8. Put thought into each gift
There is one new-age practice that desperately needs to fall out of style if we are to succeed in our mission of saving the planet, and that’s the marketing-driven theory of “fillers.”
You know these gifts. They are the candle holders, soap dishes, and miscellaneous Christmas decorations that will just end up at the summer lawn sales. Over-consumption and waste is destroying our planet one useless gift at a time, so the checkout aisle at Target is the exact opposite of where we should be buying the bulk of our gifts.
Many of us rely on fillers because commercialism has taught us that one gift won’t be enough to satiate our loved ones. This, however, is far from the truth, and it would behoove us to remember the old adage, “It’s the thought that counts.” Before your holiday shopping commences, the most important first step is to pay attention to what your loved ones say and do for direction as to what they would like to receive. They may even hint at something they could really use, but would never buy for themselves. Keep a running tab throughout the year, so that when the holidays approach you are already prepared.
Not only will they be overjoyed to receive a gift they actually desired, but the fact that you remembered a specific conversation or hobby of theirs will truly warm their hearts.
7. Choose sustainable materials
Whenever possible, opt for the items made of organic cotton, hemp, bamboo, or linen over those composed of a concoction of processed fabrics that are wreaking havoc on the planet.
Even Walmart now sells organic cotton clothing for just a few dollars more than the items made of rayon. While we're not implying that you should buy all of your gifts at a super center like Walmart, as large-scale retailers are immense contributors to the destruction of both the environment and the economy, we are pointing out that you can find organic cotton almost anywhere these days.
Hemp products are still a little more difficult to come by, but you can find them in stores such as Sears and Club Monaco on occasion. Even more simple is purchasing them online from retailers like Hemp & Company, Still Eagle, and Rawganique.
Bamboo is a new eco-trend that is just beginning to hit shelves, but it's known as a renewable resource that eats up greenhouse gases. It requires no fertilizer, pesticides, or herbicides, and as a result creates much less waste. You can find bamboo products online at stores like Bamboo Clothes and Cariloha.
Linen is thankfully the easiest to come by, and is great for the environment because it is often recycled! You can find it at most stores these days; just ask the employees to give you a hand.