The holidays are approaching and we are so excited! In this jolly season, it’s easy to get carried away when gift shopping. But don’t worry! We have put together our top five tips to help you shop sustainably this holiday season. Feel kooshoo about giving gifts this year, your loved ones will thank you and so will the planet!
1. Shop Online
According to Science Daily, shopping trips are a major contributor to fossil fuel pollution. The holidays are filled with people driving from store to store to store, buying gifts, then driving them home…often more than once!
Now imagine over 263.6 million people in their cars doing that (that’s how many cars are on the road in the US). That’s a lot of carbon dioxide emissions released into the planet.
Why not avoid spending time in overcrowded malls this holiday season and opt for online shopping? Ordering your gifts online is way better for the environment and here’s why:
UPS, FedEx, or USPS trucks are efficient by moving large amounts at one time (rather than each customer driving to buy each item in their own car)
Ordering online creates a more direct line for a product - traveling from warehouse direct to you. This means less transportation miles per product!
You can read more about the product online before you decide to purchase it, making decisions less impulsive and more thoughtful.
We challenge you to do a little research on the businesses you are shopping from this holiday season before you click “add to cart”. Look at where they are manufacturing their products, how transparent they are, and if they are packaging their items sustainably. Trust us, supporting ethical and eco-friendly small businesses make a real difference in the world.
For more information on what it means to “manufacture ethically” take a look at our recent blog, Why Transparency Matters. While you’re there, note that our blog is home to a host of resources about ethical shopping. If new to ethical fashion, start with The Revolution that is Changing Fashion and 11 Ways You Will Change the Fashion Industry. Our About Us section also provides a great overview of what to expect from an ethical fashion brand.
2. Shop Intentionally
It’s easy to get carried away when shopping during the holidays. Every store showcases great deals that entice us to spend lots and buy more than we need.
What if there was a better way to approach shopping this season?
Make a list, and check it twice! Shopping with a clear idea of what you want to buy before you begin will help you to avoid duplicating, over-shopping, or even forgetting someone's gift!
Studies by Eco Business have shown, that about one garbage truck worth of textiles either ends up in the landfill or is burned every second. Invest in quality products that will last over time, and not need to be replaced every season. This will slow the “fast-fashion” cycle, and the planet will thank you!
Opt for more sustainable products like our Kooshoo Hair Ties that are high quality and designed with function top-of-mind. For example, our Hair Ties will last much longer than regular hair elastics due to the way they’re built (twice the strength of glued hair ties) and that they’re machine washable. They also happen to be stylish and comfortable, making them the perfect gift or stocking stuffer for those friends or family members who are tricky to shop for! If curious to learn more about why choosing a biodegradable hair tie over a synthetic hair tie is important, read this blog.
3. Say “No” To Plastic Packaging
In one of our previous articles, we discussed the harmful properties of single-use plastic in the fashion industry.
Let’s say ‘NO’ to plastic packaging this holiday season and support businesses that use more environmentally-friendly methods.
Companies so often take a simple product and package it in unnecessarily thick plastic. Once the gift is opened, the packaging typically goes right into the garbage.
This holiday season, look for businesses that package their items using more sustainable materials like paper, cotton, or… no packaging at all! At KOOSHOO, our product packaging and mailing envelopes are made from 100% recycled paper, which ensures a 100% plastic-free shopping experience from us!
P.S. When you are ready to start wrapping your gifts to place under the tree, consider using an alternative “wrapping paper”. Try using reusable bags, fabric, newspaper, recycled paper, or bio-degradable gift wrap. There are so many options out there, so get creative and have fun with it!
If you have a good idea for eco-friendly gift wrap, share a photo on Instagram and tag us (@feelingkooshoo)! We would love to see your awesome ideas!
4. Bring Your Own Bags
If you aren’t careful it’s easy to accumulate plastic bags during the holiday season. In fact, according to One Green Planet, 60,000 plastic bags are consumed in the U.S. every 5 seconds—and that’s excluding the holiday season!
Substitute plastic bags (all year long) by bringing your own! Using your own bags means that less plastic will end up in landfills or in natural habitats.
Try using a tote or cloth bag, as they are better for the environment and more durable for keeping all those gifts in one place. You can count on reusable bags to survive those long holiday shopping trips.
5. Avoid Certain Fabrics
Avoid non-biodegradable materials such as: Polyester, Acrylic, Nylon and Viscose. While conventional cotton is natural, it’s also the most heavily sprayed crop on earth so if you can choose organic as an alternative, it makes a difference.
We recommend taking a look at what fabrics are used in the products you are buying before you toss them in your cart. Invest in fabrics such as linen, hemp, or organic cotton that use less water in production than non-biodegradable materials. Finding safe, ethical and chemical-free items are great for the environment, and for you.
At KOOSHOO, we are particular with what materials we use in our products, and where they are sourced. We know this is important, especially if you are buying things for your loved ones. Feel good about what you are gifting your family and friends. We’re sure they will appreciate the thought and conscious effort you put into giving!
If you have any other Sustainable Holiday Shopping Tips, please feel free to share them in the comments below, or on our Instagram page! Thanks for reading, Happy Holidays, and Happy Eco-Shopping!