Last year, international aid agency CARE Australia estimated that Australians use more than 150,000 kilometres of wrapping paper at Christmas.
"It is enough to wrap around the Earth's equator approximately 4 times!"
A survey by this agency also found that each Australian uses roughly eight metres of paper to wrap Christmas gifts. This paper only stays around for a couple of days only to be torn up and discarded, ending up in landfill.
So, if you ever wondered how to make the upcoming festive season a little greener, why not try Zero Waste gift wrapping? Below are the top 5 alternative ways to wrap your Christmas pressies.
1. Reuse and recycle cardboard boxes at home
If you ever need a box for your Christmas gift, think about up-cycling cardboard boxes that you already have. For example, empty shoe boxes or boxes from the appliances that you previously bought. Or you can even go to Bunnings to get some FREE but make sure you ask the staff before you take them.
2. Use cloth as an alternative to wrapping paper
If you have scarves and (like me) hardly use them, why not use them to wrap Christmas gifts? This is a great way to show off your creativity and impress others. You can always ask the gift receiver to return the scarves if you'd like to keep them. Trust me, nobody will mind if you ask (yes, I've done it before!).
3. Make the wrapping part of the gift
Similar to tip number 2, if you intended to give a scarf or any fabric materials as part of the Christmas gift, just use them to wrap other gifts. It is an ingenious way to minimise waste.
4. Fill your gifts in a laundry basket
Forget about wrapping, why not use a laundry basket instead? Laundry baskets are also a great way to make Christmas hampers. Again, make sure you get it back before your next laundry day!
5. Give e-vouchers
This is good one! No wrapping required; just gift someone an e-coupon or voucher. More and more people these days are choosing to give the gift of experience as opposed to a physical object. This could be anything from dinners, to sake tasting, to creative workshops... Massage vouchers are also a popular choice!
Living a zero waste lifestyle can be tricky at times. Having said that, we should all try our best to minimise waste as much as we can, especially at this time of year. If you have any other tips for a zero waste Christmas, feel free to share them with us!