With all the terror of climate catastrophe and the overwhelming feelings of guilt and helplessness that go with it, it can be hard to figure out where you can begin making a great green change in your life and your loved ones.
Add to this the chaos of the holidays and the requisite consumerism that goes with it and you’ve got yourself a great big mess. But fret not- we’re here to simplify the process down the very essentials and make it as easy as taking #LittleGreenSteps to swap out the things we take for granted, for greener, low-waste alternatives instead. Sustainability isn’t about sacrificing comfort, functionality or design; Really, it’s just about making better purchasing decisions and creating less waste. Here’s our guide to low waste and eco-friendly presents you can get for your loved ones this year, making it every bit as easy (and sexy!) as it really ought to be.
Unsustainable Culprit: PAPER
#LittleGreenSwap: Recycled Stone Paper
SHOP: Karst Stone Paper
Did you know that paper mills contribute quite significantly to air, water and land pollution? Paper is such a huge part of our daily lives that it’s not hard to see how every page quickly adds up. But you don’t have to give it up altogether- you can switch to stone paper, instead. It looks like paper, feels like paper, but it’s also waterproof and tear resistant: Karst Stone Paper repurposes waste stone produced by the mining industry and construction industry, crushes it into a powder, and combines it with a non-toxic, recyclable binding agent to make stone paper. Not one drop of water and not one tree was harmed in the making of these notebooks.
Unsustainable Culprit: DEODORANT: Toxic ingredients + Non-recyclable containers
#LittleGreenSwap: Low-Waste, Toxin-Free Deodorant
It’s no secret that our conventional deodorants tend to come in hard to recycle plastic containers and are filled with chemicals. ZeroYet100 deodorants are absolutely devoid of any synthetic toxic chemicals and their hazardous side effects. They are infused with the goodness of essential oils of Palmarosa and Patchouli in a unique nourishing base of magnesium, activated charcoal, probiotics, and cold pressed coconut oil. All the goodies you will ever need for a great deodorising experience!
Unsustainable Culprit: KITCHEN WASTE: Plastic Food bags + Plastic Food Wrap (Cling Wrap)
#LittleGreenSwap: Reusable Silicone bags & Beeswax Wraps
SHOP: NO!W No Waste
Every piece of rubbish you’ve ever produced is still on the planet in some form or another. Scary thought, isn’t it? One of the most efficient ways to tackle this issue is to produce less waste in the first place. NO!W No Waste aims to help individuals produce less waste by being a platform offering reusable and compostable products as alternatives to our daily disposable products. They’re such easy and convenient swaps, too- Swap your plastics for reusable silicone bags and beeswax wraps today!
Unsustainable Culprit: SOAP: Unnecessary Packaging + Ingredients that aren’t good for the drains
#LittleGreenSwap: Zero-Waste Soap
SHOP: Soapers Delight
Soaper Delights offers handcrafted all soaps, balms & deodorants that are formulated using vegetable oils, butters, clays, herbal infusions and are scented with natural essential oils. They enjoy creating skin-loving soaps and take great delight in offering them to customers at affordable prices. They sell only products that they truly believe in and they personally test each and every product; additionally, they use minimal or fully recyclable, plastic-free packaging, and they always look good enough to eat!
Unsustainable Culprit: SHAMPOO: Unnecessary Packaging + Ingredients that aren’t great for you or the drains
#LittleGreenSwap: Shampoo Bars
SHOP: Skincare Co
Skincare Co was started by Svetlana, an eco-enthusiast, recycling aficionado and lover of natural cosmetics in order to rid the Earth of plastic pollution in cosmetics, as well as keep our aquatic life happy and ocean water clean. The shampoos and conditioners she’s created are biodegradable, safe for marine life and water. Not only they are kinder to the planet, they’ll also make your hair look amazing!
Unsustainable Culprit: FEMININE HYGIENE PRODUCTS
#LittleGreenSwap: Menstrual Cups and Cloth Pads
The average woman will use 12,000 to 16,000 disposable pads, pantyliners, and tampons in her lifetime. That’s a lot of plastic waste polluting and taking up space in our landfills. LiveLoveLuna helps us ladies reduce the burden on landfills each month by encouraging the switch from disposable plastic pads and tampons to reusable moon cups, sea-sponge pads and period-proof underwear. Not sure what these are, read about it all here.
Unsustainable Culprit: SINGLE-USE PLASTIC STRAWS
#LittleGreenSwap: Reusable Glass, Metal or Bamboo Straws
SHOP: The Final Straw
The Final Straw aims to promote a more sustainable way of living, which instinctively factors in people and planet. For them, replacing plastic straws is a small but very visible way of actively demonstrating commitment towards this state of mind, and sparks wider discussion about how we use and manage resources responsibly in our world. It’s literally the easiest way to stop sucking at being a kinder human being to the planet.
Unsustainable Culprit: UNNECESSARY PLASTIC PACKAGING FOR GROCERIES
#LittleGrenSwap: Buy in bulk or at stores with no packaging
Unsustainable Culprit: PLASTICS IN FABRIC (e.g Polyester)
#LittleGreenSwap: Bamboo Fiber Bedsheets, Towels and Linen
Bamboa, est. 2008 designs and markets high quality, stylish and practical bamboo home and lifestyle products, ranging from bamboo bed sheets, to towels, t-shirts, homewares, accessories and many more. Their goal is to provide beautiful eco-friendly products, whilst supporting rural bamboo communities where they are made and at the same time encouraging the use of this wonder plant. Bamboo is fast-growing, eco-friendly, insulating, antibacterial and even improves soil and air quality!
Unsustainable Culprit: FACE WASH
#LittleGreenSwap: Packaging-free, Natural Organic Plant-based Face Soap
What can you put on your skin that is nourishing instead of sterilizing nowadays? BLACK PAINT is not just another organic beauty brand, they only use high-quality natural and organic plant-based ingredients. These ingredients protect our microbiomes, that supports our very own body’s natural healing process, from the inside out, so that you can achieve naturally beautiful skin.
So there’s ten quick and easy gift swaps to help you and your loved ones be greener and low-waste. Don’t just stop with Low-Waste presents- why don’t you also check our guide to Conscious Gifts under $50, or how you can have a Zero Waste Christmas, a Vegan, low-impact Christmas or even a Conversation about Climate Change? Also, do you know which GREEN SPICE you are yet?