12 Health-Conscious, Eco-Conscious, & Socially-Conscious Holiday Gift Ideas

For many people, giving gifts, especially during the holidays, can seem like a chore. This is especially true if you’re driven to give from a place of  obligation rather than a place of sincere love and gratitude. If you’ve ever been on the receiving end of what appears to be a completely random gift that has little or no practical application or even any sentimental value, then you know what I mean.

The holiday season, with all its emphasis on consumption and shopping can sometimes feel like an empty exercise in crass commercialism. But gifts are an important way of expressing how we feel about others — it’s a way of showing our gratitude to and for them. And while our gift-shopping and gift-giving gyrations don’t always accurately reflect that intention, I believe that it’s still the driving force behind why most of us give gifts.

Generosity towards others is intrinsic to the heart. Giving usually starts with the people you’re closest to, but helping people you don’t know also has a very profound karmic effect too. If the whole holiday shopping thing leaves you feeling more like Mr. Scrooge or The Grinch than Santa’s little elf … take heart. It’s easy to transcend the superficial and unrewarding aspects of holiday shopping when you focus on giving conscious gifts. There are all sorts of “cool” and interesting gifts you can give that either add value to the recipients’ lives, provide a tangible benefit to a third party, offer intangible benefits for the collective good, and in some cases all three!

I’ve culled 12 of my favorite “conscious” gift ideas below –all excerpted from my new report “50 Conscious Gift Ideas for the Holidays & Beyond” (keep reading to find out how you can grab a copy of this for yourself and use it as a guide for all your gift-giving occasions). The report (and this list) are loosely organized into three categories: Health-Conscious Gifts (i.e. gifts that support people’s needs or desires to be more healthy and fit); Eco-Conscious Gifts (i.e. gifts that promote Green lifestyle choices that have a positive impact on the environment by reducing consumption and waste or conserving energy and natural resources; and Socially Conscious Gifts (gifts that support the work of a variety of organizations in promoting social and economic justice, or environmental and wildlife preservation). I guarantee you that if you choose any of the unique items from this list or the report (or similar items), it will transform the way you look at gift-giving and turn it into a win-win situation every time!

Health-Conscious Gifts

1. Meditation/Hypnosis Audios

Reading books is a great way to keep your mind sharp but so many of us find it difficult to carve out the time to do it on a consistent basis –that’s where audio books, meditation, and even subliminal audios can make a big difference in someone’s life. When it comes to success, we all have habits we’d like to change or get rid of that keep us from achieving our goals and desires –especially when it comes to health and fitness.

If you have someone on your list that is struggling to achieve a goal, then a subliminal audio or meditation that supports them in moving forward would make a great gift! Two of my favorite sources for these types of audios are: www.mindperks.com and www.brainsync.com

2. A High Quality Juicer/Blender

Having healthy tools in the kitchen makes it a lot easier to be healthy. Ever since I successfully completed the Fat Flush Plan diet, protein smoothies and juicing or blending greens have become a daily staple for me. A couple of years ago, I broke down and invested in a High Tec Blender (the same one that’s used by Jamba Juice) and I won’t lie … it was darn expensive! But it’s so easy to work with, can liquefy almost anything in seconds, and super easy to clean up afterwards. It can be used as a juicer (though it won’t filter out the pulp) AND a food processor and it’s safe to use if you want to make your own nut milks.

This is one of the best investments anyone can make to support themselves or their loved ones in adding a healthy dose of fruits and veggies to their daily routines!

VitaMix is the top of the line in this arena (and hands down the most expensive). While I know a few die-hard people who swear by their VitaMix, I have to say I’m VERY happy with my BlendTec which more than meets my needs and was about $100 less than the VitaMix!

If you don’t have the budget for this type of gift, I suggest the Magic Bullet system. This is especially great for people who travel a lot and have an even harder time getting their fresh fruit and veggie fix when they’re on the road!

3. Subscription to a CSA Farm Delivery Program

Instead of putting your money into a big basket of attractive but unhealthy goodies or one of those expensive fruit of the month type programs, you can give a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) subscription to someone who wants to eat healthy and consciously. Your giftee will receive a box of fresh, local produce delivered weekly during the growing season that also supports their (and possibly your) local family-owned farms. The cost varies depending on the type of subscription you purchase. If it’s a little too costly, consider going in on this gift with several people. Check out LocalHarvest.com to get more info about CSA’s and to locate CSA farms near you or your giftee!

