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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Tampa chapter.

The holiday season is approaching, and with the excitement of gifts and presents, it’s very simple to forget about our impact on the environment. This season has evolved into encouraging a lot of shopping; however, it is possible to still enjoy and spread holiday cheer without falling for all the consumerist expectations. This article is here to advise, remind, and give tips for handling the holiday season with a sustainable mindset!! 


It is good to eliminate unnecessary and thoughtless purchases. It might be helpful to make a list and think about what type of gifts would be utilized to their full extent by the person you are gifting them to. Gifting should come with intention, and it will last longer if it is truly what the person needs. For example, If you know your friend is always getting caught in the rain, then it would be clever to get them an umbrella rather than jewelry. 


Shopping from thrift stores, second-hand websites, and local markets is another way to shop sustainably during the holiday season. Thrifting is a great way to find unique decorative items such as frames, candles, and figurines. After being cleaned and aesthetically packaged, the item gifted gains a special touch as you spend the time to find it and pick it out specifically for that person. Secondhand websites like eBay, Mercari, and Facebook marketplace are good places to shop for technology and household items. It saves you money and helps minimize the demand for production in retail stores. Shopping from local markets helps the individuals in the community as well as allows you to find authentic presents that won’t be repeatable to the person you are gifting them to.


Wrapping is a big part of gift-giving, which is why it’s good to consider the material that is being used. Is it really necessary to place the gifts in a brand-new store-bought plastic bag? Or is there already a paper bag lying somewhere in your pantry that could be repurposed as a gift bag? Placing the gift in a container that can be reused, such as a cardboard box or simple brown paper, can serve the same purpose and be able to be recycled afterward!  Making your own holiday cards is also an easy way to personalize the gift while reducing the engagement with overindulgence in overconsumption.

Melanie is a freshman majoring in Advertising and PR at UT. In her free time, she enjoys reading, discovering new music artists, dancing, singing, thrifting, exploring new places and trinket collecting.