Over the festive season, the UK creates 30% more waste than usual and over half of us will receive a present we don't want! 

Giving

Cards and wrapping

When you're buying Christmas cards, avoid ones with glitter or shiny, metallic bits as they're hard to recycle. You could send e-cards instead? Try paperless post, they have some great free designs, including charity cards. 

Also, avoid buying glittery, foil or plastic wrapping paper as it can't be recycled. 

You could wrap your presents in brown paper and pretty ribbon or have fun making your own wrapping paper! Cut shapes into a potato and use them as a stamp to print onto brown paper. 

'Furoshiki' is a Japanese-style of wrapping presents with material which can be reused. Use our handy guide to help you get started with the furoshiki wrapping style.

Presents

Making presents for family and friends can be easy - if you enjoy baking, how about making some Christmas biscotti or spiced biscuits

Have a go at simple toiletry gift sets including foot soak and body balm or you could get crafty on the sewing machine to create a present such as bunting. 

You could buy an experience gift? A craft course, a dance class, a massage, cinema tickets, membership to an organisation, vouchers for the theatre or a special meal out! Wiltshire Wildlife Trust offers a variety of fun workshops including Willow & Crafts, Bushcraft tasters and Hazel hurdle making - take a look to see what is available.

Hazel hurdling

How about presents to help reduce waste such as shampoo and conditioner soap bars, a nice refillable bottle or reusable cup, or a charcoal water filter? 

There are lots more great ideas on Eco-Boost

Receiving

Cards and wrapping

If you receive cards with lots of glitters and shiny/metallic material, you could either save them for next year and use them to create new Christmas cards or gift tags, or tear those bits off and recycle the rest. 

Shiny, metallic or plastic papers can't be recycled - if it doesn't scrunch, it's plastic. Remember to take the sticky tape off before you recycle any paper. 

Presents

If you do receive presents you don't want and you can't exchange them, you could donate them to a charity shop or if suitable, a food bank. 

Decorations

You can avoid plastic, glittery decorations and make your own! We've found some fantastic reuse Christmas decorations online, using anything from an old road atlas to crisp packets and toilet roll tubes! 

For more ideas follow our advent of Christmas waste-reducing tips this December on twitter @SlimBinsWilts and Facebook @WiltsWasteWatchers

New Year's Resolutions

If these tips have inspired you to reduce your waste footprint in 2019, how about joining our Waste Free Feb challenge? We're planning a bigger, bolder campaign and we'd love you to join us. See our website for more details about the challenge.