Story by Explore, submitted photos and videos
It’s that time of year again! Time to dig yourself into debt for what we at Explore like to call “Present’s Day” regardless of if it’s one day or stretched out over a week, month or even the new year. The hardest part of the holiday is finding fun, funky cool things for those kids getting close to teenagers and not another pair of slippers for dad. So we’ve wrangled up some interesting gifts that always go over well no matter your budget – or age.
For your friends with quirky personalities comes candles that reveal their wilder side once lit! Pyro Pet Candles are animal shaped candles that look all beautiful and innocent on the outside, but once the wax melts down, the animals skeleton is revealed underneath! Keep the skeletons after the candle has gone, for a quirky decor item. There are 12 unique animal candle options to choose from. Each candle should have a burning time of approximately 16 hours. The candles are made of paraffin wax, a cotton wick and aluminum.
Created by two young Italian brothers, AirSelfie is a 61gr flying camera that let you shoot tons of photos and aerial selfies in few seconds and film movies from perspectives once believed to be impossible. AirSelfie is the smallest and compact flying camera with 4 micro Brushless engines (the smallest and most powerful ones ever realized) and a 5-megapixel video camera are enclosed in a stylish and lightweight (61g) aluminium case featuring Italian design that is smaller than a smartphone (3.72×2.65×0.42in).
The AirSelfie case, available for iPhone 6/6 Plus, 7/7 Plus, Samsung S7 Edge, thanks to an internal battery, let you fully charge AirSelfie in few minutes. The most “selfie addicted” ones could have the opportunity to purchase the AirSelfie Power Bank; with the same size of the smartphone case, you could put the AirSelfie inside it and bring it with you. The Power Bank guarantees multiple full charges giving you entire days of operating time. AirSelfie could fly over 20 meters (roughly 6o feet) high and thanks to its simple and intuitive user experience allows you to use it anytime and anywhere. Just take the AirSelfie out of its cover or Power Bank and turn it on. It then connects automatically to your smartphone via WiFi (a 2.4GHz network is created by the flying camera itself) and it’s immediately ready for take-off through the AirSelfie app (available for iOS and Android). AirSelfie comes with a 4 GB micro SD memory card and it has a 260mAh 7.4v battery.
Send the gift of good sleep which is always priceless! Casper, the award-winning sleep company, wants you to order a bed in a box that delivers to your door. Casper was founded with the mission of improving sleep and modernizing the outdated mattress industry. In 2014, the company launched with a seamless shopping experience and a universally comfortable mattress that sold out on day one and has since grown its customer base to include hundreds of thousands of happy sleepers. All Casper products are designed in-house by a team of engineers, researchers, and scientists to deliver the best possible night’s sleep.
Casper also offers a pillow-in-a-pillow design which combines supportive and soft fibers that stay cool and comfortable throughout the night as well as a sheet set including crisp, smooth, and airy sheets made with pure Supima cotton and designed to be supremely breathable. Many know Casper for improving and innovating the mattress shopping experience, but Casper’s products are also heavily driven by R&D and its eponymous mattress was rated #1 by Consumer Reports.
Give the gift of discovery! With outstanding holiday deals this season (half price!), 23andMe is well known as the best DNA testing company for those soul seekers. 23andMe, Inc. is the leading consumer genetics and research company. Founded in 2006, the mission of the company is to help people access, understand and benefit from the human genome. 23andMe is the only company in the world built to power global genetic research and translate the information into novel discoveries and therapeutics – all with the power of consumer participation. They have two options, choose one or both: the 23andMe Ancestry Kit ($99) or the 23andMe Health + Ancestry Kit ($199). Currently they are running holiday specials up until Christmas so get one for the whole family at half price!
Almost everybody loves the gift of booze! Now you can wear your mad scientist cap and see what you can create with DIY beer, bubbly and cider kits. Built on the principles that making beer, real beer, from real ingredients, can be simple, tasty and more importantly, fun, Brooklyn Brew Shop sells stylish brew kits and ingredient mixes for seasonally-inspired beers and ciders. All of their kits are designed for use on a standard kitchen stove and use real ingredients instead of the less flavorful extracts and additives typical in other home brewing kits. A full list of kits is available on their website for nationwide shipping, but a few holiday standouts include: Sparking Wine Kit – $70; this kit contains all the (reusable!) equipment and ingredients necessary to make fives bottles of naturally sparkling wine, including specially sourced chardonnay grape juice from a premier California vineyard. All you need are a few empty champagne bottles and a few months of patience. Hard Cider Kit – $40; this kit contains everything you need to turn apples, pears or cider from your local market into something a little more festive. It’s good for three batches of hard cider and because cider is naturally gluten-free, it’s an ideal gift for gluten-averse merrymakers and curious epicureans alike. Stillwater Gose Gone Wild Sour Beer Making Kit – $40; all of Brooklyn Brew Shop’s beer kits contain all the ingredients and equipment necessary to brew a gallon of all-natural beer in the comfort of your own kitchen. Created in collaboration with Stillwater Artisanal, this Gose Gone Wild kit is the first ever easy-to-brew sour beer kit and uses lactobacillus to make a sour German wheat ale that’s dry hopped with citrusy West Coast hops.
