Finding the right zero waste products for you can be challenging, not to mention the difficulty of finding the perfect zero waste gifts for everyone on your list.
Maybe you’re looking for something special for your already sustainability-minded loved one. Maybe you want to help someone close to you adopt a zero waste perspective or take the next step on their no-waste journey.
Maybe you simply want your gifting to reflect your own quest to be a more conscious consumer.
Regardless of the reason, you have come to the right place!
We’ve written an eco-friendly gifts guide before, but with this post, we are taking our exploration of sustainable products to the next level and talking totally zero waste.
Every product recommended here can avoid the trash; each gift and its packaging is reusable, repurposable, compostable, consumable, or properly recyclable. Plus, each one avoids plastic and other particularly harmful ingredients in their manufacturing processes.
Many of these recommendations also come from EarthHero, an eco-friendly online marketplace that aims to reimagine the way we shop. EarthHero’s marketplace makes it easy to shop sustainably and support better businesses. It even has a section specifically dedicated to zero waste products!
Continue on to find thoughtful gifts for anyone in your life, from cooks to artists to kids. Give them a genuine and useful gift catered to their interests and the ability to protect our planet while using it. The ultimate win-win!
For the Chefs in Your Life
The kitchen can rack up waste fast. From the paper products used to wipe counters and hands to food waste, nearly everything we do while cooking has a byproduct that ends up being thrown away.
Help the cooks in your life lessen their impact and reduce plastic pollution with the zero waste options below.
Bees Wrap, a Certified B Corporation, offers the perfect alternative to plastic wrap. With a host of fun designs to choose from, these effective, compostable, reusable, and washable sheets will let your favorite chefs never have to buy plastic wrap again to keep their food fresh.
Price: From $17.99 for a 3-pack of different-sized sheets
Marley’s Monsters UNPaper Towels
Another product with some personality in each sheet, Marley’s Monsters UNPaper Towels provide a colorful way to avoid paper towel waste. Cleaning them is as easy as putting them in your washing machine and they naturally cling together so that your loved one can wrap them around their existing paper holder. Nothing beats a perfect 1-1 replacement in the world of zero waste!
With so many designs and colors to choose from, you can ensure you pick out something suited to your person’s interests and preferences.
Price: From $16 for a 6-pack
Food waste accounts for 8 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions and releases methane, a gas much more potent than carbon dioxide. Composting eliminates this harmful release by turning our waste into nutrient-rich soil!
Preventing these emissions, among the other benefits of composting, makes giving a cook a compost bin an incredibly impactful gift. Whether its a compost pick-up service subscription, the revolutionary compost-from-home Lomi machine, or a simple bin in their kitchen, the ability to compost will be a wonderful addition to your giftee’s life.
It always feels good to put food waste in the compost instead of the trash. Plus, if they have a garden, the resulting valuable fertilizer will be a gift that keeps on giving!
Price: Services typically range from $25–35/month for weekly pickups, Lomi is $399, Bins can be found from $14.99 for a 2-gallon bucket
Zero Waste Cookbook
If your loved one wants to start or continue their zero waste journey, a zero waste cookbook is exactly what they need!
The Zero Waste Chef, a book by zero waste expert, Anne-Marie Bonneau educates readers on how they can reduce their waste in the kitchen and presents 75 delicious plant-based recipes in the process.
Save a loaf of bread and make Mexican Hot Chocolate Bread Pudding? I’d certainly love a book that taught me how to do that.
For People Who Enjoy Some Good Self-Care
These gifts are perfect for your friends and family who love to keep shiny and squeaky clean – and maybe the ones who should want this a bit more 😉.
Help them avoid waste in their beauty and care routines!
Bite toothpaste bits, stored in a refillable glass jar, will help your giftee kick the tube and still keep their teeth healthy and clean. With Bite’s subscription service, your giftee will receive refills in a compostable bag and plastic waste typically associated with a teeth-brushing routine will be avoided. Each bit is made with natural ingredients and an effective alternative to fluoride, making Bite Toothpaste clean no matter which way you swing it.
While the price may be a bit to bite into compared to your average toothpaste tubes, Bite represents the perfect practical gift that will care for both your loved one’s health and the planet.
Price: $30 for a 4-month, recurring subscription
Akamai Basics Body Care
Akamai Basics is rooted in a minimalistic philosophy about self-care. This B Corp and 1% for the Planet member sees a norm that is overcrowded with products, defined by too intensive of a routine, and filled with products that have harmful chemicals and environmental waste.
