5 Ways To Embrace Sustainability During The Holidays
The holidays are a wonderful time of year — a time for us to slow down and reconnect with loved ones. It's also the time when consumer waste is estimated to increase by up to 25%. Each year, 540,000 tonnes of wrapping paper, tissue paper and gift bags are thrown out. Though you may place your wrapping materials in the recycle bin, items like wrapping paper and gift bags are not recyclable due to dyes, foils and tape. With climate change on everyone's mind and society shifting to more eco-friendly tendencies, sustainable gifting is attracting a lot of attention. We've rounded up our simple tips for you to spread holiday cheer sustainably this year!

I don't know about you, but I could eat my weight in shortbread cookies, fudge and almond roca. The simplest way to reduce waste over the holidays is to gift your loved ones consumable goods in reusable packaging. Items like baked goods, chocolate, soap bars and bath bombs are all items that are used (or eaten) and leave behind little to no waste. Avoid using wrapping paper and gift bags by wrapping body care, like soap bars, in a washcloth. Place baked goods in a reusable container or festive tin, and you'll avoid wrapping all together! Reusable wrapping allows you to give your loved ones two gifts and avoid sending waste to the landfill.

Wild tip: If you're not a baker, stop by your local bakery with a reusable container and fill it with their treats. Be sure to bring your tin so that you don't take any packaging from the bakery.

Sustainable gift options aren't limited to just consumable items — things like houseplants or locally sourced artwork are eco-friendly options. Plants are proven to reduce stress, improve air quality and they're pretty! Place the plant in a cute pot, add a fabric bow and voila, a beautiful gift that required no wrapping paper! Local artwork in a lovely frame doesn't need to be wrapped, but if you feel the need to, you can always use fabric to do so. Trends like knot wrapping are increasingly popular. There are plenty of tutorial videos online to help you master the art. Choosing to buy from a local artist allows you to support a member of your community directly. It's also more sustainable than purchasing from big-box retailers, who mass-produce art.

A fun way to give your loved ones a zero-waste gift is to provide them with the gift of experiences. The gift of making memories is becoming increasingly popular, and it's a fantastic way to spend time with loved ones. They don't need to be expensive. It can be concert tickets, a nice dinner at a new restaurant, even a weekend getaway to the mountains. The memories made doing activities with loved ones will far outlast material gifts.

Lastly, Making a charitable donation in their name is one of my favourite sustainable gifts. You can give back to your community and those in it who aren't as fortunate as you. This donation can be a monetary gift, non-perishable goods for the Food Bank, even clean, gently-used blankets and towels for animal shelters. These simple gestures allow you and your loved one to give a gift of hope to those in need, which is truly the spirit of the holiday season.

Happy Holidays!
XO, Wild Prairie Soap Company.