Recently for my friends wedding I got them a personalized zero waste kit instead of a “regular” wedding present. It took me a while to think of the little things to add to the kit and I thought, “hey that would make a great blog post”! Here are some sustainable gift ideas that anyone will appreciate.
These products require small daily changes, but help save money and the envrionment long term. I have linked items to make them easier to find for your shopping needs and to introduce you to small shops as well as big brands. I am not sponsored by any of these brands and cannot attest to all of their qualities. I simply wanted to provide as many options to start your search that suit all sorts of peoples needs (price points and aesthetic tastes).
1. Reusable waterbottle
Why – Bottled water costs more than tap water and is less tested and regulated. Plastic water bottles take 400 to 1,000 years to decompose and only one in five plastic bottles are recycled. It takes around 17 million barrels of oil to produce plastic bottles yearly. Facts from Ban The Bottle.
2. Reusable cup/tumblr (insulated & noninsulated)
Why – Single use cups use millions of resources to make, see some facts HERE. Many paper cups are lined with plastic, making them unrecyclable.
3. Reusable bags
Why – Plastic bags take over 500 years to degrade in a landfill and they don’t break down completely, but instead break into harmful microplastics. Only 1% of bags are returned for recycling, but many aren’t even recyclable. Plastic bags are also often mistaken for food by wildlife and many animals have been found with bags in their stomachs, which is a silent killer. More bag facts.
4. Sustainable straw
Why – Americans use 500 million straws a day! Plastic straws often end up in the ocean and personally are one of the most common pieces of litter I find when doing trash clean ups. Just take a look down at the side of the road on any street and you will find a straw. The unfortunate truth about “green” or “biodegradable” straws is that recycling/compost plants don’t actually know if the straws are degradable because the markings are not always clear, so most straws just get thrown away and not recycled or composted. Straws totally suck! One of the top 5 poluters of our ocean.
5. Conscious cutlery
Why – Single-use plastic cutlery is recyclable but is often thrown away where there is no accessible recycling bin. Reusing single use plastic cutlery isn’t really an option either because the plastic breaks down and enters your food. Besides that it has a big carbon footprint. With reusable options, you can throw them in your purse or backpack and bring them along for the ride.
6. Sustainable toothbrush
Why – Parts of your all the plastic toothbrushes you have ever used are probably still out there somewhere as they are not recyclable or biodegradable. Here is some more information on sustainable toothbrushing.
7. Sustainable Kitchen Items
Why – Lots of things in our kitchen are wasteful from plastic wrap (nonrecyclable) to plastic pot scrubbers (releases broken bits of microplastics down our drains). Here are some sustainable swaps! There are lots of these types of items handmade on Etsy or at local flee markets, I suggest giving those a look as well.
8. Conscious personal products
Why – There are a ton of products we use that produce unnecessary waste and expenses. Here are some quick gift ideas that are sustainable (in packaging or otherwise)!
One Stop Online Shops
Small stores with a variety of options in one place
Share this post with your own favorite zero waste gift ideas!