‘Tis the time of year when we open the floodgates on our bank accounts and throw a whole bunch of money at a whole bunch of stores, all in the name of gifting. If you can direct even a little of that money toward deserving companies that give back to the communities around them, you’ll be doing an extra good deed that we’re sure your giftee will appreciate.
Here are a few places to start—all 14 of these companies or nonprofits do significant good (i.e., more than “we donate one corn kernel to a child in need for every $1,000 made”) for a whole bunch of different causes.
With its woodsy pine scent, this candle smells like all the best parts of Yosemite National Park. Your purchase goes right back into the park itself—for every candle sold, Parks Project restores one meter of trail in Yosemite.Parks Project has a whole collection of candles that smell like different national parks around the country, so if Yosemite isn’t it for you, check out Big Sur, Joshua Tree, or one of the other parks instead.($34; parksproject.us)
OK, yes, socks were always the lamest gift we got as kids. But Bombas socks really are a solid present, and here’s why: First, Bombas makes great socks. They’re genuinely more comfortable than other brands, and they’re designed to function as well on a long run as they do in the office. Second, socks are among the most-needed items at homeless shelters, and Bombas donates a pair for every one purchased.($68; bombas.com)
Bee’s wrap is a sustainable and better-for-the-environment alternative to plastic wrap—it keeps food fresh just as well, and you can wash it and reuse it for about a year. Bee Wild is a better alternative than other bee’s wrap brands because it gives a full 100 percent of profits back to the bees through organizations like Planet Bee Foundation and the Honeybee Conservancy.($18 for 3; amazon.com)
With recipes by famous immigrant chefs from all over the world, The Immigrant Cookbook is a celebration of the diversity of American culture via our favorite medium: food. It’s a gorgeous addition to any kitchen and profits from your purchase go to the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project.($36; thelittlemarket.com)
This backpack is good lookin’ enough that anyone would feel lucky to tote it around all day—and with sturdy construction, a water-repellent finish, and pockets for everything from your laptop to water bottle, it’s rugged enough to take it.United by Blue also sells some of our favorite jackets if your price point is a little higher. This Bison Utility Jacket and Bison Puffer Vest are both outdoorsy enough for a hike but comfortable enough for everyday wear. And seriously, stock up—for every product UBB sells, it removes a pound of trash from oceans and waterways around the world.($68; unitedbyblue.com)
True to its name, Rescue Chocolate donates 100 percent of its profits to animal rescue organizations around the country so more abandoned animals can find happy homes. Rescue Chocolate sells tons of sweets, but we love the 4 Paw Collection—you’ll get one bar each of Forever Mocha, Peanut Butter Pit Bull, Foster-iffic Peppermint, and Mission Feral Fig, all wrapped up in a box with a bow. All the chocolate is vegan and organic, so it’s basically as nice as giving someone a new puppy.($25; rescuechocolate.com)
Larry’s Coffee will give 10 percent of sales on its (organic!) Bad Kitty Blend to the Foundation of Hope for the Research and Treatment of Mental Illness, which is pretty nice of it to do. Larry’s also has several other “for-a-cause” blends that donate to a variety of places—from antipoverty organizations to literacy centers to environmental groups.($15; larryscoffee.com)
Alaska Glacial Mud Co.’s products are good for your skin and good for the earth. This clay mask is sustainably hand-sourced in small portions from the Copper River Delta in Alaska (no big drills or heavy machinery are used on the fragile environment), and 10 percent of the profits go back into the preservation and restoration of the Copper River Watershed.($21; alaskaglacialmud.com)
This best-selling (and super-adorable) trio of Happy Spritz aromatherapy sprays will help anyone through the day, whether they need help feeling awake in the morning, less stressed during the day, or sleepy at night. Happy Spritz gives back to (and spreads the word about) animal rescue organizations that adopt animals from high-kill shelters, so every purchase helps save a life.($34; happyspritz.com)
Anyone who’s ready to get on the #strawless bandwagon is gonna need this straw, sleeve, and cleaner set from Simply Straws. All the materials are sustainably sourced, and everything from the company’s packing to its web hosting is as green as it can be. On top of this, Simply Straws donates almost a quarter of its sales to eight different nonprofits in order to spread the giving-back love.($21; simplystraws.com)
This sturdy growler is an awesome addition to any picnic, beach day, or excursion. It holds 64 ounces of beer (or other liquids, we suppose) and will keep your drink cold for at least 24 hours and hot for at least 12.Miir also approaches giving back in a cool way—it chooses one project at a time and uses a portion of profits from its products for one large grant. Right now the active project is installing a clean water tap in every home in a community in Lempira, Honduras. You can read more about it (and Miir’s past projects) here.($59; miir.com)
If you have a candle lover on your hands but don’t want to get them another candle, this candle care kit is the ticket. The wick trimmer, dipper, and snuffer combo will keep their candles in peak shape while providing women artisans around the world with the opportunity and tools to work their way out of poverty.($20; prosperitycandle.com)
You’ve heard about how much good amFAR does. It’s chipping away at an AIDS cure through research initiatives like Countdown to a Cure for AIDS, and purchasing this t-shirt helps since 60 percent of each purchase goes right back into AIDS research. Plus, who doesn’t need a reminder that they’re epic?($25; amfar.myshopify.com)
Yellow Leaf hammocks and hanging chairs are created by women breadwinners in rural communities around the world, so every purchase funnels money directly into communities that need it the most.And the women do an amazing job—this hanging chair is like a hammock but better in every possible way. The yarn is comfortable and breezy, the chair won’t flip over and dump you out, and its weatherproof materials mean you can forget about it outside in rain or snow and it won’t discolor or break down.($179; yellowleafhammocks.com)
Still in search of the perfect present? We’ve got tons more gift ideas right here.
Every editorial product is independently selected by our editors. If you buy something through one of our links, we may earn a commission. But don’t worry, it doesn’t cost you anything extra, and we wouldn’t recommend a product if we didn’t love it as much as we love puppies.