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Is There Anything Different About Ethical Holiday Shopping?

If this is your first year as a conscious consumer, there are a few things that you might want to know as we approach the holiday season.

After all, if you’re used to two-minute shipping speeds and have come to rely on them, you might be in for a disappointing Christmas!

Because many of our DoneGood Approved brands make handmade, custom, and made-to-order merchandise, you’re going to want to leave a bit of a longer lead time.

Many also utilize more eco-friendly shipping methods that may take longer to get to you.

But now that you know that, you can plan ahead! And with a little extra preparation, this year’s festivities can go just as smoothly as last year’s- but with way more ethically made goodies!

Now is the perfect time to start planning your holiday shopping lists, so here are a few more ethical shopping tips to see you through:

Double Check Your Recipient’s Size

I promise, it won’t ruin the surprise. 

If you want to throw them off the scent, just ask for all of their sizes- shirt size, pant size, dress size, shoe size, ring size, pupillary distance- you get the idea.

That will keep them guessing, and you’ll have them all on hand for next year, so it’s a win-win.

Just make sure that you confirm their current size before you order because, while bigger companies probably have algorithms that can have your replacement size on its way to you before you even know you need it, our brands are focused on other goals, like saving the planet and its people!

Most DoneGood brands are perfectly happy to do an exchange for you if you got the wrong size, but the process might take a little longer, and it does use up more resources, so it’s best to get it right the first time if you can.

Don’t Rely on Black Friday

While some of our brands run their own Black Friday sales, others boycott the occasion. Still others may opt to participate in Small Business Saturday, Shop for Good Sunday, or Cyber Monday instead. Some may have no sales at all, ever.

My point is, don’t rely on there being a sale. There may be one, but there may not, and if the lack of a sale throws your whole holiday budget out of whack, everyone is going to be sad.

But it’s not all bad news- you can always count on your DoneGood discounts to save you money on qualifying orders from tons of approved brands!

Know Your Giftee’s Values

Even though we’re all conscious consumers, we all have different values. 

When it comes to ethical shopping, it’s perfectly natural to prioritize one value over another.

To give you an extreme example, the most sustainably-made, gorgeous, eco-friendly pair of shoes ever wouldn’t give your vegan giftee that sparkly warm fuzzy feeling inside if they were made with animal products.

It’s important to know which values are most important to your intended recipient before you buy for them. Once you get this intel, you can use DoneGood to browse for present ideas and sort by a certain value or combination of values including eco-friendly, cruelty-free, vegan, made in the USA, recycled/upcycled, organic/GMO-free, toxin-free, empowers workers, gives back, or owned by women or people of color.

This value sorting system is awesome and allows for a level of granularity that you just can’t get anywhere else. Use it to your advantage to get the best gifts ever this year!

And Now, a Few Brands That Are Great in a Time Crunch

If you’re reading this a little too late to take advantage of my “buy early” advice, don’t panic. There are a few brands with great turnaround times and fast shipping that may just save the day.


When you need a gift in a hurry, check out these brands:

  • Ten Thousand Villages- They have fast online shipping as well as several physical locations across the country where you can shop in person.
  • Elegantees- Ships fast, offers free returns and size swaps, and can be found in certain stores all over the world! See if there’s one near you here.
  • Better World Books- There’s a book (or audiobook) out there for just about everyone, and with BWB you can get it to them in time. They offer free ground shipping and several affordable expedited options if you’re really in a crunch.


Kayla Robbins
DoneGood Contributor

Freelance writer working with bighearted businesses who want to better our world.


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