Buy, buy, buy. That’s what comes to mind when we think of Black Friday. Well, you have to admit that discounts can be tempting, but many times we end up buying things that we don’t really need. For this reason, in recent years movements have emerged that boycott this day completely or encourage sustainability. Here you will find ideas to transform your Black Friday into Green Friday.

What is Black Friday and why does it have such a negative impact on the environment?

To understand the importance of movements like Green Friday, we must know the origin of the so-called Black Friday. This day was created in the 80’s in the USA and is celebrated on the fourth Friday of November, the day after Thanksgiving, and traditionally it is also the day to start with Christmas shopping. During Black Friday, merchants apply special offers and discounts to their products, which, over the years, has encouraged excessive consumption and rampant shopping. This has triggered a series of harmful consequences on a psychological and behavioral level and, of course, on the environment.

shopping black friday
Photo by Olya Kobruseva en Pexels

One of the potentially most dangerous consequences of Black Friday is its way of empowering the “throwaway” culture, and also the fast/disposable fashion trend. This excessive consumption leads to irresponsible use of resources, more than our planet is able to handle. But that is not all. We must add the increase in CO2 emissions and the fact that the main types of products purchased during Black Friday are plastic toys and electronics. These are not only short-term usable items, but they also involve a lot of plastic to dispose of, both from the items themselves and from their packaging.

waste black friday
Photo by Tom Fisk en Pexels

All this has prompted different initiatives that keep us away from these impulsive and often harmful behaviors. and they bring us closer to a more conscious and sustainable consumption.

The rise of Green Friday

Green Friday is a movement that involves a few initiatives. One of them, for example, is Buy Nothing Day, where the idea is to refrain from making any purchase during the so called Black Friday. On the other hand, many companies choose to offer sustainable products and provide ideas on how to extend the life cycle of these products. Others, decide not to vary the price of their products, maintaining their quality, and choose to donate a part of their income to various associations that promote sustainability.

green friday
Photo by Daria Shevtsova en Pexels

So instead of being hooked on our phones, queuing outside the malls, competing for discounts and buying things we most likely don’t need… let’s be part of the change and turn our Black Friday into Green Friday!

Here are some sustainable ideas for this November 26:

1. Go for a walk, but most importantly, get in touch with nature

Get out of your house, connect with nature, get away from the city and the chaotic pre-holiday days. You will be doing both your mind and the environment a huge favor.

nature family
Photo by Foto de Alexandr Podvalny en Pexels

2. Spend quality time with family and friends

It is always a good time to spend time with family and create unforgettable moments with them. You can do some crafting, play games, or make your own Christmas decorations using recycled materials and take advantage of that time together to transmit the values ​​about sustainability, environmental impact, and conscious consumption.

family crafts
Photo by cottonbro en Pexels

3. Get creative with your Christmas presents

It’s not necessary to run to the mall this Black Friday to buy Christmas gifts, there are much greener ways to show our appreciation to our loved ones during this important time of the year. We can opt for Christmas baskets full of delicious local organic products, or give away local handmade products, or why not? something that you created yourself.

Or, you can gift an experience, such as a stay in a sustainable accommodation.

Photo by cottonbro en Pexels

4. Take the opportunity to make time for yourself

Christmas is coming and we always tend to worry about other people, to give, to spend time with our family, and all of that is wonderful. But, many times this can cause us stress, so we must prioritize our health and personal care. We can meditate, take a relaxing bath, do a little aromatherapy or make ourselves a facial or hair mask with natural products.

Photo by Los Muertos Crew en Pexels

5. Make a nice gesture for someone else

A gesture of kindness, no matter how small, can make a difference in a person’s day. Never take for granted the positive impact we can have on someone else’s life, so go for it! spread some joy!

Photo by RODNAE Productions en Pexels

6. Collaborate with an association in your community.

Take the opportunity to do some volunteer work, join a good cause, or better yet, start your own project to help your community.

volenteer work green
Photo by Ron Lach en Pexels

7. Take the time to create something wonderful.

The sky’s the limit … from reusing or giving a new life to something you already have at home, to creating a new recipe with your favorite organic products.

food cooking green
Photo by Ella Olsson en Pexels

8. Exercise

Yes, I know, the doctor tells you, your favorite magazine tells you, and well, we say it too. Exercise has a myriad of benefits.

Photo by Zen Chung en Pexels

9. Be a tourist in your own community

Sometimes you don’t have to go far to spend a beautiful and interesting day and experience something new. Haven’t you ever heard about staycation?

friends green travel
Photo by Helena Lopes en Pexels

10. Spread the word about Green Friday and be a part of the change

Share this movement with the people around you, be part of the change, encourage responsible and conscious shopping, such as buying local products to reduce the environmental impact caused by shipping and transport.

buy local green
Photo by Sam Lion en Pexels

As you can see, instead of compulsive shopping or excessive consumption, the Green Friday movement is based on the virtue of giving and investing in things that really matter and fill our lives.

Let us know your opinion on this. What do you normally do during this day?

Featured image by cottonbro, Pexels 

Author: Giulia Andreola

My name is Giulia, I am Italian by origin but I grew up in Costa Rica, and I lived for a few years in Spain. Traveling and learning about new cultures has made me the person I am today. I have always been passionate about sharing through writing, and even more so on positive and essential topics such as sustainability.
More posts by Giulia Andreola →

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