Christmas is a time of giving, of extravagance and care-free self-indulgence – but our festivities can have a negative impact on the planet. No one wants the thought of harming the environment to dampen their celebrations, especially before Christmas Day even arrives.
Luckily, a huge number of retailers now champion sustainability, so we’re spoilt for choice when it comes to buying items like eco-friendly advent calendars.
To save you time, we’ve found the best ones available right now. Say goodbye to the standard bite-sized pieces of chocolate – these ones are packed with a huge variety of different treats, including popcorn, beauty products and, of course, gardening supplies. Some are even left empty for you to fill with your own goodies, so the options really are endless.
The best bit? Investing in an eco-friendly advent calendar doesn’t mean compromising on quality. If you’re looking for luxury, you won’t be disappointed here.
Our favourite eco-friendly advent calendars
Pukka Herbs Tea Advent Calendar
Herbal tea drinkers will be eager to get their hands on this quirky, eco-friendly advent calendar from Pukka. Once you’ve got it out of the box, you can unfold it to reveal 24 pockets, each filled with a different organic herbal tea.
There’s no shortage of unusual flavour combinations here: enjoy blends including ‘Elderberry and Echinacea’, ‘Wild Apple and Cinnamon’ and ‘Turmeric Gold’.
Despite the festive red, green and gold packaging, this advent calendar is made from recyclable materials. Plus, the tea blends are organic, non-GM and ethically sourced.
Like all the best advent calendars, you can hang this one up on your wall so you never miss a day.
L’Occitane Reusable Advent Calendar
- Buy now from L’Occitane (£160.00)
If you’d like to treat yourself or a loved one to a bit of luxury, try L’Occitane’s reusable, eco-friendly advent calendar. The pockets, which you can hang up on the wall, are made from recycled cotton and filled with the brand’s most popular toiletries and cosmetics.
L’Occitane is a brand to keep in mind when shopping sustainably. It collaborates with 130 French farmers and 10,000 pickers to improve the quality and sustainability of its product ingredients. And having already protected 150 different plant species, it’s on a mission to help safeguard 1,000 by 2025.
Plus, you can recycle empty L’Occitane packaging at any of the brand’s boutiques.
Seeds Advent Calendar
A seed advent calendar would make a fantastic early Christmas gift for anyone who is just getting into gardening.
Complete with 24 small packs of seeds for herbs, fruits and vegetables, this one makes a great starter kit for those who haven’t yet gathered their own stock of supplies. It also comes with useful instructions for sowing the seeds and harvesting the produce, alongside cooking tips for whipping up delicious meals.
Inside, you get 24 seed varieties, packaged in FSC-approved paper, as well as natural jute twine and clothes pegs to string them up in a festive display.
When you buy this eco-friendly advent calendar, you’re doing your bit to support vulnerable communities, as it’s put together in a workshop for people with disabilities.
Nkuku Alu Advent Calendar
- Buy now from Nkuku (£125.00)
When it comes to eco-friendly advent calendars, choosing a reusable one is probably the most sustainable option. And who could resist bringing this one out of storage every year?
With its beautiful glass and antique brass finish, it’s perfect for storing your own personal treats and treasures throughout the month.
You’ll find handy key-hole fittings on the back, so you can attach it to the wall for the month of December. Or leave it up all year round as a quirky décor piece.
Montezuma’s Christmas Truffle Advent Calendar
For anyone who isn’t quite ready to say goodbye to the classic chocolate advent calendar (count me in), Montezuma’s is here to save the day.
This pack includes five different truffle flavours made with dark chocolate and salted dulce de leche. They’re crafted in the UK, veggie-friendly and free from palm oil. Plus, everything comes in recycled and recyclable packaging.
Montezuma’s also has a Trading Fairly Policy to champion ethical and sustainable practices, and has supported the charity Children on the Edge for over a decade.
Luxury 24-Day Advent Calendar For Gardeners
Any veg patch owner or budding gardener would be thrilled with this themed, eco-friendly advent calendar. It comes with 24 vegetable and flower seed varieties, each in an illustrated envelope.
Useful added extras make this pack special. To help you on your growing journey, there are plant markers and a notebook, as well as recipe cards for when you’re ready to tuck into your produce.
Also, this advent calendar includes a ‘grow-your-own Christmas Tree’ for a festive touch.
The Body Shop ‘Share Love & Joy’ Ultimate Advent Calendar
Another indulgent option for anyone after a little bit of luxury, this eco-friendly advent calendar from The Body Shop would make a thoughtful gift.
As well as 25 goodies, including some full-sized beauty products, the retailer has included an ‘act of kindness’ inside each box to inspire goodwill during the festive season.
You’ll have the option either to recycle the calendar once you’ve opened the final treat, or keep the box to store bits and bobs throughout the year. With its detailed illustrations and pop-up characters, it’s certainly worthy of a permanent spot in our cupboards.
Garden Seed Advent Calendar
- Buy now from Etsy (£32.95)
Another seed advent calendar option is this pack on Etsy. It includes seeds for flowers and herbs as well as vegetables and chilli.
Packaged in a festive box with colourful daily envelopes, this is a cheerful Christmas countdown option. If you plan to send it as a gift for a green-fingered loved one, why not personalise the pack with their name and include a special message? The seller offers this service free of charge.
Joe & Seph’s Vegan Popcorn Advent Calendar
In a twist on the classic chocolate advent calendar, Joe & Seph’s has created this delicious set. You get 24 little packs of popcorn with eight festive flavours, including ‘Salted Maple’, ‘Toffee Apple and Cinnamon’ and ‘Coconut and Cacao’.
As an added bonus, they’re all vegan and free from palm oil and artificial flavours and preservatives. Plus, they come in recyclable packaging and everything is handmade here in the UK.
Flower Seed Advent Calendar
- Buy now from The Rose Press Garden (£45.00)
An advent calendar now; a garden of beautiful blooms next summer. This pack contains 24 different varieties of flower seeds for you to sow in the new year and create a mini meadow of colourful annuals, biennials and perennials.
Also included are pegs and twine to hang up the seed packs, useful growing advice and a special golden envelope for the 25th.
This eco-friendly advent calendar would make a fantastic gift, as the slimline packaging fits through letterboxes. Everything is recyclable and compostable, and the company behind it gives a £1 donation to the charity Greenfingers when you make your purchase.
Playin Choc Vegan Organic Chocolate 24-Day Advent Calendar
- Buy now from And Keep (£55.00)
It can seem particularly difficult to find sustainable toys and gifts for children, but this plastic-free advent calendar is made with recycled, recyclable and home compostable materials. Even the chocolates come wrapped in film made from wood pulp and plant cellulose.
Every day in the lead-up to Christmas, you can open a 3D cardboard puzzle toy and a 10g chocolate, made with organic, vegan and palm oil-free ingredients.
The carbon footprint behind this eco-friendly advent calendar is minimal, as it’s entirely sourced and created in Great Britain.
Want even more options?
You’re in luck. Our friends at BBC Wildlife and Countryfile have put together their own selections too.
There’s something for everybody!