Wrapping Paper vs.Gift bags: Opinion: Wrapping paper is better than gift bags

April Carr, Editor

During the holiday season, the joy of giving to others is a major part of the season. Deciding what to pick out, how much it costs and the durability of items all plays a part. However, a major thing that goes into the holiday season is wrapping paper. When Christmas is brought up, mainstream movies like “The Santa Clause” come up with the infamous presents under the tree wrapped in vibrant wrapping paper. Unveiling presents is a huge part of the Christmas spirit and holiday fun.

According to the Children’s Museum, wrapping christmas presents has been a long standing tradition in numerous ancient cultures to hide the real identity of gifts. This was to build excitement around giving and receiving gifts to truly build the anticipation. Waste is a downside to using wrapping paper as opposed to gift bags; however, if opening the gift is done carefully, the wrapping paper can be reused. 

Many people often believe the way the gift is presented is more important than the gift itself, according to Southern Living. It is significant to wrap presents to be more personable to the person receiving it. With wrapping paper, people can disguise the gift in any way their heart desires and they can dress it up even more by putting bows on top or even string. 

Dr. Howard, a professor at Southern Methodist University, held numerous tests and experiments involving people receiving and opening gifts. He concluded that when people were given gifts with wrapping paper, they tended to have more positive feelings toward the gift. This is based on the visual representation and what it represents to them. 

To make a more economic friendly approach to wrapping paper, there are numerous alternatives like newspaper, kraft paper, fabric, or even used boxes. People can still dress these items up and also still give the same positive feeling to the gift recipient. According to The Harma Trails, there is eco-friendly wrapping paper available to purchase on Amazon and Earth Hero. A company called Wrappily uses recycled newspapers and prints numerous patterns with soy ink to create a satisfying design. 

Wrapping paper has been a huge part of the holiday season for numerous centuries and though some things about it are a little outdated like the plastic waste, there are numerous alternatives other than gift bags to still give the same dopamine effect. Part of the holiday fun is unwrapping a long awaited gift, and the build up to that moment– a gift bag does not give the same effect.