It’s the most wonderful time of the year!
Christmas is almost upon us, and as we enter the festive season, we could all take a step back and examine the long-term effects that our celebrations could have on our precious environment.
Having an eco-friendly Christmas party is not as complicated as it sounds. In fact, with a few subtle changes here and there, you can transform your celebration into one that’s not only memorable, but kind to the environment too.
We’ve put together a list of our ten favourite ways to go green this December. Join us in celebrating in an environmentally friendly fashion!
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Go For Durable Decorations
What is Christmas without sparkly decorations throughout the house?
As lovely as they are, most ornaments are made from materials like plastic and Styrofoam, which are terrible for the environment. Instead, consider purchasing decorations that are more durable, so that you can use them for years to come.
Alternatively, you could make your own and turn it into a fun family activity with the kids. Make sure you use eco-friendly materials, such as recyclable paper, or even paper that’s already been recycled. You could also go looking for pinecones and paint them with environmentally-friendly products – the possibilities are endless.
Rethink Your Gifting Ideas
Every year, we all exchange gifts that we don’t necessarily want – how many unopened tubs of lavender-scented body butter have you got lying around from Christmases past? But take a moment to ask yourself – what do I really want for Christmas?
This year, instead of gifting your friends and family with useless objects, why not gift them with an incredible experience instead? This could be anything from a cooking class to a theatre show – they’ll treasure the experience and the memories more than they ever would another bath bomb.
Limit Food Wastage
During the festive season, we all tend to do everything in excess, especially when it comes to cooking!
Limiting food wastage from your Christmas dinner will go a long way to helping you keep your holidays as green as possible. Try to be a bit more realistic about the amount of food that you and your family prepare – is it possible to consume that much?
Aim for a zero-waste meal by buying smaller quantities of what you need. Nothing is worse than having to throw out all those leftovers a couple of days after the festivities have ended.
Use Locally Sourced Ingredients
When going grocery shopping for your Christmas meal, try and make use of locally sourced ingredients only.
They have a lower carbon footprint and are much fresher than imported ingredients. Plus, the more frequently locally sourced ingredients are bought, the more likely the grocery store is to restock them. In the long run, this is much healthier for the planet – and your family too!
Recycle Your Gift Wrap
Gift wrap is a major part of Christmas, but it’s also a major source of wastage.
Instead of going out and buying new gift wrap, have a look at home to see if you have any from previous years. Use that to wrap the presents you’re popping under the tree.
When unwrapping any gifts you receive, make sure you save the wrapping. You can use it again next year. Not only will this save you time and money, it’s much kinder to the planet too.
Choose A Sustainable Or Reusable Tree
The Christmas tree is the centrepiece of all your festive season celebrations – it’s where gifts are exchanged, family portraits are taken and plenty of memories are made.
This year, when selecting your tree, consider choosing a sustainable tree if you are going for a fresh one. However, if you cannot find one, why not go for a reusable tree? Many of the reusable trees look just like the real thing, and you can use them for a good few years without having to throw them out.
Consider Sending e-Cards And Gift Cards
The internet is a wonderful thing. It’s accessible, and it’s limitless. Another way to go green this Christmas is to turn to the internet as the source of your gift-giving.
Instead of wasting paper on gift cards, gift wrap and the packaging that inevitably comes with any physical gift purchased, why not consider sending e-greetings and gift cards via email?
Everything will be delivered neatly in the recipient’s inbox and they’ll be able to choose whatever they want.
Taking this approach will also save you plenty of time, as a few clicks are all that’s needed to do your Christmas shopping!
Choose Eco-Friendly Crackers
Christmas crackers are an important part of festive season celebrations! However, they are often made of single-use materials that have a negative impact on the environment.
When choosing your crackers this year, try and find eco-friendly ones to adorn your table with. Plenty of stores have them on offer now, so be sure to keep a look out for them. Alternatively, get crafty and make your own!
Use LED lights
What’s Christmas without twinkly lights?
Lights for the tree, lights for the house – little fairy lights everywhere make everything feel more festive. However, there are so many lighting options available that use plenty of electricity and aren’t as durable as we would like them to be (just think about how many strings you’ve had to throw out over the years!).
This year consider using LED lights instead. Not only are they more durable and better for the environment, they use less electricity, so your energy bill will be much lower.
Take Fabric Bags When You Go Shopping
Reusable shopping bags are perhaps the easiest way to go green. They’re practical, easy to find and will serve you well in the long run.
When you go Christmas shopping, take reusable bags along instead of buying plastic or paper ones. Fabric bags are also more durable and can hold a lot more items than the flimsier ones available instore. Plus, if you take your own reusable bags you don’t have to pay for them at the checkout, so the jingle in your pocket will last a lot longer!
Going green for Christmas is easy if you follow these tips. Ditch the plastic, overly laden tables of food and plastic decorations and give the environment a helping hand while you celebrate!