With Father’s Day coming up here in the UK, I got to thinking about how to give greener gifts…
With the intention of reducing resource use and wastage, gifts can seem like an inevitable exception to this rule. The chocolates that might have otherwise not been eaten, the candle that might otherwise not have been burned, the socks that go to the back of the drawer for years, and the inevitable charity shop pile at the end of the year.
However, I am a big fan of present giving and I certainly don’t want becoming greener to turn me into some sort of scrooge or party pooper!
So I have started to try to think of gifts a little differently, and I thought I might share a few ideas that will hopefully spread a little happiness while not costing the earth! Just to be clear, I am not receiving any financial incentive to suggest these products, and indeed I cannot take responsibility for how they go down with the Daddies in your life! But we have used nearly all of these products and loved them (or are hoping to get one soon!) so I thought I would share. Naturally, these present ideas aren’t only for daddies – they are transferable to other humans regardless of gender or offspring!
A few gift ideas
Keep cup – perfect for the Daddy about town who loves to grab a coffee to go!
We use ours so often – it’s just a case of keeping it in the car or remembering to take it with you! We love the Ecoffee range, which is also available from Oxfam if you prefer to buy in person.
Books – never underestimate the power of a good book!
Fully biodegradable, compostable and low waste, these are surely high on the list for any Daddy! Go for a real keeper, a special book that will be handed down – or a page turner to be passed amongst friends. If you have a bit more money to spend, I can highly recommend the reading spa at Mr B’s Emporium in Bath.
Consumables – there is never a bad time to get foodie treats!
For an extra special gift, make your own! Jams, chutneys, vinegars, fermented products like kimchi or kombucha, fruit-infused spirits, chocolates and biscuits are all easy to make and create minimal waste.
Oxfam Unwrapped – brilliant charity gift cards – choose from a pile of poo, safe water for ten people, a share in a farmyard, team toilet and many more gift ideas that make the world a better place for others. The first time I received one of these it brought a tear to my eye, and they make me feel happy every single time.
Reusable cling wrap – For the father who makes sandwiches every day but still uses cling film!
Steel water bottle – Stylish at the gym and the office! This one is on my wish list too! It keeps the contents cold for 24 hours or hot for 6 hours!
Air-purifying houseplants – indoor house plants help to cleanse the air of toxins. Choose from chrysanthemum morifolium (an air-purifying champion in NASA testing, removing ammonia, benzene, formaldehyde, and xylene from indoor air), spider plant, peace lily, Boston fern, snake plant, bamboo palm or aloe vera.
Razor Set - What Daddy wouldn’t love a beautiful new double edged safety razor?
I love our shiny polished chrome of the Edwin Jagger DE8. If you have some flex in the budget you could couple the razor with some posh shaving cream and a lovely brush like these. I think this makes the perfect Father’s Day present!
Shaving cream and soap set - If the Daddy in your life already has a safety razor (or if you have a bigger budget and want to get both together) you could go for the Lemongrass Man Box which includes the brush, shaving soap as well as a coconut oil body soap and a balm for £30.
Snazzy lunch box set – if the Daddy in your home tends to buy his lunch every day, possibly creating a lot of plastic waste, then consider getting him a snazzy new lunch box set! We haven’t tried these ones as we are still in the realms of boring old plastic tubs, but one day we may upgrade and these would be top of my list!
Wallet – made from cork instead of leather, these eco friendly wallets are a bit different! We haven’t tried them yet, but when we need to replace our old ones, this is the sort of thing we’ll be looking for.
Experiences – a great way to give a low waste present is to buy something that you can do together. Many museums or art galleries offer a pass for a year, for example. You might choose tickets to a concert or a play, or membership of an organisation like the National Trust or the RSPB where you can go and visit the centres together. Or perhaps there might be a class or a course you could sign him up to?
Wormery – if the Daddy in your life is interested in gardening, or worms, or waste disposal (!) how about a wormery?!
A wormery is a simple, speedy way of turning ordinary organic kitchen waste into nutrient-rich liquid plant feed and organic compost. Why waste your waste?! Instead you can turn it into environmentally beneficial, cost saving and high quality feed for the garden with a wormery!
Whatever you decide to go for, make sure to wrap it in recyclable or reusable gift wrap – most gift wrap is non recyclable due to the plastic content, so it may be better to choose plain brown paper and decorate beautifully with stamps or drawings of your own, or opt for a bag or box that can be reused.