Choose your gift from a body care selection that eliminates dozens of unnecessary products and uses reusable, plastic-free packaging filled with clean and healthy ingredients.
Price: Black Balm all-purpose moisturizer for $28
With refillable bamboo packaging and a holistic ethical and sustainable mission, Elate Cosmetics represents a bright spot in the make-up industry. This certified B Corp prides itself on positive marketing and low-waste, refillable products and packaging that is only becoming more and more zero waste.
Elate Cosmetics offers a wide range of product options for your eyes, face, lips, and more.
Price: From $9 for Brow/EyeColour Compact
Do you have a friend or family member who loves to unwind and beautify with a face mask? Meow Meow Tweet’s Exfoliant Mask is exactly what they need. The skincare company is plastic negative and climate-neutral, uses only vegan and cruelty-free ingredients, and their mask comes in a compostable box and glass jar. You can also look into refill options if you buy in bulk.
We promise the receiver of this gift will be absolutely glowing.
Price: $30 for 1 jar
P.F. Candle Co.
It’s hard to miss the mark when you gift someone a candle. P.F. Candle Co. helps you reduce your environmental impact at the same time.
These hand-made non-toxic soy wax candles come in plastic-free, reusable packaging with tantalizing paraben-free fragrances. Whether the candles end up on a dresser, desk, or nightstand, they will certainly provide a guilt-free bright spot in your giftee’s home.
Price: From $19.99 for a 7.2oz candle
For the Artists and Sketchers
Many of us have friends and family members who love to craft, draw, or paint. People who create beautiful things shouldn’t be creating waste at the same time, don’t you think?
The products below will help save trees and reduce plastic waste while also letting your loved one create using effective tools.
Using 100% recycled newspaper and no plastic, these colored pencils from Onyx and Green will satisfy anyone’s drawing need without cutting down more trees and creating additional waste.
Help reduce the 82,000 trees that are cut down every year to make pencils and get the sketchers on your list an effective and upcycled tool.
Price: $7.99 for a pack of 24
Stone Paper Sketchbook
The perfect pairing for those colored pencils is a tree-free sketchbook. The more the merrier with sketching products that don’t involve cutting down trees or plastic!
A Good Company, a B Corp that Grow Ensemble particularly loves to brag about, makes the perfect notebook to sketch in for those who doodle and draw. Their Stone Paper Sketchbook is made from leftover stones found in construction waste and factories, making a product that is rip-proof, water-proof, and sustainable.
And there’s more! A Good Company plants a tree with every purchase, a beautiful token to your loved one in addition to the notebook.
Do you have any painters in your life? From canvases to paint and brushes, this type of art can fill up a trash can fast. Luckily, some inspirational companies are working toward lessening the waste produced by painting.
A Good Company’s Allround Paint is made from all-natural, good for the planet ingredients like beetroot. It is also water-based, completely solvent-free (meaning no harsh chemicals), and the packaging is made of sugarcane instead of plastic, making it 100% biodegradable.
Price: $21.99 for an 8.5oz bottle
Pottery with a Purpose gives a more eco-friendly way to have fun with DIY art projects. With products that are entirely plastic-free and with a guide for how to recycle leftover materials, their pottery kits are fun, unique, and seriously cut back on waste.
You can even buy a kit to do along with your friends and family! It’s always nice to benefit from your own gift.
Price: $52.20 for a Ceramic Beginner Pottery Kit
For Those with Furry Friends
Pets are incredible companions, but they, too, come with their own environmental pawprint from their meat-based diets and the many plastic and wasteful pet products on the market.
Help the dog and cat lovers you’re shopping for to treat their fluffy friend to something special without sacrificing the world we share with them.
A B Corp and founding member of the Pet Sustainability Coalition, West Paw is a wonderful place to start your search for the perfect sustainable gift for a dog owner. The company manufactures toys, treats, leashes and collars, beds, and accessories, all supported by a zero waste manufacturing process, recycled ocean-bound plastic, and an innovative give-back recycling program called Join the Loop.
Price: From $12.95 for a dog toy
Beco Dog Bowl
Whether you’re looking to get your favorite pet owner a beautiful and zero waste at-home water bowl or something transportable for on-the-go use, Beco Pets has you covered. This 1% for the Planet member makes sustainable ceramic and collapsible silicone bowls that are perfect for adding an aesthetic touch to a friend or family member’s kitchen and for adventurous dogs and their owners.
