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Apply for one of the 15,000 jobs in retail ahead of the Christmas season

SHOP around for your next job . . . in retail.

While many stores are struggling amid the Covid crisis, others are booming as shoppers continue to seek out value buys.

NINTCHDBPICT000615464506Peter Powell LimitedThe Perfume Shop ‘temp’ Michelle Moran is a boss 20 years on[/caption]

To cope with the Christmas rush, lots of major retailers are now taking on temporary workers as store, warehouse and delivery staff.

Seasonal jobs are a great way to get back into work, earn extra cash for Christmas and develop skills to help you switch career.

Today we have more than 15,000 jobs to apply for, with thousands more coming in the weeks ahead.

Michelle Moran knows from experience how temporary Christmas work can develop into a rewarding retail career.

TEAM PLAYER

She took a festive job with The Perfume Shop 20 years ago and now, at 37, is a retail operations area manager.

Michelle, from Urmston in Manchester, says: “I shopped at The Perfume Shop and I’m passionate about perfume, so when I saw the Christmas job I had to apply. I instantly loved the job and made it clear to my manager I was interested in a permanent role.

“It was competitive and lots of other people were interested but I worked hard, was a team player, took on extra shifts and made sure I was passionate and committed through the contract.

“Retail is underestimated. It is hard work, the hours can be long and, as with all roles, it can be stressful. However, it is also incredibly rewarding. You have to be passionate about your products and about the brand you are an ambassador for.”

This year THE PERFUME SHOP is taking on 250 Christmas sales assistants. You can find out more at theperfumeshopjobs.com.

POUNDLAND needs 1,000 store temps, with some roles becoming permanent after Christmas. Retail director Austin Cooke said: “There’s no better place to be in retail right now.” Apply at poundlandcareers.co.uk.

Clothing chain NEXT needs 1,165 sales consultants, managers and delivery assistants. Apply at careers.next.co.uk.

JOHN LEWIS is getting into the Christmas spirit with thousands of roles up for grabs, including shop staff, operations support, warehouse, LGV drivers and distribution. See jlpjobs.com.

And HALFORDS wants 500 temps nationwide. Andy McBride, group head of resourcing and reward, said: “Halfords is looking for festive colleagues who will enjoy providing great customer service and love being part of a team.”

To apply, speak to the manager in your local branch of Halfords.

Hit the road

DO you have the drive? CROWN COURIERS is searching for 400 self-employed drivers, with flexible hours available. Apply at crowncouriers.co.uk/driver.

  • Delivery giant DPD has 1,000 opportunities in various roles. See dpd.co.uk.
  • MARKS & SPENCER wants to bring in 500 warehouse operatives at Castle Donington, Leics. Apply at staffline.co.uk.
  • BAG a job with ICELAND. The supermarket chain has 5,000 festive roles for home delivery drivers, retail assistants and online pickers. Apply at icelandcareers.co.uk.
  • WAITROSE needs thousands of festive helpers. Roles include supermarket assistants, warehouse support and drivers. Begin your search now at jlpjobs.com.

jobspot

CHEMIST chain BOOTS is hiring Christmas staff all around the country. Find out more about what’s available and apply now at boots.jobs/retail/christmas.


Maisie’s an original

NINTCHDBPICT000614095775Adrian SherrattMaisie Selway joined The Original Factory Shop as a temp in 2017 – she is now assistant manager[/caption]

THOUGH only 20, hardworking Maisie Selway has already been promoted to assistant manager at The Original Factory Shop.

She joined the retailer in November 2017 as a temp.

Maisie says: “I was studying fashion at college at the time, while working part-time as a waitress.

“But due to my studies, I was really keen to develop my retail and fashion experience. I knew Christmas would be busy, so I took a chance and handed in my CV.”

Maisie, from Stroud, Gloucs, adds: “Retail is fast-paced, especially at Christmas, so it’s important to be a quick learner and use your initiative. The role helped me grow as a person and I’m far more confident now.”

This year The Original Factory Shop plans to hire 50 Christmas temps. See tofscareers.com.


jobspot

CLOTHING retailer MATALAN needs hundreds of seasonal temps for its stores nationwide. Begin your search today at matalan.jobs.


Be early and be flexible

ONE in five festive temps land a permanent job with their firm in January.

Here, Steve McCall of Newcastle City Jobcentre reveals his tips for turning a temp gig into long-term work. 

40f23680 51cc 4372 8ec6 63afd3aac35bSteve McCall of Newcastle City Jobcentre shares his tips for going from temp to perm

  1. Show ambition and the right attitude. Volunteer for extra shifts and let managers know you are keen on a permanent job. 
  2. Be flexible. Come into work early and be ready to work a little beyond your finish time if you need to complete a task. It will be noticed.