4. Sore Muscle Soother (Warm Wearable Goods)

Another awesome group of products that I can’t live without! I’ve tried a lot of microwaveable herb filled neck and shoulder pillows over the years but none have held up and provided the level of comfort that WarmGoods® have.

Whether you need fast relief from aches and pains or you just want to enjoy the comfort of deep, long-lasting heat; WarmGoods® delivers it and does it in style! Premium fabrics (cotton and hemp), filling (flaxseed and organic herbs), and superior construction (channel stitching), create fluffy soft herbal wraps that can easily bend and twist to be applied or wrapped around almost any part of the body, and hold their heat for a long time.

5. Aromatherapy Handbook for Pregnant Women

Know someone who is pregnant or planning to be very soon? Give them a gift that will help them learn how to easily stay calm and sane during pregnancy and labor using essential oils in a way that naturally supports them without harming their baby. Gift them a copy of my new eBook: Aromatherapy & The Expectant Mom: A Woman’s Guide to the Best Essential Oils for a Holistic Pregnancy.  Every pregnancy is different but the one thing they all have in common is that the baby’s emotional health is directly affected by the mother’s emotional state of being. That’s why aromatherapy and essential oils are a key component of any holistic pregnancy, but you need to know which oils are okay to use and which are not. My eBook teaches which essential oils you can safely use to solve the top 5 most common problems pregnant women face, and the best ways to use them with confidence for a smooth transition into motherhood.

 

Eco-Conscious Gifts

6. Stainless Steel Water Bottles/ Commuter Mugs

Do your part to cut back on the 40 billion+ plastic water bottles of all shapes and sizes that end up in our landfills every year by switching to stainless steel bottles and making it easy for others to. Klean Kanteen was one of the first companies to produce a stainless steel water bottle. As they’ve grown, they’ve created a variety of sizes, shapes and colors to choose from. They are still my first choice when it comes to stainless steel water bottles! Find a variety of them here.

As for commuter/coffee mugs, I recently discovered the joys of a Contigo Stainless Steel Vacuum Insulated Tumbler. I tried so many different styles and brands but they all leaked and caused me a lot of trouble especially while driving in my car! I had just about given up on finding one that would work until I found this baby and now I’m never going back! You can also pick up a pair of these at Costco for slightly more than what you’d pay for one somewhere else. Or browse the collection at Amazon.

7. AA Rechargeable USB Cell Batteries or USB Charger

The gift that keeps on giving … this is a revolutionary new rechargeable battery – the USBCELL. An NiMH AA cell that can be used like a normal battery and can be recharged simply by plugging it into a USB port. With over 15 billion Alkaline batteries made and thrown away each year – wasting resources,  C02 and creating toxic Landfill – USBCELL offers a eco-friendly alternative that can be re-used hundreds of times as no charge adaptor or cable is needed, saving money, hassle and waste.

Alternatively, try the Rayovac USB Battery Charger that can use any USB computer or device to charge 2 AA or AAA NiMH or NiCD batteries.

Both offer a great and relatively inexpensive companion that adds value to any battery-operated gift. Hell, they would be a great gift by themselves for anyone who uses a lot of small battery-powered gadgets!

8. Envirosax Re-usable Fashion Forward Shopping Bags

You probably don’t need to be convinced of the value of re-usable shopping bags and totes. Everywhere you go these days, practically everyone is using them and every major retailer offers them as an alternative to non-recyclable environmentally damaging plastic bags..

Envirosax takes the concept to another level with their collection of fashion-forward, graphically hip, chic bags made of lightweight polyester. They’re portable, waterproof, and lightweight (weighing in at just 1.4 oz each), These groovy bags are available individually or as a series of 5 contained within a handy pouch. With reinforced seams, each surprisingly large bag can hold a weight the equivalent of two supermarket plastic bags

9. Smart Klean Laundry Ball

I can’t say enough about this product! Another seemingly unglamorous gift item, the Smart Klean Laundry Ball works astonishingly well! I’ve been using it for about a year now and it’s made doing laundry unbelievably easy! You just toss in your load with the ball and run your washer and VOILA! You get clean, fresh-smelling clothes without the hassle of having to measure liquid or powdered soap. That alone is worth the price tag!

