Zero Waste Shanghai
Sustainable Christmas Gifts
Gifts are part of the holiday season. There's almost no way around it. But maybe we can change the way we see gifts and make it more valuable in the non-economic sense.
If you want to give “Zero Waste” for gifts this year, I'd suggest the following:
(Warning: this list goes from one extreme to the other)
No gifts... at all
Just enjoy the moment of being together between family and/or friends. Leave the material belongings out of it.
Experiences (my favourite!)
Instead of buying an object, why not get your loved ones an experience. An introduction class to dance/ paint/ learning how to cook/ a theatre piece or ballet... The list is long and people will cherish memories and experience far longer than An object that might be outdated in the next months.
Not so personal, but people will be able to buy whatever they want or they can save it for later.
If you like baking or cooking, you can give something tasty as a gift in maybe a nice box that your friends or family could reuse easily! And who doesn't like to receive food...? Right? :-)
We also came across a couple of cool ideas like these:
- Give people things you love and cherish, but that you don’t use anymore
- “Gifting forward” is zero waste as it involves no new purchases, and can even give new life to something you might not have used in awhile.
- Gifts should be measured on their thoughtfulness, not cost. It feels counterintuitive in our culture to not spend any money on a gift, but chances are the thought and love you put into gifting something forward could never be bought at any store.
Give away books you loved!
Gather up the books that you’ve loved, but are now just collecting dust on your shelves. Tie them up in a bundle with twine and pass them on to someone who adores reading. Go the extra mile and add a handwritten note as to why you loved each book.
A plant you’ve nurtured and grown
There’s something so special about taking care of a plant and watching it grow from the simple (but not always easy) combination of water and light. That houseplant you’ve nurtured and watched sprout new leaves the past year is the perfect gift for your fellow plant lover. And because it’s infused with your love already, it’s 1000 times more personable and special than any old plant bought at hardware store. Tip, don’t want to give away the whole thing? Try just re-planting a cutting of your favorite succulent!
A fancy new haircut
Treat your loved one to a trip to the salon and new look for their locks. Make sure you pick somewhere really nice where they give 10-minute head massages and offer you a cappuccino when you sit down.
Dinner at a delicious restaurant
FOR THE FOODIES WE KNOW AND LOVE !
No one can complain about being taken out to dinner at a great restaurant. Tag along and they’ll get a bonus gift of quality time with Y-O-U.
Tickets to a movie, show or concert
There’s nothing quite like sitting (or standing) in the dark and watching someone else entertain you.
Cooking classes are one of those things we say we want to do, but never actually get around to doing. And that’s why they make a great gift!
A fun workout class (and brunch after)
It’s true, working out can be fun! Pick something active yet creative like a dance class or rock climbing. Sweeten the deal with avocado toast and mimosas after.
Yoga studio membership
Perfect for the yogi. Find out where they practice and renew their membership, or get them one at your favorite studio if they don’t already have one.
Experience gifts are not just amazing because you don’t have to purchase any physical items, you can spend time with the people you love, build memories, and enjoy each other’s company. Because, after all, isn’t that what the holidays are all about?