Gifts with Purpose: Top Tips for Choosing Gifts They’ll Love and Use

The average person wastes up to £65 a year on gifts their recipients don’t actually like. That’s £65 of your money that’ll end up in the back of a cupboard for years, not getting any use, until it’s taken to a charity shop, or much worse – dumped in the bin.

With our budgets tightening this year, one thing we certainly shouldn’t waste money on is gifts that won’t be used. This year, we’re here to help you think about what a truly perfect gift is. We think it’s one with purpose – one that serves a purpose for the person lucky enough to receive it, and that helps a larger cause itself (maybe something Fair Trade?).

Have a look at our top tips to help choose a gift they’ll really love, get plenty of use out of, and that won’t harm the planet. Use these questions as a guide to inspire you with ideas for the perfect present.

1. Will they love it?

A gift has to say all the right things – most importantly, just how much you love the person you’re giving it to, and how well you know them. Of course, the best way to make sure your recipient will be happy with their gift is to make it something they’ll really, really love.

To think of something they’ll be over the moon to open, ask yourself:

  • What are their interests and hobbies? Is there something you could get to help them improve/enjoy it even more?
  • Do they collect something special?
  • Consider their day-to-day. What could they not live without? Or what could make their day more enjoyable?
  • Do you have a special memory together you could commemorate in some way?

2. Will they use it?

An important thing to consider is whether the recipient will actually get use out of your gift. Not just showing it off on Christmas day and then forgetting about it later, but actually using it for it’s intended purpose again and again, for years to come. More use = less waste!

Here’s a few handy things to consider to make sure they’ll use their gift:

  • If you’re buying clothes, make sure to check their size first!
  • Do they already have something similar that still has plenty of use left in it?
  • If you’re buying something to support their new hobby, do you think it’s something they’ll stick to?
  • Is it a timeless gift, or something trendy that might look naff in a few months’ time?
  • Is it something they’d need to spend money on getting the most out of?

3. Eco impact

A key thing to think about when buying anything is what impact your purchase could have on the planet. There are so many amazing eco-options out there now, and plenty of planet-friendly alternatives to the things we love.

Before you click add to cart, you might want to think about these things:

  • If it’s a disposable product, is there a reusable version you could find instead?
  • What’s it made of? Could you find a similar one made of sustainable or recycled materials?
  • If it’s appropriate, could you buy it second hand? Or have one refurbished or upcycled?
  • Who made it? Is the company transparent about who creates their products, and are they paid fairly for their work?

There’s no better feeling than showing your loved ones just how loved they are, and we think truly thoughtful gifts are a great way to do that. Hopefully by now you’ll have a few ideas, but if not, you’ll find plenty of sustainable and Fair Trade gift inspiration over on our Pinterest. And if you’re sharing the love with Paper High gifts this year, make sure to share your photos with us on Instagram and Facebook!