The month of love is upon us, and the media is sure to inundate you with a whole lot of fluff, pink hearts and drool-worthy diamonds. Being a full-time marketeer myself, I too fall into this cliche drill, but this time round I thought of creating a lineup of gifting ideas that take the meaning of ‘love’ beyond the cliche fluff and romance.

There is a great deal of love that needs to go around in the world today, and what better way to show it than spend your money on brands that go the extra mile to give back to the community? From beauty, fashion and beyond, there are so many great options to consider.

I was invited to the reopening of the Lush store at Mercato Mall last night. I’ve always loved the brand’s eco-friendly stance. As a major Lushie, I return my 5 empty pots for recycling (and get rewarded with a free face mask! Read more about that here), but the renovations at Mercato Mall have gone to show just how environmentally serious Lush management is.

Lush mercato mall dubai opening eco friendly interiors sustainable wood  (12)

I had the pleasure of having a chat with Gary Wells, Lush’s Project Manager for the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) region.

I look like a dwarf next to Gary!

With over a decade of experience with Lush in the UK, Gary has taken over the responsibility of opening 30 more stores across this region. He joined the MENA team in March this year, and gets into the nitty gritty of constructing the store interiors, keeping it up to Lush standards on a budget, and more importantly, sourcing material from environmentally sustainable and recyclable materials. His efforts have seen him being awarded the SKA accreditation for his contributions towards sustainable fittings for shops.