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23 Gifts to Help Friends and Family Use Less Plastic

If you’re reading this post, you already know the danger plastics pose to the health of our oceans and our planet. That’s why you carry reusable cutlery, use refillable beverage containers and have cloth shopping bags in all shapes and sizes. Right? Who doesn’t? 

Unfortunately, many of us have a family member, a neighbor or a friend who doesn’t share our eco ethos. The plastic problem is global, and it’s going to take all of us to turn the tide. 

How do we get people who don’t seem to care (or don’t care enough) to reduce their use of disposable plastic? By making eco-friendly choices easier and more appealing than wasteful bad habits.

When change is easy (and fun), people are more open to trying something new. With that in mind here are 23 thoughtful gifts to help friends and family use less disposable plastic.

Zero-Waste Gift Ideas

Eco-Friendly Bath and Beauty Products

For years and years, the humble bar of soap was everyone’s go-to for handwashing and bathing. Then along came plastic. Now we have body wash, bath gel, foaming hand soap, etc. All these products come in plastic bottles and half of what you pay for is water. 

What a waste! Especially when the bespoke bar soap options out there are outstanding.

Pop over to Etsy and search for “fun bar soap,” visit a local boutique bath shop, or make your own. Here’s a 15-minute “recipe” for watermelon slice soap

When selecting a soap, think about what you’ll say to your gift recipient. For example “I bought this…”

…because I know you love donuts, wine/whiskey/beer, all things chocolate. …for your kiddos to make bath time more fun. …because [their favorite beauty blogger] says this scrub bar is the best. …so your bathroom would be less boring.

If you want to spend a little more, include a shower soap saver bag to keep the soap shards from going down the drain, or a self-draining soap dish.

Here are a few more zero-waste bath and beauty gift ideas

Gifts to Reduce Plastic Use at Home

Laundry and Cleaning

metal drink bottle with hammerhead shark design

Food and Beverage

Purchasing and eating food generates a lot of plastic waste. Since 80 percent of marine debris is some form of plastic (according to a United Nations report), your gift can make a big impact.

reusable snack bags diswasher safe

Or, let your gift recipient choose what would work best for them. Buy a gift certificate to a store that sells sustainable products or a local zero-waste store (sometimes called a package free shop or refill shop). If there isn’t a refill store in your area, there are online options

Help Parents and Pet Owners Use Less Plastic

plastic bags that look like jellfish

Show People What They’re Missing (and What We All Stand to Lose)

The underwater world is an amaaaazing place. You know it, I know it, but other people don’t know what they’re missing. Open someone’s eyes to the other 2/3rds of our ocean planet and the amazing animals that live there by purchasing a gift voucher for a Discover Scuba Diving® pool session or PADI® Open Water Diver eLearning.

We usually encourage people to give experiences rather than things, but when it comes to persuading people to reduce their use of disposable plastic, the right gift can be a gateway to a lifetime of greener living. If you purchase an item featured in this gift guide from Amazon, the Amazon Associates revenue earned from that item will be donated to the PADI AWARE Foundation®.

See How We’re Working to Reduce Plastic Pollution

Go Deeper

6 Ways Divers Can Reduce Plastic Pollution in Our Oceans
Top 10 Ways to Kick the Plastic Habit
60+ Gift Ideas for Scuba Divers, Snorkelers, and Underwater Adventurers

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Original author: Megan Denny
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