10 Best Eco-Friendly Balloon Alternatives | Eco Friend

Kids love balloons. Balloon animals, balloon swords, balloon hats – the possibilities are endless. And what’s not to love about a big bunch of brightly colored balloons? They make any party POP!

But they’re not always the most eco-friendly option. So before you go and stock up on loads of helium-filled balloons for your child’s next shindig, consider some eco-friendly alternatives

Read on for some ideas that will have your guests floating in the air – without harming the planet.

What Are Balloons Made of?

Almost every balloon uses latex, plastic, rubber, or nylon fabrics. Latex and plastic balloons are made from polymers, which are long chains of molecules. 

Rubber balloons are made from rubber tree sap, while nylon balloons are made from a synthetic polymer. Each material has different properties and side effects that negatively affect the environment. 

How It Affects the Environment

While balloons may seem like a fun and festive decoration, they can be quite harmful to the environment – both for wildlife and in terms of disposal.

Balloons are often made of latex, which is derived from trees. The production of latex requires a large amount of energy and chemicals, damaging the environment. Once a balloon is deflated, it is not easily disposable. 

Most facilities cannot recycle them, so they end up in landfills where they take up valuable space. Once they pop, the pieces can end up littering the ground or ocean, and animals can mistake them for food. 

Balloons can cause blockages in an animal’s digestive system when ingested, leading to a slow and painful death. 

Plus, balloons are one of the biggest causes of helium shortages. Helium is a non-renewable resource, so every time we use it and dispose of it carelessly, we’re depleting our supply. 

10 Best Eco-friendly Balloon Alternatives

Paper Honeycomb

Balloon alternative

These delicate-looking decorations are made of paper, making them a much more sustainable option than traditional balloons. Not to mention, they look amazing when used as part of a party or event decor. 

Whether you’re looking to add a touch of whimsy to your next gathering or want to be more eco-conscious in your choices, paper honeycombs are a great option.

Paper Chains


Paper chains are a fun, eco-friendly alternative to balloons. They’re easy to make and look great in any room. If you don’t have time to make your own, you can purchase ready-made paper chain garlands. They’re a quick and easy way to add festivity to your decor. 

And, when the party’s over, you can recycle the paper chains. So why not try something a little different this year and ditch the balloons in favor of paper chains? Your wallet and the environment will thank you.


Bubbles are always a hit, whether you’re looking for a fun activity for a birthday party or just a way to entertain the kids on a sunny afternoon. And best of all, they’re eco-friendly! 

Unlike helium balloons, which can end up as litter after they float away, bubbles Pop quickly and disappear into thin air. 

Plus, they’re made with simple ingredients like soap and water. So next time you plan a party or event, consider using bubbles instead of balloons. Then, your guests will have just as much fun, and you’ll do your part to help the environment.


Papermade buntings

When it comes to eco-friendly party decorations, bunting is a great option. Bunting is made from fabric or paper so that it can be reused again and again. Plus, it’s a relatively simple decoration to make yourself. 

So if you’re looking for a festive and environmentally friendly way to decorate your next party, consider making your bunting. With a bit of time and effort, you can create colourful and stylish bunting that will add a touch of personality to any event.


Flying kite

Kites are a great eco-friendly alternative to balloons. They are just as fun and can provide hours of enjoyment, but they don’t harm the environment. Instead, try buying recycled paper kites. 

They are made from recycled materials and are super sustainable. Plus, they are usually very brightly coloured and add a touch of whimsy to any outdoor event. 

So if you’re looking for a unique decoration for your next party or picnic, consider hanging recycled paper kites from the trees. Your guests will love them!

Paper Fans

Paper fans are a great eco-friendly alternative to balloons. They are made using a piece of paper waved back and forth. They are super easy to make and look fabulous. Paper fans are a great way to show your eco-consciousness without sacrificing style or fun.

Paper fans are also very inexpensive to make and can be customised with your design or message. Best of all, paper fans provide a cooling breeze on hot summer days! 

