If you are looking to make the move into having a more sustainable and eco-friendly Christmas, with as little plastic as possible, then this guide is for you!
Here at Little Nutkins, we specialise in wooden toys, organic unisex clothes, prints and gifts.
We pay significant attention to detail which involves making our foot-print as small as possible. This includes using sustainable and ethical materials, so more wood, cardboard and biodegradable materials, and less plastic. The clothes range we stock are also made from organic cotton!
Join us this Christmas and enjoy a plastic free shop (guilt free)!
Are Plastic Toys Bad For The Environment?
Often, plastic toys are a lot more affordable than eco-friendly wooden toys (so we definitely don't want to shame those that do buy them!), and the quality of these toys are often matched with the price.
Cheap and bad quality plastic toys tend to have a shorter lifespan and will end up broken, damaged and in the bin a lot more quickly than a plaything that has been made with stronger materials such as wood.
Though they do have a longer life expectancy than single-use plastics, it is likely they will eventually end up in landfill if not donated or can not be recycled. Though it varies depending on the type of plastic, it can take from 10 to 100 years for a product to decompose.
Plastic toys amount to 90% of the toys in the market today according to The World Counts, with the majority of these plastic products being non-biodegradable. Taking the next step to purchase ethical eco-friendly gifts that are durable, including plastic free toys will take the burden off of having to try to dispose of any plastic toys/products in the future.
Can Plastic Toys Be Recycled?
You may be wondering if it is possible to recycle plastic toys?
In recent years, it has started to become easier to recycle unwanted plastic toys that are damaged or that are no longer needed. But, it still is not that easy!
Whilst some recycling centres do accept plastic toys and games, be sure to dismantle the products as much as possible and don't put them out with your
normal home recycling.
RecycleNow has an option to check your nearest local recycling centre which lets you know what can be recycled at home or in your local area.
If you are struggling to find ways to recycle or dispose of your kids playthings or other plastic products.
Here are some more tips on what to do with your unused plastic toys:
Of course, this only applies if the product is still in full working condition and has some life left in it!
Charity shops, children shelters, or other children's foundations are often taking donations for any toys that can be given to a child in need.
Have some small doll house furniture that has been outgrown, or various other kids toys - from classic cars to plastic animal figures, or even some unique collection items? Or you just need room for extra storage?
There will always be someone out there willing to take them off your hands, for new gifts for their little ones, or even for an upcycling project!
Ebay, Facebook Marketplace, Vinted, or car boot sales are great ethical ways to get rid of any plastic products that are no longer needed, to make room for more eco-friendly gifts such as natural wooden toys. You can arrange for collection or delivery depending on what works best for you!
What Plastic Free Alternatives Are Available?
Most plastic products have a wooden alternative these days. Wooden toys have become increasingly popular and you can find all sorts of toys for all different ages. Other alternatives include cardboard (jigsaws, games, even dolls houses) and paper (craft sets, books, games and origami sets).
Wooden, cardboard and paper toys not only last longer and biodegrade quicker, plus they don’t use fossil fuel in their products (which plastic does!)
Tips For Giving Eco Friendly Gifts
Whether you will be giving planet friendly and plastic free gifts this Christmas or not, another considerable tip of being more sustainable is with your wrapping paper.
Some of us love to make our presents look presentable and fun, whilst some of us just hope for the best. Whichever one you may be, there are many ways to ensure your gift wrapping is plastic free and recyclable!
Kraft Brown Paper
A great option is ditching your usual (one time use) wrapping paper full of nasty dyes and plastics, for simple sustainably made craft paper. This is easy to get a hold of, can come in bulk and can be decorated with old ribbons, dried orange slices, or cinnamon sticks!
Looking for something a little more boujee? Why not try wrapping your Christmas gifts in a unique piece of fabric that will be consciously used by yourself, family, or friends for many years to come.
Another cost friendly option would be to use old newspapers, or even magazine pages to wrap up any Christmas presents. This look may not be for everyone, but it definitely gives that retro feel!
Not looking to wrap your presents in anything? Or maybe you are looking to get away from those flimsy cardboard gift bags?
Try out the Little Nutkins Christmas Toy Sacks, personalised with any name and can be used throughout the year - for birthdays, in playrooms, or even children's bedrooms.