12 days of green shopping: Gifts under $50

Photo: istockphoto.com/Russell Tate
You don't need to spend a fortune to get a green gift for friends and family. There are some terrific inexpensive options out there. Skin care Pick out oodles of fantastic organic gifts sets from EO. But only if you're Americans -- this small small company doesn't ship anywhere else. Select lovely gifts sets for women and men from Upurea. Gift sets include a six-piece organic skincare starter set from Juice Beauty or the Shave Collection Kit by Anthony. Why not give some green hair care products? Natural Solutions offers a wide range of hair style products that are alcohol and chemical free. Try some herbal hair spray from Real Purity or sculpting/styling gel from Max Green Alchemy. Give the gift of a fragrant bath with the Dr.Hauschka Aromatherapy Bath Kit with five exquisite bath oils: lavender, spruce, sage, lemon and rosemary. Relaxation/meditation Take away aches and pains with a lavender-infused pillow filled with organic buckwheat and flax from Mette Vangso. Microwave the pillow for heat relief or or throw them into the freezer for a cold pack Using water and a paintbrush, put whatever words or designs come to mind on The Buddha Board. Watch the imaging slowly fade away as the water evaporates. Very Zen. Very relaxing. Journals Foster that poetic spirit with the Vintage Record Sleeve Journal. The outside cover is made from old record covers, inside are recycled paper folded so the blank side is facing out. Pick out a sassy Re-Cover Journal created with the covers of discarded and forgotten hard-cover books. Inside are 70 sheets of 100 percent post-consumer recycled paper ready to be filled. Bags and pouches Choose coin purses, art banner cosmetic bags, aluminum Ipod bag or cell phone pouches from designer fabric. Eco-Handbags has an international range to choose from and each one is uniqe. For the home The Caldrea Hostess Gift Set includes liquid dish soap and countertop cleanser in a variety of natural scents along with their natural dishwashing brush. The perfect gift for the new home owner or for someone trying to go green. SPIRAL Foundation offers some lovely recycled gifts. Potato Chip Coasters from Nepal are beautifully elegant. They come in silver (inside of the bag) or mutlti-coloured (outside of the bag). You may want to add a Telephone Wire Bowl. These spiral beauties are from Vietnam. On the go Help loved ones give up those evil Styrofoam cups with a beautiful stainless steel travel mug from Green Home. Suitable for cold or hot drinks. The Bucky Fuzzy Wuzzy Travel Pillow is filled with eco-friendly filling that will cradle your neck and head in an airplane, train or car. The French Press Double Shot Travel Mug is the ideal gift for a serious coffee lover. Lined with double-walled stainless steel, it brews coffee right in the mug. Lightweight, dishwasher safe with a baked-enamel finish. A pair of camel wool mittens are sure to keep your hands. Created by artisans of the Snow Leopard Trust in the Kyrgyz Republic, Mongolia, and Pakistan, these mittens help sustain the community and protect the endangered Snow Leopard. For baby Pick up a Klean Kanteen Sippy Cup for the tyke. Reusable, lightweight, and free of harmful leaching polypropylene plastic, it also grows with the child by replacing the adapter with a flat cap, loop cap, or a sport drinking cap. Pick out some organic cotton t-shirt, onesies, along with take home sets from Essere Organics. Seriously cute bargains. Toys Nurture the budding musician with the Junior Musical Instruments Pack from Green Home, features authentic, rich-sounding traditional musical instruments from Peru and Bali. Share the wonders of solar energy with Solar Beads, that change colour when exposed to sunlight. The Jumbo Test Tube contains a deluxe assortment of six colors that can change color more than 5,000 times! Pick out some really fun wooden toys from Natural Pod. Choose cool trucks, boats and trains or fun games and activities. There's oodles to choose from. The animal lovers will appreciate a Mr. H., the plush monkey carried as a mascot by Dr. Goodall all around the world. Also offered at the Jane Goodall Institute Store are chimp puppets, pillows, books and T-shirts. Need to keep looking? Here are more links if you haven't found your perfect gift:
  • BTC Elements
  • Cebra Ethical Gifts
  • Equita Essentials
  • Grass Roots Store
  • Green Gift Guide
  • Green Home
  • Shop Green
  • Ten Thousand Villages
  • Shelagh McNally is the editor of Green Living Online.