It’s the most wonderful time of the year, but what about all the additional mess and waste that comes at Christmas time? Thankfully, we live in a society that is ever more conscious of the importance of knowing how to be green and how to save the planet. With that in mind, we’ve created a super simple list of ways you can have a green Christmas, with some eco-friendly Christmas ideas for gifts and more.
Eco-friendly Christmas ideas: Green Christmas gift ideas
Learning how to save the planet and enjoy a truly eco-Christmas starts with the gifts. Here are a few ways you can be a little greener this year.
- Buy less. Let’s be honest, many of us have homes filled to the brim with ‘stuff’ so why not see if there are practical gifts people need? Alternatively, you could simply reduce who you buy for, for example, by only buying for the children instead of the whole family or choosing to play Secret Santa and buying for just the one person. An eco-Christmas is all about thinking a little differently!
- Buy green gifts. From eco-friendly clothing to eco-friendly products for the home, there are plenty of options for more sustainable gift buying. A few things to think about when buying green include:
- Purchase second-hand gifts from charity shops.
- Buy from vendors who source sustainable materials to create their products.
- Look for shampoo, conditioner and soap bars as an alternative to the traditional wash bag gift set. Or choose products which give back to the planet in some way.
- Shop from local small businesses, as this will reduce the carbon footprint of the products you are buying.
- Don’t buy – make. If you want to know how to have a sustainable Christmas, consider skipping on the buying and get creative with gifts this year instead. Skills such as sewing, knitting or crochet are a great way to create a handmade gift to cherish – or you could involve your children in plastic bottle recycling crafts to make bird feeders and so much more. Take the opportunity to educate the whole family on reducing plastic packaging and waste with these fun modules.
- Don’t buy – re-gift. Although considered a little taboo, re-gifting is actually a great way to be a little greener this Christmas. If you have unused, practically still wrapped gifts – or even items you bought for yourself and never used – why not gift these on to be loved and used by someone else? Recycling is always a good idea.
How to have an eco-friendly Christmas: 5 steps to have a green Christmas this year
In five easy steps, we’ll show you how to have a green Christmas this year!
- Make sustainable swaps. A few swaps we recommend so you can have a green Christmas include:
- Switch up your wrapping paper. Whilst brightly coloured or shiny foil wrapping paper may look pretty under the tree, most of it is not recyclable. Instead, swap to brown paper. Have a look at some more sustainable wrapping ideas over here.
- Check you’re using sustainable products at home. From the cleaners, you use to how you wash your clothes, check the products you use. For example, did you know Persil has 100% recyclable packaging (and is also made from 50% recycled plastic too!). Choose refillable household cleaners for all of the household prep!
- Switch it off. Reducing your energy usage and minimising your carbon footprint is a great step in how to help save the planet. At Christmas, you’re bound to use a little more energy with additional lights and other decorations. Follow these tips:
- Use smart plugs and switches to set timers on your lights.
- Change over your bulbs to LED or CFL to reduce your energy usage.
- Consider eating less meat. Ahh, a good old turkey roast, that’s what we all look forward to, right? Why not look at alternative options for your Christmas dinner:
- Meat-free meals can be just as tasty and nutritious too!
- If you’re set on gobbling up a gobbler this year, look for local farms to reduce the food miles.
- Don’t forget to recycle. Inevitably you’ll have some packaging, wrapping paper and other waste this year. Make sure you recycle everything you can; including batteries when you finish with any battery-operated lights and decorations. Have a look at how these small actions really do make a big difference.
- Get a real tree. Whilst plastic trees are reusable each year, they aren’t as eco-friendly as you may think. Not only do they use resources for manufacturing and shipping they are often replaced when they begin to look a little worse for wear. A few reasons a real Christmas tree is a greener option this year include:
- Live trees are replanted, making it a sustainable source.
- You can buy potted trees so you can plant it afterwards and watch it grow.
- If you don’t buy a potted one, the real tree can be used for chipping and mulch.
- Have a look at how to care for your real tree, here.
So, there you go. If you’re looking for ways to save the planet, we’ve now shown you how to have a sustainable Christmas in just a few simple steps. With just a few sustainable changes, you can be sure to have an enjoyable and eco-friendly ho-ho-holiday. Make dreaming of a green Christmas a reality this year!