You may have to send a package, maybe a gift, and you may be afraid that its contents will be damaged during the trip. To avoid this, it is very common to use wool pads, crackling plastic or polystyrene. Although they are comfortable and useful solutions, they are definitely not eco-sustainable.
So, how can you protect the content of your packages trying to be as green as possible?
The answer is quite simple. Just banish unsustainable packaging and choose alternative and eco–friendly solutions to make your shipments safer, focusing mainly on upcycling.
Some materials, in fact, can be reused several times before being thrown into the bin.
Newspapers, Magazines, Flyers, Office Paper
Whether crumpled, cut into thin strips or used to wrap objects, the pages of an already read newspaper or an old magazine are perfect for creating a protective cushion inside your packages. They are a cheap and smart alternative to polystyrene.
There are also situations that involve a huge waste of paper. Just think about all leafleting campaigns and promotional campaigns, with mailboxes invaded by brochures and flyers that nobody (or almost anyone) will read. Another example are the hundreds of useless prints and photocopies that are made in the offices. All this paper can be reused. You could crumple it, if it is not too thick, or cut it into strips and use it as a filler for your packages. However, in the case of sheets retrieved from the office, be careful that they are not important or confidential documents.
Fabrics and Old Clothes
Look at the bottom of your wardrobes and drawers. There may be clothes you no longer use because they are too old and maybe even a bit worn out. Whether it’s jeans, shirts or t-shirts with a few tears or stains – you thought you couldn’t do anything about them anymore, and you forgot them in a hidden corner of the closet, maybe behind a cumbersome pile of sweaters. However, these old and damaged clothes can still be useful to wrap the contents of your postal packages, especially if it is fragile, or to act as a soft filler. If you are a perfectionist, you can even try to customize the packaging. Just choose a fabric in a color that fits the contents of the package or the taste of the recipient!
Popcorn: an Organic Alternative to Polystyrene
A frankly original idea, even if a bit questionable, comes directly from the United States. It consists in replacing paper wool and polystyrene filling with freshly prepared popcorn. In this way, you get an organic alternative to protect the content of packages for friends. However, you should avoid this when shipping to strangers – it is difficult to imagine how they might react!