Are you looking for a gift for a family member or friend with allergies? With a little bit of thoughts and care, you can find something perfect. We’ve put together some of our favourite allergy friendly gift ideas for birthdays, Christmas Day, Mothers’ Day, Fathers’ Day or just because. And some tips on what to avoid, whether you are buying for someone with food or other allergies or sensitivities. As a bonus, we have some discount codes to share with you as well.
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Tips on making thoughtful choices
If you know your gift recipient well, and know exactly what allergies they have, then you will know whether they might appreciate an allergy friendly food option or an allergy-related gift.
On the other hand, if you want to steer clear of allergy related gifts altogether, here are some general tips to keep in mind:
- Avoid scented gifts, like bath products and hand lotions;
- If a child is allergy-prone, steer clear of fluffy toys that can gather dust and exacerbate allergies and asthma;
- Always make sure any food gifts include the full list of ingredients; and
- Be careful about choosing jewellery such as earrings that might be made with nickel, a common cause of contact allergy.
You’ll find more tips in the gift ideas we’ve listed below.
I love books as presents. There is such a wide variety of genres, fiction or non-fiction. Something to suit everyone at every age, from newborn baby presents onwards. I love shopping at The Book Depository because they have such a huge range and free worldwide shipping.
What about allergy-related books? Your friends or family with food allergies may love one of the many beautiful allergy-friendly cook books available. For children with allergies, there are many age-appropriate story books about people with allergies, just like them. You can read about our favourite allergy-related books – including cook books, allergy friendly gardening books, children’s stories and novels for teens – in our post 12 Allergy books that make perfect gifts for all ages.
What about flowers and indoor plants?
If someone suffers with hay fever or allergic rhinitis, you need to be a bit careful about gifting flowers or indoor house plants. Plants that produce a lot of pollen can be a trigger for allergies. Also, indoor plants can be a source of mould or even dust. But that isn’t to say that you can’t choose a beautiful indoor plant for your garden loving friends and family. Just make sure to have a read of our post on choosing allergy-friendly indoor plants first: Enjoy beautiful greenery inside: indoor plants for allergies and asthma.
Allergy friendly edible gifts
Giving food gifts is always popular, especially at celebrations like Easter and Christmas. If you know someone’s food allergies well, it is usually possible to find an allergy-friendly option. Yes, even chocolates (like Moo Free White Raspberry Truffles or some Sweet William chocolate hearts). But if you don’t know exactly what they can and can’t have, it’s often best not to risk food gifts.
And similarly, unless you know someone’s food allergies and all about safe cooking practices to avoid food allergy cross contact, it’s best not to gift home made food items (and if you do, include a list of the ingredients).
Allergy friendly gift boxes
Gift baskets are easy presents to organise for delivery to friends and family who live far away, or who might be in hospital, or have a new baby. But so many of them contain foods and drinks that aren’t allergy friendly.
Of course, if you are going to deliver the gift basket yourself, there is always the option of making up your own with items you know the recipient will love. And you can include allergy friendly foods if you want to as well.
But did you know that it is actually possibly to order a pre-made allergy-friendly gift box? Bunny James Gift Boxes have all sorts of options for a box full of tasty snacks. You can choose vegan, nut free, dairy free, gluten free or even allergen free boxes. The allergen free box says it is “Top 8” allergen free, but I got in touch with the lovely people at Bunny James who tell me that the tasty allergen free goodies also don’t contain sesame as an ingredient, which is great.
We have allergies, intolerances and vegan food preferences in our family, so Bunny James has us covered with something for everyone.
Allergy related gifts
If you’ve read our post on food allergy chef cards or restaurant cards, you’ll know what a great idea these are for people with food allergies. These cards help with clearly communicating food allergies to the staff preparing meals when eating out (or ordering take away, or travelling). We highly recommend Equal Eats, who make a range of premium allergy, celiac and special diet translation cards available in 50 different languages. You can buy pre set cards or customise your own, not just for food allergies but also medication and insect sting allergies, FODMAP intolerances and other special dietary requirements. We have a customised dual language food allergy card from Equal Eats that we take with us everywhere. If you know someone with allergies who likes to travel (locally or further afield), they’ll love an Equal Eats gift card to choose something from the fantastic range.
Another place I often like to look for gifts that are more individual is Etsy. It’s a bit like shopping at a market, but with the convenience of shopping online instead. There are so many clever people making everything from:
- jewellery and accessories (I love looking for scarves);
- home decor pieces;
- unique art;
- clothes and more.
You can even buy collectibles and vintage items for the collectors in your life.
Gift cards – let them choose
Last but not least, don’t under-estimate the popularity of the humble gift card or voucher. This lets your recipient choose something they need or love, without any allergy risks.
While the variety of gift cards is almost endless, I usually go with a voucher for a store that has a wide range to choose from. Amazon is always a safe choice.
If you are buying for someone in Australia (and you live in Australia, NZ, UK or the US), Gift Card Store is another fantastic option. You can buy physical gift cards to be posted to your recipient or e-gift cards that can be emailed the same day (for when you have left your present buying to the last minute!)
Gift Card Store’s cards are a range of prepaid Visa and Mastercard cards. They can be used anywhere Visa and Mastercard are accepted, wordwide and online. Plus there is a huge range of designs to choose from for all different occasions: Christmas, birthdays, housewarming, Mothers’ Day and more. But one of the features I love is the ability to design your own gift card by uploading your own photo, making what might sometimes seem to be the easy option in a gift just that much more thoughtful.
The Gift Card Store has also recently released digital gift cards with same day delivery to the recipient’s phone by sms – perfect for when you’ve left your gift shopping to the last minute!
Have fun shopping for your next allergy-friendly gifts!