With Christmas fast approaching, you’re probably starting to wonder about what to get your friends and family. Well, why not think about the planet this year with some sustainable, eco-friendly gifts? While everyone loves getting presents, it’s even better when those presents don’t damage the earth and instead, help everyone be more eco-friendly in their day to day lives.
If you’re a student looking for some environmentally friendly inspiration, here are some ideas for eco-conscious gifts you can give this Christmas.
Zero Waste Beauty Products
Zero waste is a hot topic right now. Many people are moving away from disposable, single-use products, especially when it comes to health and beauty.
There are so many gifts you can get to help someone on their way to a more sustainable beauty regiment. These include reusable cotton pads for removing makeup, shampoo and conditioner bars, sustainable deodorant and all kinds of beauty products that come either without packaging or packaged in more sustainable materials like cardboard or metal.
This year, instead of a toiletries hamper, give your loved ones some zero waste beauty products that they, and the planet, will love.
When you head down to charity shops, you’ll notice that some of them, like Oxfam, have teamed up with Fairtrade to provide wonderful gift hampers that support good causes. When you buy a hamper, you’ll be helping communities far afield and boosting the income of the farmers who make the products.
You can get hampers that feature tea, biscuits, honey, chocolate bars, coffee and much more. Or if you don’t fancy buying an entire hamper, you can purchase the products individually. They also have a focus on sustainable products like reusable beeswax food wraps, tote bags for shopping and reusable water bottles. Fairtrade gifts are the perfect way to give presents that benefit so many more people than just the recipient.
Zero Waste Cookbook
Did you know that the UK wastes 4.5 million tonnes of food each year? It’s a massive problem for the sustainability of the planet, and an awful thought when there are so many people struggling and going without.
Zero-waste cooking is all about using up those extra food scraps so they don’t go to waste, helping people be more creative with their cooking so they don’t throw out perfectly edible food. It can be tricky to know where to start, so why not help someone out with a zero-waste cookbook full of recipes and tips and tricks for ensuring nothing goes to waste?
We’ve all seen those pictures circulating online of sea turtles with plastic straws jammed up their nostrils; it’s not a pleasant sight. Reusable straws are incredibly popular and can be bought in a wide variety of colours, materials and styles. You can even get ones that fold away into a small box that can be attached to a set of keys, ensuring that you always have your reusable straw ready to hand.
Give your loved ones a practical, fun gift with reusable straws. They can even try them out over Christmas dinner.
Gardening is a great activity to stay healthy and keep active, but it can also help contribute to the well-being of the planet. Consider gifting seed bombs to your loved ones; they’re a great way to add wildflowers to a garden that bees love. They make great stocking fillers and are ideal for people of any age.
You can also get someone started with a herb planter, encouraging them to grow their own produce at home and save on buying plastic-wrapped coriander from the supermarket. Whether someone has a huge garden or just a nice spot on a windowsill, there are plenty of plant-based gifts that can make someone’s Christmas truly special.
Most coffee shop cups are not recyclable, and we throw away a massive 2.5 billion of them each year in the UK. Help your friends and family fight back against the problem with a travel mug. Travel mugs come in so many different styles; you can even get personalised ones for that extra special touch.
If that doesn’t convince you, remember that most coffee chains do a discount on drinks when someone uses a travel mug, so you’ll be saving the planet and helping your family and friends save money.
Now that you’ve picked out your eco-friendly gifts, it’s time to wrap them. There’s no point buying eco-friendly presents if you then spoil it with non-recyclable wrapping.
Avoid wrapping papers with glitter or shiny surfaces, as these very often cannot be recycled. You could try brown paper packaging, which can be bought from post offices and card shops. If that’s a bit too plain looking, you can jazz it up with a nice gift tag or ribbon.
Sellotape needs to be removed from gifts before the paper can be recycled, so make sure you use it sparingly to help with easy removal. You can even buy zero plastic Sellotape made from plant-based sources which can be composted. Or if you really want to avoid plastic, you can even learn how to wrap gifts with no Sellotape at all, using an origami wrapping method.
We hope you have a fantastic Christmas and manage to get all your eco-friendly gifts in time. If you’re looking for student accommodation in Lancaster, contact Student Housing Lancaster today.