Thursday, December 21, 2017

Minimalist & Zero Waste Gift Ideas

Similar Wholesome Christmas Tee (100% Sweatshop Free) //
Old Hat & Jeans // 

If you're searching for some last minute gifts, I'm here to help! This year, I bought minimalist and zero waste gifts for family and friends that were focused on making their lives more sustainable and happier, or allowing them to have new experiences. My goal was to rid Christmas of the materialist association that it has developed in recent years. That being said, most of the following gifts do not focus on materialism and can even be made or bought immediately if you're in a time crunch:
  • Amazon Gift Card - I like the idea that someone can buy whatever they want or need with this option so that they don't receive something that will end up in a landfill.
  • Groupon Tours - There are many amazing Groupon tours, restaurants, and travel options that are offered at a steep discount. 
  • Micro Loans - This is one of my favorite gift ideas because you are supporting a real person starting a business that will allow them to support themselves and promote economic growth in their community. 
  • DIY Gifts - I made a few different DIY zero waste gifts including lotion and chapstick (blog post coming soon).
  • Coupon Book - I made two coupon books this year dedicating my time to the person that I'm giving them to (I used Canva to make them).
Do you have any creative, minimalist gifts you're giving this year? For more inspiration, check out this video from The Girl Gone Green! 

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Zero Waste Gift Wrapping

Thrifted Sweater // Old Jeans // 

As Christmas approaches, it's time to wrap my zero waste gifts in sustainable wrapping paper! Just the thought of all the wasteful Christmas wrapping paper and bows that can't be recycled makes my inner zero waste spirit cringe. Thankfully, there are many sustainable options when it comes to gift wrapping:
  1. Newspaper 
  2. Paper shopping bags (picture above) 
  3. Odds and ends that you already have 
    • Jars, ribbon, wrapping paper, bows, boxes, fabric, Christmas tree branches
  4. Eco-Friendly Wrapping Paper 
Check out the photo below and this post from Ecocult for more options and inspiration!

Sustainable Christmas Outfit Inspiration

Thrifted Dress // Previously Owned Accessories //

As the holidays are approaching, I wanted to share a sustainable holiday outfit which can be worn for Christmas, New Year's, and any other holiday event you may have. What I love about this dress is:
  1. It's black so it's both classic and flattering
  2. It's versatile - you can dress it up or down
  3. It's thrifted so I'm not introducing more waste into the fashion cycle
  4. I paid $7.99 for it!!!
I hope this post inspired and proved to you that you can still get cute clothing at a second hand store. It may just take a little more time and patience. If you are still searching for a holiday dress, I recommend going to Goodwill or checking out Reformation

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

What I'm Doing This Week With the $30 I Used to Spend Weekly on Coffee (pt. 2)

Similar Wholesome Christmas Tee  (100% Sweatshop Free) //

Today, I'm happy to share with you Part 2 of my new series, "What I'm Doing With the $30 I Used to Spend Weekly on Coffee". This week, instead of buying coffee at Starbucks and Dunkin' Donuts, I spent $30 on Christmas toys for a child in need. I did my best to find toys that were still fun, but not wrapped in plastic or made of plastic. My heart is filled with joy knowing my money put a smile on a child's face, rather than supporting corporate companies who create tons and tons of waste.

I challenge and encourage each of my readers to do the same: give up buying coffee this week and purchase toys for a local Christmas toy drive. I'm sure there are plenty of toy drives at your local church or community center. That $30 you usually spend on coffee can buy about 3-4 toys for some of the many children who won't have gifts this Christmas without someone like you.

Join me and let's do good this holiday season.


Monday, December 18, 2017

2 Must-See Netflix Documentaries: True Cost & Minimalism

If you know me personally, you already know that I don't own a TV and I don't have a subscription to Netflix as I value experiencing the beauty of life and traveling rather than spending my time binge-watching shows. However, I recently subscribed to Netflix for the one-month free trial for the sole purpose of watching the following two documentaries: Minimalism and The True Cost.

1. Minimalism: I used to be the girl who went shopping online once a week and always had the biggest wardrobe out of all of my friends. However, when I was abroad, I realized I didn't need all that "stuff" as I found myself wearing the same mom jeans and white t-shirt multiple times a week. During this time, I was experiencing more to life than I had ever experienced, and through all of these experiences, I realized that all my "stuff" no longer made me happy. In fact, all along it was actually giving me a false sense of happiness and fulfillment. After this realization, I began making small changes to my lifestyle. However, it wasn't until after watching Minimalism that I made a drastic change. I went through EVERY item that I owned, and truly thought about its use in my life. This resulted in me selling and donating about 2/3 of my belongings. Now I can focus on what really matters in my life. That's the beauty and power of this documentary. 

2. The True Cost: If you ever wonder why I constantly talk about how horrible the fast fashion industry is, this documentary will explain the many reasons why. In fact, it actually made me cry. I felt so disgusted at myself for falling into the trap of buying cheap clothes and contributing to the horrible lives of the people making these clothes. When you see a factory-working mother having to send her child off to another city to be cared for so she can work for ridiculously long hours and not get a living wage, I bet you will think twice about buying a $10 shirt from H&M or Zara ever again. 

Let me know if you watch either of these documentaries and your thoughts on them! If you want any other suggestions, I recommend A Plastic Ocean and Chasing Coral!