Saturn’s Ultimate Veg-Friendly, Cruelty-Free, and Sustainable Gift Guide for 2016


It’s that time of year again…when opportunities to show you care are everywhere and finding the perfect something for all your wonderful someone’s becomes a full-time endeavor.

Saturn has you covered! Here are some of our favorite ideas for gift-giving this year!

  1. Cosmetics

image of cosmeticsCelebrities have played a big part in moving the cosmetics industry in a hugely positive direction this year, away from animal testing and towards greater inclusivity. Now you can pick from one of the many lines that has expanded to offer more cruelty-free, body positive beauty products than ever before.

  1. Gardening Kits

Let your friend show off their green thumb and grow some of those herbs that are just better fresh–sprouting from your wall fresh–or welcome a host of succulents into their home.

  1. Upcycle It!

There’s something fascinating about a cool product that was once something else entirely. We are particularly intrigued by these unique, eco-friendly gifts that can only be fully appreciated by the right people.

  • Ellie Pooh Paper – Made from recycled paper and dried elephant dung, these notebooks, photo albums, stationery, and artwork support endangered elephants in Sri Lanka, a perfect example of “conservation through innovation.”
  • Bicycle Tire Belt – Handmade in Portland, this is for the adventurer who needs a belt that is built to last.
  • Recycled Record Bookends – For those who are book addicts and music lovers both.
  • Retool – Support local artists who work hard to repurpose everyday materials into cool products that are great for the “eco-conscious go-getter”!
  1. Children’s Books

arranged-1842261_1920When it comes to our entertainment, representation is everything, and diversity comes in many forms. To help build a world where meat isn’t the norm, read aloud from colorful and creative storybooks that keep all the flavor and fun while discussing your family’s beliefs and traditions. Find these titles at our beloved local bookstores, Bookshop Santa Cruz and Pegasus Books!

  1. Make It Yourself

If you’re reading this early on in December, then you still have plenty of time to make your Christmas gifts! Add that personal touch and a sign of how much you care with the fruit of your own labor.

  • Let the kids help with these cute and easy gifts for the grandparents, siblings, or good friends.
  • Turn a picture frame into the ultimate easy and impressive gift with any one of these awesome ideas, customized to your bestie’s taste.
  • Don’t forget the furry friends, just whip up a batch of these tasty dog treats.
  • Creating

Does someone close to you, young or old, have a passion for creativity? Give them the tools to stretch even further.

  • Berkeley-based Glob Natural Paints forgoes chemically colored paints in favor of food grade ingredients for beet- and cabbage-powered vibrance.
  • Vegan paint brushes from Colors of Nature keep the quality without the fur.
  • Give the gift of music and making music with dance classes, singing workshops, and more! For a truly wow-worthy gift, this local shop makes wood-free eco-friendly ukuleles and guitars that don’t skimp on sound!
  • Crazy Paintz lets them paint their own bodies without exploiting the body of an animal.
  • Published author Elizabeth Stark and a team of celebrated authors can coach your special someone into truly embracing their writing dreams with creative writing classes that give them the tools they’ve always needed.
  1. Experiences

In age of Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, CAIf you and your loved ones are joining the movement to cut down on “stuff” then give the gift of an experience, which takes up space only in the heart and soul. Make it an adventure for two or a group outing to add on time with you as a bonus! Consider wine tasting, dinner cruises, skydiving, or spa packages, all according to the preferred activities of the giftee. And there are always unique ways to explore the heart of San Francisco.

  1. Subscription Services.

The gift that really does keep on giving, a subscription service will appear once a month for the rest of the year, reminding your friend that you wanted to make their whole year wonderful.

  • Saturn Pie of the Month – Every month our bakers craft a different pie from seasonal, organic ingredients. Recipients can pick up theirs in Santa Cruz or Berkeley, or have UberEats deliver! (special order form/info to link to for this?)
  • Mistobox – Ethically sourced coffee that brings the aromas of morning straight to you.
  • Urthbox -This monthly gift focuses on non-GMO, organic, and all natural snacks, treats, and beverages, and you can customize it for groups of different sizes, or make it gluten-free.
  1. “Adopt” an Animal

Image of a LionFrom anteater to walrus and every animal in between, the National Wildlife Federation Adoption let’s you give your loved one the gift of supporting their favorite animal. Because you can’t present them with an actual a koala or sloth, but they can have some of the same warm and cuddly feelings knowing that because of them, an animal is a little better off.

  1. Gift Cards

While it may not be your first choice, gift cards for a specific location can show just as clearly that you know the person you are gifting it to. Choose a local favorite stop that your recipient already loves…or that they will! Add in a note that it comes with a date with you and it can be perfect to the tenth power.

  1. Saturn Cafe

– Buy a foodie friend a ticket to the best vegetarian and vegan classic comfort food to be found in the heart of Berkeley and Downtown Santa Cruz.

  • Pegasus Books or Bookshop Santa Cruz – Sometimes a reason to browse a bookstore is the perfect gift, while the book itself is icing on the cake.
  • Ernesto: other ideas/businesses around downtown Berkeley or Santa Cruz that you would consider adding here? Good gift ideas plus businesses you would like to support.
  1. Volunteering

Give the gift of service by organizing a volunteer event for you and your close friends and family to participate in together. Get together at the Santa Cruz food bank, chip in with Habitat for Humanity, offer time and conversation to the seniors in a nearby retirement home, and reach out to our furry friends through the Berkeley Animal Shelter. Arranging a way for you and your group to give more is a gift both to and from all of you, as well as the lives of those you touch.

  1. Make a Donation

Maybe what that “person who has everything” really wants is something that’s not for them at all. Think about the causes they are passionate about, the things that matter most to them in the world, and show that you care about what they do, too. Make a donation in the name of your loved one to an organization that represents those critical interests and spread that holiday joy even further.

  1. For the Hostess

unspecifiedStick on a bow and you have the perfect way to thank your host for their generosity–and be the favorite of the party!

  • Fresh, warm vegan cinnamon rolls from our friends at Cinnaholic was a great idea last year, and it’s sounding better still now. Order soon and enjoy with friends and family over the holidays.
  • No matter the theme or reason for the season, Saturn’s vegan cupcakes are the perfect complement to both the meal and the festivities at hand. Ask us for a recommendation!
  • There’s just no way to lose with one of these organic wines, in fact, everyone wins! Add on a cute wine stopper for a little something that the host can keep.


That should get you started! When it comes to gift giving, it’s the thought that counts. So think of your loved ones while also reflecting about the relationship we are always building with our world. For additional ideas, you can refer to our ultimate gift-giving guide from last year. Have any ideas of your own to share? Let us know!!

Many happy wishes for wonderful holidays and a beautiful end of year season, from Saturn Cafe to you and yours.