Christmas Gift Guide: Kind-Hearted Picks

22 November 2017

Something different for you today!

This year I have been intrigued and inspired by my friend Nicole’s commitment to buying new clothes only from ethical sources. Admittedly, it’s not something that has been a huge priority in my life thus far, and it’s not an area I know much about — BUT, what better time to dip in a toe than the gifting season? With all the gift guide hoopla happening right now, I think companies that do good deserve a spotlight just as much as any.

Whether you’re splurging on a friend, adding a pricier item to your personal wish list, or taking advantage of Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales, there’s never a better time to pick up one of these items than this week! I hope you find something to love here!

P.S. A note from Nicole, who helped me find most of these picks: “I think ‘ethical’ is open to interpretation. It could mean produced ethically, with the community and the environment in mind, or created under a business model that benefits society in some way. It’s also worth noting, for background, that while some companies are scrutinized and criticized for the way they contribute to their causes, I think any company that has a net positive impact on the world could fall into this category. (I’m thinking of TOMs as an example — criticized for not using their money and influence to actually improve the infrastructure that causes the ground to be unsafe to walk on, and instead just handing out shoes.)

ethical gift guide

I’ve marked with an asterisk those companies that have current or upcoming Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales!

*A gorgeous maxi skirt from Francis + Benedict, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that employs Togolese seamstresses and invests their profits in the same communities to benefit orphans, widows, and those in poverty.

A striped ceramic tray from The Little Market, Lauren Conrad’s online market supporting artisans around the world. (Go, LC!)

*A dainty wire cuff bracelet from Nisolo, who provides fair wages, community support, and support of independent artisans.

A Kitchen Traditions recipe box from Belle & Union, made from trees killed by a fungus. Infected/dead trees are often burned when the more eco-friendly option is to recycle them into usable goods!

Punjammies lounge pants from Sudara, who empowers women in India to live in freedom from human trafficking through living-wage employment and skills training.

*A pair of cozy socks from Bombas, who gives a pair to a homeless shelter for each one purchased.

*A sleek backpack from Everlane, who is devoted to radical transparency and the best and most ethical factories around the world.

A beautiful leather clutch from Fashionable, who manufactures directly in the communities they wish to impact, creating jobs and ending the cycle of charity dependency.

*The coziest flannel pajama pants from Boll & Branch, who uses fair trade cotton and donates with each purchase to help end human trafficking.

A pair of swingy earrings from Sseko Designs, who hires high-potential women in Uganda to support their college educations.

A stylish pair of shoes from Rothy’s, made from recycled and recyclable materials (water bottles!) with low-impact production.

A colorful throw from The Little Market.

*A pair of floral yoga pants from Naja, who employs single women and prints their materials digitally for less chemical runoff and water waste.

A beautiful vase from The Commons, who’s reviving a community in NC and uses recyclable/earth-based materials.

A slouchy tee from Sevenly, who originated the 7-day “cause campaigns.”

Finally, a sheet mask from Yes to, who is cruelty-free. Do it with a friend :)

Friends, I would LOVE to hear: What other companies do you love who are doing good? This list only scratches the surface, especially since that can be defined in so many ways! Please chime in!!

Affiliate links are used in this post!

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
November 22, 2017 8:10 am

This is fantastic! I love discovering these companies!

November 22, 2017 9:09 am

I have a few friends that have gotten me started looking into the ethical fashion business and I highly recommend Molly Stillman’s blog Still Being Molly since she has an amazing list of companies there.

I love Noonday jewelry and I am not sure if you are aware but there are two stores in the Triangle-Liberation Threads in Durham and the Flourish Market in Raleigh that specialize in ethical clothing/gifts.

November 22, 2017 9:56 am

Love this post, adding that beautiful leather clutch to my list now! and have to put in a plug for Rothy’s, I love the good they are doing AND they are one of the most comfortable pairs of shoes I have ever owned. They are light and stretchy and provide good support- perfect for lots of walking or standing! I will also note I’d recommend going half a size up!

November 22, 2017 8:52 pm

Love it! Brands that I enjoy following are Mata Traders, Maggie’s Organics and Pyne and Smith! One easy way I shop ethically is by shopping second hand. :)

November 22, 2017 9:43 pm

My favorite place for artsy clothing: Blue Fish in Frenchtown, New Jersey; website: Made in the USA from start to finish. There is a table near the check out in their historic Frenchtown location that consists of beautiful, hand-cut printing blocks in wood – older designs that were used on clothing decades ago – under glass. Functional and simply beautiful. As is their clothing.