My favourite eco, ethical and sustainable gifts

pukka bamboo keep cup

Last minute shopping for the plant based, eco warrior in your life? Or maybe you just need some inspiration for good eco and ethical gifts. Look no further than a few of my favourite products that I use and highly rate.

These tick eco friendly, sustainable, stylish (and if not stylish, then useful!). Would love to hear your what eco presents you have given, received or recommend. After all, ethical and sustainable should be all year round, not just for Christmas.

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Stocking filler #5 Fragrance

Yardley Polaire fragrance

Buying fragrance is like buying a pair of jeans – an almost impossible quest for the perfect fit (which is why experts advise selecting scents for different moods or occasions rather than ‘the one’ to fit all). If you want to steer clear of big-name or over-powering perfumes, as a gift for another (or for yourself), Yardley Polaire fits the bill.

I’m very particular about the perfumes I have in my life and YP has been on my desk at work, in my handbag and generally used for relaxed, daytime spritzing since its launch earlier this year because it’s so easy to wear. Light enough to spray liberally but with a touch of soft spice to make it slightly interesting, it’s surprisingly unoffensive for a high street perfume.

Yardley Polaire fragrance

The ad campaign (above) was impressive too – vintage inspired and a lot more directional and stylish than other Yardley comms I’ve seen; practically unrecognisable as the traditional Yardley we know.

I’ve also just spotted a bit of a sale at Yardley online so I think you can snap up Polaire for a very festive price.

Happy spritzing; happy holidays. x

Pure perfumes

Embrace by PG Organics

Embrace by PG OrganicsI’ve recently been chatting on Twitter to the lovely Patricia Gallagher, founder of PG Organics, about why we need natural and organic perfumes. She created Embrace after learning the almost-forgotten art of traditional and natural perfume making and she talks passionately about why we need to keep the practice going…

Patricia is a strong advocate of using natural and organic ingredients in perfume and not the 10-40 chemicals that can usually be found in a mainstream spritz. The Environmental Working Group wrote a report on this last year, discovering many hidden and undisclosed chemicals in bottles. Popular perfumes usually contain a mixture of natural extracts and synthetic chemicals but the report revealed many secret chems too.

PG Organics is one of the few niche brands committed 100 percent natural ingredients and small batch production using traditional methods. What’s interesting is that many people who suffer from allergies and sensitivities, such as asthma or eczema, can react badly to conventional perfumes – anything from a mild or severe headache to itching or rashes on the skin. Patricia says customers often turn to natural perfumes for less sensitivity.

The brand uses only natural materials with the highest possible content of organic ingredients, no animal derived products and testing on animals.  Check out her gorgeous site

Winner of Best Online Feature goes to… perfume personality…ME! Yes, I’m the proud owner of one of beauty industry’s most prestigious journalism awards – a Jasmine Award, which celebrates fragrance editorial. I actually won the award joint with the Financial Times as the judges agreed it was difficult to decide between two very different online offerings (mine was a quiz, the FT’s was a full length feature). I believe next year they’ll be revamping the criteria for the online category.

The event – held yesterday morning at BAFTA in Piccadilly – saw a good turn out of beauty editors, writers and members of the fragrance industry.  There’s nothing better than winning in front of all the editors you’ve worked with in the past.

The winning piece was a quiz I created for (home of Good House Keeping, She and Prima) and was a unique take on finding your perfect scent. had created something similar but I’m so glad mine won!

I interviewed James Craven, the head ‘nose’ at Les Senteur – an amazing boutique perfumer in London – and with his exquisite insight into fragrance families and how different people like different scents, the quiz was born.

Finding a fragrance is no small feat so I recommend you all take the quiz! And well done to all the other winners and nominees too…the shortlist was really impressive!