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29 Nov 2022

Blog cover - How to have a sustainable christmas

It’s the most wonderful time of the year (but also the season of plenty). We’ve put together our best tips to help you navigate a more sustainable festive period.

Sustainable Christmas FASHION

Pre-loved Christmas clothes over new, always

When putting together your party outfits this year, opt for pre-loved. Best yet, wear what you already own. Wearing clothes already in existence just makes more sustainability sense than buying something new that you may only wear once. We’ve got a great selection of pre-loved party wear on Reskinned or shop our collection in person at ReskinnedIRL (on South Molton Street in London),

Wash on Eco, 30 or don’t wash at all

Opt for cooler washes or don’t wash at all. The more we wash our clothes, the more likely we are to release microfibres (tiny bits of fabric that end up in our water systems and even our food). If your clothes are synthetic (eg. polyester), they’ll release microplastics every time you wash your clothes. Cooler washes can help limit microfibre release, and also avoid shrinking, keep your clothes lasting longer and use less energy (something we’re all conscious of this year). Use tide pens (on-the-go spot-cleaning markers). They really are your best friend.

Sustainable Christmas GIFTS

Ask people what they want

Put a smile on their face with the perfect gift. We know it’s a nice feeling to feel seen or to truly see someone and surprise them with something unexpected. There is no harm in asking people what they want. It might make things really easy as you can get them something they truly want, or it might even give you some inspiration so you can still surprise them. Either way, having an open conversation about gifts will mean fewer regretful purchases and more joy for those involved.

Embrace pre-loved Christmas gifts

The big one. La pièce de résistance. The game changer. Pre-loved gifts are the way to go. You don’t always have to disclose where you got something, but pre-loved gifts provide a more affordable and more sustainable way to find something special for your loved one. We think you should go for it and be proud about choosing the greener way to do presents this year, but if you’re faced with a recipient who might be a bit more hesitant, you can always pass it off with a, “it’s vintage darling”.

Reskinned have a wide range of preloved options to suit the explorer, the fashion-conscious, the family-focused and the outdoorsy types.

Rehome gifts you don’t want, don’t leave them at the back of the cupboard

It’s happened to the best of us. That sinking feeling when you unwrap a present only to be faced with something that is just-not-it…often gifted by some family member that doesn’t get to spend a lot of time with you. It’s okay. Pass it on. You don’t have to hold onto things out of politeness. Energy and resources go into making everything on this Earth, so the least we can do is ensure that the things we have are loved and used. One man’s trash is another one’s treasure! Send unwanted clothes back to Reskinned as part of our takeback schemes, and ask your friends if they want to rehome things you don’t fancy. Last resort: take it to the charity shop.

Rethink gift-giving dynamics altogether

More isn’t always best. You don’t always have to buy everyone in the family something. Check-in and see how people are feeling about gift-giving this year. Suggest a Secret Santa or gift exchange where you each have one member of the family to buy for. It means that you may be able to spend a bit more intentionally on the gift you are giving, and will lead to less waste at Christmas time. This won’t work for every family, but you might find that the suggestion is a welcome one.

One of our team members recommended this way of doing things and said: “This is an approach we’ve taken with my partner’s family. My family loves gift-giving and is smaller so wouldn’t go for this type of model, but his family find it a bit more overwhelming. We now only buy gifts for the kids and we might treat other adults to a small food-related gift like a bottle of wine or a nice chutney. It’s definitely taken the pressure off us all.”

Use a sustainable wrapping

Wrap your gifts in something that is recyclable. Even better, take inspiration from the Japanese and use reusable fabric to wrap your presents. Word of caution: if the paper is sparkly, it’s often not recyclable.

We know we’re all about fashion at Reskinned, but we’ve assembled a few extra tips from the team to keep the sustainability vibe going across the entire festive season.

Food at Christmas

Here are the Reskinned team’s favourite tips to have a more sustainable dinner table this Christmas:

  • Avoid food waste and ask people what they like. If only one person likes brussels sprouts, don’t make a whole bowl of them.
  • Embrace vegan and vegetarian alternatives for a less meat-heavy, more carbon-friendly spread.
  • If you have time and ability, make canapes at home. Supermarket party food often comes with a lot of packaging and it can often be cheaper and less wasteful to make finger food yourself. This one is a great option to get kids involved with, too.
  • Freeze your leftovers, don’t bin them.
  • Compost your food waste.
  • Check food packaging to make sure you know what can and can’t be recycled. Don’t be a wishcycler.

Travel during Christmas

Christmas can often involve a lot of travelling across the country. Opt for the train or coordinate with friends and family for car-sharing options. This will mean less carbon emissions.


Parting words…

Take and leave what you want, but there are definitely ways in which we can all be just a little bit more sustainable this Christmas. From what we wear, to the gifts we give, to the food we eat, if we all go a little bit slower, we can create a big impact together.

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