Between gift wrapping, large feasts and other activities, holidays tend to produce a lot of excess waste. Having to deal with so much trash gives you one more thing to do during an already busy time of year. Use the following tips to prevent excess waste this year so that you can enjoy the holidays even more.
Choose Gift Wrapping Products Wisely
Gift wrap is among the biggest contributors to waste buildup during the holiday season. You can avoid this altogether by using decorative containers, baskets or tins for presents rather than wrapping them in paper. If you still want to wrap presents, choose gift wrapping products carefully. Use wrapping paper made of recyclable materials that can be reused. You can even save the wrapping paper and use it again if presents are opened with care. Alternatively, you can opt to use pages from magazines as wrapping paper instead of purchasing gift wrap at the store.
Keep in mind that another way to reduce the amount of gift wrap waste your household produces is by giving eco-friendly gifts instead of the usual consumer products. Rather than purchasing store-bought gifts, give homemade presents to loved ones, such as baked goods or crafts. You can also give other gifts that don’t have to be wrapped, such as gift certificates or gift cards, tickets to local events or memberships.
Trash vs. Recycling for the Holidays
Which products should you put in the garbage, and which ones should go in your recycling bin? Knowing which is which helps you avoid accidentally putting recyclable materials in the trash, where they’ll end up in landfills. It also helps you from putting non-recyclable materials in the recycling bin.
Holiday Items to Recycle
Some holiday items can be recycled, including holiday cards, paper gift bags, and cardboard gift boxes. However, make sure that cards don’t have any ribbon, foil or other embellishments on them before putting them in the recycling bin. Some types of wrapping paper can be recycled, such as traditional gift wrap. Metallic or foil wrapping paper should not be recycled. Consider reusing it again next year or using it for homemade crafts instead of tossing it in the garbage. Keep in mind that you can also recycle any store catalogs you’ve received for the holiday season.
Holiday Items to Trash
Cards that are made of foil or have embellishments that can’t be removed should be thrown in the trash. Wrapping paper that’s covered in tape, string handles on gift bags, metal grommets on gift bags and bows should also go in the garbage rather than the recycling bin.