Shop with Sustainable Brands
There are countless brands out there that are dedicated to being part of the solution to the climate crisis, rather than the problem. In every industry, from stationery to clothing, and everything in between, there are businesses committed to providing customers with guilt free products. If not obvious on their homepage, sustainable brands will often have a sustainability page on their website where there will be details on what they are doing to help save the planet. For example, on the Avorium website, we have a sustainability page that can be accessed from the web footer. On this page we have provided information on why we believe we are a sustainable brand and detailed what we are doing to be kind to the environment. With so many brands out there that are committed to sustainability, there really is no excuse!
Think about what will be used
It’s no good buying presents for your friends and family that will just get put away and never used, or even thrown straight in the bin! Have a think about the longer-term life of the gift. Even if it puts a smile on their face on Christmas Day, there will be more sustainable gift ideas out there that have the same effect. As well as being more sustainable, this attitude also means they’ll think of you every time they use or pick-up the present in years to come! If you’re really stuck for ideas, a gift voucher could be the perfect solution to this problem. This way, the recipient gets to choose their own gift and will certainly pick something they actually want!
Use sustainable wrapping paper (or don’t wrap at all!)
There’s nothing quite like ripping open presents on Christmas morning, but it results in tonnes of waste each year – this is particularly harmful if wrapping paper contains plastic. There are alternatives out there that are kinder to the planet; here are some of our favourites:
· Present in a reusable gift bag! This is a great option as gifts can still sit mysteriously under the tree but the bag can be used again and again!
· If you are eager to wrap presents, use recyclable wrapping paper. To ensure the paper you use is recyclable, make sure it does not contain glitter and is not shiny. Save as much as you can when unwrapping to use again next year!
· Why not try wrapping your presents with fabric? There are plenty of beautiful options out there and the material can even double up as extra protection if the gift is fragile.
· Don’t wrap! This may sound crazy, but Christmas should be all about good will and time with friends and family. Part of the fun is giving and receiving gifts but ultimately, wrapping is not necessary! It really is the thought that counts – your friends and family should support your mission to save the planet and an unwrapped present is a small price to pay!
By shopping in your local area, you are reducing the distance presents must travel and are therefore reducing the carbon footprint of your purchases. It seems silly to order online from other parts of the country (or even from abroad!) when you can shop locally. Not only is this better for the environment but also a great chance to support your local economy. Small, local business will often have smaller carbon footprints themselves than larger, online retailers, so even more carbon is saved from entering the atmosphere!
Presents don’t have to be physical
Some of the most thoughtful presents are not even physical! For example, tickets to see a show, or a sports game. Even gift vouchers, as previously mentioned, are a great option from a sustainability point of view. Gift giving doesn’t have to be a handover of a physical item from one person to another; if giving to a student, maybe helping out with their bills would be a thoughtful gift. Sometimes, even your presence is a gift enough!
If you have any more suggestions for how to have a sustainable Christmas, please do get in touch!