How to Have a More Sustainable Holiday Season

The holiday season is a lot of fun, but it can also be the most wasteful time of year. We have some tips to make your holiday season a little more sustainable. Let us know your ideas for staying sustainable this time of year in the comments.

1. Be Mindful When Shopping for Gifts

When shopping for holiday gifts, don’t over buy. When you’re buying presents for your friends and family, make sure you’re only getting them things that they want and need. Also, if you don’t want to buy them something, gift an experience. The goal is not to purchase items that are going to get thrown away or get put into storage. Check out our holiday gift guide for our ideas.

2. Buy Seasonal Clothing Second-Hand

Everyone likes to get clothing for the holidays. Most people attend at least one event. It is easy to go overboard and buy a bunch of new sparkly holiday party clothing. Or to go crazy getting a new winter wardrobe. If you do need something new, consider shopping second hand. Just Google search places near you. Thrift stores range from everyday clothing to pre-owned high-end fashion.

3. Reuse Bows and Ribbon

Instead of buying tons of new bows and ribbon every year, consider reusing them. We love to reuse the same bows every year because they’re in great shape and it limits waste. After we unwrap gifts on Christmas morning, we make sure to put everything we can reuse for the next year in a box.

4. Find Recycled Holiday Wrapping Paper

There seems to be more recyclable wrapping paper than ever before. Places like Etsy sell this and they do come in holiday-themed patterns. Don’t forget to place all the scraps in recycling as soon as you’re finished.

5. Donate Unused or Unwanted Items

Unfortunately, there’s always going to be some terrible gifts. But don’t let it go to waste and gather dust in storage. Consider donating any items that you don’t want. This doesn’t have to be strictly new gift items. Look through your place and see what you don’t want anymore. Someone out there is going to be able to use your unwanted stuff. Look up places that can accept these items and give the items a new home.

6. Use Energy Efficient Christmas Lights

One of our favorite activities is to put up lights and make our neighborhood look even better. But lights can use a lot of energy. Consider looking for energy efficient lights to make your decor more sustainable.

7. Get a Real Tree

Yes, getting a real tree is better for the environment than buying plastic. It doesn’t matter that you reuse that plastic tree, it’s still better to go search for the perfect real tree every holiday season. To learn more about real vs fake trees, check out We found a great article that explained the benefits well.

8. Repurpose Glass Candles Holders

If you’re like us, then you probably have plenty of candles around your house. But when you finish with a candle and just have an empty glass holder, find a way to repurpose it. We have two pine-scented candles in green containers that we plan on turning into Scotch glasses, after we thoroughly clean them of course. Yankee candle glass holders are great to use as Mason jars. Consider them for storing small items.

19 thoughts on “How to Have a More Sustainable Holiday Season”

  1. These are all great ideas. I like the live tree suggestion. We didn’t do a tree this year, but last year we did and when we were done, we put it in the chicken yard, and they used it for cover and shade.

    Liked by 1 person

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