Recycling in your bathroom

Recycling in your bathroom

Most people know what they can recycle from their kitchens, but what goes into bathroom bins often gets thrown out with the rubbish. According to recent research* only 52 percent of people say they regularly recycle items from the bathroom.

It is really important that people put the right waste in the right place.

You can follow these tips to increase what you recycle from your bathroom:

  • You don't need to take packaging up to the bathroom, take things like toothpaste, soap or make-up out of the box before you put it in the bathroom. Then pop the cardboard box straight in the recycling bin.

  • You can use a bin divider to separate recyclable items in your bathroom bin if you use one.

  • You can use another container to keep items in, like a second bin, a basket or a box.

  • Use reminders like sticky notes inside bin lids or inside bathroom cabinets so you remember to recycle.

  • Check the labels on bottles and tubs. Some shops will take your empty bottles and tubs and re-use them.

  • See if you can buy refills so bottles can be re-used.

  • Some companies sell bathroom products with no packaging. Have a look online to see what options are out there.

Remember you can recycle all these items once they are empty, rinsed and finished with:

Cardboard Toilet roll tubes, soap boxes, toothpaste boxes, make-up boxes, empty tissue boxes, painkiller boxes, tablet boxes**
Plastic Shampoo and conditioner bottles, shower gel bottles, bathroom cleaner bottles, toilet cleaner bottles, bubble bath bottles, mouthwash bottles (not black plastic bottles)
Metal Deodorant cans, antiperspirant cans and shaving foam cans
Paper Medication leaflets, make-up leaflets
Glass - to go in the caddy Cough medicine bottles**, glass make-up bottles, glass bubble bath bottles (not Pyrex ones - looks for the triangular recycling symbol)

There are some common things that cannot be recycled in your blue bin.  Please be careful to not put these items in your blue bin:

Roll on deodorant - plastic or glass The parts of the container are not suitable for recycling
Pump dispenser tops Like from hand soaps and face washes. Please put the pump in your green bin and the bottle in your blue bin.
Spray bottle tops Like from bathroom cleaner or shower cleaner. Please put the spray part in your green bin and the bottle in your blue bin.
Squeezy plastic tubes Toothpaste tubes, make up tubes, hand cream, face washes. Products like this cannot be recycled in your blue bin.
Tablet blister packs These are a mix of metal foils and plastic and they are not suitable for recycling
Pipettes and droppers Found on face treatments and serums. These can be a mix of different plastics and sometimes glass and rubber. They are not suitable for recycling.
Wipes, peel-off strips and sheet face masks These are not recyclable and should never be flushed down the toilet.
Sachets and Foil packets These might contain sheet face masks, single hair treatments or cosmetic samples. This mix of foil, paper and plastic is not suitable for recycling.

There are options for recycling some of these tricky products and packaging.  You can look for drop off points in your area by checking the Terracycle website.  They work with partner companies to offer a recycling service for things like contact lenses, face wipes, toothbrushes and cosmetics.

*Source: 2015 Recycle Now poll surveying 2,000 adults in the UK.

**Remember if you get medicines on prescription you should peel off the pharmacy label which may have your name and address on it and destroy it.


Did you know?

We have a really detailed A-Z of Recycling where you can check what goes where.

Remember, get the right waste in the right place! We have recently made some changes to what can be recycled so please check.

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