This time of year it’s easy to produce a lot more waste. Product packing, wrapping paper, food containers, etc. It seems that during the holidays, everything we do gets multiplied, especially the stuff that may potentially have an adverse impact on our planet. But this time of year you can have a friendlier impact on the world, you just need to be a little bit more conscious of the choices you make.
I have compiled a list of 20 different ways you can easily have an earth-friendlier holiday this year.
How to Have an Eco-Friendly Holiday
- Shop local – by shopping at local manufacturers, you reduce your carbon footprint because the items don’t need to be shipped. Take it a step further and purchase hand-made items and you not only reduce waste but support your local economy as well.
- Cancel catalog subscriptions – physical catalogs line garbage cans during the holidays and are often a waste of paper. Take the time to contact the companies sending the catalogs and asked to be removed from their list.
- Forgo the disposable dinnerware – use real plates, silverware and cups for holiday gatherings to reduce the impact of waste. If you can’t use real dinnerware, make sure to choose compostable plates and silverware. These can then be broken down and used in compost piles for growing gardens. Also consider cloth napkins as well.
- Don’t use wrapping paper (or recycle it) – there are a lot of fun options for wrapping besides the pricey, shiny paper that isn’t recyclable. Brown grocery store bags, old newspaper, and other paper products can be used as wrapping, and you can even draw holiday pictures on it, or have the kids get involved. Recycle ribbons and bows to use them year after year.
- Choose natural gifts – choose items that are naturally eco-friendly such as soy candles, essential oils or plants, or natural bath and body products.
- Bake your gifts – baked goods make amazing gifts and if you choose organic and healthier ingredients, you also help the environment because purchasing those items means supporting less pesticide use that affects the planet.
- Donate instead of buying a gift – a donation in your recipient’s name to their favorite charity is the gift that gives back without waste, and if it’s an environmental charity, well then that’s double the earth-friendly impact.
- Cook from scratch – packaging from convenience foods makes up a lot of holiday waste and really with a bit of planning, making everything from scratch isn’t that difficult, can taste better and is better for you.
- Use natural cleaners – you will probably be doing extra cleaning during the holidays, natural cleaners are better year-round for the environment and your family. Making homemade natural cleaners helps reduce your impact even more because you will store them in reusable packaging.
- Gifts in glass jars – there are a lot of different ideas on Pinterest for gift ideas in glass jars. You can buy nuts in bulk, create cookie mixes and more. You don’t even need to wrap it. Add a hand-made tag, and recycled ribbon for a beautiful, thoughtful looking gift.
- Choose gifts in eco-friendly packaging – many products use not only eco-friendly packaging but also have eco-friendly manufacturing policies. Often these companies indicate this on their packaging so keep an eye for these products when shopping and choose them over other similar brands that don’t have earth-friendly practices.
One example of a brand that has products that are both naturally friendly and use eco-friendly packaging is hello products. All of hello’s products are vegan and never tested on animals. They use non-GMO corn for their xylitol and erythritol ingredients which are harvested sustainably in Mexico. Their products also have no dyes, no artificial sweeteners, no artificial flavors, no parabens, no triclosan and no microbeads in them. On top of all that, their boxes are made from 100% recyclable paper sourced from sustainable resources and certified by the Forest Stewardship Council and their tubes are BPA-Free, and contain no phthalates.
You can create eco-friendly spa gift baskets and include hello products or use them as stocking stuffers during the holidays. You could even use the boxes as holiday packaging for other gifts that you need a box for. Wrap it in paper and have the kids color a holiday picture on it.
For more information about hello products visit: www.hello-products.com