Price: $7.99 each
It’s a fact of a pet owner’s life that they will have to pick up their pet’s waste. Bio Bag takes at least some of the waste out of the equation. Their compostable and microplastic-free bags not only help keep waste out of landfills in the manufacturing of one-time-use plastic bags but can increasingly be composted themselves. Check out your giftee’s local dog parks and composting rules and see if there are options for doggie compost located near them.
Price: $6.29 for 45 bags
For the Little Ones in Your Life
Finding zero waste products that will make children happy and keep them entertained is no easy task. Have a look at the products below for a glimpse into the world of waste-reducing, kid-pleasing products and ideas for little ones and new parents.
Once-Kid Wooden Blocks
In this case, if you build it, they won’t come (shoutout to my Field of Dreams fans). Yep, I’m talking about the people who pick up the garbage! This bamboo, plastic-free Lego alternative from Once-Kid, a children’s toy company centered around sustainability, can help to nurture a child’s creativity without the environmental impact. And, once the blocks are no longer being in use they can be donated and are biodegradable.
Additionally, 1% of Once-Kid’s total sales is donated to the Trash Free Seas Alliance, so you can help save the ocean in the process of buying a sustainable and fun gift.
Price: $19.99 for 24 pieces (and you can gift colored blocks for a bit more)
Little Lentil Clothes
Not only are Little Lentil clothes cute and comfortable, but they are also made sustainably and many are recycled from previous use.
Wondering what your giftee will do with clothes once they have been outgrown? Little Lentil’s send-back program lets people send back clothes to be repurposed for 25% off their next order!
Check out the Loved Again Baby Bundle for a stylist-curated selection of clothes. Plus, let Little Lentil know you are buying a gift and they will include a beautiful handwritten note on recycled milkweed paper.
Price: Loved Again Baby Bundle (6 items) for $37.99
Colorful Bath Bombs
Bath time, anyone? These 100% plastic-free bath bombs that are made with food-grade pigments come in a reusable, water-proof metal tin and will help add a big splash of color to any bathtime. Your little bath-taker will love the fun fizz the bomb creates for the first 2 minutes in the water and the vibrant color that settles in the tub.
Price: 22.95 for 36 drops
For the Fashionistas
If you have followed Grow Ensemble’s series on the impact of fashion, you know that the clothes we wear can have an enormous impact on the planet. You’ll also know that inspiring brands and organizations are trying to change the industry to be more sustainable.
For people who are into clothes and those who simply would benefit from a wardrobe refresh, the next three gift recommendations will help spruce up a closet without supporting the toxic fashion economy.
MUD Jeans, a Dutch clothing brand dedicated to producing sustainable denim, is creating a world without waste one denim product at a time. In short, MUD Jeans uses organic and recycled cotton as part of their sustainable and circular manufacturing process to produce a selection of stylish jeans, jackets, shirts, bags, and more.
With the first circular denim company, your giftee can wear their jeans and send them back to continue their jean’s life cycle.
Price: From $135 for a pair of skinny jeans
Patagonia’s Worn Wear Collection
Worn Wear is an online store for used Patagonia clothing. Worn Wear allows you to extend still-effective products’ lives (and cut associated carbon emissions and water waste), trade your unused products for credit, or buy repurposed clothes made from flawed clothes or old scraps.
Get your loved one connected to the market dedicated to reducing the waste of Patagonia products with an item they’ll love.
Price: From $11 for a Women’s Boardie Skirt
Rothy’s shoes are about as zero waste as they come. The stylish and comfortable boots, sneakers, and slip-ons are made from recycled plastic water bottles in a factory that is set to be zero waste certified in 2022. Rothy’s is also rolling out its zero waste Close the Loop initiative to eliminate waste at the end of life for their products.
Check out Rothy’s men’s, women’s, and kid’s selections for a sustainable, practical, and fashionable gift for anyone on your list.
Price: From $55 for The Kid’s Sneaker
To Give a Daily Reminder of Your Sustainable Generosity
A major part of one’s zero waste journey is to move away from consistently wasteful habits to behavior that doesn’t leave anything behind. With the gifts below, the people on your list will come away with a useful product and something that both reinforces a sustainable lifestyle and reminds them of their generous gift-giver every time they use it.
United by Blue Water Bottle
While there are a lot of reusable water bottles out there that can help kick a single-use bottle habit, United By Blue is a B Corp that stands out with its unique designs, functionality, and sustainability initiatives. Their products are available in a range of nature-inspired patterns and images, the bottle’s insulation maintains heat and cold for up to 12 hours, and for every purchase, United by Blue removes 1 pound of trash from the ocean.
