By Nina Wu
This holiday season, you won't have to look far for "green" gift ideas. Here are a few suggestions on items that someone can use for the rest of the year — and longer — that help reduce the use of disposable plastics and paper.
* S'well bottles. The S'well reusable beverage bottles have a sleek, elegant design and can be used for both hot and cold beverages (which is great, because I know a lot that can only be used for one or the either). They're double-walled, made of stainless steel and come in seven cool colors. By the way, Oprah loves them, too. $35. Spotted at Lanikai Home + Style. Visit www.swellbottle.com.
* ChicoBags. This is a great Secret Santa gift for anyone who goes shopping because you know he or she can definitely use it. The ChicoBag is a reusable bag that you can easily tuck back into its drawstring to put in your purse or pocket. This one caught my eye - it's part of the Solstice Collection — with a colorful, custom-designed "flower burst" print on a reusable should-style bag. $12.99. Found it at Down to Earth. Visit www.chicobag.com.
* L.I.F.E. jackets. This is the perfect stocking stuffer at just 99 cents, but it goes a long way. These reusable coffee sleeves are handmade in Kenya by a special group of women, providing them the opportunity to provide for their families. Each jacket is screen-printed. Reduce your use of cardboard coffee sleeves — you won't need one with this reusable one. Available at Whole Foods Markets for just 99 cents if you purchase a cup of coffee. Visit www.ctcinternational.org.