By Beth Buczynski on November 23, 2011

This year, give your loved ones a green gift that spares landfills and lasts long after the holidays have passed.

Giving gifts has always been my favorite part of the holiday season. Sure, receiving a gift is great, but seeing the look on a loved one’s face when you surprise them with something that makes their life better is priceless!

Gift giving can be a strange time for those who try to live an eco-conscious lifestyle. It’s easy to get caught up in the spirit of the holidays, and that can lend itself to spending money on things that aren’t necessary or kind to the environment.

This year, be strategic. Give gifts that not only look cool, but also serve an important purpose. Instead of giving gifts that will break or be obsolete within a few months, select presents that will help your loved ones get one step closer to a waste-free life.

Hydros water bottle

Hydros recycled bottle

Thirty-eight-billion disposable plastic water bottles end up in landfills each year. Most people drink bottled water because they think it’s cleaner, but studies have shown that most tap water is held to higher health standards than bottled water.

The Hydros Bottle comes with a built-in quick filtration system, so no matter where you fill up you’ll know that you’re drinking clean water. The Hydros bottle is BPA-free, antimicrobial and made in the U.S. And, $1 from each purchase helps fund sustainable water infrastructure projects around the world! (From $29.99)

PeopleTowels

PeopleTowels

The use of paper towels alone sends 3,000 tons of waste to the landfill every day. Many of the most popular brands use virgin timber to create these disposable cleaning tools. Depending on the size of your family and level of messiness, using paper towels can add an extra $120 to $200 to your annual budget.

PeopleTowels are a great way to curb paper towel and napkin use. Made of 100% organic fair trade cotton, these stylish towels save trees, save money, reduce landfill waste, cut CO2 emissions and conserve water. Clipped to a book bag or slipped into a purse, these towels are also an easy way to keep hands clean without sacrificing the environment. (From $6.99)

Water Pebble

Water Pebble

The average 10-minute shower uses 25 gallons of water. That’s 2.5 gallons of water a minute rushing down the drain, never to be seen again. While taking a 30-minute shower might not seem that expensive, it’s extremely harmful to the environment and disrespectful to the millions of people who live without access to safe, clean drinking water.

Water Pebble is an ingenious little device that will be sure to please the gadget lovers on your list. Once you've programmed the pebble, it signals a yellow light at your half-shower mark and flashes red when it's time to turn off the faucet. The next time you shower the Pebble will flash red just a few seconds earlier. In this way, the device will train you to take shorter showers over a period of just a few weeks! (From $10)

E-reader

There’s nothing quite like curling up with a good book on a snowy day, or reading an interesting magazine article to help pass the time during a cross-country flight. But printed books and magazines are a drain on our natural resources and a hassle to recycle.

An e-reader eliminates paper waste, and the carbon emissions needed to transport books and magazines around the country. Instead of waiting to order a new book online, you can simply download it for the fraction of the price. Some libraries are also getting into the e-reader game, lending out electronic books for free. And you aren’t just limited to books: many e-readers are optimized for magazines, newspapers and blogs as well. The Kindle from Amazon is arguably the most popular, and its basic model is one of the cheapest. (From $79)

About the author

Beth Buczynski is a freelance copywriter and environmental journalist in the Rocky Mountain West. She specializes in providing online content and community mana[...]
Learn more about Beth Buczynski

Related Articles

Comments

There are no comments for this post yet


Articles by Beth Buczynski

RoboSteel Creates Amazing Art from Scrap Metal

By Beth Buczynski on March 28, 2012

Old scrapyard bits and pieces are recycled into jaw-dropping sculptures big and small.

Samsung Blue Earth: Everything an Eco-Friendly Phone Should Be

By Beth Buczynski on February 9, 2012

The phone, composed of recycled plastics, features a solar charger and CO2 calculator, among other green features.

Sprint’s Buy-Back and Reuse Program for Mobile Devices

By Beth Buczynski on February 6, 2012

The mobile carrier offers users incentive to recycle. A sister program, Project Connect, accepts any old cell phone regardless of condition or carrier.

Products Articles

Recycled Glass Tree Globes Make Beautiful Decorations

By April Stearns on December 24, 2013

Stephen Kitras' recycled glass tree globes are sourced from broken windows.

ThinkEco2 for Your Holiday Gifts

By Wendy Gabriel on December 23, 2013

Two friends teamed up to create an online store to sell handsome products made from 100% recycled wood scraps sourced from construction sites.

Allan Young’s Repurposed Trash Makes a Great Holiday Gift

By Maggie Wehri on December 18, 2013

Each year as the holiday season approaches, it becomes a bit more difficult to buy gifts for our loved ones.

Current News

Recycling Profile: Long Beach, CA

By 1-800-RECYCLING on April 18, 2014

Long Beach's weekly curbside recycling program accepts items like polystyrene, plastic bags and paint cans.

461 Colleges and Universities Nationwide Recover 89.1 Million Pounds of Organic and Recyclable Materials During RecycleMania

By 1-800-RECYCLING on April 14, 2014

During this 14th annual tournament, updated weekly rankings allowed schools to track their performance in eight categories measuring their recycling rate.

Recycling Profile: Nashua, NH

By 1-800-RECYCLING on April 11, 2014

Nashua's single-stream curbside recycling program could be a model for other programs around New Hampshire.

Loading