The big day is nearly here of course, so we wanted to fill you in on some last-minute tips on how to avoid waste as much as possible this Christmas Day. Including some festive inspiration on how to make the most of leftovers – welcome to the #ReuseRevoluton!
Food is arguably THE highlight of the festive season, yet 54 million plates of dinner will be thrown away during December…just in the UK. That’s including 11.3 million potatoes, 7.1million pigs in blankets, 740K Christmas puds, 263K turkey’s and enough gravy to fill an Olympic sized swimming pool!
We hate to waste anything, especially delicious food that has had a lot of work put into growing and creating it. Here’s some cracking tips straight from the Beauty Kitchen Team on how we spice up our leftovers:
- Brussel Sprouts – packed full of essential vitamins! Try chopping them up with some bacon, pancetta, or your leftover pigs in blankets, then frying them off with some onion for a tasty side dish
- Veggies - pile cooked veg onto one tray, top with cranberry sauce and left-over brie (or whichever festive cheese you desire), and roast until the cheese has melted for the ultimate Christmas tray bake!
- Turkey – Our favourite way to use up turkey is by either making a crunchy toastie (with spare stuffing or cranberry sauce and cheese) or mixing through a warming winter curry
- Nuts and dry fruit - a nice addition to your morning breakfast when topping your yoghurt or used up when baking your next cakes - we love this Fruit & Nut Cake recipe
- Roast Potatoes – just like double fried chips, double roasted potatoes are incredible. Add some onions, a pinch of thyme and some olive oil, and crisp up in the oven
- Christmas Pudding - in the very unlikely event that you have this left over, the good news is that Christmas pud is great for freezing. You could also try crumbling it up into some fresh custard, ready to be frozen into ice cream!
There’s bound to be some waste of course, whether it’s the stem of your brussel sprouts or the tips of your carrots. We recommend throwing these in your regular food bin, or better yet - creating your own compost to use in the garden.
The reason we created our Reusable Cotton Gift Bags & Gift Tins was to offer a sustainable and reusable gifting option that wouldn't need to be re-wrapped. However, it’s guaranteed that you’ll receive more than a few wrapped gifts from other people - so what do you do with all the waste paper?
As always, Reuse is the best option so get creative by creating some decorative bunting or streamers – either for now or to pack away to decorate with next Christmas! Some other quick ideas include, creating origami figures, wrapping plain notebooks to personalise them, shredding it into confetti or parcel filler… there’s so many ways to reuse excess wrapping.
In terms of recycling though, keep in mind the ‘Scrunch Test’. Yes, we mentioned this in our last blog, but we thought it was too important not to mention again - especially as we will use around 108 million rolls of wrapping after this year in the UK. The Scrunch Test will give you a hint to whether your wrapping paper can go in your recycling bin. If you scrunch the paper into a ball and it stays, odds are it can be recycled if the plastic tape is removed, whereas if it springs back then it can't be.
In all honesty, we can’t understand why the UK throws away around 500 tonnes of Christmas lights each year…when they could be easily Reused or fixed for next Christmas. Why not create a cosy atmosphere by hanging them round your living room or bedroom windows throughout the year?
Or you could tackle another issue at the same time – leftover glass bottles! There will no doubt be an abundance of empty glass bottles during the festive season, and they make the best rustic home accessories when paired with some fairy lights or Christmas lights inside. Keep this in mind for upcoming birthdays (or next Christmas) as these make great homemade gifts. The Beauty Kitchen Team also love reusing glass bottles as vases, to store fresh water or juices in the fridge, and also as vintage looking candlesticks.
Trees for Life
See our last blog on the real versus artificial tree debate, but whichever option you chose this year, please make sure you handle them in the most sustainable way possible rather than throwing them away after one use.
If you chose artificial, it’s simple…Reuse it again next year! The same with your beautiful decorations - or drop of at your local charity shop. If you chose a real tree which cannot be replanted, visit your local waste centre who may have arranged drop-off points for your trees, where they can shred them and make use of them as wood chippings in parks for example.
Our favourite option to think about for next year, is shopping at your local Zero Waste store (like Locavore) that might offer a rental service for your Christmas tree. As most of these trees are grown in the pots, they never have to be cut or discarded…they are a tree for life! The best thing is that they are much cheaper than buying a single use tree too.
To Re-Gift or Not to Re-Gift?
Hmm…it’s always a tricky situation to land in when you’ve been gifted something that doesn’t quite suit your personality. In our opinion, re-gifting is the perfect option! You can pass on your gift to someone who will enjoy it more than you, and in turn does not create waste with something that will get flung to the back of your cupboards or bin. Gifting to charity is also a lovely option to consider too, and we guarantee that nobody will be offended by this.
Beauty Kitchen Empties
If you’re lucky enough to have received some Beauty Kitchen treats for Christmas (or you treated yourself!), then you can sit back and relax because you don’t have to worry about any waste here! All of our products have been created with the end in mind, from our compostable pouches, wood pulp film, FSC approved cardboard, pre-cycled containers (that would have gone to waste through other businesses) & most importantly, packaging that's included in our Return·Refill·Repeat programme - where you can send back empty packaging for us to wash and reuse.
With 95% of beauty packaging being thrown out, we wanted to do something about this. Sustainability is for life, not just for Christmas after all! Find out how to return your empties to us for free here.
With all of this in mind, have a lovely Christmas and let’s get ready for a Waste Zero 2021!