Despite your best intentions and attempts at organization, sometimes you do miss out on names to include on your gift list. Then, while you’re busy navigating through a crowded mall, your brain suddenly gets jolted by adrenaline, and you start to remember a couple of people whom you haven’t thought of.

Not the smartest shopping strategy. GIF via Giphy.

Should this happen, don’t pick up the nearest department store item you’d see; chances are it’ll just be additional clutter for its recipient. It’s still possible to be mindful about the gifts you’d buy even at the 11th hour, as long as you know the brands and independent sellers that have already done the hard work of creating products that are not only useful and necessary but also lend themselves conducive to a more ecological lifestyle. Yup, these are last-minute gift ideas with a conscience. You might even be tempted to gift some of them to yourself.


Get naked

Clockwise from top: Christingle naked body conditioner, P625; Cinders naked shower gel, P725; Christmas Citrus soap, P425; and Golden Pear soap, P525

Handy especially to frequent travelers who have to mind the amount of liquid toiletries they can stash into their carry-on luggage, Lush’s line of “naked” or unpackaged products still have that handmade, lushly scented, and skin-friendly appeal that the British cosmetics brand is known for, but without the plastic bottles and tubs that would have ended in landfills. From their popular shampoo bars to the naked shower gels, body conditioners, and lotions, Lush is working on its vision of practicing zero packaging in all of its stores (they currently have two Lush Naked Shops already, one in Berlin and one in Milan). Pitch in to their vision and minimize the waste that your gift recipients generate in their households by picking up any of Lush’s festive-looking naked products, and wrapping them up in vibrant knot wraps that can be used over and over again.

Lush stores are located at Alabang Town Center, Bonifacio High Street, Estancia in Captiol Commons, Glorietta 4, Greenbelt 3, Robinsons Magnolia, Shangri-La Plaza, SM Mall of Asia, and TriNoma. 


Get messy

Budget-friendly and super useful Christmas gift bundles from Messy Bessy. Image from the Messy Bessy Instagram account.

We’ve long known how this homegrown brand helps us keep our bodies and homes clean without doing the environment dirty. By opening a branch that allows customers to refill their empty Messy Bessy containers (hint: It’s at the Power Plant Mall), it also helps shoppers cut down on the number of plastic bottles that tend to accumulate in their homes. Help your friends and/or loved ones make their bodies and personal spaces cleaner and fresher with Messy Bessy’s wide selection of eco-friendly solutions, from the zesty all-around surface cleaner and aromatic linen sprays to muscle relief balms and hand sanitizers. P.S. Your purchase also helps fund the HOUSE Foundation, which employs, educates, and empowers at-risk young adults.

Messy Bessy is located at Alabang Town Center, Central Square Bonifacio Global City, Estancia Mall, Glorietta 2, Greenhills V-Mall, Lucky Chinatown Mall, Market! Market!, Power Plant Mall, Robinsons Magnolia, Robinsons Manila, SM Mall of Asia, SM Marikina, SM Megamall, SM North EDSA, SM Southmall, TriNoma, Uptown Mall, U.P. Town Center, and the Venice Grand Canal Mall.


Get clean

Clockwise from top: Aloe vera after-sun serum, insect repellant, hemp seed oil facial serum, deodorant cream, calendula lip rescue balm, aloe vera burn gel, healing balm, travel soap (in tins), bamboo charcoal tooth powder, bamboo toothbrush, and stainless steel ear pick. Image from Daniela Calumba’s Instagram account.

Even the smallest toiletry items we use generate waste. Good thing eco-warrior Daniela Calumba continuously works to find ways on how we can care for the environment as we care for ourselves. From her bamboo toothbrushes, which comes with a compostable wooden handle and charcoal-activated bristles that last for months with proper care, to her all-natural facial serums and deodorants that come in recyclable (and refillable) glass jars and bottles and tins, her growing line of personal care items make for an easy way to lead an earth-friendlier lifestyle. Those on your list who like that certain clean, minimalist, and almost clinical aesthetic will also appreciate how a small fleet of her products would look on their vanity tables.

Daniela Calumba’s products are available at the Kahilom store (open from Tuesday to Sunday, from 11 am to 8 pm) at the HUB Make Lab at the First United Building, Escolta, Manila. 


Get smart

SIP Burrito Silver set (comes with a bamboo spoon, a bamboo fork, a bamboo knife, a pair of bamboo chopsticks, a silver classic straw, a silver milk tea straw, and a straw brush, with a canvas burrito wrap), P550. Image from the Sip PH website.

Who wouldn’t appreciate receiving any of Sip PH’s niftily packaged metal straws and wooden utensils? They’re easy to tote around in their canvas pouches, so your recipient can opt to refuse single-use plastic straws, plastic spoons and forks, and chopsticks whenever they dine out.

Sip PH is located at Unit 30, 68 Roces, 68 Don A. Roces Avenue, Tomas Morato, Quezon City. Sip products are also available at their partner locations nationwide. 


Get practical

Delicious dry goods at the Ritual store. Image from the Ritual website.

If that last-minute name that popped into your head has a family and/or likes to cook, why not give them some grocery items? Except not those sold in supermarkets, shipped in from a million miles away, and packaged with so much plastic and Styrofoam. At the Ritual store, you’ll find dry goods that come from local farms, including some unusual products that could spice up any conventional recipe. Buy a couple of kilos of heirloom grains or an assortment of different kinds of salts or any of the other dry goods selection that you think someone can mage magic with in the kitchen, bundle them up in reusable beeswax wraps (Daniela Calumba sells these, by the way!), and present them to your recipient with a heartfelt greeting.

Ritual is located at the 2nd floor of the Languages International Bldg., 926 Arnaiz Ave., Makati.