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  • Jennifer Scales

Gifts That Give Back

We think a lot about gifts and presents as the holidays are approaching. But what do you give to those who already have everything, or that say they don’t need a gift? There are two classic, almost stereotypical solutions: socks (because everyone needs socks) or giving to a charity in their name (because good karma doesn’t clutter up their space). How would you feel about combining these two?



SOCKS WITH AN IMPACT


An increasing number of companies allow their customers to feel good about their shopping by giving money to charity or planting trees for every purchase. For some, it’s just a marketing tool. Others are real impact brands that create their product around the one specific cause they want to support.


 

Sustainable Shopping Made Simple

 


Conscious Step approached it a bit differently. They combine a product that everybody needs -socks- with the option to choose which one of our world's most pressing issues you, the consumer, want to help resolve. Conscious Step uses the framework of the United Nations Sustainable Development Agenda to pick the organizations they support. Or as they put it:


“By aligning with the 'world's to-do list,'​ it ensures that our wearers are creating impact for the most pressing global issues, in step with the collective global development effort. In providing impact across a range of causes, our collection allows our wearers to take a stand for the cause that matters most to them…”

From the LinkedIn page of Conscious Step




3 boxes of Conscious Step socks with Christmas ornaments


PICK YOUR CAUSE…

…AND TAKE A STAND FOR IT


Whatever you care about on this planet and even beyond – not only can you pick the cause you want to support, but the design of the socks represents the values you stand for. Socks that protect tropical rainforests come with a cute palm tree pattern; if you support LGBTQ rights, there is an embroidered rainbow flag on your socks, and guess what’s on “socks that save koalas”?


You can choose between providing homes or meals, fighting childhood cancer, supporting space exploration, protecting the oceans and so many more. If you have a hard time choosing, a subscription allows you to support a variety of causes with a new pair of socks each month.





LEADING BY EXAMPLE


Donating part of the profits is a great way for a company to contribute to a fairer, more sustainable world. Helping to create this world through everyday business practices, however, is the perfect basis for authentic impact.


Conscious Step socks are produced from organic cotton in a fairtrade-certified factory in India, where the workers not only enjoy a living wage and health benefits but also get a say in company decisions. And free socks for their families, of course.


This is how Conscious Step puts it:

“We’ve taken great care to keep our manufacturing sustainable and transparent. Our Fairtrade socks are made from clean, organic cotton by empowered producers in safe and fair working conditions. That’s a sock you can feel good about.”


RECOMMENDATIONS TO SCALE UP THE IMPACT


I found out about the company when vetting them for inclusion in the askBelynda product recommendations and wanted to share my excitement. It’s just great to know that when an askBelynda user types “socks” into their Amazon search bar, these amazing products will pop up. Because that’s what the plugin is all about, really: Reliable recommendations from people who share your passion for sustainability.


Find this and many more amazing products right in your Amazon search.


 

Jennifer Scales is a photo artist and train travel enthusiast. When she is not vetting companies for askBelynda, she spreads her love for sustainable travel by capturing the beauty of nature seen through the train window.

Check out her website Landscape in Motion and follow Jennifer Scales | Fine Art on Instagram to see her artwork.

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