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  1. Talk to colleagues. Ask how they started with the company. Showing a genuine interest will help you stand out.
  2. Be friendly, professional and dress smartly. Even if colleagues are more “relaxed”, stay professional. Treating the position as an extended interview will give the impression you belong there. If you get into that mindset from the start, your supervisor will sit up and take notice.
  3. Look ahead. Even if you don’t clinch a permanent job, you will get a reference, practical experience and examples you can take to the next job application. No Christmas job is ever wasted.

GOT a story? RING The Sun on 0207 782 4104 or WHATSAPP on 07423720250 or EMAIL exclusive@the-sun.co.uk

RETRO: Viene La feria y la Navidad ¿Te acordáis de las gaitas de Joselo? (Video)

 

Josélo o José Diaz se recuerda por su progrma de humor, sin embargo, ya por estas fechas eran muy populares sus gaitas de «Las locas». La fórmula era muy sencilla: un buen arreglo musicar en el cual se mezclan chistes animados en varias voces. Como ya se va octubre y viene el mes de la feria de La Chinita que se pega con La Navidad, para aquellos nostálgicos les compartimos este audio de Youtube posteado en el canal de ottoniel parra.

 

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La entrada RETRO: Viene La feria y la Navidad ¿Te acordáis de las gaitas de Joselo? (Video) se publicó primero en noticia al dia.

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Album Review: Dolly Parton – A Holly Dolly Christmas

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Dolly reinforces the joy of Christmas with her famous friends

When considering the greatest country musicians to ever grace this planet, a few names come to mind: George Jones, Merle Haggard, Willie Nelson and Dolly Parton. A living legend and highly respected member of the music community, Parton’s legacy transcends borders, genres and lifestyles. Dolly released her first album Hello, I’m Dolly in 1967 and rose to fame almost instantly. Though mainly pushed forward by her own personality and talent, Dolly was mentored by some of the biggest names in the industry at the time, including Porter Wagoner.

Since the day her debut album released, apt words to describe her greatness have become harder and harder to find. Not only has Dolly Parton composed over 3,000 songs, but among these songs (“I Will Always Love You,” “9 to 5” and “Jolene”) some have come to be some of the most well-known and beloved tracks of all time. In addition, Parton has had 25 different tracks hit Number 1 on Billboard’s country charts earning her the record for most from a female country singer. However, she is not just a single machine; her albums reflect her greatness as well with 44 albums being slated Top 10, a record for any artist regardless of gender. In the last years, Dolly has been inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame and was honored at the 50th Annual Country Music Awards. Dolly has also acted in, produced and directed multiple TV shows and movies.

Sticking with her larger-than-life persona known to try new things, Dolly Parton has decided to release a Christmas album this year called A Holly Dolly Christmas. Unlike most Christmas albums, however, this one has a star-studded cast. With features from both Billie Ray and Miley Cyrus, Willie Nelson, Michael Bublé and even Jimmy Fallon, Parton has attempted to spread Christmas cheer to many of her friends. In addition, there are many original Christmas songs on here that are not the same tired songs people hear on the radio every December.

One of these such songs listeners find at the beginning of the album, “Christmas Is.” Dolly Parton reflects on the great things about Christmas with the help of her goddaughter, Miley Cyrus. She sings Christmas is “all about kindness, love and compassion.” Nothing less would be expected from the motherly presence that Dolly gives country music. She then continues on to say that Christmas is “to rejoice in His glory, the great Christmas story, and to the all that you’re sharing and with.”

In the next song, Dolly does a little “Cuddle Up, Cozy Down Christmas” with the always-talented Michael Bublé. A swingy, jazzy take on a Christmas love story, Parton and Bublé go back and forth agreeing with each other about how much they would like to “cuddle up and cozy down” with each other. A musically grand piece filled with horns, piano, chimes and strings, Bublé is able to put his big-band touch on this album.

The most interesting part of the album comes with Parton and Jimmy Fallon’s rendition of “All I Want For Christmas Is You.” Beginning with a breathy, corny yet self-aware monologue in typical Dolly fashion, she says “I’ve always wanted to do a duet with you, so, you can go first…right after me.” They then both launch into a prototypical performance of “All I Want For Christmas Is You,” but with a twist. When Dolly sings, you can hear Fallon in the background ad-libbing, almost as if it were a hip-hop song. They then join together and find an incredible harmony just before Jimmy Fallon’s solo. Taking the second verse, Dolly ad-libs behind his surprisingly-talented voice. Though the melody and tempo are similar to the original, Parton and Fallon are able to spice it up with their personalities.

