How To Be More Sustainable With Gift Giving

gift present

This is a collaborative post.

Buying and delivering gifts to your loved ones can be one of the most exciting things you do. Whether you’re celebrating a milestone moment, or an achievement in your loved one’s life, it’s great to see the smile on their face when they open that present. Unfortunately, after the opening part is done, your friend is left with a bunch of wrapping materials which might not be ideal for the environment.

If you know that you have a lot of gift giving to do this year, but you want to make sure that you’re doing it in a way that doesn’t disturb the environment, it might be time to rethink your strategies for sustainability. Today we’re going to cover some of the best ways for sustainable gift giving and make it better for the planet.

cloth gift wrap

Try Buying Online

Shopping for gifts online can be a much more convenient and sustainable way to stock up on the items you need. First, it means that you can shop from anywhere without having to worry about spending money on fuel to travel to different stores and destinations. Secondly, when you’re browsing through your options online, you can specifically look for companies that are environmentally efficient.

Check out the information that the business in question shares about their efforts to reduce carbon emissions. Do they use packaging that’s ready to recycle, and how do they ensure that products don’t produce a lot of emissions when in transit to their destination? You can find plenty of information online about the right brands and manufacturers if you know where to begin looking.

Avoid The Wrong Wrapping

Wrapping materials are an excellent way to take your standard gift to the next level. The presentation and fun of actually opening the present can be just as meaningful as the product itself. However, it’s important to make sure you’re choosing the right wrapping materials. Some of the papers, bags, and bows available on the market today are made with naturally biodegradable materials which aren’t going to do any damage to the planet.

On the other hand, you’ll also find a lot of options out there, like cellophane and plastic, that make it harder to get rid of your wrapping once you’re done with it. Glittery items and other wrapping that doesn’t look as though it was made with natural paper might not be ideal for the planet.

Reuse When You Can

There are tons of ways to reuse items when you’re gifting. You could gift second hand clothing or accessories which have never been worn. Or, you could even consider re-gifting an item that you didn’t want to save on waste if you know the person who receives the present isn’t going to find out about its origins. Additionally, think about how you can reuse the wrapping papers that you already have lying around the house.

An old scarf can make an excellent way to wrap bath products if you don’t have any paper available. You can also use bags and gift wrapping that you obtained from other people when they gave you gifts. Look for anything that you can use instead of standard wrapping paper to make your mark on the gift and be sustainable with gift giving.

Think About Delivery

How can you deliver this gift in a way that’s going to be beneficial to the environment? If you’ve got a bunch of items to send a long distance, packaging everything together will help to reduce the number of boxes and plastic bags that you need to ship. You’ll also reduce the number of journeys your post office needs to make to the recipient when you bundle items together, which means lower emissions overall.

If you can drop the gift off in person, and you have multiple presents to deliver to different people, could you do a larger meet up where everyone can exchange gifts in one place, rather than having to drive to different homes or arrange for postage?

Look for Eco friendly Gifts

Finally, when you’re buying presents, think about the kind of items that are going to be best for the environment. Experiences are often way more likely to protect the planet than items made with a ton of plastic and non-recyclable components. Maybe you can pay for your friend and you to visit a concert together, rather than spending money on physical possessions. Travel gift vouchers are also make a great gift and they are not just more “stuff” but a lifetime experience gifted. This is a great way to adopt sustainable gift giving.

If you do want to buy a traditional gift, look at the company that makes the product for more information on how they help to look after the planet.

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