Valentine’s Day is upon us and that means another season of gift giving. Whether for a romantic partner, friend or family member, this holiday can come with a lot of environmental waste. But it doesn’t have to.
The typical gifts include cards, chocolates, and jewelry; each of which can be wasteful. Let’s dive a little deeper into each of these.
Most of the cards you will find on the market are laminated, covered in glitter or embellished in ways that make them unable to be recycled. Rather than heading to your supermarket, consider making your own or shopping for recyclable options. Brands like Paper Culture make beautiful cards from post-consumer recycled material and even plant a tree for every order.
Many of our favorite Faire Trade chocolate brands can now be found on grocery store shelves. Choosing treats that carry this seal prevent further economic inequality such as child labor, forced labor, deforestation and gender inequality that is rampant in the cacao industry. Plus, you can give a unique gift with flavors such as Raspberry Cacao Nib or Bread & Chocolate from Theo.
Yes, even jewelry can be sustainable! Look for brands and stores that talk about the sourcing process. The workers should have access to protective equipment to help keep the dust out of their lungs and minimize exposure to harsh chemicals. Many of the major brands do not disclose their sustainability practices so look for smaller, locally owned companies or consider buying secondhand.
Some other sustainable gifts to consider include living plants over cut flowers, homemade baked goods over store bought chocolates, an experience like a cooking class rather than a dinner out.
Don’t forget to pick up your favorite Dreamsoft Travel Scarf for all the ladies on your list this Valentine’s Day. Made from 100% GOTS certified organic cotton, this versatile scarf supports economic, social and environmental well-being. Bonus: it is the perfect addition to any Valentine’s Day outfit.