Continuing with her list of famous duet partners, Parton teams up with Billie Ray Cyrus on “Christmas Where We Are.” Having more of a pop feel than her other songs on the record, this one is reminiscent of the early 2010’s “Bro-Country” craze. This song outlines the joy of Christmas no matter where one is—if it is spent with people with whom one cares about, Christmas will be fine right “where we are.” Cyrus’s verse and consistent harmonies help along the track.

In a stunning show of some of country music’s most prolific artists ever, Dolly Parton and Willie Nelson take on Roy Orbison’s 1963 classic, “Pretty Paper.” Electing for a more traditional feel, chimes and horns are given up for a slowed down, classic country twang moved by sliding steel guitars and Nelson’s musical artifact, his guitar, Trigger. Nelson and Parton’s voices play back and forth, dancing unhurriedly on top of this classic Christmas melody.

A Holly Dolly Christmasis a mixture between classic Christmas nostalgia, new Christmas memories and a whole bunch of that Dolly Parton personality that pulls everyone who sees or hears her in. At the end of the day though, it is a Christmas album. While usually bland and played-out, Dolly is able to do what little she can—add her personality, make new songs and recruit other stars—with an idea that has run its course time after time. Because of these changes, she has made a Christmas album that ranks higher than most others.

Christmas party flyer retro printing and decoration postcard

Christmas party flyer retro printing and decoration postcard

Christmas party flyer retro printing and decoration postcard

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Kitchen & Dining Interior Inspiration Ahead of Christmas

Every year interior design trends change but generally take inspiration from the past. The interior trends of today have been shaped by those that came before the likes of indoor plants, which were popular in the 1970s and the velvet fashion which comes from the 1920s.

As Christmas is on the way, many of us are looking to refresh our kitchen and dining spaces. This post will look at popular trends through two of the most desired decades and provide tips on how you can apply them to your modern-day kitchen and dining décor ahead of the holiday season.

Kitchen trends from the 1940’s

The image above shows how The Great British Bake Off tent may have looked if aired in the 1940s. This image was created by Age Co and shows just how far interiors have come. What we can take from this is the pastel shades and patterned flooring that have come back into style over recent years.

Kitchen & Dining Interior Inspiration Ahead of Christmas

Photo by Wren & Willow, Inc.

Your kitchen is a multipurpose space which needs to be both practical and inviting for guests, so its design is vitally important. The 1940s kitchen was mainly practical, but one thing is for sure pastel colour schemes work well in this space.

A pastel colour scheme can be warm but also light and airy which make them perfect for a kitchen – that’s our first tip!

Kitchen & Dining Interior Inspiration Ahead of Christmas

Photo by New Spaces

The second tip to add some 1940s style to your kitchen is to have a contrasting floor which will make that pastel shade standout. Patterned flooring is back in style so don’t be afraid to give it a go.

The 1940s appliances leave a lot to be desired these days but having fancy utensils and pretty tea towels on display is still important for many of us. The other element of a 1940s kitchen that everyone seems to want again is the pantry, as more people want space over obstructing cupboards and drawers.

Kitchen & Dining Interior Inspiration Ahead of Christmas

Photo by Chi Renovation & Design

1970’s dining room trends

You may recognise the above image from the popular soap opera Emmerdale, but this dining space has taken inspiration from the 1970s, with the mustard yellow walls, patterned wallpaper and dark furnishings.

Kitchen & Dining Interior Inspiration Ahead of Christmas

Photo by Caroline Sharpnack

Although the accents of the 70s are subtle in this image, they are still there and here’s how you can recreate this 70’ style seamlessly with your modern-day home.

Dark brown furniture was all the rage in this decade as it was a contrast to the patterned wallpaper and flooring that was in most homes during this period. Now you can find a lot of this ‘old fashioned’ furniture in second hand or antique stores. Some of the items can fit nicely in homes that have large rooms, but other may need a little sanding down and touching up.

Kitchen & Dining Interior Inspiration Ahead of Christmas

Photo by STRUKTR Studios Photography

When it comes to choosing your paint or wallpaper don’t shy away from crazy patterns or bold colours, after all we are on about the decade of funky lights!

Lighting is key to this design, low level lighting such as lamps help create a warm environment whilst colourful light bulbs remind us to have fun.

Kitchen & Dining Interior Inspiration Ahead of Christmas

Photo by Kristie Barnett, The Decorologist

As the years pass, we find that trends come back around just like those from the 40s and 70s, so this Christmas let’s make our homes feel comfy and cosy with nostalgic design. If you have any tips of tricks for kitchen and dining room interior decor then let us know.

