Zero-Waste Gift Wrapping This Holiday Season

Learn how to wrap your gifts this holiday season in a way that is eco-friendly and waste-free!

Zero-Waste Gift Wrapping This Holiday Season

The holiday season is a time for giving, spending time with loved ones, and… wrapping presents.

Lots and lots of wrapping presents.

In fact, Americans alone are estimated to spend $12 billion on wrapping paper each year!

But all that wrapping paper, tissue paper, bows, ribbons, and other wrapping supplies add up to a whole lot of waste.

In fact, the Environmental Protection Agency estimates that approximately 2.3 million pounds of wrapping paper and supplies end up in landfills every single year.

Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to wrap gifts without creating all that waste.

In this blog post, we'll share eco-friendly alternatives to traditional wrapping paper and supplies as well as zero-waste wrapping tips that will help you reduce your impact on the environment this holiday season.

  • This article contains affiliate links. We may receive a commission (at no cost to you) if you make a purchase through a brand link below. Learn more here.

The problem with traditional wrapping paper and supplies

One of the biggest problems with traditional wrapping paper is that most of it can't be recycled.

That's because most wrapping paper is coated with plastic or metallic layers that give it a shiny finish. These coatings can't be removed, so the paper can't be recycled.

What ends up happening is that all that shiny, non-recyclable wrapping paper gets thrown away.

And it's not just wrapping paper!

Most traditional sticky tapes, ribbons, plastic bows, and other decorations are made from petroleum-based materials, which means they are not recyclable and mostly end up in landfill where they can take centuries to break down.

Fortunately, there are some eco-friendly alternatives to traditional wrapping paper and supplies that can help you reduce your carbon footprint this holiday season.

Let’s take a look at a few of them.

Eco-Friendly Alternatives to Traditional Wrapping Paper and Supplies

Great zero-waste alternatives to wrapping paper are fabric gift wraps and gift bags.

They are reusable, so you can keep using them for years to come.

And they are just as easy to use as paper - in fact, some might even say it's easier!

What is furoshiki wrapping?

Furoshiki is a Japanese wrapping cloth that can be used to wrap gifts, clothing, or even bento boxes.

It's an eco-friendly and stylish alternative to traditional wrapping paper, and it's easy to learn how to do.

zero waste gift wrapping

To wrap a gift using furoshiki, simply place the item in the center of the cloth and tie the corners together.

For a more polished look, you can fold the cloth over the top of the item and tie it in place.

With a little practice, you'll be able to create beautiful furoshiki wrapped gifts that are sure to impress your friends and family.

Best Fabric Wraps and Gift Bags

Mytri Designs Sari Gift Wrap

Image by Mytri Designs

Mytri Designs Sari Gift Wraps are an elegant and sustainable way to wrap your gifts.

These beautiful wraps are made from recycled sari fabrics, adding color and beauty to your present.

Each wrap is unique, so you can be sure your gift will stand out from the rest.

Machine-washable, Mytri Designs wraps make the perfect eco-friendly gift wrap that you will be able to use for years.

Hallmark Reusable Fabric Gift Wrap

Images by Hallmark

Hallmark Reusable Gift Wrap is a festive and eco-friendly way to wrap your holiday gifts in furoshiki style.

Measuring approximately 26" by 26", it's perfect for wrapping books, small boxes, and uniquely shaped gifts.

The pretty holly sprig design is great for Christmas. The purchase includes a coordinating "Joy" gift tag with string - making wrapping uniquely shaped gifts quick and easy.

Plus, it's 100% reusable, so you can use it year after year.

Joywrap - Crinkle-Sounding Fabric Gift Wrap

happy birthday, gift, box
Images by Joywrap

Joywrap is on a mission to reduce wrapping paper waste while keeping the fun in gift wrapping.

Their Furoshiki-inspired products are beautiful, high quality, and make the same fun, nostalgic sounds as traditional wrapping paper - without any of the waste!

They're also reversible, with a solid color on the reverse side, so you can use them over and over again for different occasions.

Joywrap is the perfect choice for eco-conscious people who still want to have fun wrapping gifts.

Plus, a tree is planted for every Joywrap sold!

Organic Cotton Mart Reusable Gift Bags

parcel, package, packaging
Images by Organic Cotton Mart

Organic Cotton Mart reusable gift bags are an eco-friendly and stylish way to package your gifts.

Made from cotton fabric, Organic Cotton Mart gift bags are washable and reusable, perfect for eliminating waste and helping to keep trash out of landfills.

They're also super easy to use - simply insert your gift into the bag, pull the drawstring, and tie on a gift label.

And with two fun prints and two sizes to choose from, these cloth gift bags are perfect for any occasion.

Eribagz 12 pcs Christmas Gift Bags

template, christmas pattern, christmas themes
Images by Eribagz

This set of 12 Eribagz Gift Bags will make your holiday gifting easier and more stylish!

This set includes 4 beautiful designs in 3 different sizes, perfect for wrapping Birthday gifts, Christmas presents, or any other special occasion.

These fabric gift bags are durable and inexpensive, with a convenient drawstring closure.

Plus, you will get 15 bonus removable tags - just print or write your own message and attach it to the bag.

Recyclable kraft wrapping paper

Unlike traditional wrapping paper, which is often made from virgin trees, craft paper is usually recycled and/or recyclable.

