good cause

Whether you’re looking for a gift for a vegan friend or family member or are a looking to treat yourself to something cruelty-free, this is the perfect guide for you! I put together my ultimate vegan gift guide including cruelty-free beauty products, plant-based cookbooks, delicious dairy-free chocolates, chic vegan fashion, gifts that give to sanctuaries and so much more! My gift ideas are grouped into five categories:

1. Cruelty-Free Kitchen
2. Plant-Based Beauty
3. Rescue, Shelter & Sanctuary Support
4. Vegan Fashion
5. Peaceful Yogi

Keep reading and click on the links beneath each item to start some feel-good shopping!

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In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I put together a list of my favorite “pink” products. All of these items benefit breast cancer causes and research. Click on the links below to get shopping!

1.  Deborah Lippman “Shape of My Heart” Nail Color  view on
2.  Tory Burch “Kerrington” Hard Shell iPhone 5 Case  view on
3.  Carolee Word Play Double Take Bangle  view on
4.  Teleflora Pink Grace Bouquet  view on
5.  NEST Fragrances Passion Breast Cancer Awareness Candle  view on
6.  Nancy Rose Performance Pink Top  view on
7.  Pilot Breast Cancer Awareness Pink Pens  view on
8.  Tweezerman Precision Pink Breast Cancer Awareness Slant Tweezer  view on
9.  Holst + Lee for Loft Necklace  view on
10.  Sephora “Together in Pink” Hair Ties  view on
11.  Jane Iredale “Smell the Roses” Hydration Spray  view on
12.  KitchenAid 5-Quart Artisan Series Pink Mixer  view on
13.  Metrokane Original Rabbit Corkscrew in Pink  view on
14.  NEST Fragrances Passion Reed Diffuser  view on

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These gift ideas are perfect if you’re looking for a way to give to charity while giving to your loved ones!

1. Superfruit Lip Balm by Peacekeeper Cause-Metics  (view online) “Peacekeeper Cause-Metics is the first cosmetics line to donate all of its after-tax, distributable profits to women’s health advocacy and urgent human rights issues.”
2.  Youth Hoot Beanie by Krochet Kids Intl.  (view online) “With every product you purchase, you are helping Krochet Kids provide women in Uganda or Peru with fair and consistent income, skills training and mentorship.”
3. Beech Wood Troubadour Headphones by LSTN (view online) “For every pair sold, LSTN helps restore hearing to a person in need through the Starkey Hearing Foundation.”
4. Species Adoption by World Wildlife Fun (view online) “Your symbolic adoption supports WWF’s global efforts to protect wild animals and their habitats.”  Choose from over 100 species to adopt! For a $50 donation, you’ll receive a plush animal, adoption certificate, photo, and species info card!
5.  Hope Soy Candle by Juara (view online) “10% of proceeds from this candle will be donated to Walubi charity relief organization dedicated to aiding Indonesian disaster relief efforts.”
6. Gold + Silver Dust Set by SAME SKY (view online) “SAME SKY provides jobs globally for women struggling to lift themselves out of poverty. Instead of a handout, we believe in giving a hand-up and the tools to become self-sufficient. Trained as artisans, SAME SKY women earn 15 to 20 times the average wage in Sub Saharan Africa. 100% of net proceeds are reinvested to train and employ more artisans in need.”
7. Navy Navia Throw by JADEtribe (view online) “With every item you purchase, you are helping JADETribe provide financial opportunity for women in Southeast Asia and support the artisitic and cultural tradition of textile weaving.”
8. Just Like You by the Just Like You Foundation (view online) 100% of the profits of this amazing book go to charity. You can choose which charity you would like to donate to at checkout!
9. Charity Pot Hand & Body Lotion by LUSH Cosmetics (view online) “Every penny (yes, every single penny) that you pay for a pot, excluding the tax, goes to fund and support grassroots charities all around the world.”
10. Earthwise Rust Men’s Vegan Classics by TOMS (view online) “With every product you purchase, TOMS will help a person in need. One for One.”
11. Grey Ikat Women’s Vegan Classics by TOMS (view online)
12. Earthwise Cranberry Bimini Tiny Vegan Classics by TOMS (view online)

This past weekend, Ryan completed the first 70 miles of Project 96!  The project’s mission is to raise money and awareness for Juvenile Dermatomyositis by swimming, biking, and running 96 miles in two events, seven days apart. The first event was the Half Full Triathlon in Ellicott City, Maryland. The race was held on Sunday, October 6th, at Centennial Park and the weather was unbearable. It was nearly 90 degrees and humid! In addition to the challenge of the the unseasonable weather (last year’s race it was in the 40s), this half-ironman triathlon is known for being one of the toughest courses…and this was Ryan’s first triathlon.  What an accomplishment!  Ryan pushed through the heat and dizziness and completed a .9 mile swim, 56 mile bike ride, and 13.1 mile run. The entire event was inspiring: there were athletes of all ages and sizes, cancer survivors, families, and friends. All racing for a good cause. It was amazing standing at the finish line watching everyone run across the line. We saw people running with arms linked in the air, parents holding babies, wives and husbands jogging in support, people breaking into tears, and friends screaming in support along the path. There were even dogs that made their way across the line with their owners. We were so proud when we saw Ryan come around the bend! He did it! Here are some of my pictures from the event:
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Project 96 was started by one of my best friends, Ryan McCarthy.  He’s like a brother to me and I’m so proud of him for taking on this ambitious challenge so I wanted to share it with you!  Ryan started training and competing in marathons a couple years ago and has decided to put his growing mileage towards an amazing cause: fighting Juvenile Dermatomyositis, a rare and incurable auto-immune disease that affects as few as 2-4 children out of a million.   In particular, the project will benefit an adorable 6 year old girl named Keira Jzyk, who is suffering from JDM.

Here’s some information about the disease from the Cure JM Foundation:
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MyChelle Dermaceuticals
Isabella Oliver Maternity
The Honest Company