The post Kitchen & Dining Interior Inspiration Ahead of Christmas appeared first on YourAmazingPlaces.com.

10 productos estrella para comprar en el Black Friday y Navidad

Como suele ser habitual desde hace algunos años, cuando se aproxima noviembre, las personas empezamos a buscar todos aquellos productos que tenemos en mente comprar aprovechando los descuentos del Black Friday y de la época navideña. Este año será algo diferente debido a la situación en la que estamos metidos por culpa del Covid. Todo apunta a que este año el presupuesto de los españoles será algo meno, por lo que habrá que acertar con las elecciones de los productos a comprar. Por este motivo, hoy os dejamos un listado de 10 productos que brillarán tanto en el Black Friday como en la Navidad.

PS5 y Xbox Series

consola psp5

Las nuevas videoconsolas de Sony y Microsoft prometen ser un bombazo de ventas en esta campaña, convirtiéndose en los regalos estrella de los más pequeños, y no tan pequeños. El problema es que sus precios serán elevados, por lo que estos días será buen momento para hacerse con algún modelo anterior.

Patinetes eléctricos

Xiaomi Mi Scooter

Hace tiempo que el patinete eléctrico ha dejado de ser un juguete para convertirse en un gran medio de transporte para la ciudad. Hoy en día el Xiaomi Mi Scooter es el rey indiscutible de la categoría pero se pueden encontrar otras opciones en guías de compra de patinetes eléctricos que tengan una buena relación calidad-precio.

Pulseras de Actividad / Relojes GPS Runners

Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 5

Hace tiempo que se pusieron de moda debido a que se encargan de recoger información sobre nuestra actividad diaria. Entre todas las que nos podemos encontrar la Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 5 se ha convertido en la más popular.

En un escalón por encima se encuentran los relojes deportivos con GPS que como advierte su nombre permiten ver el trayecto que se realiza en los entrenamientos y sirven de gran ayuda para saber que distancia se ha recorrido. El Garmin 735XT Forerunner es el reloj GPS más demandado por los runners en estos momentos tratándose de un reloj con una calidad-precio más que óptima.

Smartphones

iPhone 12

Otro de los regalos que siempre están en auge en estas épocas son los smartphones y es que esta tecnología vive una imparable evolución en prestaciones. Con la llegada de nueva tecnología y nuevas redes como la 5G los consumidores demandan cada vez terminales más avanzados para estar a la última.

En este sentido el regalo estrella en cuanto a Smartphones está previsto que sea el iPhone 12 que se podrá comprar a partir del 27 de Octubre.

Altavoces inteligentes

Amazon Echo Dot

Hablar a un altavoz y que este programe la calefacción, ponga una alarma o encienda las luces, etc. Lo que hasta hace unos años parecía de ciencia ficción hoy ya es una realidad. Cada vez se ven más altavoces inteligentes en los hogares españoles y es que darles órdenes parece que es adictivo. Lo más populares sin contar soluciones de domótica profesionales son Amazon Echo Dot y Google Home.

Auriculares inalámbricos

AirPods de Apple

Hace poco que vivieron su “boom” y fueron uno de los productos más regalados pero de nuevo vuelven a estar de moda con los AirPods de Apple. Estos se integran por completo en el ecosistema Apple y ofrecen una calidad de sonido excepcional.

Robot de cocina

Monsier Cuisine

Para los la cocina les supone un auténtico dolor de cabeza, estos robots se han convertido en sus grandes aliados. Si hasta hace unos años el robot de cocina más solicitado era la Thermomix hoy y debido en gran parte a la diferencia de precio le ha cogido el relevo la Monsier Cuisine.

Freidoras sin aceite

Princess AeroFryer XXL

Las freidoras sin aceite llevan poco tiempo en el mercado y al principio parecían una moda pasajera pero nada más lejos de la realidad. Estas consiguen freír con una cantidad mínima de aceite rebajando sustancialmente las kcal de los alimentos. Un dato: 100gr de patatas fritas caseras pueden estar por encima de las 300kcal mientras que en una freidora sin aceite apenas llegaran a las 88kcal.

La Princess AeroFryer XXL es la opción más popular en estos momentos debido a su gran capacidad y perfecto funcionamiento. Por sus medidas resulta ideal para todo tipo de familias.

Aspiradoras sin cable

Dyson V11 Absolute

Son ideales para pisos donde la superficie a aspirar no sea demasiado grande. La Dyson V11 Absolute aunque no es para todos los bolsillos es el estándar en este tipo de electrodomésticos. Si se va de presupuesto es recomendable leer una guía y ver que otras opciones en aspiradora sin cable existen y que se ajusten a las necesidades.

