As much as I love the month of December, the environmentalist in me can’t deny that the most wonderful time of year is also the most wasteful. I’m not trying to be a Grinch, but this year, I’m determined to save some green (while also making this a Sustainable Christmas of course).
Read my tips below to have a more sustainable Christmas season, and feel good about saving a little money in the process!
DIY a Sustainable Christmas Gift
When you’re on a budget, and you want to give a frugal, yet meaningful gift, DIY is the way to go. You’ll save cash by making it yourself, and the recipient will appreciate the time and effort you put into their one-of-a-kind gift. To save a little more green, consider buying second-chance arts and crafts supplies from sites like BLINQ.
Donate to a Worthy Cause
In the spirit of the season, in lieu of gifts, have everyone donate to a charity in your name. You’ll be helping others in need, and can inspire friends and family to do the same. If you don’t want to completely forego giving gifts, consider purchasing from a company that makes charitable donations. (Read about our partnership with Trees for the Future to learn how each purchase on BLINQ plants a tree in rural communities in the developing world.)
Cut Down on the Gifts
My family is doing the one-gift rule this year. Cut down on Christmas clutter by bringing a single gift to your holiday celebration this year. Consider doing a white elephant exchange – a fun way to swap the gifts you brought. If buying one gift is too drastic, buy a few gifts that are useful or never go out of style. Buying on-trend can be fun at the time, but trendy items may end up collecting dust in the very near future.
Limit and Recycle Your Decorations
When decorating for the holidays, I turn into Martha Stewart times a million. This year, I’m scaling back for a more sustainable Christmas, and you should too! By limiting your decorations to a few key pieces, there’s less to toss when January rolls around. Purchase Christmas decorations that can be reused or upcycled for years to come. Which brings me to my next point…
Get Crafty with Gift Wrap and Ribbon
Have you seen Pinterest lately? There are all kinds of crafty crafts you can do with leftover gift wrap paper, ribbon and holiday cards. I’m all about being thrifty, and this is a great way to reuse items you might otherwise throw out after the holidays.
Buy Open Box Items This Christmas
When you buy open box items this Christmas, not only will you save on big-ticket items, but you’re also keeping a perfectly good item from being wasted. Recycling and reusing items is just good green practice! Not to toot our own horn here, but BLINQ prides itself on being a sustainable company for giving products like these a second chance.
Use LED Lights to Save Energy
If you simply can’t do without twinkling lights this holiday season (I don’t blame you), go with the LED version of your favorite sparklers. Not only are they more environmentally friendly, they’re way more efficient, and your wallet will thank you later!
Reuse Sustainable Christmas Decorations
When you’re planning a holiday party, it can be tempting to use paper plates and plastic utensils. Instead, give Mother Earth a gift this year, and utilize reusable plates, cups, utensils and napkins at your party. It’s eco-friendly, and will bump up the class factor at your party big time! (Think Christmas is the only time to have eco-friendly celebrations? Learn how to throw a green birthday party any time of the year).
Buy Local Foods For Your Christmas Feast
There are many easy ways to be a green shopper year-round, and Christmastime is no exception. Be green by buying local produce for your holiday grocery goodies this year. You’ll be supporting local economies, putting money back into your neighbor’s pockets. Shop for a few key items that you can throw in a slow cooker and fix for a large crowd. Everyone will be green with envy (even the earth, because of your environmental awareness) after tasting your locally-sourced treats!
It’s easy to go over the top during the holidays – the lights, tree, presents, and more – it all adds up! Using these easy tips, you’ll not only save moolah as you scale back for a more sustainable Christmas season, but you’ll be doing good as well. Have any sustainable tips for the season that I missed above? I would love to hear about them in the comments!