1. Make handmade holiday gifts. I truly believe that when it comes to spreading holiday cheer, it’s the thought that counts. Show your appreciation for your loved ones this season by taking the time to create a handmade present; it makes your token of gratitude that much more special and limits the strain on fossil fuels caused by factories and transportation. This year I made eucalyptus bath bombs for my team at work and the other amazing women in my life.


2. Or, buy handmade gifts. DIY not your thing? No problem. Shop sites like The Little Market for Fair Trade Certified products that are ethically made by artisans all over the world. I bought the Peruvian alpaca stuffed owl for my cousin last Christmas and it was so soft that I’m thinking of buying one for myself this year! Instead of shopping at big businesses, support fair trade organizations and you can truly make a difference for the life of an artisan and their families.


3. Introduce clean beauty into your routine with a gift set. Take advantage of the holiday gift sets if you or someone you know is thinking about making the switch to safe, non-toxic beauty. These seasonal sets come at a lower price point and often include smaller versions of a brand’s best-selling products, so you’re able to try a variety of items without committing to full-size pieces. Check out my two favorite picks here.


4. Wrap your presents in recycled wrapping paper. Did you know that half of the paper America consumes is used to wrap and decorate consumer products? If you’re paying all your bills online and using mobile tickets but still buying conventional wrapping paper and bags, then you’re missing a major paper-saving step. I’m wrapping my gifts in Wrappily paper this year, an innovative new eco company that prints ultra-chic designs by independent artists on 100% recycled newspaper. They have many beautiful and conveniently reversible print options, but the Classic Christmas: Eco-Friendly Gift Wrap Set and Watercolor Cactus prints (shown here) are my favorite.


5. Bring a reusable water bottle on your holiday travels. On a recent business trip I noticed that the LAX food court had a “hydration station”, a type of enhanced water fountain that’s designed to refill reusable water bottles. I drink a lot of water, especially when traveling, so I’ve been making it a point to pack my reusable water bottle in my carry-on. It helps me stay hydrated and save on refreshment packaging waste not only at the airport, but throughout my entire trip.

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