Sustainable Christmas present ideas that don't break the bank

Christmastime to some of us is an excuse to buy lots of presents for family and friends, but how can we show our loved ones how much they mean to us whilst also avoiding a big impact on the environment?

Lyndsey Sleator
9th December 2021
Image from Unsplash @Ben White
Christmas- a time of good food, reunions with loved ones, and gift-giving on a sometimes extreme levels. While Christmas presents are a lovely way to show friends and family how much they mean to us, have you ever thought about the environmental impacts of your gift choices?

According to Business Leader, 125,000 tonnes of plastic packaging is generated each year in the UK at Christmas time. This is a stark statistic that we can all collectively alter by making small, simple changes to our shopping behaviours, while also enjoying the sparkle of Christmas! Why should sustainability be boring? Here, I'll show you some amazing alternatives which will not only leave your pocket feeling happy, but our planet smiling too.

Reusable deodorants from @wildrefill instagram

Refillable and natural soaps and deodorant There are many fun and sustainable deodorants and fragrances available online and on the high-street, but one that stood out to me was Wild’s refillable and natural deodorant. Not only are there amazing seasonal sets such as Toffee Apple, the deodorant is also in a case that you can then keep and refill with your next replacement, reducing the copious amounts of waste from deodorant cans while also reducing air pollution. Plus the trio set is only £12.99!

125,000 tonnes of plastic packaging is generated each year in the UK at Christmas time

Water bottles: Image from @chillys instagram

Reusable water bottle Reusable water bottles have taken the world by storm in the past couple of years as saviours of plastic bottle waste so why not treat your friend to Chilly’s bottle starting at just £15 and available in many creative designs and colours!

Get creative and make your own amazing gifts! Why not get artsy and make your own personal Christmas cards and gifts? You could help in saving the 8 million trees used each year at Christmas by making your own or by reusing last years. Simply cut off the front and make it into a Christmas postcard! You could also get into the Christmas spirit in the kitchen by making your friends and family some Christmas treats such as Christmas shortbread or reindeer brownies! All wrapped up in a reusable fabric knot wrap from Lush for only £5- wrapping paper is an especially important change to make as per 1kg of wrapping paper produces 3.5kg of CO2! Plus, the gorgeous reusable fabric can be used for many other purposes so is a gift in itself for the beholder!

Re-usable wrapping paper: Image from Instagram @furoshikiwrapcompany

Give the gift of green! What is more lovely than a new houseplant or cactus? Instill some green in your friend’s life with a plant that will not only make their space feel refreshed, but will also give back to the environment in producing clean oxygen- Yay!

Christmas can be what you want it to be- there is no reason for excessive spending and gift-giving to show your loved ones that you care. Excessive consumerism is just unnecessary, and through giving gifts which care a little more for the environment, you are helping make the world a cleaner and happier place.

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