Don’t get us wrong, we’re suckers for presents wrapped in bright, shiny packaging...it’s just that we really like the planet, too. And unfortunately, the whole holiday gift giving experience can create a whole lot of paper waste. As such, if you’re looking for a way to keep the festivities eco-friendly this year, recyclable wrapping paper is the way to go. But isn’t all paper recyclable, you ask? Actually, no—it turns out that many types of wrapping paper are destined for the trash bin. That’s why we’ve put together a list of our top recyclable wrapping paper picks, so you can feel all warm and fuzzy while cleaning up the carnage from that Christmas gift exchange. Happy (sustainable) holidays!
PSA: You Should Switch to Recyclable Wrapping Paper This Year—Here Are 15 Great Picks
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What types of wrapping paper are recyclable?
When it comes to eco-friendly gift wrapping, kraft paper—either brown or white—is your best bet. It’s also fairly easy to identify and totally ideal for gift wrapping since it’s durable, tear-resistant and easy to work with. If you think this style of gift wrap sounds a bit drab, fear not: Although kraft paper doesn’t typically shine or sparkle, it is available in an array of cute prints, so you needn’t worry about sacrificing style this holiday season.
What types of wrapping paper are not recyclable?
We mentioned this already, but if you were under the impression that all paper was recyclable, you were mistaken. Here’s a breakdown of what not to recycle after the presents have been ripped open:
- Wrapping paper with glitter, sequins or other textured embellishments
- Laminated wrapping paper
- Wrapping paper with foil
- Wrapping paper with adhesive gift labels (i.e., stickers) attached
- Wrapping paper with loads of Scotch tape attached
- Wrapping paper with plastic bows or ribbon still attached
15 Gorgeous Recyclable Wrapping Papers
1. The Doodle Factory Christmas Gift Wrapping Paper (set Of 10)
This U.K.-based paper company specializes in heavy-weight, 100 percent recycled gift wrap that features a wide range of eye-catching designs. The Doodle Factory’s holiday line is particularly charming and oh-so festive, and loyal customers report that this high-quality paper is a breeze to work with, too—namely because it doesn’t tear too easily. That said, this sturdy wrapping paper does arrive folded, so you might have to put a little effort into ironing out the creases in order to achieve a more aesthetically pleasing parcel.
2. Biobrown Christmas Wrapping Paper Sheets (set Of 6)
This kraft paper bundle features six thick and generously-sized (19.6 by 27.5 inches) sheets of wrapping paper, each of which boasts a different Christmas-themed graphic. The designs on this sturdy paper are classic and understated, and we’re big fans of the attractive matte finish that both looks and feels expensive (but isn’t). Best of all, the set even comes with recyclable gift tags, so you don’t have to ruin a good thing with those blasted sticky labels, and it even arrives folded flat for easy storage.
3. Jackson Wrapping Paper Holiday Kraft Wrapping Paper Set
The neutral colors and designs on this four-pack of kraft wrapping paper rolls are downright classy. Plus, you’ll get plenty of mileage out of this budget-friendly bundle—it boasts 120 square feet of paper with cutting grid lines on the back to minimize waste and up your wrapping game.
5. Wrappily Christmas Elephant Holiday Wrapping Paper
We’re kind of obsessed with the offbeat but festive elephant graphic on this wrapping paper, which is made from recycled newsprint material and, by all accounts, feels a lot like a newspaper, too. Of course, if you’re looking for something a little more traditional, you can always flip the reversible sheet over and opt for the simple Christmas tree design instead.
8. Jam Paper Assorted Kraft Christmas Wrapping Paper
Although this 125 square foot, 5-roll pack of wrapping paper is available in many different color and pattern options, the one pictured above is one of the only recyclable choices on offer. (The others are either laminated or have foil.) That said, this product gets rave reviews for its high quality and attractive appearance.
11. The Doodle Factory Recyclable Rudolph Wrapping Paper
Another style of 100 percent recycled (and recyclable) gift wrap from the Doodle Factory, with a festive Rudolph graphic that’s adorable and ideal for kids. Best of all, the thick, tear-resistant paper means less mess on Christmas morning.
13. Uniqooo Nutcracker Recyclable Gift Bags
Let’s be honest, wrapping presents is kind of a pain, which is why you should take a shortcut whenever possible and simply bag the goods instead. Presenting a Nutcracker gift bag you can put in the recycling bin, but looks so good you won’t want to.
14. Camkuzon Christmas Wrapping Paper
Scoop this bundle up and you’ll score 10 flat sheets and 48 square feet of cutesy wrapping paper with festive graphics that basically scream “Christmas with kids.” That said, it’s worth noting that reviewers say this paper, while plenty strong, is on the thinner side, and in some cases (i.e., depending on the packaging of the gift) not entirely opaque.