How can we be more sustainable this festive season? 

I’ve put
together some friendly advice to help making environmentally sound decisions more
convenient for you. First, a couple of great websites for online retail. Next, my 5 top tips for low-impact celebrations. 

I encourage you to embrace change as it is inevitable and necessary. The time of buying, giving and consuming is upon us again and provides us with the perfect opportunity to put into practice some thoughtfulness and compassion. Let’s adopt some fabulously kind behaviours this season.

The Ethical Consumer is a comprehensive resource for anything
retail-related and scores brands on their ethics. 
I highly recommend you make this one of your go-to websites as they provide all the tools and resources you need to make choices at the checkout simple, informed and effective.

Buycott is an app that helps you vote with your wallet. Join
campaigns to support causes that you care about, then use Buycott when you shop
to discover how a manufacturer matches up against your principles. 

Top 5 Tips for low-impact holiday celebrations

  1.    Avoid Amazon

Amazon is notorious for terrible packaging: oversized
cardboard boxes filled with non-recyclable plastic. Opt instead for online retailers that support
independent sellers, as these tend to be more careful with their packaging. 

prioritise second-hand. Promoting a more circular economy is the only way we
are going to reach the waste-reduction goals that are 
necessary for a healthy planet.

For Books, check out this list of 15 Best Online Bookstoresfor Cheap New and Used Books

For Artwork, have a look at in
the UK. If you’re outside the UK, check if something similar exists where you

For Homeware,
Etsy hosts lots of independent artists.

   2. Support local

:   Wherever possible, buy local.
Show support to the small, locally-owned businesses in your area as many will be suffering from the

3. Don’t use wrapping paper

Avoid using wrapping paper as it is non-recyclable. Instead you can use a scrap
of fabric and ribbon, a pillowcase tied off at the top, old calendar or
magazine pages, decorated tins, baskets, reusable fabric bags or even paper
grocery bags. 

Check out the beautiful and simple Japanese art of fabric
wrapping Furoshiki:

Furoshiki wrapping –

4. Donate to an organisation in
someone’s name

I wouldn’t recommend any of the ‘big’ ones such as Greenpeace,
Oxfam or Sea Shepherd as there are plenty of smaller locally active environmental
organisations doing important work on the ground that need our help.

Marine Conservation Cambodia would be my go-to, but you could also take the time to find an organisation that is doing
something close to your heart and support them directly.


5. Have a meat-free meal

Reducing our consumption of meat is one of the most effective ways of helping
the planet. Why not switch things up and try a nut roast instead of turkey?
There are so many delicious and exciting alternatives to meat, and this is the
perfect opportunity to get creative and try something new. 

I’ve heard numerous people
say that they prepare meat at festive dinners because they think it’s what guests
and other people expect. But if you talk to each person individually, not that
many really care! So long as the food is good and the love is shared. It’s time
to change expectations!


Thank you very much for reading, I really appreciate your time. Every action we take, every habit we change and every decision we make has an impact.

Never underestimate the change you can bring about. We are social beings and widespread change will only ever happen if some of us (you!) start to lead by example. Your peers will see you adopting environmentally-friendly practices and that will make it more accessible to them too, creating a chain reaction. 

I have hope and trust that we are moving in the right direction, as every day more people are awaking to our responsibility to make the choices necessary for a better future. 



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