Graduation is a special time of year for young adults that's full of pomp and circumstance and uncharted territory. Graduates are embarking on a new era of their lives and it’s tradition to send them off with a sentimental or practical gift. If you’re trying to figure out what to get your favorite graduate, but want it to be greener than the average present, then check out the following 10 gifts.
HelloFresh: For the graduate who needs help in the kitchen
Whether he's off to college or starting a career, your graduate might be inclined to skip a healthy meal in lieu of quick and easy pizza, tacos, candy and other not-so-nutritional meals. Enter HelloFresh – fresh ingredients and easy-to-follow recipes, all in a box that’s shipped right to their door.
“For college graduates transitioning into the ‘adult’ world and living on their own (or with a roommate) for the first time, cooking is an important life skill to have, and HelloFresh makes it easy for them by taking care of the tough parts: the meal planning, food shopping, ingredient prepping and delivering,” said Shara Seigel, senior manager of public relations.
A registered dietitian approves all recipes, so you can rest assured that your graduate is eating a balanced meal. You won't have to worry about waste, either.
“Using a meal kit is a great way to reduce food waste. Each box comes with perfectly-portioned ingredients,” said Seigel.
Neighborwoods: For the graduate who gets homesick
If your graduate is leaving high school, then this gift will be great for bottles of water to sit on. If your graduate is leaving college (aka, over 21 years old), then this gift is perfect for any beverage to sit on. The Mix and Match Coasters from Neighborwoods puts an end to water-damaged coffee and side tables. It also helps remind new grads of their home town neighborhood.
These coasters are made of aromatic red cedar plywood, originating from the Pacific Northwest, and are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). By harvesting under FSC certification, Neighborwoods ensures that its materials come from responsibly managed forests. With over 30 cities to choose from, you can select up to four neighborhoods and have them laser engraved on each coaster. Every time your graduate goes to sit down and relax with a drink in their hand, she'll think of home.
Automatic: For the graduate who’ll forget to change their oil
With newfound freedom and a desire to hit the open road, many graduates will want to plan a cross-country, or cross-county, road trip with their friends. If you’re a parent, you’ll mostly likely be uninvited. However, you can still make sure they get to their destination safely. In fact, you can make sure the entire car is in good condition – even after the road trip. The second generation Automatic Adapter is a device that plugs into a car’s diagnostic port and decodes engine problems, gives real-time driving feedback, locates your parked car and detects, and reports, accidents.
“Whatever vehicle they might be driving, users stand to benefit from better understanding what's going on inside their car,” stated Automatic Spokesperson Buckley Slender-White.
Continued, the device can help reduce their carbon footprint by “suggesting fuel-saving habits that can help save up to 30% on gas, showing the cost and MPG for every trip to find the most efficient route and connecting to the world’s first app-store for [their] car so [they] can turn on [their] thermostat while driving home.”
ShopGrosche: For the graduate who needs an extra boost in the morning
Without parents waking them up, or relaxed college schedules that allow them to sleep in, graduates might have a difficult time waking up and getting into the groove of an early-morning lifestyle. Now that they’re on their own, a daily trip to the coffee shop might not be the most feasible thing to do. Instead, graduates could use ShopGrosche’s eco-friendly Terra French Press to get a caffeine boost.
Made with more than 75% recycled plastic and packaged with more than 50% recycled paper, the Terra French Press is a green gift that gives back. With every French press purchased, five days of safe drinking water is created for someone in need, and a tree is planted in areas in need of reforestation. The French press has a 34 fl. oz. capacity, making two to three cups of coffee per press. Your graduate can make French press coffee or tea every morning, knowing that your purchase helped the environment.
VivaTerra: For the graduate who needs motivation to do laundry
Instead of having mom or dad take care of laundry, new graduates will now have to rely on themselves if they want to wear clean clothes. VivaTerra’s Woven Hampers & Waste Basket Set might just be the motivation needed to get your graduate inspired. Crafted by artisans in Thailand, each piece is created with sustainably harvested palm fronds, weaved with intricate patterns that allow the set to keep its durable shape. You can choose between three sizes – short, medium and tall – or get them all.