And because it's usually less expensive than traditional wrapping paper, craft paper is a great way to save money while being kind to the environment.

Paper Farm Store Kraft Wrapping Paper Roll

happy birthday, box, celebration
Images by Paper Farm Store

Looking for a jumbo roll of zero-waste wrapping paper that's eco-friendly and made in the USA?

Look no further than the Paper Farm Store!

Their jumbo roll is crafted from 100% recyclable materials and is 100% biodegradable, so you can feel good about using it for all your wrapping needs (and more).

It's 30 inches wide by 1200 inches long, so it will last you a while.

And because it's uncoated and unwaxed on both sides, it has that genuine natural look.

If you are looking for something more colorful, you can opt for a colored kraft paper like this one from Ruspepa in green or red.

pattern, leaves, blue
Images by Ruspepa
template, christmas pattern, christmas themes
Images by Ruspepa

Natural cord and biodegradable / recyclable tape

If you are wrapping your gifts in paper, you can secure your paper wrap with a natural cord or you use recyclable tape.

Let's have a look at some of them!

Blisstime Natural Jute Twine

happy birthday, gift, box
Images by Blisstime

This natural jute twine from Blisstime is perfect for gift wrapping, attaching tags to various items, and more.

It comes with 100 kraft paper gift tags so you have everything you need to make your gifts look pretty.

It's made from environmentally friendly biodegradable materials.

Plus, at 300 feet long, you'll have plenty to work with.

So go ahead and get creative!

Hemptique Hemp Cord

parcel, package, packaging
Image by Hemptique

If you are looking for a more colorful cord, look no further than Hemptique hemp cord!

This versatile cord is perfect for gift wrapping but also for any number of other projects like macramé wall hangings and plant hangers, dream catchers, key chains, earrings, scrapbooking embellishments, bracelets, jewelry, paper crafts, and string art.

Made from 100% natural hemp fibers, Hemptique products are eco-friendly, biodegradable, and vegan.

Adhes Biodegradable Kraft Paper Tape

pattern, leaves, blue
Images by Adhes

Adhes kraft paper tape is made with 100% kraft paper.

This tape can be recycled with your boxes and wrapping paper without having to separate it.

And because the surface is uncoated, it's ideal to use with pencils, pens, water-based marker pens, and oil markers.

Best of all, it tears easily by hand and self-adheres, so you'll never have to struggle with getting it to stick.

Fabulas Colored Masking Tape

parcel, package, packaging
Image by Fabulas

Looking for a fun and creative way to add some color to your gift wrapping?

Look no further than Fabulas colored masking tape!

This set of 6 colorful tapes comes in blue, green, red, yellow, purple, and pink, perfect for adding a pop of color to any project.

The best part is that the tape is easy to remove or reposition, so you can set your imagination free with fun wrapping designs!

Gift Decorations

If you are feeling creative, you can add a fun twist to your gifts with some ornaments like the ones below.

ilauke Wooden Snowflakes

happy birthday, gift, box
Images by Ilauke

Add some rustic charm to your Christmas decor with these ilauke Wooden Snowflakes.

These beautiful snowflakes are made from natural wood and are laser cut for a precise, clean look.

They're perfect for various uses including attaching to presents for a beautiful Christmassy look.

Each snowflake is unique and 4 different patterns are included so you can mix and match to create your own custom look.

Easy to hang with the included jute twine rope, these snowflakes make a great way to add some handmade charm to your holiday decor.

Fuyit Wooden Christmas Ornaments

happy birthday, gift, box
Images by Fuyit

These natural wooden ornaments would make great gift decorations.

They come blank, ready for you to paint, stain, write, and color however you want.

You can always reuse them as tree decorations after.

Each wood slice is laser-cut and comes with jute twine and red-white twine for easy hanging.

More eco-friendly gift-wrapping ideas

Reuse what you already have

Got a pile of old magazines or newspapers lying around?

Put them to good use by using them as wrapping paper!

This is a great way to reduce waste and add a personal touch to your gifts.

You can use any of the above decorations for a truly unique look.

Reuse old fabrics and scarves

A scarf, bandana, some scrap fabric, or even an old T-shirt can make beautiful and unique zero-waste gift wrap.

Simply lay your fabric down flat, place your gift in the center, and tie up the corners with some string or ribbon.

Voila - instant furoshiki!

Use brown paper bags

Brown paper bags are not only inexpensive, but they're also eco-friendly and endlessly versatile.

You can decorate them with stamps, markers, or even just some pretty ribbon or twine.

They also make great impromptu gift bags - just put your gift inside and voila!

Make your own wrapping paper

If you're feeling really crafty, try making your own wrapping paper!

You can either stencil or stamp patterns onto blank sheets of recycled paper or get really creative and paint or collage your own designs.

This is an easy way to make great wrapping paper and add a personal touch to your gifts.

Use dried orange slices, Christmas tree branches, or holly to decorate your gifts

You can get creative and add a personal touch to your gifts with these natural easy-to-find decorations.

Your friends and family will be impressed!

With a little bit of creativity (and perhaps a trip to the recycling bin), you can easily find ways to wrap gifts without creating mountains of waste this holiday season.

So why not ditch the conventional wrapping paper in favor of one of these eco-friendly alternatives?

Your wallet - and the planet - will thank you for it!