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We all know how important it is to do our bit for the environment, and in recent years it’s become much easier to stay on top of recycling now that councils provide separate bins for it.
However, as many of us tend to have our green bins in the kitchen, it’s sometimes easy to forget that much of what we use in the bathroom can be recycled too. According to Recycle Now, the national recycling campaign for England, while an impressive 90% of kitchen packaging is recycled, that figure is only 50% for bathroom packaging.
Did you know that if everyone in the UK saved just one bottle of bathroom cleaner, it could save enough energy to vacuum up to 82,460 homes? And that it uses 75% less energy to make a plastic shampoo bottle from recycled plastic, than it does using brand new virgin materials? With such great incentives, find out more about what can be recycled, and hacks to help you do it…
Bin there, done that?One of the issues that can prevent people from recycling bathroom packaging is not having a separate bin for recyclables in the bathroom. It could be because you don’t have space for it, or you just don’t want any more clutter in the space, so try these ideas instead:
1. The door bagHang a bag on the back of the bathroom door for your recyclables. It means that you don’t use valuable floor space, and with so many stylish options out there you should be able to find one that matches your décor.
2. The cupboard stashDo you use up all the space in your bathroom cupboards and cabinets? If not, use spare space to stash your empties before taking them to your main recycling bin.
3. The repurposed basketIf you’ve received a gift in a stylish basket or box, there’s no need to throw it away. Use it to store your recyclables, and pretty up your bathroom at the same time!
4. The cardboard pre-cycleWhen you’re putting your shopping away, remove things like soap and toothpaste from their cardboard packaging and recycle it straight away rather than taking it to the bathroom.
5. The bin dividerIf it’s large enough, you may be able to separate your regular bathroom bin in two with a piece of card or plastic, so that recycling can go in one side and regular waste in the other.
Prepare your packaging
Before you bung it in the recycling bin, follow these easy steps to ensure your packaging is ready to be recycled.- Check the label on the packaging, and your local authority’s rules, to know what you can recycle. If in doubt, check out https://www.recyclenow.com/.
- Give it a quick rinse to remove any product left behind. It doesn’t have to be perfectly clean, but it’s best to leave as little as possible.
- Put tops or spray triggers back on the bottle (if not, they don’t get recycled).
- Remove any sleeves, but labels can stay on.
Bathroom items that can usually be recycled (always check your local authority just in case):- Shampoo and conditioner bottles
- Shower gel and bubble bath bottles
- Cardboard boxes, like those used for tampons, soap and toothpaste tubes
- Toilet roll tubes
- Bathroom cleaner and bleach bottles – including the spray dispenser (if its all plastic without any metal parts)
- Shaving foam cans
- Hand soap bottles (but not the pump dispenser because it’s a mix of plastic and metal)
- Moisturiser bottles
How do you remember how to recycle your bathroom packaging?
Let us know how in the comments below!