I’ve been thinking a lot about the next few weeks and while I am so excited, it can’t be denied that is such a materialistic time of the year. I’m not saying that I’m not one of those people who gets totally caught up in the excitement, the shopping, even the greed if I’m being perfectly honest. But I have made an effort this year to be a little more conscious, and deliberate in the things that I talk about on my blog and social channels.
It’s important to me to use my corner of the internet to share valuable content, but more importantly, topics that truly matter. Talking about the environment isn’t exactly a sexy topic (I’m not trying to be sexy, but you know what I mean), but it cannot be ignored…especially around this seasonal time of the year when it’s importance starts to fall by the way side.
So anyway…I wanted to talk about a few different ways that you and I can become a little more environmentally friendly throughout November and December. I really hope you’ll join me in the following ideas and efforts.
Different ways to become a little more environmentally friendly this November & December
Buy in bulk online
We have a lot of online sales coming up with Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and while I have another post coming later in the week about the best ways to approach them, one of my top tips would be to buy in bulk from the same retailer. This will cut down on the amount of packaging and parcels that are delivered to you. Brands never go easy when it comes to packaging, but we also have to bear in mind the amount of emissions that are expended from all of the delivery men traipsing up and down the country with our goodies. This isn’t an obvious thought, but it is something worth thinking about.
This is a no brainer, but sometimes it’s just important to remind yourself and those around you to be aware about what you can and can’t recycle. Understand recycling symbols and follow them accordingly.
Buy less, and wisely
This has really been my mantra for the last few months. As a generation we consume SO MUCH more than we could ever possibly use. I’ve made a conscious and deliberate effort to step away from certain fast fashion brands that I would previously have bought way too much crap from. I’m talking about the kind of “going out” top that I would just wear once and be done with. It’s not a healthy way to think and it’s a mindset that is so typical of millennials. We need to spend on items that we can achieve #30wears with in terms of style AND quality.
Share gift lists
Christmas is coming, and has there ever been a holiday season when you haven’t received something that you will truly never use? It has to be the worst time of the year when it comes to waste (goods, food, and money!). Tell the people who are buying for you what you need and want. Nominate a sibling or a cousin to gather everyone’s lists in time for the sales or just in time for Christmas and share them with everyone. I feel as though there is a website that serves a functionality similar to what I am explaining. If anyone knows what it’s called, please let me know and I’ll update this post with the information!
Use brand packaging more
There is no doubt that there will be a lot of paper waste when it comes to gift wrapping this year. I do love wrapping presents in front of a Christmas movie, I won’t deny it. However, maybe it’s just in the last year that I have noticed since I’ve worked closely with a lot of different brands…but the amount of money that companies invest into packaging is crazy. A lot of brands pride themselves on their boxes and gift bags, and they really are beautiful. Maybe this year, make a conscious effort to use these bags, boxes and papers to wrap other gifts, or just leave the gifts in their original packaging. I saw a cool tip online which suggested cutting up old Christmas cards and using them as labels for presents this year. This could be an idea if you’re trying to hide a logo of a certain brand if it’s a surprise gift.
Ease up on the stocking fillers
Stocking fillers are a great way to bulk up a present if you feel like it’s necessary. But in reality, most of the time these are the bits and bobs that are overlooked on Christmas morning. There’s no need to feel like quantity is better than quality. Go back to my previous point about finding out what people really want, and then save your money and avoid the unnecessary purchases.
Buy items that will reduce single use plastic in homes
This is an important one. You may have heard that the EU are bringing in a ban on single use plastic by 2021. This is absolutely brilliant, if only it could happen sooner! Try do your bit and consider buying your loved ones a KeepCup for their morning coffees, a pretty water bottles for daily use, metal straws for their kitchen…there are so many things that you can do!
We’ve all been there on Christmas morning when someone is losing their life because there’s no batteries for their latest gadget. If you’re organised enough, try and remember to buy rechargeable batteries as opposed to disposable ones. They are much better for the environment
Get creative and shop second hand
This is something that I’ve personally never done for Christmas but I am very excited about it. I was recently in an antiques shop and found the perfect gift for someone who I knew I would be shopping for. It’s funny the things that you will stumble upon in shops like that- they will make you instantly think of different people. Purchasing something second hand as a gift will be big surprise for people too, which is lovely if it’s perfect for them. I also think purchasing someone something vintage or totally unique shows that a lot more thought went into the present as opposed to something from the high street.
Most homes will, quite literally, be lit up like Christmas trees coming up the beginning of December. Each to their own, but maybe think about being conscious about the amount of electricity that is being used in your home. Timers for plugs with lights can be a good idea to make sure you don’t accidentally leave lights on over night. LED lights typically last longer which means you will have to replace them less, and they typically generate a lot less heat which is good for energy expended, and your monthly bill!
I really hope you enjoyed this post and found it valuable. I loved putting it together. Until the next one!