Buying an eco-friendly and sustainable Christmas present is a great way to show that you care for loved ones and the planet. However, ethical presents are notoriously expensive, meaning that it can be a real headache when it comes to doing your Christmas shopping. Don’t worry though, we’ve got you sorted. So, whether you’re shopping for housemates, a partner, family, or even yourself (we all do it). Here’s how to shop for sustainable Christmas presents on a budget.
Check the charity shops
A second-hand gift won’t be right for everyone (unless the person you are buying for is very ethically conscious). However, you can often find brand new items in Charity shops for a fraction of the cost. Also, shops like Oxfam, usually have a range of handmade products for sale that raise money for charitable causes across the world.
Shop at the markets
Local farmer’s markets or pop-up Christmas stalls are a great place to do your Christmas shopping. Here, you will often find locally made and environmentally friendly products such as food items, accessories or candles. If you are trying to save money, you can usually negotiate to get some money off the price (especially if you are buying a few different items).
Don’t get carried away with buying too much
The very basis of sustainable Christmas shopping is that you don’t go overboard. You don’t need to buy lots of presents or spend a ton of money to show that you care. Instead, buy one, ethically sourced gift and explain some of the environmental reasoning behind your purchase. Useful gifts are a lot less likely to end up in landfills than something novelty.
Alternatively, if you are a bit crafty then why not make your own gifts? This is a really great way to get in the Christmas spirit and it’s a budget-friendly option too. Some options could include; making a photo album or calendar, painting a canvas, sewing or knitting something to wear, homemade facemasks, baking sweet treats, jam, or bread.
Boycott online shopping
Websites like Amazon and Asos are very convenient but they really aren’t the most sustainable way to do your Christmas shopping. Avoid the excess packaging and delivery emissions and shop in person instead. Try to support small independent stores, instead of the big chains.
Buy experiences not things
Buying experiences is a great way to give a more sustainable gift. You don’t have to have bought tickets for a big event, it can be anything as simple as writing ‘Save the date, I’ve booked a table for dinner’, in the Christmas card. This means that you have something to look forward to after Christmas Day too.
Talk to your loved ones about your views
Aside from buying sustainable Christmas presents for others, it’s equally important to tell your loved ones about your own views. That way, they won’t buy any presents that go against your ethos and you can help cut down on waste. If they are struggling for present ideas, then you could suggest that they give you the money so you can find a gift yourself. Alternatively, you could take them sustainable Christmas present shopping to show them how it’s done.