Ditch the plastic toys and consider these eco friendly gifts for kids instead!
It should be easy, but personally, I find it really hard to buy gifts for kids these days.
The main reason? The sad fact is, no matter how hard you try, when you need to find a present for a kid, it’s going to be made of one evil material: plastic. It’s so ubiquitous, it seems that finding eco friendly gifts for kids is pretty much impossible; everything from dolls and trucks to games and clothing has the stuff in it.
And that’s a shame, for so many reasons.
Why eco friendly toys matter
For little babies and toddlers, it’s likely they’re going to end up chewing a bit on plastic, and that’s not good – gnawing on it can actually lead to microparticles of plastics entering their bloodstreams. In fact, you can read more about the health threats from plastic toys here.
For older kids, giving them plastic presents only normalises the stuff, and that’s not good either. We adults should be sending out a message that natural materials are best for people and the planet.
And then, of course, there’s the whole reality that whatever plastic gifts you give kids today will end up as plastic pollution when they’re adults. Not exactly the kind of planetary legacy you want to leave for that wee one you love, is it?
Take a look at these eco friendly gifts for kids – they cover all ages, tastes and genders, too!
12 Eco Friendly Gifts For Kids For All Occasions
The sad fact is that kids seem to be losing touch with manual and creative activities, thanks to their parents increasingly putting devices in front of them to keep them busy. But you can easily help their brain development by gifting them with this wooden letter puzzle.
Handmade in the USA, this is an educational tool that helps kids not only with their spatial development by allowing them to fit the letters in the appropriate space, but also teaches them how to spell their name and know the alphabet. Love the idea of wood toys? Click here to see more!
Best for: Educating kids aged 1-3
We love: How this is made from all natural materials, even up to the paints.
How great is the message on this printed organic cotton-jersey T-shirt by Stella McCartney? It basically sends out a positive message to all those who can read. It goes great with jeans, tights or a skirt, is wonderfully unisex and suits all ages, too.
Best for: Kids from 2-14 (these come in loads of different sizes)
We love: The sweet message!
Ok, so this luxury gift is more likely to delight moms than kids, but how charming is this beautifully illustrated suitcase? It can, of course, be used again and again, to house toys, personal care products, clothes, you name it.
The Aurelia Probiotic Skincare gift set includes not only a plethora of gentle skincare products such as soaps, shampoos and creams for kids, but also comes with a limited edition hardback copy of Sleepy Time Tales, a book that’s full of sweet, woodland-inspired adventures.
Price: Around $190
Best for: New moms and wee babes
We love: The fact that all of Aurelia Probiotic Skincare’s products are designed to protect the natural biome of the skin, through the use of natural ingredients
The I See Me! My Snuggle Bunny Personalized Storybook is a one-of-a-kind tale. Its main focus is on treating others with kindness. The reader follows a super sweet bunny throughout their daily routine, during which the sweet Snuggle Bunny counts ten ways that they express affection.
Printed on FSC-certified paper pages, your child’s name is featured throughout the story and in the illustrations. It’s one of those eco friendly gifts for kids they’ll treasure for years to come.
Best for: Teaching kids from 0-8 years old the value of kindness
We love: How you can customise this so the child really feels included in the story.
5. Cool Kicks
These vegan slides by Stella McCartney make for a great gift, for several reasons. One, they’re easy for kids to put on. No fussy laces or snaps! Two, they’ve got a non-slip bottom and warm, fuzzy top. Three, they’re decorated with Mickey Mouse from Fantasia. And finally, they’re unisex. Perfect, right?
Best for: Kids of all ages – in fact, they make these for adults, too!
We love: That these can be worn outdoors in warm weather, or indoors as slippers.
There is nothing better than a positive affirmation. And what better way to decorate your little one’s nursery or playroom than with some words that remind them they’re magic?
This canvas banner with the ‘She Is Magic That One’ was made by artisans in Kenya. It lends an empowering, positive message that will be as strong now as it will in a few years time. After all: magic is everywhere!
Best for: Girls of all ages! From babies to older kids, this message will grow with them.
We love: The simplicity behind the super important message.
Dolls are a much-loved classic toy. I remember how much I adored my paper cut out dolls, which came with loads of exciting outfits to dress them up in!
This Camille doll made by La-di-dolls is a bit more durable since it’s made from wood. She’s hand painted and comes with eight eco-friendly outfits, and loads of hemp hair. How awesome is that? She also comes with her own eco-friendly carrying case, which is perfect for taking Camille and all of her outfits on outings, holidays and car trips.
Best for: Creative kids
We love: That hemp hair!
What kid doesn’t love to draw? And these ice cream shaped, eco friendly chalks allow them to do just that, pretty much anywhere they like. If they draw a hopscotch, that also encourages kids to get active, too. Bonus!
The purchase of this product supports “Recycling Education” and employs people with developmental disabilities, creating a positive earth conscious impact. What’s not to love?
Best for: Little Picassos aged 3-10
We love: The fact that these encourage kids to get outside and get creative on the pavement!
Maybe you remember the thrill of having your first ‘own’ money? Kids will love the notion that all the coins in this ceramic piggy bank are theirs – and only theirs – to spend!
There’s an array of colours and styles to choose from here, and it’s big enough to ‘eat’ a lot of savings! The best part is that the rubber stopper on the bottom means that coins can be removed without smashing the bank. Why not add some money in the piggy to make your little recipient extra happy?
Best for: Teaching kids the value of savings
We love: How you can customise the colours
Kids will learn to love bath time once they sample the BeginAgain Bathtub Ball Shark Tank! This natural rubber toy makes it more fun to splash around with. Kids can exercise their imaginations, pretending they’re guiding a deep sea expedition fraught with adventure, sharks and other sea creatures.
Best for: Stimulating the imagination
We love: The fact that these toys blow bubbles when fully submerged underwater
This is one of our favourite eco friendly gifts for kids, because it looks like so much fun! (wonder if they make adult sizes…?)
The Ecotribe Wooden Unicorn Toddler Swing is handcrafted from natural birch wood and cotton rope. It works wonderfully indoors or out. I promise this totally sustainable swing will keep toddlers and babies busy for hours!
Best for: Restless babies and toddlers
We love: That this is a unicorn, not a horse!
This is one of my personal favourite eco friendly gifts For kids! Rocks, like plants and animals, are a living part of our planet, and this kit really allows kids to get in touch with what geology is. This science is even more exciting since the kids get to smash open rocks….and to discover the crystal treasures that lie within!
The kit comes with 10 geodes filled with various crystals, safety goggles, and a full-colour learning book. It’s a great educational toy for both boys and girls, and is guaranteed to get them perceiving rocks in a different way.
Best for: Kids aged 7-10 with an interest in science
We love: The fact that some of these ‘rocks’ are actually healing crystals! Bonus!