One ball effectively washes 365 loads of laundry without using any soap or detergents which helps to conserve water and energy. The active components inside are derived from Earth minerals and are formulated to leave zero residues behind, making them safe for you and safe for the environment. And now the manufacturers of this nifty product have added a Stain Remover to their product line. I can’t wait to check that out! Find more on the environmental benefits of using this product here.

10. Sodastream Jet Starter Kit

Enjoy the freshness and convenience of homemade soda and protect the environment at the same time! The Sodastream is a table-top unit that allows you to use regular tap or filtered water to create your own carbonated water. It’s like the 21st century version of a soda king, but instead of using a lot of small whippets (which creates a lot of waste), it uses one large (refillable) whippet that can make between 60 to 180 liters of soda water (that’s somewhere between 15 and 45 gallons of the stuff!) depending on how fizzy you like your water.

If the fact that over 40 billion plastic water bottles of all shapes and sizes end up in our landfills every year troubles you, consider how much of a mitigating impact this product could have if every household had one and used it instead of buying sparkling water in plastic bottles!

With a Sodastream, there’s no need to haul heavy bottles, store them at home or throw them away. It’s simple to clean and reuse, and comes in a variety of colors and styles, making it easy to find a soda maker to match any decor. I’d skip the flavors that come with it as they have some questionable ingredients and just add a splash of your favorite juice to your glass of sparkling water. Find a selection of models and accessories here.

Socially-Conscious Gifts

11. Support  the World Wild Life Fund

The world’s leading conservation organization, the World Wildlife Fund, works in 100 countries and is supported by 1.2 million members in the United States, and close to 5 million globally. WWF’s unique way of working combines global reach with a foundation in science, involves action at every level from local to global, and ensures the delivery of innovative solutions that meet the needs of both people and nature.

Make donations in on behalf of the environmentalists and other do-gooders on your list! Or shop the WWF Gift Center where you can get a Gift Adoption Card or Build Your Own Bucket, which includes an FSC certified wooden bucket filled soft plush versions of your selected animals, a 5″ x 7″ formal adoption certificate, 5″ x 7″ full-color photo, Species spotlight card, full of fascinating information, FREE first-class shipping, and a personalized acknowledgment letter to your gift recipient. A great gift for the youngsters on your list!

12. Buy an eGift Card From TOMS for Shoes or Eyewear

Tom’s unique One for One motto ensures that for every pair of their shoes purchased, they will donate a pair to a child in need. Why shoes you might ask? Because shoes are a fundamental resource for protecting children’s health and the need for them in developing countries is great. To date, Tom’s has given 2,000,000 pairs of new shoes to children in need around the world. Pretty impressive!

On top of that, every week they select one customer to follow their purchase around the world on a TOMS Giving Trip. How cool is that?

And now they’ve expanded their One for One concept to eyewear too. For every pair of glasses sold, through its partnership with the SEVA Foundation, one person in need will receive the eye care they need be it prescription glasses, sight saving surgery, or medical treatment. Shop TOMS for the holidays and support an amazing business with an exemplary business model!

For even more great conscious gift ideas download the full FREE report: 50 Conscious Gift Ideas for the Holidays & Beyond (available on our web site for a limited time)

Take the Edge Off the Holidays: 5 Natural Holiday Stress Relief Tips

The holidays are usually a joyous and wonderful time of the year for most, but for many of us they can also be very stressful. Whether it’s related to gift-giving anxiety, travel upsets, inclement weather, difficult family dynamics, isolation or overindulgence, this time of year can make us all more susceptible to colds, flu, fatigue, depression and general malaise.

Instead of allowing ourselves to go into hibernation mode as there is less and less sunlight during the holiday season, we pull our coats tight and brave the cold weather, traffic jams, crowds, and long lines to get our gift shopping done (often at the last minute). We stay out late, drink too much, eat too much, and scramble under pressure to complete projects or plans before the close of the year.

Add the pressure of living up to the expectations of family and the inevitable weather-related travel upsets and you’ve got a recipe for major stress.

So what can you do to take a little bit of the edge off this time of year? Here are some tips to help you keep your stress to a minimum and improve your mood so you can enjoy the holiday season with some sanity:

Get plenty of rest. Stay hydrated and remember to breathe … deeply! Try to get at least 8 hours of sleep a night or make up for lost sleep by taking naps or sleeping in. Lower alcohol consumption and drink plenty of other fluids, especially water, to stay hydrated. And remember to breathe deeply.

