Would you like to celebrate an eco-friendly Christmas this year? Christmas is just around the corner and while everyone is gearing up for a season of festivities, let’s keep in mind this is also the time when things can take its toll on the environment. From wasteful expenditures, gift wrapping papers that cause a landfill, toxic decorations, disposable party ware and not to forget the high consumption of electricity that can cause a considerable damage to the environment. But then, you could also look at ways to celebrate an eco-friendly Christmas.
It isn’t very difficult to celebrate a green Christmas. Right from shopping local, making your own gifts, choosing environmental friendly decorations and ensuring that you reduce waste! There is so much that you can do to ensure you don’t cause any landfill, make this Christmas season more sustainable, save money and also have a positive impact on your community.Christmas is a season of not only rejoicing, but of reflection. ~ Winston ChurchillClick To Tweet
20+ tips for an eco-friendly Christmas
Right from being mindful this season to choosing what you want to gift or eco-friendly decorations; there is so much that gives you an idea on different ways to celebrate an eco-friendly Christmas. Here are some ideas and links to posts that can help you celebrate a green Christmas.
Green Christmas ideas to being mindful
Celebrate Christmas in a way that you would enjoy, let it connect to you the way it did when you were a child; full of magic and wonder.
1. Slow down
Don’t get caught in the frenzy of the festivities. Give yourself the permission to enjoy what you want. Say no to the umpteen commitments and choose what you want to attend. Take time to smell the freshly baked cakes and stop to listen to the laughter of people enjoying the festivities.
2. Connect with the Season
Do you recall any old family tradition that was a part of the Christmas festivities? It’s time to bring them back. There is so much to do with the festivities – decorate the tree, make your gifts or just spend time with your family.
When was the last time you received a gift that you did not like but stashed it away? Happens to most of us. De-clutter and make space. Give away all unused gifts or things that you do not want to use in charity. Help someone in need.
Eco-friendly Christmas Gifting Ideas
Gifting is synonymous with all festivities and Christmas is no different. If you are looking for something different here are some ideas for green Christmas gifting. It will ensure that you give a gift that can be used and not just stashed away only to be thrown away later causing a land-fill!
1. Gift hand-made skin care prods
Lotion Bars are getting increasingly popular these days. For a foolproof recipe, check out my very own Orange Body Lotion Bar post. It’s very easy to make and takes less than half an hour! Make a variety with different oils and package for gifting.
Collect some twigs, cones and tree bark from your walks outside. Slice an apple and orange into very thin slices and bake them for about an hour till completely dry. Mix together with some lightly crushed star anise, cloves and cinnamon. Keep for a couple of days before gifting.
3. Cookies & Cakes
Foods can be consumed and they rarely go to waste. So instead of opting for some store bought goodies that can have a good amount of preservatives in them, opt for baking something at home. Here are some recipes that I have shared on my blog; do check the macaron recipe that is one of the popular reads! And this easy recipe of a pomegranate cake is not just easy to bake but will also make a fabulous gift. Try it! You can view the recipe here.
4. Some good scrubs
Scrubs are probably the most popular home made personal care products. There are so many varieties you can try, it can get confusing! Start with these extensive lists of body scrubs, hand scrubs and foot scrubs.
5. Shop Local
Do you know someone who makes hand-made gifts? If you have the time make your own gifts or shop from a local artisan. Hand-made gifts add a personal touch to gifting. Click on the link to explore some inexpensive but wonderful DIY gift ideas.
6. Keep it to a one-gift rule
Don’t go overboard and instead pick up one thoughtful and unique gift that someone may actually appreciate and use. If you can manage to come up with a list of things that you actually need, you may get gifts that you can use and not stash away.
7. Make Your Own Greeting Cards
Instead of buying cards to send out for Christmas, ask your child to craft some cards or just send a family photo with a hand-written note or a greeting handwritten on the back. Remember its really the thought that counts.
8. Make your own gifts
I am a DIY person, when ideas fail, I resort to making something on my own and gifting it. You can check the entire DIY section of my blog and come up with inexpensive, yet fantastic gifts that you can make for your loved ones. Trust me all that you need are a couple of ingredients from your kitchen, an empty jar and a ribbon! And you are done! Oh and you can add some jams, pickles, cakes and potted plants to this list too!
While you are at gifting, don’t forget to opt for eco-friendly gift wrapping options. Read this post to know more about budget friendly gift wrap ideas.
Eco-friendly Christmas Decoration Ideas
Christmas is incomplete without decorations. Instead of opting for plastic and thermocol decorations that contribute to the landfill when discarded opt for simple, affordable and beautiful decorations. And some of these can be made right at home!
1. Keep it minimal
Cluttered decorations just make things look messy, so opt for the minimal look. It looks simple and elegant. Cluttered decorations are neither inspiring, nor beautiful. Just keep it simple. Pick up pine cones and make it a decorative centerpiece!
2. Utilize Timers
Decorations look beautiful, but even if you are using energy efficient decorations, remember that you are still consuming electricity. Buy a timer that is easily available in any hardware store so that the electric decorations can be automatically turned off after some time.
3. Natural Centerpiece
An empty glass jar and some unused decoration pieces can make a fabulous centerpiece. Look up this really simple DIY homemade Christmas decoration that you’ll love to have. Source: Take Time For Style
4. DIY Ornaments
Opt for eco-friendly ornaments that won’t cause on contribute to a landfill. Wood and cloth decorations are long-lasting and can be also reused. Not to mention that they don’t contribute to a landfill.
5. Make your Christmas wreaths
Take out those old cards or a bunch of colourful magazines and cut them into the shape of holly. Sew them or glue them together to weave a wreath. These upcycled decorations won’t cost anything plus when you discard they, they will not contribute to a landfill. Look up this post to know more.
6. Energy-efficient LED Lighting
If you use electric lights and fairy lights, opt for the LED variants because they consume less energy. They can also save you up to 90% or more on power costs and will last longer than traditional bulbs. Look up some varieties of LED decorations here.
7. DIY Christmas Trees
Have you explored the thought of having a Christmas tree that is not actually a tree? Instead of cutting down and actual tree, look up these ideas to decorate your home and still get a Christmassy feel. Click here to read more.
Stick to a mix of originality and simplicity and opt for decorations that are reusable, so that you don’t have to spend a bomb when you get ready for festivities the next year.
Eco-friendly Christmas Planning ideas
Support local farmers and craftsmen in your neighborhood. Keep a look out for Faremer’s markets and flea markets that have pop-up stalls during this season to sell their wares. You will get an assortment of gifts and things that you can use.
2. Combine Shopping Trips
Double-check your shopping lists to ensure that you have listed all the items that you need so that you won’t have to step out again to buy things. Opt for stores that will have all or most of the items in the list so that you don;t have to store hop.
3. Skip Disposables
If it is just the family, use your glass ware to serve the dinner. If you do have to opt for disposables, then opt for bamboo cutlery that does not cause a landfill and it can also be added to your compost pit.
4. Green Christmas Dinner Ideas
The family meal is a time to relax, connect and celebrate. Opt for fuss free meals that will allow you to spend more time with your family. Check this assortment of recipes. If you are vegan, check these recipes.
5. Clean Green
Cleaning up after the guests leave can be a task! Opt for all-natural household cleaners if you can to ensure you are not spraying any chemicals in the air. Save electricity by running dishwashers only if hey have a full load. Look up this post on a collection green cleaning recipes that really work!
With parties and dinners, there is bound to be left-overs. Segregate food that can be given to animals and what you can compost. You can read more about composting here.
Opting for a green living is a choice that becomes a habit. Small acts of conservation works a long way to make our planet a greener one.