Make Black Friday Greener with These Five Eco-Friendly Ideas

Black Friday is a huge shopping day, with millions and millions (137 million in 2017) getting out early, often in the cold, to get the best deals of the season. It's not just huge for the shoppers, it's also huge for the stores, with more than 30 percent of annual retail sales happening between Thanksgiving and Christmas; Black Friday kicking it all off.

With so many people running around and so many goods being picked up, it's important to remember to stay eco-friendly at this time. While it may seem close to impossible to be eco-friendly on such a consumeristic day, we've compiled a list of five items to help get you through that consumerism and stay environmentally conscious.

Shop Thrift Stores

You'll get a lot more bang for your buck at a thrift store, and many of them even offer sales on Black Friday! Along with saving some cash, shopping at a thrift store is much better for the environment than buying new. Going thrift or consignment for Black Friday will give you plenty of options for clothing, accessories, home goods, electronics, and much more. It will save on shipping costs from shopping online and help the environment by reducing the need for new items to be produced. If you're in the Rockville, MD area, make sure you check out the Planet Aid Thrift Store!

Shop Small Business Saturday

Small Business Saturday is a movement that exists to help bring attention to small businesses around Black Friday, encouraging people to shop at local small businesses for the holidays rather than at large retailers. Supporting Small Business Saturday supports your local economy and helps the environment. How? Small stores often carry locally-sourced goods from smaller companies that are more aware of their environmental impact. Ask your local retailer what they're doing to be greener.

Look for Sustainable and Cruelty-Free Brands

Whether you're shopping at a small business or going out to the big stores for Black Friday, do your research first to determine which brands are environmentally-friendly and cruelty-free. Many brands are moving toward more eco-friendly and cruelty-free ways, which is great for helping the environment. Here's a list of some to get you started!

Bring Your Own Bags

This one is pretty simple. Help cut down on waste by bringing your own reusable bags when Black Friday shopping! Even when you're not shopping Black Friday, it's good to carry a reusable bag with you, just in case you find that perfect gift.

Take Public Transport

Instead of driving around on your own, using gas, hopping from store to store, try taking public transport! You'll save time by not needing to circle parking lots looking for a spot and you'll be able to relax going from one store to the next. If there isn't great public transport in your area, try car-polling with friends or family to save fuel.

Any small effort you're able to put into going eco-friendly on Black Friday will help make a huge impact when combined with others making small changes. Do what you can to go eco-friendly this Black Friday!