Planchas de Pelo

Remington Kerating Therapy Pro

Son un clásico pero es que cada año se siguen regalando y si se conoce a alguien a quien le guste cuidarse el cabello y no tenga plancha de pelo son el regalo ideal.

Sin duda, la plancha más popular es la ghd, pero en los últimos tiempos la Remington Kerating Therapy Pro con mucho menos coste y resultados totalmente satisfactorios suponen una opción ideal de compra.

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J.C. Penney hopes to emerge from bankruptcy by Christmas

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J.C. Penney believes it will emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings before Christmas, under a proposed ownership agreement that would save tens of thousands of jobs.

The beleaguered, century-old retailer said Wednesday it has filed a draft purchase agreement with the nation’s two biggest mall owners. Substantially all of J.C. Penney’s retail and operating assets will be acquired by Brookfield Asset Management and Simon Property Group through a combination of cash and new loan debt.

Details of the $800,000 million deal that will save roughly 70,000 jobs and avert a total liquidation first emerged last month during a bankruptcy hearing. During the hearing, a lawyer representing J.C. Penney said Simon and Brookfield will spend $300 million for the acquisition then take on another $500 million in debt on behalf of the retailer.

The deal goes before a bankruptcy judge in Texas on Monday.

If the J.C. Penney deal is approved, the company would be the latest brand to fall under Simon Property ownership. Earlier this year, Simon Property bought men’s clothier Brooks Brothers, fast fashion retailer Forever 21 and denim store Lucky Brand. Simon Property owns most of the malls where these stores have been anchored.

Lord & Taylor to close all its stores 00:22

J.C. Penney — which even before the coronavirus pandemic struggled to compete with Amazon, Target and Walmart — became one of the largest retailers to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy this year amid a wave of store closures forced by the spread of COVID-19 infections. About $4 billion in debt has weighed down J.C. Penney and the company has closed numerous stores in recent years in order to cut costs.

In its most recent quarter, J.C. Penney’s sales fell nearly 8%, to $3.4 billion, from the same period a year ago. Income was $27 million, down from $75 million a year ago. The company missed two debt payments, one in April and one in May, which many analysts saw as a harbinger of bankruptcy.

CEO Jill Soltau said in May that bankruptcy «is the best path to ensure that JCPenney will build on its over 100-year history to serve our customers for decades to come.» The Texas-based retailer will shed nearly a third of its stores in the next two years as it restructures, leaving just 600 locations open.

More than two dozen retailers have filed for bankruptcy since the pandemic including restaurants, gyms and other businesses. Neiman MarcusJ. Crew, Hertz, Ruby Tuesday and Gold’s Gym all blamed their financial woes on the pandemic. Lord & Taylor ended a nearly 200-year-old legacy after filing for bankruptcy in August.

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No more plastic pollution: How to give a Christmas present to the Earth

Does our planet like Christmas?

If Earth could speak, I’m sure it would say “Hell, no!”

Sorry for wearing my Grinch hat, but I’d be much greener than Santa Claus by all means!

Instead of writing a letter to Santa this year, I took my ambition up a notch and wrote this post to all human beings.

Christmas

What do I ask for?

Join the pledge for an eco-friendly Christmas in alternative to the wasteful model imposed by our society.

Keep reading to find out how. 

An unwanted gift: Plastic 

Who has never snorted at an unwelcome present?

My worst Christmas ever was when I received three pairs of socks from my auntie. I was ten-year-old. End of the sad Christmassy story.

For Christmas 2018, Australian spent $400 million worth of unwanted gifts, with pyjamas, slippers, underwear and socks (dear auntie, hope you’ll read this!) on the blacklist.

In the UK, nearly 1 out of 5 unwanted gifts got landfilled last year.

Yet, the most unpleasant present was given to the Earth in 1907 by Leo Baekeland, who invented Bakelite, the first fossil fuels-made plastic.

Since then, this handy yet harmful material spread across the planet like Coronavirus. And like for COVID-19, we haven’t found a vaccine for it yet.

Plastic became so popular mostly due to its durability. Unfortunately, our not-so-far-sighted friend Leo (and many others after him) did not consider plastic’s best quality would have turned out to be its worst flaw.

Once it’s disposed of, we don’t easily get rid of plastic. To have an idea of its persistence, plastic litter produced in 1960 is still around!

The plastic gift was definitely more than welcome for giant corporations such as Coca cola: Currently the biggest plastic polluter in the world.

The plastic lurking around the Christmas market

It doesn’t feel like Christmas until markets are up, right? I do like them myself, but we need to be aware of what we buy. Why?

