canvas tote bags represent one of the sustainability paths we can all take to make this world a better, healthier place.

7. The Stylish Jute Tote Bag for the Posh Professional

Speaking of canvas tote bags, you probably know many women wear them as casual purses – some of the trendiest eco-friendly approaches to fashion and accessories is to have one type of tote bag for each occasion. In other words, your mom, sister, or fiancé already has a unique collection of shopping cotton/canvas bags she uses on a daily basis.

What she may not have – and you can be of help here – is the latest and most luxurious sustainable purse a woman can wear: the large jute posh office handbag.

If you are a man and all you know about purses fits the back of a postal stamp, you need not worry: this bag is a dream came true for the professional lady who wants an excellent delicate and feminine look.

Eco-Friendly Gift Ideas for Men

Your friends and family members on the masculine side of life will also appreciate thoughtful, eco-friendly gift ideas on any occasion. So let’s see how you can make their birthdays or holidays better and more cheerful!

1. Canvas Sports Backpack for the Gym Buff

Is he always carrying his sports equipment in the car trunk? Or, better yet, is he spending his free time riding his bike towards the gym with a backpack full of gear? Then you cannot go wrong with a two-tone large heavy sports backpack to fit his needs and eco-friendly personality.

If you buddy will ask about the cleaning and the maintenance of a sports canvas backpack, tell him we have got him covered: here is our guide on how to clean a canvas bag!

Is he an outdoor buff who spends any given spare moment exploring nature? That is laudable, especially since we also have a guide on canvas bags’ waterproofing he might find useful as well!

2. A Bamboo Pen Holder for the Desk Geek

Some men love their organized desks – at work or at home. Surprise him with a stylish bamboo penholder to keep his favorite writing tools in one place and a sustainable manner. Bamboo is a highly durable material, used on a large scale in construction, furniture manufacturing, home and office décor, cooking, and even fashion.

If your father, brother, or best friend loves a composed, streamlined, and beautiful desk (as mess prevents him to focus), then the bamboo penholder is the best way to approach a gift-giving situation.

3. A Portable Power Bank for the Gadget Freak

Men and their gadgets, are we right? He is probably checking the battery of his phone as we speak or is in desperate need for an outlet to charge one of his numerous devices, so spare him of his troubles – and yours – and buy him a portable power bank. It is a thoughtful gift for any gadget buff, not only for the eco-conscious one who collects all the wasted batteries in the family to deliver them personally to the collection center.

4. Recycled Plastic Bottle Socks


Socks make fabulous gifts for men in general – if you get the novelty ones with fun prints – but recycled plastic bottle socks are the new IT fashion item for eco-conscious guys out there. One of the best and most affordable eco-friendly gift ideas for men, these socks do not look or feel different from regular ones. On the contrary, they will make your buddy proud to become part of a more considerable sustainability effort.

5. An EcoSphere for the Nature Lover

In truth, this is more of a unisex gift, but consider it one of that individual and unique housewarming presents for the brother or the friend who just moved into his own house. EcoSpheres are self-sustainable miniature gardens. They do not need watering or maintenance. They beat potted flowers, especially in the case of men who do not have the time or skills to care for apartment plants.

6. A Reusable Metal Straw Set for the Cocktail Maker


Don’t we all have a friend or a family member who plays bartender at all gatherings? He also probably has a wet bar in his apartment. Pique his interest in making even more cocktails for the whole gang with a reusable metal straw set (with cleaning brushes included) for great parties and no plastic!

7. Eco-Friendly Tie for the Executive


Many fashion brands these days took the “green” path, providing clients with organic cotton items, eco-friendly packaging, and more. For your executive friend or father who spends his work hours running business meetings, an eco-friendly tie is the most thoughtful gift with any occasion.

For your geek friend, however, you can try a recycled paper handmade bowtie – they do exist, and they do look great as well!

Unisex Eco-Friendly Gift Ideas

Your eco-conscious friends and family members deserve the best. You have plenty of unisex eco-friendly gifts to consider in case you are in a hurry, you want everybody to receive the same thing, and you want to make everyone happy.

1. A Tree Adoption Certificate for Nature Lovers

A person who dedicates a significant part of his or her life advocating for the environment will be more than happy to receive a tree adoption certificate. A handful of major environmental organizations offer such papers, while some green brands go a step further and provide more than just a document, but organic products as well. Search online for the best offers and provide your friends or family members with the adoption certificate for a tree in the Amazonian forest or an olive tree in Italy.

2. An Animal Adoption Certificate

Implemented by the WWF, the program allows people all over the world to “adopt” (on paper) a wild animal to protect species and prevent the extinction of wildlife. A great venue, bringing people closer together in their ideals and efforts of wildlife conservation all over the globe.

This initiative will melt the hearts of your eco-friendly friends, even if some of them are already the symbolic parents of endangered animals. You cannot have too many baby orangutans in your care.

3. Orang Utan Coffee for Sophisticated Coffee Lovers


Speaking about the gentle orange giants, a wonderful gift can also be the Orang Utan coffee. The organization sells certified ethical coffee and supports all vendors and brewers who demonstrate that their coffee businesses walk the green path.

The funds collected by Orang Utan via their commercial activities go to projects aimed to protect orangutans and implement sustainable and ethical coffee cultivation practices in threatened areas.

For all the coffee lovers in your group, this is one excellent choice to make – have a high-quality cup of java together and be confident that your efforts saved a baby orangutan from extinction.

4. Bamboo Cooking and Serving Utensils for Culinary Artists


One of the best eco-friendly gift ideas for this year is a set of bamboo cooking and serving utensils. Men and women alike will appreciate the looks and practicality of such gift, especially if they are into cooking or throwing dinner parties for the family or group of friends.

Make things even more compelling for the receiver and add an organic cookbook next to the utensils for the ones who made extensive lifestyle changes and prefer the bio and green side of the culinary arts.

5. Countertop Compost Bin for the Recycling Buffs


Do your friends, and family members say they want to compost but do not have the necessary means in their apartments? Now they do – thanks to you! A countertop compost bin is small and fits nicely in the kitchen, helping your eco-conscious friends or family to further their sustainability and recycling personal agendas.

6. Biodegradable Phone Case – Because Everybody Needs One


Last on our best eco-friendly gift ideas for today is the biodegradable and compostable phone case. A relatively new concept, it has a huge potential of becoming the next best weapon in the global fight against plastic. Some brands are starting to sell such cases on larger and larger scales, and people are crazy about them. The items seem to be durable, resilient to the usual wear and tear, and ecologically disposable once you want to change it. Besides, who says no to a cute phone case?


We hope our list of eco-friendly gift ideas for your environmentally aware friends and family members gave you solid points of inspiration. Remember that any gift you decide to buy, it has to match the receiver’s values, tastes, hobbies, and personality. Other than that, happy gift shopping, and come back with your suggestions or tips regarding eco-friendly presents!