No Waste Gift Wrapping: Five Ways to Wrap Greener This Holiday Season

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Every holiday season from Thanksgiving to New Year, Americans generate about 25% more trash, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This, according to the National Environmental Education Foundation, equates to about a million tons of extra garbage produced every week. It’s also estimated that about 38,000 miles of ribbon, $11 billion of wrapping material and 15 million used trees are discarded every year. Subsequently, these materials end up in landfills since the majority can’t be recycled. This holiday season, go green and save money by gifting items that do not require wrapping, or by trying one of the no waste gift wrapping ideas below.

  1. Wrap gifts with old newspaper, magazines or road maps.

    This is a great way to wrap gifts at the last minute with materials that are usually readily available. You may choose to use the black and white pages or colored comics and advertisements. Check out this video to learn how to wrap gifts with common paper materials.

  2. Utilize toilet paper rolls and paper towel rolls to paint and wrap smaller gifts.

    Every household has paper tubes from paper towels or toilet paper. These can easily be painted or lined with other colorful recyclable paper to make the perfect unique gift box. Give these two tutorials a try to decide which gift box better suits your needs: the square box or the flat oval box.

  3. Use fabric, scarves or old clothing pieces to wrap gifts.

    This method of wrapping gifts is otherwise known as “furoshiki,” a Japanese fabric wrapping technique. With this method, you’ll use different types of knots to wrap your gift in fabric without the hassle of tape or ribbon. Because of the versatility of this method, you can wrap anything from a coffee mug to a box of shoes. Watch this tutorial on wrapping a box using furoshiki, or select one from the list of other tutorials.

  4. Mason jars serve as a great no waste gift wrapping idea, and can be reused or tossed in the recycling bin.

    Mason jars come in a variety of sizes. Due to its different volumes, you can wrap anything from baked goods and sauces to jewelry and make up. The possibilities are endless! And after Christmas, the gift receiver may choose to reuse the mason jar or recycle it. For inspiration on what to put in a mason jar, this video offers up 20 gift ideas.

  5. Reuse boxes from various products as gift boxes.

    Online shopping creates a large amount of cardboard waste. A 2018 article from Forbes says 70% of Americans have Amazon Prime memberships. These memberships in turn create cardboard waste with every delivery. By reusing Amazon or other product boxes, you can wrap gifts for the holidays and deter waste by utilizing a recyclable material.

We hope you’ll try some of these no waste gift wrapping ideas this holiday season. You might even decide to wrap your gifts this way for years to come. And while you’re shopping, don’t forget to give yourself a gift with with 1.5% cash back on your Earned Premium Rewards Credit Card!