Because of the tons of plastic waste we create! Sadly, useful presents can still generate a pile of junk, plastic being the major component of it most of the time.

Let’s look at some facts about the plastic pollution caused by the staple of our Christmas shopping.

plastic pollution

  1. Packaging

Single-use plastics in gift packaging contribute to exacerbate the plastic pollution of our environment. As of 2018, the amount of not recycled plastic packaging produced only in the UK at Christmas weighed nearly as much as 215,000 polar bears.

Also, paper used for wrapping up our presents is rarely only paper. It often has plastic coatings and microplastics-made glitter on it.

  1. Cards

Sorry to say, but Christmas cards are not plastic-free either. Most cards are glittered and come in a plastic envelope. Given that over 2 billion Christmas cards are sent each year only in the US, our oceans will receive a huge microplastic present this December.

  1. Jumpers

What’s wrong with Christmas jumpers? Nothing, except 75% of them are made of acrylic (in other words, plastic!). Blame fast fashion for that! Whenever you wash them, your funky jumpers will release plastic fibers (more microplastics) into your drains, which will be fed to fish and other ocean wildlife at the end of their journey. 

  1. Crackers

Right, these make me crack up. They’re cracking if you want to add up to plastic pollution in just a second! I feel for crackers’ fans, but these should be the first items to be crossed out from our shopping list.

plastic free

How to have a plastic-free Christmas

Banning Christmas would be too radical, but we could ban plastic from Christmas instead!

I’ve gathered a few tips to minimise your festive plastic pollution below.

  • The less, the merrier

I can’t stress this enough.The most effective way to reduce plastic waste is to cut down on unnecessary shopping.

The less you have, the merrier you’ll be. Give people experiences rather than objects. That’s essentially the mantra of minimalism philosophy and it’s proven by research.

  • Circular Santa

Although plastic recycling is not working, you can “recycle” your plastic-containing unwanted Christmas presents by re-gifting them. However, recycling is not the only option to recirculate stuff. Instead of swapping (new) presents at Christmas, you can swap clothes all year around. Life is funny. Now I would swap anything with my younger self for those pairs of socks! Clothing is just one option, but you can swap any other unwanted gift with friends and family. Be creative with your wrapping and decorations. You can reuse old newspapers, fabrics (furoshiki) or even a scarf to fold your presents. If you are a crafty person, have a go at making wreaths, eco-glitter, and edible Christmas decorations.

green gift

  • Green gifts

I’m going to take off my Grinch outfit and turn into a Santa’s sustainable helper.

Once you’ve cleared your pile of undesired presents, you can go through the following list of eco-friendly Christmas gift ideas.

  • Go virtual

Why not get a gift card?

Make a donation on someone’s behalf to charities involved in the fight against climate change, such as WaterAid, Send a Cow, or Friends of Earth.

Is your girlfriend an animal lover? Adopt an endangered species for her via the WWF.

A few environmentally sound suggestions for climate-change-savvy friends: drought-resistant crops, worms for composting or super solar street light.

  • A zero plastic waste boost

A guppy friend bag will retain the plastic fibers released by Christmas jumpers and any other synthetic clothes. Using it will minimise the plastic pollution in the ocean.

Is your dad still buying bottled water?

No presents for him!

Just kidding. Though, seriously, give him a metal flask this Christmas and tell him to bring it with him everywhere all the time. The Refill app will find the nearest refilling station for him.

  • Not a Christmas tree, but a tree for Christmas

Besides being made of non-recyclable plastic (PVC), a fake Christmas tree’s carbon footprint is more than twice that of a real one.

Although you could rent/adopt or buy a real tree from sustainable sources, it would be much better, cheaper and easier to plant a tree online.

  • Plant the plastic-free seed in your children’s mind

Let’s be honest. Kids demand something from their Santa-disguised parents. So, what better present than a book to learn about the environment? Otherwise, there are plenty of ideas for eco-friendly gifts for the little ones.

The end (of a crazy year)

2020 has been a tough year for the whole Earth. More than ever, at Christmas we should give our most precious gift to our beloved: Time. Be minimalist and make your shopping plastic-free as suggested above. Doing so, you’ll give the planet the special gift it deserves: No more plastic pollution!

The best pre-lit artificial Christmas trees [Silicon Alley Insider]

  • Pre-lit artificial Christmas trees come in an array of sizes, colors, themes, and levels of quality.
  • When choosing which tree is best for your home, it’s important to consider your budget, space, and other holiday decor.
  • The best overall pre-lit artificial tree we’ve found is the Balsam Hill Classic Blue Spruce Pre-Lit LED Artificial Tree, which is full and lush, easy to assemble, and made to last for more than one season.