And to go with that homemade wine, how about some fancy smelly cheese? Check out the subscription artisan cheese box by Cheesemonger Box. Launched in October 2017, Cheesemonger Box is a cut-to-order artisan cheese delivery service with both gifting and subscription options. With a commitment to sourcing only the highest quality artisan American and European cheeses and a strong focus on education, Cheesemonger Box aims to bring an authentic cut-to-order cheese shop experience to cheese lovers everywhere. For the holiday gifting season, Cheesemonger Box will offer a monthly gift option (from 1 to 12 months) that can be purchased up-front by the gifter, as well as a monthly subscription box with flexible, easy-to-schedule delivery. Cheesemonger Box will offer two box options: A Classic Box featuring three hand-selected, half-pound pieces of cheese ($75 monthly) or a Signature Box featuring three half-pound pieces of cheese along with a gourmet, artisan cracker and a small batch accompaniment such as a jam, spread or charcuterie. ($95 monthly).
Sometimes you just need a little gift for friends and family that won’t break the bank. Or something to weigh that stocking down! Full of good vibes and good for you, these goodies are great for gifting.
Crystal Bliss, the book that comes with a sachet of healing crystals, offers a fresh approach to healing crystals with advice for selecting, preparing, and using crystals for meditation and energy healing. If you’re feeling worn out, uninspired, and unmotivated, you can change your energy with the help of crystals. Crystal Bliss provides you with everything you need to harness the innate energy and vibrations of crystals. This guide walks you through the process of selecting crystals, cleansing and preparing them for use, and incorporating them into your meditation and energy healing process. With the help of Crystal Bliss, you can learn how to boost your own energy, beat back negative vibes, open your heart to love, manifest wealth, and promote good health. Author Devi Brown is a successful radio personality, meditation and crystal healing expert and loving wife to Seattle Seahawk’s’ Duane Brown. Devi has introduced the power of crystals to some of the most unlikely people – from Schoolboy Q to controversial radio figure, Charlamagne Tha God. In a sense, Devi is the hip-hop fairy Godmother bringing her self-discovery practices to anyone who wants to rest their mind.
Naturallclub.com, the only hair-care company featured on Forbes 30 Under 30 this year, is a female-owned business that formulates and sells natural hair products for curly hair. Their mission is to provide natural beauty products with integrity, while fostering and uplifting our community. Founder Muhga Eltigani launched NaturAll Club in Philadelphia in 2016 after several years of making and using her own hair products and sharing her story with an online natural hair community via her youtube channel. She saw a need in her community for products that didn’t contain harmful chemicals. NaturAll Club sells the only products on the market that are made with fresh, all-natural ingredients, and the company fosters a community of women who share hair questions and journeys with each other. We believe in self-love, as it manifests in natural hair care as well as body and self-image, and encourage our community to support and learn from each other. Unlike other products on the market that contain harmful chemicals and ingredients, the mission is to make products with integrity and ingredients we can pronounce.
Not only do they have beautiful jewelry but other gifts like gourmet coffee, coasters and the option to purchase a $25 gift to help others in need. Since 1996, the World Vision Gift Catalog has given people the opportunity to better the lives of children, adults and communities in the U.S. and around the world through hundreds of gifts in all different areas of need: clean water, food, education, sexual exploitation, job training and others. In fiscal year 2016, more than 112,000 people donated more than 274,000 items from the Gift Catalog helping people around the world. To order from World Vision’s Gift Catalog, visit www.worldvisiongifts.org or call toll-free at 1-855-WV-GIFTS (1-855-984-4387).
Give the gift of comfortable shoe inserts for active people! Upstep is launching an end-to-end online service to buy custom made ortho inserts designed to meet the specific needs of women and produced by world-class podiatrists. Prices represent 35%-50% savings over the direct purchase from podiatrists. Upstep’s custom orthotics are suitable for all types of women’s footwear, including flats, low heels, a variety of boots, orthopedic shoes, sandals, pumps, casual shoes, sneakers, athletic shoes, and safety shoes. The orthotics are designed and manufactured to provide relief from a range of medical conditions and common complaints affecting the foot. Upstep was founded by Israeli entrepreneurs Limor Katz, Aviad Raz, and Oren Raz, all siblings. The company enables customers anywhere in the U.S. get fitted with top of the line custom orthotics.
Upstep’s service enables the customer to order online and receive the footprint kit at home. The customer then follows the simple instructions to make a foot imprint and send it back to the company. Upstep uses 3D technology to scan the footprint. The orthotics are custom designed based on each customer’s individual specifications. The technology also offers a platform that takes various work and or athletic factors into account in order to meet the customer’s needs. The precise pair of orthotics is produced using sophisticated manufacturing techniques and the latest innovative materials. Once completed, they are sent directly the customer’s home. Prices in the U.S. based on the Upstep website range from $189 to $239, 35%-50% less than the $300-$500 cost of inserts purchased at a podiatrist’s clinic.
Whether you actually use them for yoga or are your go-to “active wear” essentials, the high quality made in the USA “Worthy of Love” leggings by Four Athletics, benefits girls rescued from sex trafficking via non-profit organization Saving Innocence. For every “Worthy of Love” leggings purchase, Four Athletics will donate a pair of its best-selling black 7/8 Omni leggings directly to Saving Innocence to give to a rescued girl in need. During this upcoming holiday season, this is the brand’s way of saying thanks by giving to those most in need. Some startling statistics include: over 100,000 girls under 18 years of age are bought and sold for sexual exploitation every year in America; the average entry age for girls is 12 years old; 70% of minors recruited into sex trafficking are from the foster care system. Once trafficked, a girl’s life expectancy is 7 years more years if not rescued. Sex trafficking has grown at a rate of 35% from 2015 to 2016, making it one of the fastest growing crimes in America.
Count your blessings and help others this holiday season!