Paper Flowers

Balloon alternative

Paper flowers are a beautiful and eco-friendly alternative to balloons. They can be hung from the ceiling or placed on tables, and they add a touch of colour and elegance to any setting. 

While they may take a little time to make, the results are well worth the effort. Paper flowers are also a great way to show your support for the environment. By choosing paper over balloons, you can help reduce the amount of waste in landfills. 

So next time you’re looking for a unique decoration, consider making paper flowers. You’ll be glad you did!

Paper Lanterns

If you’re looking for a fun and eco-friendly way to decorate for your next party, look no further than paper lanterns! These beautiful lanterns are made from various materials, including rice paper, tissue paper, and recycled newspapers. 

While they come in all shapes and sizes, they all share one common trait: they’re completely biodegradable! Paper lanterns are also extremely easy to use. Place a small LED light inside the lantern, and let the warm glow fill the room. 

Whether you hang them from the ceiling or float them up into the sky, paper lanterns are sure to add a touch of magic to any event.



Pompoms are a great option if you’re looking for a fun and eco-friendly alternative to balloons! They’re super easy to make, and you can find them at any supermarket. 

There are plenty of pompom options, including tissue paper, fabric pom poms, and more. Plus, they’re a great way to add colour and excitement to any event!

What Can We Do Instead of Balloon Release?

While balloon releases may seem like a harmless way to celebrate an event or honour a loved one, the reality is that they can have a serious impact on the environment. 

When balloons are released into the air, they eventually come back down to earth, where they can be mistaken for food by wildlife. This can lead to animals choking or tangled up in the balloons, ultimately leading to death. 

In addition, when balloons pop, they release small pieces of plastic into the environment. These microplastics can be ingested by marine life and end up in the food chain, where they can cause health problems for both animals and humans. 

For these reasons, it’s important to think twice before releasing balloons into the atmosphere. There are many other ways to celebrate that are more eco-friendly and just as fun.

Alternatives to Balloon Release:

Float Flower

Instead of releasing balloons, you could float flowers. Gather some friends and family, and head to your local florist. Choose some locally grown flowers, then head to a nearby pond or lake. 

You can release the flowers into the water as a tribute to your loved one. The flowers eventually sink, but they will provide food for the fish and other wildlife. Plus, you’ll be doing your part to help the environment.

Fly a Wish Paper

If you’re looking for a more eco-friendly alternative to balloon releases, you might want to consider flying a wish paper. To do this, write down your thoughts on paper and then burn them. 

Then, as the ashes rise into the air, you’ll feel your wishes taking flight—without harming the environment.

Plant a Tree

Planting a tree is a great way to show love and gratitude for lost loved ones. Trees can be a living memorial, and watching them grow can be a source of comfort. They are also good for the environment, providing oxygen, cleaning the air, and stabilizing the soil. 

If you are considering releasing balloons to remember a loved one, consider planting a tree instead. It will be a lasting tribute that will continue to give life long after your loved one is gone.

Release Birds From the Cage

This eco-friendly alternative provides a moment of beauty and joy while also helping to preserve local wildlife. When released from their cages, birds can return to their natural habitat, which will help support the local ecosystem.

Additionally, releasing birds is a more personal act than releasing balloons. It allows for a moment of connection with nature and the natural world, which can be healing and comforting.


It is important to be mindful of the environmental impact of our decisions, especially when it comes to something as seemingly innocuous as balloons. By choosing eco-friendly alternatives to balloons – we can help reduce the amount of waste in landfills and harms wildlife.

So let’s all make a concerted effort to use eco-friendly balloons for celebrations big and small and show everyone that going green is more fun than ever!

author avatar
Jared McMillen
Jared spent most of his working life in financial markets. He observed corporations making decisions for profit regardless of the impact on the environment. In many cases this was in full knowledge of the implications to the environment so it was a conscious decision of profit over our planet even though there were options that would deliver both albeit at a lower profit margin. As these decisions were outside of Jared's control he decided to make changes in his own life to help our planet. He found it difficult to find products that would have an impact as well as to find the correct information. It was from this frustration The Eco Friend was born.

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