Avoid refined carbohydrates and sugars. OK, I know this is a tough one, but it can make a huge difference in how you feel! Refined carbs tend to spike then deplete your serotonin levels leaving you exhausted. So, indulge a little, but try to stick to healthier treats like dark chocolate or seasonal fruits. Balance things out by eating serotonin-enhancing foods like whole grains, root vegetables, beans, legumes, seeds and nuts, along with a little lean protein (turkey or fish).

Slow down. Take time to savor and enjoy the rituals of the season. Stay present with yourself and everyone around you and practice forgiveness and acceptance. Remember, you can choose to let go of whatever is troubling you for the moment.

Reach out to others, especially those in need. The holidays can magnify feelings of isolation or loneliness for those who can’t be with family or don’t have family to be with. Don’t be afraid to reach out for help and comfort if you are in need. Helping others in need also has a profoundly healing and uplifting effect, both physiological and psychological.

Surround yourself with uplifting and nurturing sounds and smells. During the holiday season it is especially important to surround yourself with soothing and uplifting smells and sounds. Listen to music that makes you happy and calm even if its not holiday music. A great place to start is with one of our Soothe collection of aromatherapy products. The combination of lavender, geranium, clary sage and chamomile essential oils in this blend help you stay calm and grounded, even when things around you are a little chaotic.

If you need a little extra help adjusting your mood try our Inspiration blend with it’s uplifting mix of citrus essential oils –sure to put a smile on even the most stubborn of scowls. If traditional holiday smells stress you out or make you depressed, avoid them as much as possible.

What to Get Your Clients or Customers For the Holidays: 5 Great Gift Ideas

‘Tis the season of giving, and who better to gift than those who gave to you during the year. That is to say, your clients and customers. This year, avoid useless doodads designed to promote your business and give them gifts that won’t be absentmindedly stuck in a desk drawer. I know that in these economically challenging times, this giving philosophy brings up the delicate matter of cost. You don’t want to bankrupt yourself giving gifts but you do want to let clients and customers know you appreciate them especially around the holidays.

Below are 5 eco-friendly gift ideas that will show your thoughtful appreciation without breaking the bank.

1. A Gift Of Bonus Time or Product

A wonderful gift for clients or customers is a coupon for a complimentary service –maybe a free hour of your time, a bonus consulting or coaching session, or a free copy of a book you wrote or cherish. Another great idea is to partner with a local business or a business that offers something of value to them and give them a free introductory service or product. This is a great way to increase visibility for your marketing partner without burning a hole in your pocket. Just make sure that the item or service is something that truly adds value and isn’t something they are already getting from a variety of sources like calendars or pre-printed mailing address labels!

2. Charity Gift Cards

Giving charity gift cards is a wonderful way to be philanthropic while enhancing your corporate image. The best part about this gift is that everyone wins! You and your company give a meaningful tax-deductible gift that supports a valuable cause. The recipient chooses a charity they like from over 150 well-known charities and the charity recipients benefit. For more info visit TheGiftThatGives.com

3. Give Clients A Break!

Here’s a unique take on audio books … give your clients a little mental break with Sniplits MP3 Audio Short Stories! Perfectly-sized for busy lives, Sniplits has stories in many genres from more than 90 authors worldwide (from under 5-min to 1 hour).They can be played on MP3 players, mobile phones, e-readers, and laptops. For more info visit Sniplits.

4. Send A Net. Save A Life.

Send a mosquito bite –preventing bed net to a family in Africa, where every thirty seconds a child dies from malaria. It’s simple. For just $10, you can send a net and save a life. 100% of the contribution goes directly to purchasing bed nets, distributing them, and educating communities on how to use them. Your customers or clients will be impressed by your compassion, and you will both have had a part in saving (at least) one child’s life. For more info visit Nothing But Nets.

5. High Quality Spa and Aromatherapy Products

Nothing says ‘thank you’ better than natural, healthy, eco-friendly gifts that make people feel and smell great! Who among us couldn’t benefit from a little extra help when it comes to stress relief or attitude adjustment? Our our clean-burning Aromatherapy Soy Candles , Revitalize Spa Gift Set and Energizing Trio of Aromatic Spray Misters are among many beautiful aromatherapy products that create soothing and nurturing environments and focused states of mind! That makes them a perfect choice for gifting clients or customers who will delight in and remember your extraordinary thoughtfulness.

