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Life Hack: How to not cost the earth this Christmas.

November 29, 2018

Life Hack: How to not cost the earth this Christmas.

We've decided to ban the single-use bag, there's talk of snow down south, Shallow (from the hit film: A Star is born) is averaging three plays a day and the Xmas pre-sales have already begun. Aside from the fact that it's meant to be summer, we're well on track to the end of another year.

Amongst the streets of tinsel, festive lights and bargains are crowds of people asking the same question: How do I make the silly season a sustainable one?

Well luckily, we've been pondering the exact same thing. 

Here are 25 ways you can make the silly season, less silly.

  1. Get crafty this Christmas. Try making a tiny terrarium (bottled forest), scented scrubs or herbed salts.
  2. Choose toys that don't use batteries. 
  3. Find Fairtrade. Opt for food and gifts that empower communities on a global scale.
  4. Turn something old into something new. If you can't do it, Citizen Leather probably can. 
  5. When it comes to wrapping, choose paper that is recyclable, or give Furoshiki (the Japanese art of wrapping gifts in fabric) a go. Furoshiki
  6. Stay away from shiny wrapping paper as it contains glitter, plastics and other non-paper additives, and often can't be recycled.
  7. One's trash, another's treasure. Instead of purchasing new gifts, check out antique stores and charity shops. 
  8. Donate a Drape - give the gift of curtains to a family that needs them.
  9. Give them a voucher to the world's most exclusive restaurant: your house. 
  10. Who doesn't love a candle? (well, a moth might not) Choose candles that are made from beeswax, soy or vegetable wax. Not yucky petroleum-derived paraffin.
  11. Give life to old CDs by upcycling them into shiny decorations and make your tree sparkle.
  12. Defrost your freezer before Christmas. It will work more efficiently and create more space to store leftover food.
  13. Always carry a reusable bag. Especially when shopping for gifts.
  14. Make your own greeting cards. Use the cards you received last year, a child's artwork or your own craftiness to create new Green Christmas cards.
  15. Co-purchase a gift. Join forces with someone else and buy something that will last. Buy for life, not for trends.
  16. Steer clear of mass-manufactured beauty buys. Not only do they contain chemicals that aren't great for your skin, but they're often packaged in materials that can't be recycled. If in doubt, grab a sampler set from Ethique.
  17. Make memories, not a mess. Give an experience rather than a 'thing'. An animal encounter a Wellington Zoo, a trip to Kapiti Island, a year pass to Zelandia.
  18. Buy them a KeepCup and a voucher to their favourite coffee shop
  19. Give them a growler (fancy word for a reusable bottle) for more sustainable drinking habits.
  20. Give them the gift of life. Plant life that is.
  21. Ban the bow. Use organic fabric ribbons instead and add sprigs of rosemary, pine needles, or cinnamon sticks to make your gift earthy, festive, and eye-catching.
    eco wrapping paper
  22. Avoid artificial trees. The most eco-friendly Christmas tree is a live potted native. 
  23. Buy LED string lights. They use less energy than incandescent bulbs. Plus they’re brighter, last longer, and don’t produce much heat.
  24. Be smart with leftovers. Try to avoid them in the first place by carefully planning your menu and shopping list. Choose foods you can freeze or foods that can be used in different ways. We love The Big Oven.
  25. Choose presence over presents. Christmas Day is about spending time with friends and family.

We hope we've given you some ideas on how to have a green Christmas.

And remember, the best gift you can give someone is your time... and food. 

Meri Kirihimete!

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