6 Easy Ways You Can Make Shopping On Amazon More Eco-Friendly

We’ve all been there before.

We’re stoked to find our amazon package arrived today but… why is it in such a huge box? And what’s with all these ridiculous air pillows? Seriously?

The eco-guilt comes down hard.

Let’s be honest here: online shopping isn’t going anywhere. And with Amazon being one of the world’s most popular shopping apps, we might as well make it as sustainable as possible, right?

 If we want to move towards a low-polluting, sustainable society, we need to get consumers to think about their purchases.

David Suzuki

Here are 6 ways you can make shopping on Amazon more eco-friendly.

Reduce your packaging waste.

Get Frustration-Free Packaging

  • Offered on select items.
  • Item is shipped in it’s own packaging without additional Amazon packaging.
    • Items have been lab-tested to ensure the product won’t get damaged.
    • All packaging is 100% curbside recyclable.
  • Here’s what Amazon has to say about selecting frustration-free packaging at checkout:
    • “These items are listed on the Amazon product page with the following language: โ€œItem arrives in packaging that reveals what’s inside. To hide it, choose Ship in Amazon packaging at checkout.โ€ Amazon provides this option at no cost to customers.
    • Look for this ๐Ÿ‘‡๐Ÿ‘‡
get frustration-free packaging to make shopping on amazon more eco friendly

Amazon’s Frustration-Free Packaging option has been around since 2008. It’s time we spread the word so all amazon shoppers know about it!

Call or email Amazon’s Customer Service

  • Go here and start chatting with a robot until it contacts a customer service rep for you.
  • Choose if you’d rather do a text chat or a phone call.
  • Request plastic-free packaging. Feel free to use my template below.
  • Thank the kind human that made a note on your account to help save the planet.
  • Go celebrate and show everyone you know who shops on Amazon how to do it too! โœŠ๐ŸŒ
email amazon customer service for less plastic packaging

We have to let Amazon know that we do not want to receive our items in plastic packaging otherwise they will ship out your items in the “most protected” way possible.

We need to create the cultural and consumer pressure to change their shipping model.

Related: Zero Waste Bathroom Swaps on Amazon Under $15

Shop second-hand on Amazon.

Buy Used

Have you ever noticed the “Buy Used” option at the bottom of the shopping widget on the right hand side of page?

hope second hand on amazon to make shopping on amazon more eco friendly

Amazon Warehouse

Check out Amazon Warehouse to shop great deals on millions of used and open-boxed items including outdoor gear, digital cameras, furniture, clothing, cell phones, and even groceries. It’s not as weird as it sounds, just check it out. ๐Ÿ˜‰

how to make shopping on amazon more eco friendly and sustainble

Amazon Renewed

Similarly, check out Amazon Renewed, for “like-new” computers and other refurbished electronics.

how to make shopping on amazon  more eco friendly

Shopping second hand gives items another life by keeping them out of landfills and helps you save money. It’s a win-win!๐Ÿ‘

Start Using Amazon Second Chance.

Did you know that you can trade-in, recycle, and repair thousands of items on Amazon?

Amazon Second Chance gives us an opportunity to be a more conscious consumers with resources to:

Trade- In

  • Trade-In thousands of devices for amazon gift-cards. ๐Ÿค‘
    • Eligible items include textbooks, amazon devices, video games, Kindle E-readers, and more.
    • Get an immediate offer and instant payment from Amazon on eligible items.
    • Print a free pre-paid shipping label and drop your item off at the nearest shipping center.

Recycle โ™ป๏ธ

  • Recycle Amazon Devices and Accessories
    • Keep your Amazon devices and accessories out of landfills by recycling them with Amazon.
    • Totally free- Amazon covers all costs that associated with shipping and recycling your devices.
    • Print a free shipping label and drop your time off at your nearest UPS.
  • Recycle Electronics โ™ป๏ธ
    • Find a free recycle bins at select drop-off locations for consumer electronics (check locations here).
    • The bins are in locations with our Lockers and returns drop-off points, so drop off your unwanted electronics during your next visit! 

What IS accepted ๐Ÿ’ป๐Ÿ“ฑ๐ŸŽฎ๐ŸŽง

  • Cell phones, tablets, e-readers, laptops, media players, small electronics, connected home devices (like wifi modems and Alexa, for example), headphones, video game consoles and accessories.

What is NOT accepted ๐Ÿ™…โ€โ™€๏ธ๐Ÿ”‹๐Ÿ’กโ˜ฃ๏ธ

  • Loose batteries, light bulbs, large electronics, appliances, non-electrical material and hazardous waste.


  • Repair items before returning, replacing, or throwing away your item.


  • Replace missing or broken parts for free.
    • Replacement missing or damaged parts for large items like furniture and appliances.
    • Get free technical support for your devices.
      • I know, technology can be hard. But before you frustrated and return it or buy something else, call and get free technical support! ๐Ÿ“ž

There is no such thing as โ€˜awayโ€™. When we throw anything away, it must go somewhere.

Annie Leonard

Order multiple items at once.

Here’s a challenge for you: try to reduce your amazon orders to once a month.

Sure, browse as much as you’d like, but then use the “Save For Later” or “Wishlist” features.

At the end of the month, go back through and see what items you still actually want and/ or need. You’d be surprised how many of those items were (almost) straight up impulse purchases.

“The most environmentally friendly product is the one you didnโ€™t buy.”  

Joshua Becker

Please watch the first three minutes of the following video to better understand how shipping items together can have a massive impact on the environment (keep scrolling down).

Choose slower shipping.

Did you know that shopping online can actually be even more eco-friendly than driving to your local store? But this is only true if you opt for slow shipping.

Check out the first three minutes of the following video to better understand the environmental cost of shipping items together and with a slower shipping option. ๐Ÿ‘‡

YouTube video

To summarize, rush shipping:

  • creates a demand for more delivery trucks on the road which means more greenhouse gases are being produced.
  • often delivers items in multiple packages which means more packaging waste, and again, more trucks on the road.
  • may need items, even as small as a specific chapstick or dish soap, to be flown into a distribution center creating a ton of greenhouse gases.
  • require trucks to be sent out for deliveries only half full.

Related: 8 Essential Items for Travelers Who Hate Creating Plastic Waste

Repurpose your shipping box.

Whether you reuse your cardboard Amazon shipping box as a storage box or a kitty home (see minute 12:20 on the video), think about useful and creative ways you can give your shipping box a second life.

The possibilities are really endless here. Here are 27 ideas to get your creative juices flowing.

YouTube video

So to summarize, some ways to make shopping on amazon more eco-friendly include:

  1. Reduce your packaging waste.
  2. Shop second-hand on Amazon.
  3. Start using Amazon Second Chance.
  4. Order multiple items at once.
  5. Choose slower shipping.
  6. Repurpose your shipping box.

If anything in this post inspired you to make your experience shopping on Amazon a more eco-friendly and sustinable one, please share this with your fellow Amazon shopping enthusiasts.

Your planet will thank you. ๐ŸŒŽ๐Ÿ’•

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