1. Don’t burn it.
That toasty holiday fire doesn’t need a dose of toxic fumes. Wrapping paper can be full of chemical dyes, foils and other materials that can create harmful fumes when burned (like dioxin). Just put the used wrapping paper in the recycling or use it again on another gift (FYI, you can easily recycle if it is an all-paper wrap, if it has foil in it then you might have to take it to a special recycling center). Better yet, see suggestion #2…
2. Don’t use it.
The EPA reported that wrapping paper is a main culprit for the 25% increase in curbside trash between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. That’s 5 million extra tons of garbage in the U.S. alone.
But, who doesn’t love the experience of tearing into a wrapped gift and finding some kind of treasure inside? Not to worry, there are ways to experience the tearing open of a gift while still being conscious of the earth.
The main idea is to be creative and bring a personal touch to the wrapping of the gift. If the person is a self-described comedian, wrap their gift in the comics section and use your old Whoopie cushion as a bow. If your friend is an animal or nature lover, use the pictures from an old calendar to wrap with. Or, take that old pre-algebra textbook you’ve been hanging onto “just in case”, tear the pages out and wrap with that (and challenge the gift recipient to finish the equations). Whatever you use, be sure to encourage the person to reuse the wrap or recycle it after they’ve torn it open.
If you have some other fun wrapping ideas please share them here 🙂