Gift sustainably in 2023
Green Living,  Holidays & Gifts

6 Ways to Gift Sustainably in 2023

Throughout the year we are faced with birthday parties, engagement parties, bridal showers, retirement celebrations and more. If you’re trying to manage a sustainable lifestyle, these shopping experiences can be daunting.

But shopping for everyone on your list doesn’t have to be difficult. In fact, these 6 ways to gift sustainably are incredibly simple! Read on for how to gift sustainably for all your celebratory needs.

How to Gift Sustainably

This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. I only link to products I have personally used or researched.  

Shop Local

Shopping local, small businesses for gifts can reduce your carbon footprint. I know our go-to for convenience is online retailers that offer fast, free shipping, but have you considered the environmental impact of that convenience? I urge you to stop and think before clicking “add to cart”. Think air pollution, excess plastic, and packaging. Think, “can I find this from a small business near me?” Not only does this reduce emissions and packaging, but it stimulates the local economy! Big box retailers have a lot of people all over the world that need to make a profit off your purchase. Local small businesses usually employ people from their community. Wealth and profits directly affect the community rather than global corporations.

Plastic free toys - gift sustainably

Plastic Free Gifts

Have you walked down the toy aisle at Target lately? Plastic upon plastic upon plastic. My brother even wrote a catchy tune about wrapping our plastic toys in more plastic. (It was in my head on repeat last Christmas!) Then we unwrap the plastic packaging from the plastic toys and put it in the plastic garbage bag. PLASTIC. EVERYWHERE. This season, consider gifts that either have minimal plastic packaging, or are plastic free in design.

Check out the links below for some of my kids’ favorite plastic-free toys!

Sustainable Gifts by Design

Choose gifts that are eco friendly by design. Look at the materials used in production. Some examples are wood, bamboo, organic cotton or linen, and stainless steel. Research your options before you take the plunge. My favorite gifts I’m giving this year are plants from my indoor garden. I propagated several of my favorite plants back in September so they would be nice and hardy by the time December rolled around. Another great option would be upcycling or thrifting. What’s more sustainable than giving something a second life? Those plants I’m gifting? You bet they are in pots from the thrift store!

High Quality Gifts

Please, please do yourself and your giftee a favor and do not purchase gifts that will not even last a season. We have all seen low quality toys and gadgets. We know they will end up in the dumpster, not even useful enough to donate to someone else. Just pass on those purchases.

Gift sustainably in 2023

Gifting Experiences

Gifting experiences can be a great way to treat someone without adding to the clutter that can come with the season.  Experiences can offer connection with your giftee, such as movie or concert tickets or a weekend getaway.  They can be services your people would appreciate but would not purchase for themselves, like a cleaning service or cooking class.  For your kids, how about Disney on Ice or an afternoon at the trampoline park?  There are so many options for experiences.  Check some more out here: 

Experience Gifts for Everyone On Your List!

Sustainable consumable gifts

Homemade & Consumable Gifts

Consumable gifts are my absolute favorite and number one go-to for sustainable gift giving. Bonus points for homemade! Consumables are anything that can be “used up”. Think body scrubs, soaps, fancy infused olive oils, homemade apple butter, baked goods, and candles. All of these examples can be made at home, packaged in glass jars or reusable containers, and can be presented with very minimal gift wrapping and still look beautiful.

Now go on and make a list and check it twice. Then cross reference with these 6 ways to gift sustainably. Remember! Progress, not perfection. Nobody’s perfect but it’s the small mindset shift that can make a big difference over time.

Did you find everything you needed? Do you have another way to shop sustainably that you want to share? Leave a comment below!

Sustainable gifts

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