I’m dreaming of a green Christmas! And I’m hoping you are too. That’s why when I’ve put together 6 top tips for a sustainable Christmas.
1. Go green with your decor including your tree
Real tree or a fake tree? That is the question. We’ve concluded, if you haven’t yet got a tree, buy a real one. Then after Christmas, recycle it. Yep, that’s right, trees can be recycled. Be sure to ask what the options are when you buy it.
If you already have a tree, continue to use it. Fake plastic trees consume a significant amount of energy in their manufacturing and usually have a long carbon footprint in their transport to our shelves. If you really do need a fake tree, buy second hand. Same thing if you need to get rid of one, sell it on or give it away to someone who needs it.
Switch to LED Christmas lights; they’re far more energy efficient than traditional. Plus you’ll save on the electricity bill. Don’t forget to turn them off or put them on a timer though.
Unfortunately, many popular decorations such as tinsel are made from plastic or PVC. This year why not have a go at making you own? The internet if full of ideas for DIY sustainable decorations. We love these dried orange decorations.
2. Ditch the turkey
OK, we know this is a controversial one, but one of the biggest ways you can go green this year is to go meat free. Maybe Christmas is a difficult place to start so if you want to keep the turkey, buy organic and opt for organic veg where possible. Most importantly, don’t waste your leftovers! Inevitably everyone will eat until they can’t manage another bite, but there will still be food on the table. Tackle the food waste by seeing what you can freeze or transform in to another dish. If all else fails, compost.
3. Buy eco-friendly gifts or donate to charity
Think handmade soaps, shampoo bars, reusable metal water bottles, keepy cups, the list goes on. These are all fantastic gifts that will encourage your friends and family to behave a little more sustainably. Plus they are a great conversation starter.
Why not also try your local charity or vintage shops? Buying second hand goods is a fantastic way to reduce your environmental impact, as well as being a great way to pick up some bargains!
Finally, have you considered asking your friends and families to donate to charity on your behalf? There’s an endless list of incredible charity and not for profit organisations that could do wonders with the money your loved ones would have spent on a gift. Feel good by knowing you’ve helped others this Christmas.
4. Gift wrap green
Did you know last year in the UK alone we threw away 108 MILLION rolls of wrapping paper at Christmas!
As hard as it is not to tear things open, try to unwrap with a little bit of order. Save the paper for next year. Hold on to your ribbons and bows and reuse them. Or go for the vintage look and fashion your old newspapers or magazines in to wrapping paper that can then be recycled. Win win!
5. Cut back on cards
How many Christmas cards do you send each year? Send digital Christmas cards, and not only are you reducing your environmental footprint, but think of the money you’ll save on postage!
6. Have a Christmas clear out
Does anyone else’s mum use the same line every year ‘you can’t have anymore clothes for Christmas until you’ve cleared some out of your closet’? She makes an excellent point though.
Christmas is a great time of year to de-clutter and get rid of things we no longer use or need. But don’t throw them away! Take them to your local charity shop so someone else can enjoy them.
Hopefully that’s given you one or two ideas how you can make a positive difference this year. And if you’ve got any top tips of your own, be sure to let us know. Together we can make a difference!