Growing up on a farm in the Blue Ridge Mountains, our Christmas tree came straight from our woods. 

That magical experience waned when I moved farther south where the weather could be 80 degrees as I picked out a semi-live tree from a lot and tried to secure it to the top of a compact car. The final death knell rang the year I could not get the tree into the stand and ended up trying to whittle the trunk with a screwdriver and a hammer. It was time to move to an artificial tree I could manage.

My first artificial tree looked fake from even 3 miles away. Fortunately, tree designers and manufacturers have gotten better at producing more realistic branches and needles and I’ve gotten savvier at selecting trees that fit my space. 

After a few years of attempting to wrangle lights onto my artificial tree, I opted for a pre-lit tree. After several years of owning a pre-lit artificial tree I’ve done the research to know what to look for. For a full rundown of what to consider when buying an artificial tree, jump to the bottom of this guide.

Here are the best pre-lit artificial Christmas trees:

Updated 10/21/20. We updated prices, links, and formatting.

The best pre-lit Christmas tree overall Balsam Hill Bellevue 7 ft. Blue Spruce Pre lit LED Artificial Tree

Balsam Hill

The lush and full 7-foot Balsam Hill Classic Blue Spruce features 850 LED clear lights and 2,366 branch tips with realistic needles.

Even if you’ve never been to Colorado, you’ll love their state tree, the blue spruce, with its blue-green, light grey, and moss green needles. Balsam Hill captured the majesty in their Classic Blue Spruce Pre-lit LED Artificial Christmas Tree. The 7-foot height (without a tree topper) and 53-inch width are perfect for a statement tree in your home.

Balsam Hill trees are exceptionally realistic because they have so many branch tips that can be fluffed and spread to create fullness. The PVC needles are soft, pliable, and flat just like real spruce needles. The sturdy branches are hinged for quick and easy setup.

My favorite feature is the lights. While many LED clear lights are dazzlingly bright, Balsam Hill uses Candlelight LED bulbs that cast a soft glow more like an incandescent bulb. There are 850 hand-strung lights attached to the branches. The tree comes with extra bulbs and fuses, and the lights are designed to be continuously on if one bulb on a strand goes out.

The tree comes with a tree stand with rubber, scratch-proof feet, storage bags, and my favorite, an on/off foot pedal so you don’t have to crawl under the tree every night to unplug it.

Pros: Easy assembly, 2,366 branch tips, 850 LED lights, realistic color and needles, 3-year limited warranty

Cons: Time must be spent to spread and fluff the branches to achieve fullness

The best narrow silhouette pre-lit Christmas tree Puleo International 7.5 ft. Slim Fraser Fir Pre lit Artificial Tree

The Home Depot

The Puleo International Slim Fraser Fir Pre-Lit Artificial Tree provides all of the fullness of a perfectly shaped Christmas tree within a slim silhouette.

There are spaces like entryways, tight corners, and small apartments where a wide Christmas tree just won’t work. Most artificial trees come in full, slim, or pencil widths. The Puleo International Slim Fraser Fir Pre-Lit Artificial Tree stands at 7.5 feet tall and gives the illusion of a wide, full tree but in a slender 42-inch diameter.

When a friend moved from a large home into a patio home, her previous tree just wouldn’t work in the living room unless everyone wanted to stand around the tree for the entire season because there was no room for chairs. So we went shopping for a more slender tree. Pencil trees just didn’t offer enough branches to accommodate her favorite ornaments, but this slim Puleo International Fraser Fir Artificial Tree was perfect.

The 7.5-foot tree is pre-strung with 500 lights and has 1,453 branch tips to create the illusion of a wider, full tree. The tree is simple to assemble with just three sections to put together. The included tree stand is sturdy and the lights are soft white, UL-listed. The lights are «continuous on» so that if one bulb goes out, the others stay on.

Pros: 500 lights, 1,453 branch tips, 5-year warranty for tree, 2-year warranty for lights

Cons: Lights are not LED, no storage bag included

The best snow-covered pre-lit Christmas tree 7.5 ft. Flocked Lexington Pine Pre lit LED Artificial Tree

The Home Depot

If you enjoy a white Christmas, the Flocked Mixed Pine Pre-Lit LED Tree will make you feel like you’re in Vermont.

This charming tree looks like you just brought it in from the snowy woods. But the benefit of a flocked artificial tree dusted with snow is that it won’t melt and leave puddles on your floor.  When I was growing up, we added a wintry-touch to live trees with a can of spray-on snow. I can tell you it was quite messy, and cleaning the floor was not simple. So I was thrilled to discover I could have the look without the extra effort and mess.

