It’s almost here. Christmas shopping has begun, lists are being made and wallets are being stretched. This year, we’d like more people to take a moment to step back from the Christmas chaos for a while, and to consider making this year more green than ever. Here are our top tips for a sustainable, plastic free Christmas- do let us know your thoughts in the comments!
Keep your wish lists short and sweet
Christmas is traditionally a time of over-indulgence… in more ways than one! This year, when friends and family ask what you want for your gift, why not actually tell them? Cross out all those unnecessary gifts that are stashed under the tree each year, only to make their way to the back of a cupboard (or worse, landfill!) on Boxing Day. Ask for things that you truly need, or simply tell everyone you don’t want anything this year. It’s really ok to do that!
And when it comes to giving gifts, the same applies. Don’t be tempted by novelty gifts that have no real use for the person receiving them. Try a Secret Santa instead, so you can spend a little more making sure your recipient gets something of quality, rather than having to buy lots of cheaper gifts.
Plastic can hide itself really well in all kinds of places over Christmas. You can find it in the wrapping paper, in gift tags and in packaging too. It’s time to ban it! Choose eco-friendly wrapping paper, or recycle paper from gifts you’ve been given yourself.
Reduce food waste
There’s nothing we love more at Christmas than a gorgeous table laden with delicious food, but the amount that gets wasted every year is enough to make us lose our appetite for good. This year, make a menu and stick to it. Eat the seasons so that your food is fresh, locally sourced, with a low carbon footprint and a longer shelf life. Keep fruit and vegetables in the fridge so they last longer and choose organic where you can. If you do have left overs that you can’t eat, make sure you compost them.
Plastic free Christmas tip: buy fresh and skip the plastic packaging
Consider your tree carefully
The ‘Real or Fake’ debate rages on… and we’re not about to tell you what to do either. It really is your decision to make, but here’s a great post from the Soil Association that might help you make up your mind. Just steer clear of plastic baubles and tinsel this year!
Plastic free Christmas tip: if you do buy artificial, make sure you invest in a tree for life!
Do you really need crackers this year?
We really don’t mean to be spoil sports, but we all know that Christmas crackers are rarely recyclable and often contain cheap plastic toys that nobody wants. If crackers are a must, make your own or look for FSC-certified crackers instead.
Use LED lights
LED lights use less energy, so are way better for decorations at Christmas.
Plastic free Christmas tip: make sure you turn your lights off when you’re not there- saves energy, and is safer too
Party dress season…
Yes, we LOVE party season! And yes, we love making an effort, dressing up and feeling special… we don’t love fast fashion however! This year, instead of buying a new party dress, why not have a really good rummage around your wardrobe to see if there’s a dress back there that still looks amazing? You can also try second hand shops, or apps such as Vinted, where you can buy or sell clothes for the party season. Don’t be tempted to spend money on an outfit you might never wear again.
Spend some time outdoors…
… with people you love. Re-connect with nature this Christmas. Forget the packed shopping centres and busy high streets, and instead take the dog for a walk with a friend. Have a frosty picnic (with plenty of hot coffee!) with a relative you haven’t seen for ages. Appreciate this beautiful word we have.