15 Gifts You Can Feel Good About
As we approach the season of giving, we’re of the belief that where a gift comes from matters just as much as where it’s going. In a year wrought with unexpected hurdles, we all want to treat our loved ones to the gifts they deserve, but what if we could give back to our communities at the same time? From lowering our carbon footprint to supporting children’s education, this year’s gift guide ensures you find the perfect present for everyone you know while still taking care of those you don’t.
Founded and produced in Toronto, Bather first made its name by developing street-inspired beachwear that abandoned oversized board shorts in lieu of the more tailored East Coast style. Eventually branching into quality leisure apparel, producing sweatpants, camp shirts, and headwear that rival any streetwear brand, Bather’s apparel is made entirely of environmentally sustainable fabrics. What’s more, this year, the brand launched its “Get a Beanie, Give a Beanie” campaign, an initiative that donates a beanie to Covenant House Toronto to help youth experiencing homelessness for every beanie they sell with the mission of keeping everyone warm during the holiday season. These vibrant beanies are the perfect cool-weather companion for anyone who appreciates a splash of colour in their winter wardrobe. $40
Children Believe: Gifts for Good
Finding the perfect gift can be a challenge, especially when it comes to a person who seemingly has it all. In a year mired with unprecedented challenges as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, supporting and empowering vulnerable communities is a thoughtful and unique alternative that will not only be impactful today but also for years to come.
Since 1960, Children Believe has worked to help children overcome barriers so they can access education and achieve their dreams. Today, they help over 900,000 children, women, and men in nearly 400 communities across Africa, Asia, and the Americas to overcome barriers to change. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Children Believe continues to do their part in tackling the spread of the virus by providing education on proper sanitation practices, supplying critical nutrition and hygiene kits, and keeping children safe from violence so they can continue to learn.
Their Gifts for Good catalogue contains over 40 different gift ideas that give back. Our recommendation? A COVID-19 emergency kit ($50) that provides nutritious meals and vital PPE kits ($75) for healthcare workers and mothers, or a $100 scholarship to send a girl to school for a year so she can access essential life and professional skills.
2020 has taught us all to be thankful for what we have. This year, share the love and help children live and dream fearlessly. childrenbelieve.ca/giftsforgood
People everywhere have been affected by COVID-19 in one way or another. While some of us have tried to live a “normal” life this year, one group of people have not had the same luxury: frontline healthcare workers.
This holiday season, consider giving a gift that gives twice by donating to Sinai Health. With every donation, you support life-saving care at Sinai Health, and allow our healthcare workers to provide the best care possible.
Sinai Health is a specialized health care system and biomedical research institute, discovering and delivering life-changing care. Our globally recognized experts push the boundaries of care for infants, the most complex chronic illnesses and the diseases of aging.
2020 taught us that our health is the most precious gift. This holiday season, give the gift of care and research for a brighter and healthier future through a charitable donation.
Since the brand was founded in 2015, Kotn has been steadfast in its mission to redefine the standard for conscious production. Prioritizing tasteful design, honest value, high-quality fabrics, and a positive social impact, Kotn’s collections are all made from ethically-sourced Egyptian cotton and serve as the perfect gifts for those who appreciate beautiful workwear. With every item you scratch off your list from Kotn, you contribute to one of the brand’s social impact projects, including building and operating new schools in areas without access to education. Working with a local NGO, Kotn aims to provide every child in their Nile Delta farming communities with a safe education, prioritizing a 2:1 female-to-male student ratio in an effort to empower young women. Whether it’s a cashmere turtleneck for him or a knitted lantern sweater for her, feel good about the impact of your purchase with Kotn. Prices vary
Nobis No Cold Shoulder
Nobis has been at the forefront of Canadian outerwear for much of the past decade, making the brand’s limited-edition reversible No Cold Shoulder beanie a standout gift this holiday season. Able to flip from its subtle grey tone to a vibrant orange, this two-way beanie offers something charmingly different from most luxury brands who prefer understated colourways. With the purchase of the beanie, Nobis will donate 100 percent of the pre-tax purchase price to a participating charity so you can give back to foundations like One Warm Coat and New Circles Glow in style. $50
No Mask No Service x Oretta
A year ago, we never would have imagined how fundamental masks would become, but here we are, so why not embrace this new reality in style? Fashion designer Amanda Lew Kee launched her brand, No Mask No Service, in response to mandatory mask bylaws in Ontario, creating masks that look good and feel even better. Now, No Mask No Service is partnering with Oretta restaurant and café in Toronto with the mission of raising community awareness for supporting small local businesses, takeout from local restaurants, and the overall importance of masks specifically in the service environment. The collaboration includes limited edition sweatshirts and matching masks to help keep you and your loved ones warm and safe as you venture out to pick up your local take-out. $30 for three-pack
