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Updated: Sep 8, 2021

Holiday seasons are considered to be one of the most wasteful and demand-driven months during the year. India is known for its diverse and rich cultural festivities. This means that there are numerous chances for gifting.

Exchanging gifts today is not limited to social events alone. It is also popular among corporates and business circles to promote the company and increase brand awareness. The six Indian metros alone produce over 36,000 tonnes of solid waste per day and experts believe that the festive season contributes significantly to this waste.

But the joy of gifting always makes the spirit of any occasion greater. So how do we ensure we can spoil ourselves and our loved ones without spoiling the planet?

Make it sustainable!

Reconditioning our gifting habits by incorporating sustainability could potentially lead to mindful consumption of our planet’s limited resources. Sustainable gifting refers to a wide range of changes which can be made at an individual level which aims at reducing the use of wasteful resources and maximising the use of natural/ biodegradable and eco-friendly products. These can start from avoiding plastic gift wrap to the gifting of an experience instead of a tangible gift to even purchasing from an ethical brand which supports and pays its workers!

The benefits of this would be that we will be reducing our carbon footprint by reducing our consumption of single use items, non-biodegradable items, carbon emissions and waste. In this manner we would also be supporting responsible production, consumption, supporting local businesses and using long-lasting items!

We are making it easier for you! Here is an exhaustive list of sustainable gifting ideas to help you and your loved ones have a sustainable and eco-friendly holiday season.

Explore different packaging options

Yes, wrapping paper is pretty to look at and it makes the gift look complete. But in reality they are just trash waiting to be tossed in the landfill after a single use (Unless you’re an Indian family who saves all the gift wraps to reuse them lol) With the right packaging you can still make your gift look stunning without creating unnecessary waste.

Using eco-friendly packaging include options such as: gift wraps made from recycled products, reusing old newspaper, using metal/ glass/ cloth options. There are also other newer options available in the market such as using handmade tree-free wrapping paper, using beeswax wraps, plantable paper wrap, honeycomb paper wrap etc.

EmaTip: If you want to check if your packaging is recyclable, then do a scrunch test. If the paper bounces back after being scrunched then it’s a recyclable wrap!

Picking eco-friendly materials

The single most important point while gifting sustainably, is to avoid single use items such as gifts made out of plastic. It is also important to ensure we are giving something the person “needs” rather than fulfilling our “wants”.

Here are a list of gifting alternatives for plastic, inorganic, single-use products:

  • Plastic stationery items: can be replaced with Plantable seed stationery/ reusable stationery/ recyclable stationery.

  • Clothes, bags, shoes etc made from synthetic fibres such as Polyester / Nylon/ Leather can be replaced with Natural and vegan fibre clothing - Organic cotton, Tencel, Linen etc.

Try our products made from 100% GOTS certified organic cotton:

  • Flower bouquets can be replaced with a tree-planting event

  • Plastic kids toys and board games can be replaced with Wooden board game alternatives/ Gift swapping events.

  • Gift hampers filled with plastic products such Home decor, lifestyle products, etc can be replaced with organic products hampers such as zero waste travel kit, Personal care kit

  • Audio speakers also can be replaced with Bamboo amplifiers.

Gift an experience

Gifts are meant to signify the bond we have with our loved ones. This can be enhanced better through an experience rather than through physical products! How you may ask? Instead of gifting, you can actually try doing

these things:

- Have a game night

- Go to a concert

- Join a workshop/masterclass/course together

- Go on a trek

- Go on a long-drive and watch the sunset, go to a spa and pamper them!

There are innumerable ways to express your bond by eliminating consumption!

Budget friendly sustainable gifting options

Still want to give them a physical product? Why not give a twist to trends!

Instead of conducting a Secret Santa event at your organisation or workplace why not convert that into a Swapping Santa event! Why buy a whole new product when all of you could swap your own belongings and save some money while doing so! The same can be done for children. Instead of constantly buying new plastic toys/dolls and adding to an already messy house, you can swap them amongst the existing group.

Another budget friendly sustainable gifting option could be finding thrifted or secondhand treasures! Giving a Vintage or thrifted decor pieces/ clothes/ shoes a second chance as a gift not just increases their life and use but will receive more appreciation than you think!

Want to make it a little more special? Why not try making something on your own which is made out of recycled or upcycled materials! That is the most personal gift anybody could receive because you have put your time and effort into it! Why not make something together as a DIY session? That’s some great quality time spent together as well!

Now that we’ve prepared you with a whole lot of ideas for your sustainable gifting journey do not forget to check out our shop to buy sustainable gifts for your loved ones.

If you liked this article, then hit the like button and let us know what you think in the comments section.

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