Intentional, practical, and zero waste? I think we may have found a winner.
Price: From $27.99 for a simply designed 18 oz bottle
If you follow our content, you know this is one of our favorite products. And for good reason! Pela, a B Corp and 1% for the Planet member, as well as climate neutral, makes compostable, non-toxic phone cases that really work. We’ve wrote a full Pela phone case review you should check out!
While there are many problems with our technology, your loved one can at least find a wholesome product to protect it.
Price: $39.95 for a monochromatic iPhone 11 case
Reusable utensils to use on the go is a classic zero waste gift and definitely one you should consider. Each year, 40,000,000,000 plastic utensils are thrown out. Those zeros are difficult to even keep track of…
Final offers an easy and enjoyable alternative to using the plastic utensils in your to-go containers. Their collapsible straws and cutlery, all BPA-free and dishwasher safe, represent a zero waste option that can be easily tucked away and taken out when the time is right.
Price: From $19.95 for the Final Straw
Do you have a coffee drinker in your life? Maybe one who especially enjoys a cup at your local coffee shop?
KeepCup is a great way for them to enjoy their coffee on the go. The first barista standard reusable cup will let your coffee-lover avoid the trashy to-go containers and enjoy their morning cup guilt-free.
Does your coffee-lover like to drink their own coffee at home? Think about getting them coffee produced by a sustainable coffee brand.
Price: From $23 for a 12 oz glass cup
For the Minimalists and Travelers (and Those Just Plain Hard to Shop for)
What do minimalists, travelers, and people who are difficult to shop for all have in common? They may not appreciate a physical zero waste product as much as a thoughtful alternative.
For these people in your life, giving them an experience can be a thoughtful gift and one that, to many, is a better gift than “a thing” could ever be. Do they like concerts? Hiking? Movies? Plan their perfect day around the answers to these kinds of questions.
Also, in the spirit of zero waste, you can make a gift in your friend or family member’s honor. A tribute to your giftee that actively helps the planet takes zero waste a step further: from preventing the negative impacts of plastic and waste to making an actively positive impact on the planet.
Trees provide many benefits. They help clean the air we breathe and the water we drink. Countless animals call trees home. Yet humans are cutting down trees at alarming rates.
Planting trees on behalf of your loved one can be a touching gesture that also supports the environment.
One Tree Planted, a non-profit organization focused on global reforestation, is a favorite tree-planting organization of the Grow Ensemble team, particularly in the context of gift-giving. You can choose to support different projects in different regions of the world that mean the most to your giftee and receive subsequent updates on the progress of the project’s impact.
Don’t forget to select “gift some trees” on the project page when you donate and you can design a digital gift card.
Price: $1 for 1 tree!
Did your loved one fly in for the holidays? Do they have a far-away adventure planned for the near future?
Being a sustainable tourist and traveler is extremely difficult, so carbon offsets can be a wonderful gift for them. Get this, just one long-haul flight can produce more carbon than the average person does over the course of an entire year. Knowing that this carbon footprint is being offset can be a significant weight off their shoulders.
Native Energy makes this easy! All you need to do is use their carbon calculator to figure out what your adventurer’s rough footprint is, buy carbon offsets in this amount, and, boom, Native Energy will proportionally support the building of clean energy and carbon-reducing projects.
You can also get in-depth information about the project you contribute to with your purchase and check the “this is a gift” option to really put a bow on it.
Price: $7.64 to offset a round-trip flight from Chicago to Denver
Why is Zero Waste Gifting Important?
Giving zero waste gifts can help loved ones to start or continue their journey towards mitigating the many ways in which our trash can affect the planet. Our waste negatively affects almost every aspect of our planet and our lives, from the air we breathe to the economy. Being part of the solution to reduce these effects is inspiring and an incredible gift in and of itself.
Learn more about the importance of zero waste living on our zero waste products page.
I hope you found some inspiration for the perfect zero waste gift! For even more ideas, check out EarthHero’s wide selection of carefully chosen sustainable and socially responsible brands and products.
Oh, and don’t forget your zero waste gift wrap.
Grow Ensemble Contributor
Sam Shonfeld is from Chicago, IL, and is currently living in DC working at a digital marketing agency. He’s passionate about corporate impact, loves backpacking and being active, and strives to positively affect the people and world around him.