Moët Hennessy Atelier on Queen
Add something special to the top shelf this holiday with a personalized bottle from Moët Hennessy. Perfect for the cognac connoisseur, Atelier on Queen is a new online pop-up shop featuring limited-edition bottles from the Moët Hennessy portfolio. Whether for a loved one or yourself, celebrate the season by ordering a bottle of this iconic French brandy customized with a name, date, or festive saying. With each purchase, you will be given the opportunity to make a donation to the Bartenders Benevolent Fund, supporting food, beverage, and hospitality industries heavily affected by COVID-19 and Atelier on Queen will match every donation up to $10,000. This year, we could all use a drink, so why not enjoy the best? Prices vary
True trailblazers of material innovation, Allbirds arrived on the scene in 2014 and immediately transformed the shoe industry. The New Zealand-American apparel company initially launched with a direct-to-consumer approach aimed at designing environmentally-friendly footwear before recently expanding into their stunning apparel collection. Shop responsibly this holiday by buying him a cozy Allbirds’ wool cardi or transform her winter wardrobe with their soft Trino puffer made of 60 percent merino wool. Determined to create apparel with a purpose, these sustainable fashion pieces not only make for a wardrobe statement but are kind to the environment. Prices vary
Goodee Basse Market Tote
There are few items more universally practical than a sustainably-minded tote. Goodee’s newest carryall, the Basse Market tote, is designed to take you seamlessly from weekday to weekend and does so in style. Featuring four striking colourways, the Basse is both practical and meticulously designed. Handcrafted by ethical fashion enterprise Cartiera, the bag celebrates and supports traditional artisanship while providing meaningful work to young refugees in search of a better life. Produced in partnership with the UN’s Ethical Fashion Initiative, this tote is more than a charming gift, but the sign of a better future. $200
Sentaler 4 SickKids
Since its emergence in 2009, luxury outerwear brand Sentaler has become one Canada’s most beloved labels. Sentaler’s signature ribbed accessories make for particularly special gifts during the season, where designer Bojana Sentaler’s influence can be seen in every stitch. Made from 100 percent cruelty-free alpaca fibres, Sentaler’s gorgeous collection of hats, scarves, and gloves are the perfect gifts for those who appreciate the finer things. And with each piece sold, the label’s #SENTALER4SickKids initiative will donate all proceeds to the SickKids Foundation. Prices vary
Sydney Hale Candles
With scents ranging anywhere from the rich cognac base of applewood and birch to the bright herbal tones of lavender and bay laurel, Sydney Hale Co. has the perfect collection of candles to warm up with this season. Choose the perfect scent for anyone on your list while supporting animal rescue organizations across the United States. Sydney Hale Co. has always been involved in animal advocacy, donating 10 percent of all profits towards organizations promoting the humane treatment of animals, adoption over purchase, and the responsibility of spaying and neutering. Breathe in the sweet scent of elderberry rose this season while giving back to the animals who give so much to us. $40, available at Park & Province
TenTree has quickly become one of the most impactful and environmentally-sustainable clothing brands to come out of Canada, making the label’s wide range of outdoor apparel perfect for anyone on your list who embraces the wild. Hoping to motivate and encourage environmental stewardship through earth-first apparel, TenTree’s pledge has been simple but wildly impactful: for every item sold, TenTree will plant 10 trees. With over 50 million trees planted to date, you can help that number grow by finding quality clothing for anyone on your list. Prices vary
Giving Good Juju is the gift for everyone this year. Formulated with certified-organic ingredients, their concentrated solid shampoo bars promise to leave hair feeling healthy, shiny, and nourished. With a range of options for all types of hair, Good Juju’s aim is to provide the perfect gift for the self-care enthusiast while inspiring us all to make more conscious purchases. From formulation and manufacturing, to packaging and shipping, the company only uses methods and materials that will have a minimal environmental impact, with a single bar of their solid shampoo or conditioner taking the place of as many as three plastic bottles. $20
Province of Canada
The Province of Canada may not normally be your go-to source for holiday shopping, but this year, please everyone on your list with a fresh pair of combed cotton socks, an all-season Canadian staple. With a variety of classic designs, these high-quality socks make for such a charming present while supporting those who don’t take these simple gifts for granted. Socks are the least donated, but most needed clothing item among Canada’s homeless, so for every pair of Province of Canada socks purchased, a pair will be donated to a Canadian homeless shelter. It’s a simple solution to a difficult problem that delivers everyone some much-needed comfort this year. – Prices vary
7 Virtues Fragrances
Few gifts are as intimate as the right perfume, but often, we’re so overwhelmed by options that we surrender to giving the same scents for years at a time. This year, 7 Virtues provides a lasting, natural perfume void of harmful chemicals that offers the perfect fragrance for the women in your life. Sourcing fair trade and organic essential oils in support of farmers rebuilding after war or strife, 7 Virtues’ philosophy is to serve both their farmers and customers, ensuring your loved one receives a perfume that carries them from workday to date night while supporting a larger movement. Prices vary