The VivaTerra team says that “aside from being beautiful, the baskets are highly functional” and can be used “as a stylish storage and organization solution.” The company seeks out fair-trade partners and sustainable materials, with a goal to bring positive impact to impoverished communities across the globe.
And to keep it green, the team states that “by shopping wisely, we can preserve our limited natural resources and reduce the harmful effects of greenhouse gas emissions on the environment.”
WeWOOD: For the graduate who needs help keeping track of time
Whether it’s for fashion or utility, watches are always a great gift for anyone of any age – especially new graduates who are rocking their older sibling’s hand-me-downs. WeWOOD is a fashion time piece company that uses scrap wood to create unique watches that are Earth-friendly.
The company’s Kos Nut 100% natural wood watch, along with other time pieces sold by WeWOOD, helps aide forest restoration across the world. Every WeWOOD piece purchased equals one tree planted. The company has a goal of planting a million trees by 2020, and since 2011 it has planted over 420,000 trees.
However, the Kos Nut watch is more than a great way to help the environment. It is free of any toxic chemicals, hypo-allergenic and adjustable to fit any wrist. Also, it's made from a walnut wood that has traditionally been used to stimulate blood circulation and used as a status symbol in China.
Food52: For the graduate who wants the smell of fresh pine all year round
While graduation is an exciting time, it can also be stressful. Learning how to handle pressure comes with time, but there are many things that can help add a sense of serenity to any room. Food52 sells eco-friendly Vermont Wood Candles that can bring the outdoors inside without the added pollen or the stress. Packaged with recycled letterpress and jarred in vintage, reclaimed glass, these candles come in three different scents made of USA-grown soy that bring to mind the feeling of a cozy cabin.
"Your first apartment post-graduation might not be a palace, but a cozy, woodsy candle will make it feel like home,” said the Food52 team.
To top it off, the team also reports that “Farmhouse Pottery, the maker, is dedicated to practices that support a more sustainable lifestyle and value system, honoring the farmers, craftsmen, and makers that enrich a community.”
Bambeco: For the graduate who likes to be pampered
Having a massage, soaking in warm water and listening to classical music with cucumbers over your eyes are different ways many people relax. Going to a spa is a treat that can make anyone feel pampered.
However, a new graduate may not have time or money to book an appointment. For those who enjoy the finer things but have a finite budget, Bambeco’s Organic Hydrating Spa Gift Set could create a luxury, sensory experience that rivals the real deal. The gift set is made from all-organic ingredients and is packaged in a natural muslin bag.
Included in the set are essential oils of citrus, neroli and vetiver as well as a travel-size lotion, bar soap and unscented lip balm. All items created by Bambeco are natural, nontoxic, recycled, sustainable and shipped carbon-free.
Boyce Studio: For the graduate who doesn’t like to garden
Your graduate may not like to garden, but who doesn’t enjoy the presence of some natural greenery while home from school or work? Boyce Studio offers a small, handmade holder for air plants called René. Named after the artist of the 1929 painting, The Palace of Curtains, III, René comes in four different materials: walnut, speckled maple, hickory and ash. Each piece is one-of-a-kind and is finished with low VOC oil and wax.
“[René] holds an air plant which doesn't need a lot of care to survive, so if [your] grad is busy looking for a job or summer internship, they don't have to worry about a finicky plant,” said C.C. Boyce of Boyce Studio.
Boyce said, in regards to shipping, “I pack my goods in geami paper, which is made from recycled paper and cardboard, instead of plastic bubble wrap or Styrofoam packing peanuts,” and, “I ship with boxes and envelopes that are made in the USA and [are] also made from recycled paper.”
TrackR: For the graduate who tends to misplace things
If your graduate has a tendency to lose his keys, phone or wallet, then he might need an extra hand once he's on his own. TrackR Bravo is an easy way to find misplaced belongings.
Only the size of a quarter, TrackR Bravo attaches to any item and tracks its location.Using the TrackR app, your graduate can find their missing item in seconds, or even be notified before leaving important things behind at home. It features an item ringer that allows you to find your keys or wallet (or whatever you have your Bravo attached to), a phone finder that can be enabled by pressing a button on the Bravo and a distance indicator that displays on the app the distance between your graduate and the lost item. Instead of driving around trying to locate an important or needed item, your graduate can reduce his carbon footprint and use the TrackR app to get his things back.