We Brits love the idea of a real Christmas tree – but few of us are passionate about the reality of dragging a 7ft Norway spruce tree through the house and leaving needles everywhere.
If this sounds familiar to you, maybe it’s time to pretend. And, while you might be hesitant about the idea of a plastic tree, the reality is that a quality fake tree is far from a misstep and buying an artificial Christmas tree doesn’t necessarily mean accepting defeat. . Here’s everything you need to know, and how to find your perfect match.
Why choose an artificial Christmas tree?
The big advantage is the cost: Artificial trees can last for decades, so they cost less than paying for a real tree every year. For those who like a clean and tidy tree, they are totally symmetrical and look fabulous from all angles. And think about how much time you’ll save without having to suck on pesky needles.
What are the disadvantages ?
You might think you are saving the planet, but a fake tree is actually not the most environmentally friendly option. Most are made in factories in Asia, racking up serious air miles to reach the UK. They’re made from non-biodegradable metal and plastic, and many end their lives in landfills.
On the other hand, of course, keep your tree for years and years and it will start to pay off in terms of your carbon footprint; whereas a “real” one will still have to be transported, used and disposed of every year.
Another problem with a fake tree? They can look synthetic – and of course, you won’t get that lovely piney smell. You will also need to find space for storage.
What should I pay attention to?
- Size: Generally speaking, they range from 4 feet to 12 feet. Most people go for a 7 foot tree, which will fit into a medium sized living room.
- Price: 7ft trees cost just £ 20, but you can also spend over £ 8,000 if you want.
- Spending as much as you can is worth it: a cheap tree will likely look cheap
- Tips: Choose a tree with a high number of tips. This refers to the number of needles; the higher the number, the fuller the tree will appear.
- PVC or PE needle tips: Go for PE tips if you can afford them. They are 3D molded to look like real needles and therefore look lifelike even up close. PVC ones are cheaper and are cut from sheets to look like needles – sometimes without success. Although they look the same from a distance, PVC needles up close can look fake because they are rectangular.
The best artificial Christmas trees
1. The Symons Nordmann Christmas tree from The White Company
£ 545, The White Company