Whether you work one-on-one with clients or serve a large customer base, imagine how the gift of aromatherapy can positively influence their perceptions of you, increase loyalty to your brand, and deepen your connection with them!

For more amazing aromatherapy gifts and gift ideas, visit our Holiday Gift Buying Guide.

Give Scrumptious Gifts for the Home This Holiday Season!

This holiday season why not give the people you love the gift of wonderful cleansing and nurturing smells for the home? There’s nothing more gratifying than entering a clean, fresh, and pleasant smelling home – especially after a long and grueling day, or after being away for a length of time. Having a clean smelling home not only makes people feel good, it makes visitors and guests feel welcome and at ease. This is especially true during the holidays when we tend to entertain more or have guests from out of town.

Diffusing essential oils is one of the healthiest and most efficient ways to scent a room or space, and can be the most effective, non-toxic way to eliminate odors and airborne bacteria too. Our ScentBall Electric Diffuser Kit makes a great gift for the home. Be sure to throw in some essential oils or an essential oil blend like our Air Purify Diffuser Blend. Essential oils of Lemon, Lavender, or Geranium are a great way to brighten up the bedroom or hallway. The kitchen is also an ideal spot for a diffuser, quickly neutralizing heavy odors that linger after cooking.

The easiest way to diffuse essential oils in the home is with an aromatherapy mister spray. Try making your own mister gifts this season. Just add 8-10 drops of lemon, rosemary, pine or lavender essential oil or a blend for every 2.5 cups (or 20 ounces) of water and place in a plant sprayer bottle. These misters can be used to spray the air, furniture and furnishings, even the walls, on a regular basis to keep them smelling clean and fresh. Our Calming Blend Mister Trio and Energizing Blend Mister Trio make great gifts if you don’t feel like dabbling in homemade gifts this year. Or try our limited edition Holiday Cheer Mister.

Aromatherapy soy candles also make wonderful scrumptious-smelling gifts for the home. Our Holiday Cheer Soy Candle is a perfect Christmas stocking stuffer. Our soy candles also come in Enchant, Inspiration, Revitalize, and Soothe blends.

Essential oils can be used in many ways all over the home. Try combining some of our high quality pure essential oils with a diffuser into a gift basket. Add an aromatherapy mister and a soy candle to complete it. If they are not familiar with essential oils, typing up or handwriting some of the tips below, is a nice touch:

  • Just add 5-10 drops of essential oil (or a mixture of oils) into your liquid laundry detergent or directly to the water to add a fresh, light scent. Or add a few drops of essential oil to a small hand towel and toss it into the dryer with your load.
  • All essential oils are anti-bacterial to some extent but some also have antiviral and antifungal properties. Diluted in water, you can use these to clean the bathroom and kitchen. They out-perform their chemical and synthetic counterparts, are safer and much more pleasant.
  • An easy, healthy way to deodorize rugs and carpets is to make a simple carpet powder. Just combine baking soda with a couple of drops of essential oil (the proper ratio is 16-20 drops of EO per cup of powder). Sprinkle liberally and let it sit for about 10 minutes then use a vacuum to clean it up.

What to Get the Boss This Holiday Season: Great Gift Ideas to Keep the Wheels Greased

The Big Cheese. El Jefe. Top Dog. Head Honcho. No matter how you address your boss, choosing the right holiday gift can be tricky business. Whether you love or fear your boss, don’t underestimate the value of giving him or her a thoughtful gift to keep things running monthly between you throughout the year. Exorbitant or highly personal gifts can potentially send the wrong message and may be misinterpreted as a bribe or pandering.

Unless you’re close to your boss and really know their preferences, it’s best to keep it relatively impersonal but at the same time thoughtful. Here are some suggestions to help:

1. Bonsai Golden Gate Ficus or Low Maintenance Plant

This ficus bonsai is a great way to add a little green joyfulness to the boss’s desk this holiday season. Breath some life and healthy fresh air into the top dog’s office. The best part is there’s little to no maintenance required. Any small, low maintenance plant that adds a pleasant touch to their workspace would likely be appreciated. Try ProFlowers.