Standing 7.5 feet tall, this pine is pre-strung with 500 LED lights in a warm white. The 1,586 branch tips are accented with flocked pine cones to add to the natural, woodsy look. There’s still plenty of room for your ornaments and maybe a red bird or two peeping out of the branches.

The tree sets up quickly because the plugs for each section of lighted branches are located inside the tree pole, or trunk. As you add each section, the lights illuminate automatically as you connect the plugs. The tree features an on/off foot pedal for convenience, and extra lights and fuses are included.

Pros: 7.5 feet tall, 1,586 branch tips, 500 LED pre-strung lights, sprinkled with pine cones, foot pedal for light control

Cons: Flocking can shed during setup

The best silver pre-lit Christmas tree wondershop silver tinsel artificial christmas tree

Target

If you love a retro-modern holiday style, then the Wondershop Silver Tinsel Alberta Spruce Tree with 210 lights is just what you need.

The first silver tree I ever saw was in my aunt’s living room. It was almost like a needleless tree with silver pom-poms at the end of every branch. I was mesmerized with its ever-changing colors as the separate rotating light wheel turned it from red to blue to silver. It was like celebrating Christmas with the Jetsons.

The Wondershop Silver Tinsel Alberta Spruce Tree is shaped like a natural spruce tree, but it still holds the allure of a dazzling tree. Just like its green counterparts, a tinsel tree is made from PVC plastic that has been coated to give the needles their shimmer. And with 210 pre-strung incandescent clear lights, this one is a showstopper.

The tree is 6 feet tall with a slender 27-inch diameter and weighs just 10 pounds making it simple to assemble. The tree comes with a four-point tree stand and has pull down branches. There are 520 branch tips to fluff out and hold all of your favorite ornaments.

If you want a fashion-forward holiday, use only one color of ornaments for a stylized effect. Or silver trees are great for highlighting antique ornaments, especially fragile mercury glass pieces. Either way, you’ll be smiling each time you use the foot control to turn on and off the lights.

Pros: 6-foot slender silhouette, 210 pre-strung lights, 520 branch tips, tree stand included

Cons: No storage bag is included

The best on a budget pre-lit Christmas tree Gymax 8 ft Pre lit LED Artificial Tree

Walmart

While keeping a budget in mind, this 7-foot Gymax Pre-Lit Tree will light up your holiday decorations.

If you are looking for a pre-lit artificial tree that delivers a decorating punch but won’t break the bank, the 7-foot Gymax Pre-Lit Tree from Walmart is a perfect choice. I was amazed when I first saw this tree and heard the price. The tree has 300 warm white LED lights and 1,438 branch tips that create fullness. 

The tree comes with a high-density metal stand for support and three sections of hinged branches and has a full silhouette at 49 inches. That’s plenty of room under the tree for a train set or lots of presents. At 7 feet, this tree is large enough for an office or public gathering space and will hold dozens of ornaments.

I was pleased with the enhanced top of the tree that is sturdy enough to hold your favorite tree topper without drooping. The branches are spruce-like and fluff out easily. This is a good looking tree at a bargain price.

Pros: 7 feet tall, 300 pre-strung LED lights, 1,096 branch tips, sturdy, easy-to-assemble

Cons: No foot-control for lights, a storage bag is not included

What to consider when buying an artificial tree

After going through a series of trees, I’ve gained a bit of knowledge that allows me to help others make a good decision when buying a pre-lit artificial tree:

  • It is important to look for a pre-lit tree that is labeled «with burn-out protection» or «continuous on.» This means that if one bulb goes out, the rest of the strand will stay lit.
  • Measure the space where you plan to put the tree so you can purchase the height and diameter that works for you. Since artificial trees are so lightweight, you may be able to lift a shorter tree by placing it on a sturdy base (more room for gifts under the tree!).
  • Look for trees with branches and needles that are molded as one, not attached by wires, to more closely resemble a real tree.
  • Choose a tree with the highest tip count you can afford. More tips make an artificial tree look fuller and provide more spots to place ornaments.
  • A higher light count means a brighter tree. A good rule is 100 light bulbs per every 1.5 feet of the tree.
  • Most artificial trees have a life expectancy of around 10 years. Invest in a tree bag to help protect the tree from dust and insects while it’s in storage.
  • If you crave the scent of a real tree, skip the artificial sprays and buy a fresh pine wreath or garland to bring the outdoors into your home.

Check out our other great Christmas decorating buying guides Red Burlap tree skirt

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Christmas Screen Savers

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