The holidays are upon us and the mountain of wrapping paper is coming...but where does it end up?
No matter which holiday--if any--you celebrate, wrapping gifts is a wildly-held custom. But where does it all go once you're finished unwrapping your new O&Co gear? Read more below!
Christmas, one of the most beloved holidays of the year, is just around the corner. With Christmas comes holiday joy, gift-giving, warm feelings of together-ness, and LOTS of waste. On average, Americans create 25% more waste during the holidays than any other time of the year with all of the decorative gift wrap, bows, bags, and paper that is excitedly ripped apart and thrown away in a matter of seconds. Many people think that wrapping paper is recyclable, but a lot of wrapping papers are lined with plastics that cannot be recycled. Any paper that has very bright colors, shiny material, or glitter is often unrecyclable as well and can have a very negative impact on our environment and our oceans (glitter especially! Marine wildlife can ingest the small microplastic pieces and be harmed by it). We could save enough paper to cover 45,000 football fields if every family in the U.S. wrapped just three gifts in reusable material; small changes really can make a big impact! If you’re looking to be more eco-friendly this holiday season, here are some great ideas for wrapping your gifts:
- Cloth materials. Using cloth materials is a great alternative to wrapping paper. It’s also an incredible way to give an extra gift. Try wrapping a gift with the Skip The Straw Unisix Tee, or the Plastic Pirate Unisex Tee. They’re soft, stylish, and come in a wide variety of colors that are just as fun as any traditional wrapping paper. Wrapping a gift with these tees not only creates a great extra gift out of otherwise useless wrap, but their messages also further encourage others to be kind to our environment! Other cloth materials such as scarves and blankets can work wonderfully for wrapping purposes, too.
- Reusable bags. Need to bag it instead of wrap it? Try using a reusable bag instead of traditional gift bags. The Happiness Within and the Happiness Comes In Waves Drawstring Bags both make excellent alternatives to give gifts in - they can hold up to 33 lbs, so you could fit multiple gifts in one as well! For larger gifts, try the Sea Turtle Inspiration Canvas Tote - it’s spacious, durable, and incredibly versatile. Using reusable bags is also a great way to give an extra gift to someone!
- Recyclable paper. If you can’t quite commit to getting rid of wrapping paper, use paper that is recyclable. Try using old newspapers, as they are easily recyclable and can be used to make new newspaper prints. Many stores nowadays do carry recyclable wrapping paper as well - just check the label. Remember, If anything is overly shiny, sparkly, or glossy, it’s most likely not eco-friendly.
- Don’t wrap! Skipping wrapping altogether is always an option as well! If you’re anything like me, you may agree that skipping the surprise and cutting right to the chase is simply better sometimes. In addition, our Sea Turtle Stone Bracelets and other jewelry come in super cute, eco-friendly jewelry pouches, so they don’t even need to be wrapped!
Hopefully you’ve been inspired to make some eco-friendly changes this holiday season; it really doesn’t take much effort to make a positive impact! Remember, Christmas is the season of giving, so what better gift is there than the gift of a cleaner, healthier world?