Tips for Zero Waste Gift Wrapping

It’s that time of year again—the time of year my cynical side says that families are gathering together around the Christmas tree to celebrate consumerism! But there’s another side of me that absolutely loves Christmas. Twinkling lights, evergreen boughs, and giving gifts to loved ones, who could hate that?

Instead of being a Grinch and swearing off the holiday, let’s set an example and turn Christmas back into a sustainable and meaningful holiday! Instead of hauling bag after bag of wrapping garbage to the curb this Christmas, choose these zero waste gift wrapping options.

zero waste gift wrapping

Step 1: Reuse Wrapping

Unless you rip into your gifts like Godzilla, try reusing the wrapping that you have previously received. Tissue paper, gift boxes, ribbons, and even wrapping paper can sometimes be reused a few times. Just remember, only save what you will be able to reuse next year and don’t end up hording your stash of Christmas wrapping. Read this guide to recycling Christmas wrapping paper here.

Step 2: Zero Waste Gift Wrapping Swaps

In the zero waste community, you’ll often hear the word “swaps” thrown around. A zero waste swap is something that you can easily substitute for waste creating product. Check out these zero waste gift wrapping swaps for a simple substitution and a hassle-free Christmas!

Zero Waste Wraps:

  • Reuse paper bags – Turn logo side in for a classic paper wrapping
  • Reuse magazines and newspaper
  • A real gift bag – Just make sure this is a bag you know the person would actually use or regift!
  • Scarf or pretty towel – Wrap the gift in a fabric that can be part of the gift.
  • Scrap or thrift store fabric – Wash and give these fabrics a new life. They can be reused or donated again after gifting.
  • Recyclable Wrap – Try this brand Wrappily for an easy eco-friendly swap.

Zero Waste Ties:

  • Twine or cotton string
  • Scrap or thrift store yarn
  • Scrap fabric
  • Biodegradable Washi Tape – Like this one

Zero Waste Tags:

  • Recyclable paper tag
  • Scrap fabric or ribbon
  • Wooden tag – could be reused as Christmas ornament
  • A decorated cardboard tag
  • Decorated Christmas Cookie – I haven’t tried this, but I’ve seen people recommend the hard kind of gingerbread cookies.

Zero Waste Decorations:

  • Evergreen boughs
  • Eucalyptus
  • Pinecones
  • Cinnamon sticks
  • Dehydrated citrus slices

Here is a beautiful video I found on zero waste Christmas gifts and wrapping: 

What are you using this year to wrap your gifts? I’d love to see them! 
Add to the #ZeroWasteChristmas conversation on Instagram. 

Hop on over to our other zero and low-waste posts here.

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