2. Aromatherapy Car Diffuser

Help your boss start their day off in a good mood! Give them one of our Aromatherapy Car Diffuser Kits so they can fill their car with fresh, clean, soothing, inspiring, or energizing scents on their way to work! A Car Scenter plugin diffuser fits right ito any standard car lighter port. Simply put a few drops of an essential oil or essential oil blend on the re-usable cotton pad and slide the pad into the diffuser. Plug and go. When coupled with the right essential oils this gift can go a long way towards taking the edge off long commutes and it’s portable so it can be taken on business trips or given to the driver of their car service. Ours comes with a bottle of Stay Alert diffuser blend –a potent mix of eucalyptus, peppermint, cinnamon, orange and cedarwood.

3. Spa Gift Certificate

If you’ve got the budget for something more expensive, a SpaFinder Gift Certificate is the perfect gift to loosen the tight shoulders of your boss and bring a smile back to his or her face! Flexible and convenient, these gift certificates are accepted at over 6,000 spas worldwide! In addition, they now can be printed or emailed, so don’t worry about a last minute gift. And they never expire! Find out more at SpaFinder.com and give the gift of relaxation.

4. Basket of Farm Fresh, Local Goodies

A fresh idea is to bring your boss a picnic basket of organic treats from your local farmers market. Include a sweet treat along with a set of bamboo utensils and a cute mug with some Fair Trade coffee to round it out.

5. Calming Trio of Aromatherapy Misters

If you work in a stressful environment, giving your boss the gift of calm is like giving a gift to the entire department! At 2.75 oz, our water-based Calming Trio of Aromatic Spray Misters are a great, portable way to put instant stress relief at your boss’s fingertips! They can be used directly on the face or as room and air fresheners. The trio includes the following misters: Soothe restores balance and calms the mind, Divine is relaxing and even a bit indulgent, Revitalize brings calm and clarity while cleansing the air.

For more great aromatherapy gifts ideas for the workplace visit our Holiday Gift Buying Guide.

Perfect Holiday Gifts for Co-workers and Employees: 5 Ideas to Make Them Love You Even More!

Gift giving isn’t always emphasized in the workplace. However, you can find unique, thoughtful gifts that are affordable and allow you to show appreciation to employees and co-workers. Giving gifts to the people you work with can help to boost morale as well as create a more pleasant working environment. It doesn’t matter if you are a corporate CEO, the owner of a small business, or a mid-manager, there are cost-effective solutions to finding gift options for co-workers and employees. Consider some of these options:

1. Succulent Garden

Deck the halls with dazzling succulent gardens. Modern style succulent arrangements are lush and unique, and most importantly, low maintenance. A succulent garden transforms an office space into a botanical sanctuary. Perfect for employees or co-workers who appreciate a little nature in their life. An array of multi-colored succulents offered by ProFlowers come planted in a modern black zinc container making for a very handsome gift.

2. Wine Aerator

Do you work with some wine lovers? Wine connoisseurs know that allowing a vintage wine to “breathe” brings out its rich aromas and subtle flavors, creating a smooth finish. Wine aerators are a good choice for them because they help achieve the ideal mix of wine and oxygen with each pour. This results in a perfectly aerated wine with no decanting and no waiting. Vinturi brand provides separate models for red and white wine ensure optimal aeration for every bottle. This is a thoughtful gift for colleagues who are wine enthusiasts.

3. Local Food Basket

Try to purchase the gift baskets from a local vendor that sells locally grown or produced foods. Local grocery coops, cheese shops, farms and orchards are a good bet. To find a source try LocalHarvest.org, a nationwide database of local food producers and farms.

4. The Gift of Charity

GiveNow Cards can be personalized and enable employees and colleagues donate to the charity of their choice! Select from a variety of e-card designs or choose a traditional gift card and accompany the GiveNow card with your special message making a difference with your considerate gift of charity. Find out more at JustGive.org.

5. Aromatherapy for Inspiration and Stress Relief

We all know that the workplace can be a stressful environment –increasing employee job dissatisfaction while decreasing their motivation and productivity. If left unchecked, this can lead to stress-related illness and absenteeism. A recent medical study showed measurable reduction in stress hormones in the body within 10 minutes of soothing aromatherapy. Aromatherapy can be used to in many ways to instantly diffuse tension and restore harmony as well as life spirits when moral is low in the workplace. A great gift for co-workers and employees is our Inspiration Deluxe Spa Gift Set or our Sampler Gift Box which is filled with a large selection of pocket-sized aromatherapy products. For smaller gifts try our Trial Size Mini Gift Bag or anyone of our holiday Stocking Stuffers. For an extensive selection of aromatherapy gifts ideas visit our Holiday Gift Buying Guide.

