The holiday season is a time to relax, rejoice, and spend—on gifts for you and yours and theirs. But what if you could put that purchasing power to good? It’s a question the actress Olivia Wilde and her best friend Babs Burchfield, the duo behind the consulting company Conscious Commerce, ask themselves and the ethical brands they work with every day, no matter the time of year.
“People always want us to give gift suggestions, particularly around the holidays,” says Wilde, who is also the chief brand activist for the clean beauty line True Botanicals. The mother of two sees it as the perfect opportunity to “highlight the power consumers have around these high-spending times,” and the positive imprint they can leave on the ethical economy. Burchfield agrees, noticing the natural piqued interest in consumer behavior after purchasing items from a mission-driven brand. “If they’ve become conscious in one area of their life, they’re curious about how they can do so in others,” she says.
Working with Conscious Commerce and True Botanicals on a “give greater” initiative that harnesses the purchasing power of a holiday splurge, Wilde partnered with a lineup of ethically minded luxury brands to curate a selection of presents that give back. Here, you’ll find a slew of gifts from brands committed to honesty, integrity, and transparency—from the supply chain, to the impact on consumers, the environment, and their employees.
“I love the chic simplicity of this yellow gold [necklace],” says Wilde over the phone from her home in Los Angeles, where she has spent the past year working on Booksmart, her directorial debut. “It’s made in L.A., and in addition to the fact that the materials are sound, there are no fillers—it’s just gold. Plus, they’re all about quality, transparency, simplicity, and trying to expose some of the wastefulness in the traditional [jewelry] industry.”
“Tenoverten is a great company, and their salons are much healthier places to be in than typical ones, whether as an employee or a consumer. I love their polish because it’s cruelty-free, vegan, and made in the U.S. This whole set lets you experiment and up your game in nails, without all the crazy chemicals.”
“[Babs and I] love Reformation, and La Ligne, so we were thrilled about this collaboration. Reformation has really cut a new mold for sustainability in affordable fashion; they’re all about green building infrastructure and on-the-job training opportunities. And La Ligne, which we’ve been fans of since the beginning in 2016, is female-founded and operated. I really love [the sweater in] hot-pink! This is perfect for any friend who’s not shy about color.”
“These shorts are totally for Babs,” says Wilde of her business partner and best friend. “I don’t have the balls to wear them, but she can pull them off. Girlfriend Collective is all about quality, humane manufacturing, meticulous design, and sustainable materials.”
“My relationship with True Botanicals is both official and authentically enthusiastic,” notes Wilde. “It’s a company that’s truly changed my skin and is through and through transparent, clean, and honest. The resurfacing mask is a great way to exfoliate—you can really feel it working—and I call the renew mist the gateway drug for [the brand] because it smells so good that if you spray it on a plane or in an office, everyone turns and is like, ‘What. Is. That.’ And the stress aromatherapy is awesome; give it to someone who’s overwhelmed.”
“Babs told me about The Little Market, a female-founded business that’s also a nonprofit working with artisans on their crafts, and helping them with their families in various ways. They’re a great place to look for gifts, from candles to jewelry to home goods. Give this pitcher to someone who needs to be reminded to drink more water.”
“These are truly great gifts because there’s [a shoe] for everyone in the family, but I get them for my dad, who stays up on the latest colors. They’re made from all-natural materials and machine washable, which makes sense if you’re giving a pair of white [sneakers] to someone in New York City.”
“[Babs and I have] been supporting this brand from the beginning because we love that they’re focused on slow fashion and pieces that last,” says Wilde. “I asked Babs for this, so that I can be hands-free on set while directing.”
“Outerknown, founded by pro surfer Kelly Slater, focuses on its environmental impact being slim to none. And Nadaam is an ethical brand for cashmere which, this time of year, people are always looking for. I’m getting both of these for Jason [Sudeikis, her husband]. What is Christmas if not a chance to buy your dude clothes that you fully plan on stealing?”
“I got a few of these to bring over to our friends’ houses for holiday parties. They’re made in Africa out of hand-carved soapstone, and filled with natural wax.”
“The rest of my family is getting Everlane this year! There’s really something for everyone from this company, which has an ethical production process and is committed to transparency. My sister is getting this puffer coat, and my little brother, this backpack.”
“Aurora James’s company supports African and Mexican artisans and uses cool materials, including leather byproduct from the meat industry. [Babs and I] love all three of these styles.”