7 mother’s day gifts that won’t kill your budget AND the planet

by | May 10, 2017 | Environment, Ethical

If mother nature was a human being and could speak, it would tell my mother to sit in a corner, face the wall and think about what she just did to the planet. My mother is not a bad person, nor does she purposely harm the environment. Taking the facts that she comes from an older generation and that she was born in a different country, learning to be eco-conscious was just not part of her culture. On the bright side, it’s never too late to make some changes in one’s life, even more, when accompanied by people who love and trust you. For the longest time, I kept giving lectures to my mom on why she should be eating healthier. Every time I would learn something new and bring a change to my diet, I would share it with her hoping that she would do the same. Eventually, when her health hit a danger zone, she finally listened to me and took an appointment with a naturopath\nutritionist which ended up with her health improving dramatically. It took forever to get her to action but like I said earlier – it’s better late than never. If your mother is like mine and you would like to initiate her to an eco-friendly lifestyle, offering her a “green” gift for mother’s day is a great way to start. Below, you will find a few gift ideas to help trigger that environmental consciousness that is hibernating inside your beloved mother.

1.Terrarium for the low maintenance mom


A terrarium is a miniature ecosystem mounted in a clear vase to be displayed as an elegant object of interior decor. In another way, it’s an aquarium that contains terrestrial elements like plants, reptiles or insects instead of fish. The beauty of this gift is that it requires very minimal maintenance – just a few materials and a fair amount of fun. You might already have some of the required material at home, like a clear vase and soil. You could also decide on whether to turn it into an activity to do with your mom or to personalize it yourself as a pre-made gift. If your thumb is not so green and you need guidance, there are a few places in the city like Plantzy that offer step by step workshops given by professionals.
For an easy DIY terrarium check out this blog post by clicking here

  1. Eco-friendly handbag for the fashion mom

If your mother was looking for a new handbag because she needs one – and I reinforce on the “needs” part – why not get her a clutch that was made with the environment in mind? If you don’t have a big budget, Matt & Nat, a Montreal-based accessories brand offers fashionable handbags at a decent price. Not only all the products are vegan but the company makes a constant effort in using recycled and renewable materials like cork and rubber. All the inside linings, for example, are made out of 100% recycled plastic bottles. Some brands use what they call ‘’vegan leather’’ but if it’s made out of PVC it might be cruelty-free, but environmentally harmful.

  1. iPhone case for the tech-savvy mom

I’ve been trying in vain to find an eco-friendly case for my android phone. Fortunately for the Apple fans, a small company found an innovative way to create iPhone cases that won’t harm the planet. Born from the love and care for his children and the planet, Pela Case was founded by Jeremy Lang to ensure a toxin-free environment for his family. All products are tested to be free of BPA, lead, cadmium and phthalates. On top of all that, the phone cases are made with flax which makes them 100% compostable!

  1. Essential oil diffuser for a zen mom

Is your mother the type of person that sprays the house with air freshener every time she’s about to welcome guests…or just because she’s a neat-freak? Air fresheners often contain harmful chemicals like formaldehyde, petroleum distillates, 1,4 dichlorobenzene and aerosol propellan. Can’t pronounce them? Yep, me neither and that’s not a good sign. An awesome alternative to sprays is an essential oil diffuser. It contains two simple ingredients: water and essential oil. It’s a great tool that helps with relaxation and gives a subtle but invigorating smell. Most of the ones currently available come with led lights that add a little warmness to the ambiance. There are many different kinds of diffusers but my only advice would be to get one made out of bamboo instead of plastic – they are slightly more expensive but look better and are eco-approved. You can easily find them for a good price on Amazon – click on the image to find this product. 

  1.  Spa day to unwind for the stressed mom

On mother’ day, tt’s a common tradition for a lot of people to take their mom’s for a relaxing day at the spa or for a simple massage. This year, you could choose to book a spa that has the environment at heart. Based in the Montreal plateau area, Espace Nomad offers products and services free of toxins. All of their body care products are prepared by a herbalist who makes sure to only use natural and almost completely organic ingredients. From facial treatments to body waxing, you can be sure that no chemical will find their way into your body.

  1. Green kit for the eco beginner


If you wish to take it up a notch and be a real trooper in the eco world, you could prepare a basket full of eco-friendly products. It could be a great way for your mom to discover and try new products for which she might have never given a chance by herself. If you don’t have a basket at home, you could buy a used one from the thrift store or even reuse an old box sitting in the basement. Don’t be afraid to get creative – you could even add little notes on what makes each product better for the earth. If you live in Montreal, you can easily find these products by visiting a natural product store near you like Rachelle-Béry, Branche d’Olivier or Tau.

Here are a few ideas of items you could add to your basket :   

  • Bamboo toothbrush
  • Natural toothpaste
  • Beeswax food wrap
  • Natural soap
  • Eco-friendly detergent
  • Eco-friendly dish or dishwasher soap
  • Reusable makeup pads
  1. Give a meaningful gift

Cambio market is a Canadian e-commerce where you can find ethically made products that value and empower women in underdeveloped countries. They offer beautiful jewelry that go beyond the physical aspect of things. Some of the pieces are handmade by women who went through various trauma in their lives like sex trafficking for example. They partnered with artisans in the Philippines, Guatemala, India, Kenya, and Uganda to help them fight poverty and overcome inequality. They currently offer special packages for mother’s day so make sure to check out their website.