Five green Christmas hacks that you actually might do

We were excited to catch up with dotte hero Ellie Besley-Gould, and the force behind eco-conscious platform The Greenish, on her five top Christmas hacks to make your festive season that little bit greener but not more complicated (you might actually look forward to doing them!)

I cannot count the number of articles I’ve read about making my own crackers or elaborately roasting nuts under a candle light for a truly vegan lunch centrepiece. If you’re anything like me, a lot of these gorgeous ideas are a bit too much to take on at a particularly busy time, in the middle of a pandemic, with kids under my feet the whole time. So here is my list of five Christmas hacks which will make your festive season that little bit greener but just as festive.

1. Buy bags of wine instead of bottles

This is such an easy switch and will make a huge difference. Switching to wine in a box for the 97 percent of wines that are made to be consumed within a year would reduce greenhouse gas emissions by about two million tons, or the equivalent of retiring 400,000 cars. It’s to do with the additional weight of the bottles being transported and the waste - bag wine lasts longer. 

We absolutely love using More Wine. They’re a British company specialising in box and bib wine and have a brilliant range - we’ve loved everything we’ve ever bought from them. This ‘Only Natural’ selection will cover the whole Christmas period and includes box, bib and bag wine in three colours - winner! 

Go bag not bottle this year!

2. Make one of their gifts a toy rental

One of my least favourite things about Christmas is all the effort you put into choosing, and wrapping only for the kids to be completely overwhelmed by the amount of stuff, pick a box of matches up and start playing with that, forgetting all the gifts they’ve been bought. I’ve become so fed up with discarded toys and gifts in fact that we now have a monthly subscription to Whirli. With Whirli we choose toys we want to borrow, have them for a month and then send them back. No stress about needless plastic and no guilt over unwanted stuff! The toys on their site are probably better suited to under-5s. The company completely understands how busy we can be and also that things get broken, so you don’t need to be super precious. They’re also happy for you to keep things indefinitely if they’re a big hit - only switching what you want to. Postage is made extremely simple and the packaging is reused. 

Rent the toys this Christmas!

3. Don’t chuck the leftovers

Tackling food waste is one of the best things we can do to reduce our emissions as a country, and as households. Never is this more true than at Christmas when we just have too much food to manage. So, in advance, make sure you have a good Bubble and Squeak recipe, consider using your old mince pies to make brownies, and if there’s still food leftover, pop it on Olio so your neighbours can help you out. We’ve never had anything that didn’t get taken within a couple of hours. Maybe sign-up to the app ahead of the big day so it’s a super simple task when you do want to shift food. 

Don't chuck your leftovers this Christmas!

The clothing industry generates more emissions than international flights and maritime shipping combined. The way I’ve been trying to cut down on buying new is to think about which outfits and clothes will be worn and re-worn for ages.

4. Rent your outfit

Instead of heading to the shops, pop online to Hurr or By Rotation and rent your outfit. We absolutely love this Rixo Dress and Jimmy Choos

Rent your oufit this Xmas! Rixo dress (left) and Jimmy Choos (right).

The clothing industry generates more emissions than international flights and maritime shipping combined. Ew… The way I’ve been trying to cut down on buying new is to think about which outfits and clothes will be worn and re-worn for ages - my Christmas day outfit is never that so it’s a fab place to start with clothes rentals. Also weddings, holidays, fancy dinners (remember those) and birthday parties. 

5. Buy the kid’s Christmas day outfit on dotte

I popped into town at the weekend to look at clothes and was suddenly struck by the colossal waste - so much stuff hanging from rails that really wasn’t needed. dotte has been an absolute breath of fresh air for us and has really made me rethink what I’m dressing my kids in for Christmas this year (for the 2 hours before they get back into football shorts that is!) From PJs to velvet dresses, accessories to wooly jumpers, dotte has launched with a bang and with some brilliant wardrobes for sale. Get in there quick, and use the filters - they’re brilliant. We adore these Beau Loves tights these velvet bloomers and this cream liner jacket

Buy the kid's Christmas day outfit on dotte!

Have a very Happy Christmas!

Ellie Besley-Gould is the editor of The Greenish. She set it up when she made a decision to be greener but wanted content which was achievable,  non-judgy, non-preachy and felt like it suited her personality. The Greenish is the definitive place for women to find and share simple and impactful green choices which fit their lifestyle.

The busy mum of three also sells her secondhand clothes via dotte, saying " I love trying to find amazing clothes without buying new and without feeling too guilty about fast fashion!". Check out Ellie's shop here.

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