Green Gift Ideas for Athletic and Outdoorsy Nature Loving Types

Athletes and especially active people are a notoriously challenging bunch to shop for! Are you wondering what to get for the athletes and loved ones in your life for the holidays? Look no further. We set out to find hot green gifts for the fittest of your friends and family for the holiday season. Below are some great gift ideas for your favorite cyclist, runner, triathlete, outdoor enthusiast, gym junkie and yogi.

1. Energizing Trio of Aromatic Spray Misters Our all natural, eco-friendly energizing trio of pick-me-up misters makes a great gift for those with active lifestyles. In lightweight aluminum bottles, they’re totally FAA-compliant making them the perfect for those on the go. Use them to scent hair, clothes, linens, or as room and air fresheners. Refresh cools and stimulates. Inspiration stimulates, inspires, and improves your mood. Revitalize brings calm and clarity while cleansing the air. Especially useful for situations where regular bathing or grooming may not be possible, or when cleaning up well in a hurry is imperative.

2. Harmony Yoga Mat Help your yoga loving friends rest in child’s pose in peace, knowing they are on a PVC-free mat made of sustainably-harvested natural rubber! Pick their favorite color and help them find their balance on a mat that reflects their values and personalities.

3. SIGG Aluminum Water Bottle At just ~$20 a pop, these stylish bottles made with Swiss craftsmanship make a great gift for the friend who is always on the way to the gym or off on a hike or run. They are seamless, leak-proof, crack-resistant as well as being ecologically sound, reusable and ultimately, easily recycled.

4. RunPhones Earphones These unique, headband-style soft, comfortable headphones for running wick away excess moisture, allow traffic to be heard through the band and keep hair out of the way. They are eco-friendly, being made with 100% recycled plastic bottles, and they are sewn and assembled in the USA. They have a winter version available that is perfect for staying active in the cold.

5. Keen Nopo Gym Bag These bags are more than just pretty, they are practical. The perfect solution for the loved on who is often at the gym and needs a bag that can easily pass for a purse. This stylish gym bag features a sustainable recycled polyester lining and molded rubber bottom.

Giving the Gift of Green This Holiday Season: 4 Gift Giving Tips for the Eco-Friendly!

Do you have friends and family on your list that you know are eco-conscious? It seems that more and more people are turning the corner and making extra efforts to reduce their carbon footprint these days. If your friends and family are too, a thoughtful way to show you care this holiday season is by giving gifts that are in alignment with their environmental and social values. This helps you and the giftee feel great and lowers your carbon footprint! Buying products with organic fibers or ingredients, and products that are locally made whenever you can, are great rules of thumb for greener gifting. Here are some ideas for eco-friendly holiday gifts.

1. Give All-Natural, Organic and Cruelty Free Green Beauty Products. Keep in mind that the term “natural” does not speak directly to the environmental benefits of a product or the manufacturer’s commitment to environmental practices. Before gifting skin or beauty products, visit the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep database, which enables you to see how products rank in terms of health and safety. All of our products are safe bets for spa and skin care gifts, check out our selection of aromatherapy and organic bath and body products and especially our aromatherapy gift sets.

2. Give re-usable gifts that help them be more green! Hydros Bottles are re-usable BPA-free plastic water bottles with built-in filters that can greatly reduce plastic waste. Hydros donates $1 from every sale to providing clean drinking water to a village in Cameroon. For more information go to http://www.hydrosbottle.com. Another great green gift is the Esse Reusable Bags’ complete reusable shopping bag system called the Carryall Tote –6 different bags in 1 convenient tote. They also have some of the most stylish reusable bags I’ve seen so far. You can check it out at their site: http://www.esselife.com.

3. Handmade gifts. No one will appreciate a handmade gift more than your truly eco-minded. Consider baking something or canning some fruit preserves. Crocheting, knitting, or sewing something is also a touching way to stay low-impact and show you care, especially if you use organic or recycled fibers. Or make your own lotions or soaps – include some essential oils, to add a delicious scent and make them therapeutic as well! You can’t go wrong with Lavender or citrus essential oils.

