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Christmas is the hardest time of year to be zero waste, but with a little bit of knowledge, research, and careful planning, you can make the act of gift-giving zero waste or close to it. Here are a few tips to help you give guilt-free zero waste gifts this Christmas.
Zero Waste Gift Giving Tips
Have a look at these tips to make sure that your gift-giving is helpful, and there is zero waste involved.
When you’re looking for gifts for your loved ones this year instead of going on Amazon or heading to your local mall shop locally. Keep an eye out for upcoming farmer’s markets as well as arts and craft shows. In these places, you’ll find locals selling products they made themselves that put more value on quality than quantity. If you see something you like, that comes in packaging, ask the vendor if they can keep it. Most of the time they’ll say yes because that means they won’t have to buy more. You can also shop online on sites like Facebook Marketplace.
Shop for Things Built to Last
When you’re shopping for gifts, skip cheap plastic items that are only going to break after a few uses and instead get something a little more expensive that is higher quality, even if that item has some packaging. Why is some packaging ok in this case? Well, consider the manufacturing process, items that have to be replaced have to be made, again and again, doing more harm to the environment than that little bit of packaging did that you’ll only have once. Websites like BuyMeOnce specialize in these sorts of products, and the subreddit Buy It For Life is a great resource too.
Ditch the Wrapping Paper
Most Christmas wrapping paper is one-time use, and it isn’t recyclable. So, the best advice to make gift-giving zero waste is not to use it. Use newspaper, brown paper, or cloth as an alternative. You could also go the gift bag route if you wanted but make the materials they’re made out of can be recycled. Keep in mind that not everyone will reuse a gift bag and that even if you’re reusing a gift bag, it will eventually end up as trash. If you do want to give a gift in a bag, consider getting one made out of cloth that they will be able to use in their everyday lives when they go shopping.
Use Paper Tape
This may not seem totally obvious to everyone, but the traditional clear tape is just a strip of sticky plastic. But, there are some great alternatives like using natural paper tape. This tape is biodegradable and comes with a natural substance to make it sticky. You’ll have to shop in a zero-waste store to find this, unfortunately. Another alternative is using a natural glue, but these will also have to be bought in a specialty store.
Reuse Christmas Cards for Gift Tags
Save up your Christmas cards and turn the front half into gift tags for presents. This gives the Christmas cards you get every year another opportunity at life. But it does require that you save them with your Christmas decorations until the following year. Tear the front side off from the back where the messages are written. Then cut that side into strips that you can use for gift tags. These strips will have the cover of the card on the backside, leaving you what was the inside of the card for you to write on.
I hope you helpful information in these Zero Waste Gift Giving Tips this year.