Eco friendly christmas, representing things to do over christmas (1)

Dreaming of a Green Christmas: How to Make the Holidays More Eco-Friendly

The holiday season is a time for celebration, joy and gift giving, though, it’s also a season that tends to produce a significant amount of waste.

The UK will generate 125,000 tonnes of plastic packaging waste, enough to fill 5,000 lorries, and some households will produce 30% more garbage at home during the holiday season. However, there is some good news for those dreaming of a green Christmas, and that is that you can begin making a more positive impact throughout the holiday season, starting from now! From considering more eco-friendly gift ideas, to tweaking your Christmas dinner habits, in this blog post we will discuss some of the sustainable and environmentally conscious ways you can celebrate the festive season and have a more positive impact on the environment if you wish to.

Decorations

When it comes to seasonal decorations, considering sustainability and waste reduction is something worth exploring. Rather than decorating your tree with tinsel, for example, consider swapping your single-use decorations for wooden ornaments or ones made from recycled materials such as paper. You could even try making your own decorations with materials already at home, such as newspapers, magazines, or old scraps of fabric. This not only adds a unique and personalised touch to your home but is also a fun activity that the whole family can enjoy.

Gifting

Want to buy your friends and family some amazing eco-friendly gifts to remember? Our top tips are to focus on gifts that use recycled materials, support small businesses, gift ‘experiences’ rather than physical items or buy second-hand. A less is more approach is also a great way to go, and buying or creating something personal is likely going to be way more meaningful to the recipient.

Etsy – a great place to support small businesses far and wide – you can find most things on here and even get gifts personalised for that unique touch.

Virgin Experience Days or Buyagift – both websites are great websites to buy experiences from, but you could also consider looking more local; booking onto a local brewery tour, going to see a live comedy act, or treating your loved one to a voucher for their favourite local restaurant.

Depop and Vinted – maybe your loved one loves brands. You can often find people selling brands for second-hand online for a fraction of the price (with the bonus of it being vintage or one of a kind). These are also great places to find handmade clothing from small businesses.

Lighting

Wanting to spruce up your Christmas lighting with an eco-friendly swap? Ditch the energy-guzzling incandescent bulbs for energy efficient LED lights – they’ll even save you money on your electricity bill. You could also opt for solar-powered or rechargeable options for your festive decorations as well, helping your home become as green as your Christmas tree.

Food

One of the highlights of the festive period for many people is the food. While indulging in festive treats is a tradition we all cherish, why not consider some alternative options this year, and perhaps introduce them as a small part of your meal – whether it’s vegan pigs in blankets, stuffing, or meat substitutes; see if your family notices a difference! Statistics have shown that Christmas food consumption can contribute significantly to our carbon footprint, with overindulgence during the holiday season accounting for the same emissions as a single car traveling 6,000 times around the globe. Making choices such as minimizing food waste, buying locally, and incorporating more plant-based options into your Christmas dinner can make a positive difference. Once your dinner is finished, you can also consider repurposing or composting leftovers and recycling any packaging. Soft plastics can be recycled at your local supermarket, and you can find your closest store that offers this service here.

Giving Back

Another way you can be more environmentally conscious this Christmas is by ‘giving’, whether that is through a monetary donation or through donating your time to the local community. Charities such as The Wildlife Trust, Greenpeace UK, or Friends of the Earth work towards environmental conservation and sustainability and are great choices of charity to consider donating to if this is an option for you.

You could also consider donating to carbon offset programmes or supporting reforestation projects.

Additionally, you could consider supporting food banks, such as The Trussell Trust, or a local food bank in your area, that help provide meals and essential supplies to families in need. We recommend donating items such as non-perishable foods, toiletries, or items such as nappies, if this is something you are able to do.

You can also find local charities through websites like Charities Aid Foundation or platforms like JustGiving, which connect donors with causes they are passionate about. By giving what you can afford, you have the opportunity to make a meaningful difference in the lives of those less fortunate.

We hope these suggestions for how to make your Christmas more eco-friendly have helped inspire you to make a swap at home – whether that be big or small! Remember, even the smallest changes can make a big difference. Wishing you a joyful holiday season!

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