4. Buy Fair Trade and Local Goods. Key product aspects to keep an eye out for are Fair Trade and Local. Buying products with organic fibers or ingredients and buying local products whenever you can are great rules of thumb for greener gifting. Fair trade coffee, nuts, chocolate or fruit make great gifts as does a basket of locally produced artisanal breads and cheeses!

What Men Want…Perfect Holiday Gifts for Him

Here’s the holiday season, and once again we find ourselves faced with the challenge of what to get the men in our lives to show them we care. Instead of going the cliché route this year and getting the standard silk ties, power tools, barbecue sets, or accessories for his car, why not consider another alternative: all-natural grooming products.

We all know that most men tend to look at skin care as the exclusive domain of women and just don’t seem equipped to decipher the array of product choices to understand how they can benefit from a skin care routine. However, men have skincare challenges too that can often be addressed with some guidance and a little push in the right direction. So, this season, give the gift of an enjoyable collection of all natural plant-based skin and body products along with a few grooming tools and help the men in your life embark on the path to smoother, softer, healthier skin. Below are some great ideas for products to gift alone or to combine into a wonderful gift basket for him:

1. Cleansing is essential to controlling oily skin. For a minty fresh and clean feeling that men love, try any of our Refresh blend products. If bar soaps are his preference, give one that is glycerin-based or a super-fatted soap made with shea or cocoa butter.

2. Regular exfoliation helps unclog pores, which is key to fighting acne in addition to allowing for a closer shave and fewer ingrown hairs. The combination of our Gentle Cleansing Body Wash and Nourishing Hand & Body Lotion works great for this especially in the Revitalize blend. Add a set of Loofah Facial Disc Sponges to provide gentle exfoliating action that won’t cause irritation.

3. A good toner should soothe and calm irritated or inflamed skin, re-balance the pH of his skin, and tighten pores without drying out his skin (which is what alcohol does). Your best bet is a toner that includes witch hazel (a natural astringent), vegetable glycerin (a humectant), aloe (to normalize skin), and essential oils of lavender, chamomile, and cedarwood. A spritz of our purified water and hydrosol based Aromatherapy Mister Spray will do the job too.

4. After cleansing and shaving, men should apply moisturizer. Give him a plant-based lotion or cream made with light hydrating anti-oxidant rich oils like Jojoba, Grapeseed, or Coconut oil. For more on this read our ezine article Inside-Out: Heal Dry Skin with Natural Skin Care Oils Good Enough to Eat! Our Simply Naked unscented hand and body lotion is a great choice for your guy if he’s not a fan of scented moisturizers It’s gentle enough to use on the face and neck and won’t leave a lingering scent.

5. For occasional breakouts or blemishes, give him our Boo Boo Blend, an essential oil-based blend of Lavender, Tea Tree, Geranium, and Chamomile essential oils that can be applied directly to affected areas. It’s like a natural liquid bandaid that soothes and treats minor cuts, scrapes, and breakouts.

The most neglected parts of a man’s body are his lips, cuticles, elbows, knees and feet, so include some of these items in your gift set:

  • Petroleum-free lip balms to keep lips hydrated and soft –especially when exposed to the elements. Try are yummy Organic Lip Balms, available in 4 blends
  • A protective and emollient balm for dry or cracked elbows, knees, and heels made with herbal extracts, olive oil, and/or shea butter will work
  • Exfoliating salt or sugar body scrubs can help slough off dead skin cells and soften tough skin

For exclusive deals offered all year round, “like” us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter.

Don’t Miss Exclusive Holiday Deals Starting Soon at Dropwise!

This holiday season we will be offering many money-saving deals to help you and your loved ones stay wrapped in wonderful and healing smells this Winter! These special deals will be exclusively offered via a few different channels so make sure you are plugged into the Dropwise community to take full advantage of our special offers this season!

Facebook 12 Days of Deals ImageIf you haven’t already, come join the conversation with us on Facebook by December 1st when we will begin offering daily deals exclusively on our fan page! Make sure to join us on Twitter too for aromatherapy tips, great holiday tips and wellness reminders, inspirational quotes, and more!

Here at Dropwise, we love our customers, subscribe to our newsletter for additional special offers for holiday shopping, and, of course, for our informative articles focused on health and wellness!

Don’t want to wait? Check out our gift sets for holiday gift giving! Dropwise aromatherapy gift sets are thoughtful, healing, green, pure and natural ways to show you care this holiday season.