Keep It Green: 6 Ways to Make Black Friday Environmentally Friendly

Smiling woman cycling in Helsingborg, Sweden
Tolga_TEZCAN/Getty Images

I’m a huge proponent of frugality and green living. So why do I think Black Friday is one of the best days of the entire year?

Simple: I get to save a lot of money on products that are usually out of my price range — products that are environmentally friendly and can help me save money in the long run.

Here’s how I turn Black Friday green, using its deals to support my frugal and eco-friendly lifestyle.

1. I Invest in Energy Star-Rated Appliances

Black Friday offers the opportunity to purchase appliances at low prices, so I take advantage of the chance to upgrade some of my appliances to newer, more energy-friendly versions.

Switching to an Energy Star appliance can help you save hundreds of dollars a year, according to EnergySage, depending on the age of your current appliances and how many of them you plan to replace.

Plus, if you add the Black Friday savings and the fact that you’re much less likely to need repairs for newer housewares, you can save even more in the long run.

2. I Buy Faux Fur and Faux Leather on Discount

Living frugally doesn’t mean I don’t like to look good.

On the contrary. I am quite fashion savvy and I love creating fun and polished outfits.

I love quality clothes, and I don’t like buying cheap items that won’t last for long, won’t look as good and have serious environmental and other impacts.

The good news is many clothing stores have great sales for Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and it’s worth seeing whether that item you’ve been lusting after is marked down, so you can get a quality product and stick to your budget.

One of my favorite eco-friendly investments is high-quality faux fur and faux-leather products. These clothes look just as great as natural fur or leather ones, but they are much friendlier to our fauna — and on Black Friday, I’m much more likely to find a price I like.

3. I Bring My Own Reusable Bags

Plan on shopping for things you’ll carry away with you? Don’t leave home without your own shopping bags.

It may feel a bit odd to bring a bunch of them with you, but it can help you make a huge difference. Every year, we throw away enough plastic to circle the planet four times.

Instead of contributing to plastic debris in the oceans and toxic emissions generated when manufacturing plastics, bring and reuse your own bags.

4. I Walk or Bike to the Store

Why drain energy resources when you don’t need to?

Walking or biking to the store when the weather is right is a great way to see how cheap, healthy and environmentally friendly leaving the car at home can be. As long as I don’t have to carry large objects, I will be more than comfortable.  

If you don’t have a bicycle, why not look for a Black Friday deal on a new one? A fairly good bike doesn’t cost a lot of money, but it can help you save a lot, both in terms of finances and environmental impact. Here’s a cool calculator for the financial part.

5. I Keep an Eye on Eco-Friendly Products

Many green technologies and products cost a lot upfront, even though they can help you save money in the long run.

On Black Friday, you can often find these products on sale, so I usually keep an eye on them.

For example, I have always wanted to buy a solar battery recharger and I’m hoping this Black Friday might be my chance!

6. I Don’t Buy Everything That’s on Sale

The best way to save money on Black Friday and to be green is to avoid buying absolutely everything you see on sale.

As tempting as it seems, you probably don’t actually need all those items, and you might wind up tossing them before their expected lifetimes are actually up.

This would be a waste of both environmental and financial resources — so take a moment to consider whether you really need that item or you’re just excited about the deal.

Savanna Oconner is a frugal-living computer systems analyst from Memphis. She enjoys hiking or any kind of outdoor physical activity. In her spare time, she loves to write and cook.

Did this article help put money in your pocket?