Recycling is a huge topic in modern times, where landfills are overburdened and the amount of waste produced every year continues to grow. Landfills not only pollute the environment but also have a negative effect on the health of human beings and animals. Landfills are primarily meant for wastes that can’t be recycled, composted or used to generate energy. Of late, we have been disposing all the wastes including the ones that can be easily recycled to the landfills.
While putting everything that you can in the recycling bin is helpful, so is figuring out ways to reuse your garbage. There are a number of things you can do, from art projects to home improvement, using your discarded items for materials. The idea behind reusing your garbage is to make sure that you send minimum waste to the landfills and minimize your carbon footprint on the environment. These simple ideas listed below won’t cost you anything and can help you fight against growing problem of landfills.
Here are 51 ideas for you to get started with your own in-home recycling program. The earth will thank you!
1. Milk Jug Planters: Create easy to transport planters for your garden, particularly useful when relocation indoor plants to the outdoors.
2. Milk Jug Watering: Use gallon jugs for a DIY watering system for your garden. Poke a few holes in the bottom, fill it with water, and bury it, and it will slowly seep out into the garden.
3. Plastic Soda Bottles Bird Feeder: Making a bird feeder in the backyard is easy with an upside down bottle; plus, you can decide if you want to use the bigger size or smaller.
4. Plastic Soda Bottles Science Projects: Reuse soda bottles to learn and experiment in safe and creative ways. Help kids create a science project exploring volcanos or vortexes.
5. Plastic Soda Bottle Coolers: Use small frozen bottles to keep lunch bags cool, and larger ones for long-days at the beach.
6. Egg Carton Seed Starters: You only want to use paper egg cartons for this, but they can be great to plant your seedlings in because the paper is biodegradable.
7. Coffee Grounds Cleaner: They can be an excellent non-abrasive way to help clean dishes that need an extra bit of scouring power.
8. Coffee Grounds Fertilizer: Use them as fertilizer in your outdoor gardens, or for indoor plants that could use a bit of nourishment.
9. Coffee Grounds Deodorizer: Dry out used grounds, and place an open container in the fridge and freezer to keep them odor-free.
10. Tea Bag Spa Refresher: Save your old tea bags and store them in the refrigerator; they are a great way to reduce puffiness in the eyes.
11. Tea Bag First Aid: The tannins in tea bags will also help reduce swelling and pain related to burns and bites.
12. Newspaper Cleaning: Newspaper is amazing for cleaning things up. Use them for wiping down windows, or as a way to wipe off paint from brushes, or grease from tools.
13. Newspaper For Protection: Keep sensitive areas safe by adding newspaper. Great for under tablecloths for another layer of protection.
14. Newspaper Bags As Boot Pulls: Love wearing knee-high boots, but hate getting them on? Equestrian athlete that has to pull them over sweaty pants? Newspaper bags can be slipped over the foot and calf to make pulling boots on and off super easy.
15. Newspaper Bags As Boot Protectors: They’re also great to carry around just in case of rain, as a way to protect your shoes.
16. Newspaper Bag Gloves: Need to wash dishes but don’t want to ruin the manicure? Slip on a bag as an easy way to protect your hands.
17. Newspaper Bags for Animal Waste: If you have a pet, you probably have to pick up their waste at some point. Use newspaper bags to easily scoop out litter boxes, or to pick up after dogs when out on a walk.
18. Silica Packets For Storage: You can’t eat them, but you can use them for what they are designed for – protecting items from moisture. Use in storage with paper items and documents to keep them safe, or with old printed photos to make sure they are preserved.
19. Wine Cork Key Rings: They make great key rings – easy to grab but also able to float! Perfect for boaters and watersport enthusiasts.
20. Wine Cork Sharp Safety: Wine corks are also great for some of their oldest reuse purposes – on the end of needles, pins, or other sharp items to protect fingertips.
21. Wine Cork Drawer and Cabinet Pulls: For a unique décor item, use larger sized corks, or reinforce corks with a resin sealer, and use them on your cabinets.
22. Bacon Grease Bird food: You can’t put it down the sink, and storing it in jars to discard gets gross. Instead, pour your used grease into a small can and chill it. Then you can string up the can on a tree and attract a number of interesting birds – including jays, bluebirds, woodpeckers, and more.
23. Old Bread Croutons: Don’t let old bread go to waste – cut it up and dry them or throw them in the oven for some croutons.
24. Old Bread becomes Breadcrumbs: Do the same thing, but let the bread first dry out and then crumble it into useful breadcrumbs.
25. Old Dice Jewelry: You can use dice for a number of awesome ideas, such as punching holes in them, making them unique “beads” for jewelry.
26. Old Typewriter Key Cufflinks: You may want to keep your old typewriter in one piece, but if not, repurpose the old keys by transforming them into cufflinks. Unique, and an awesome gift for any occasion.
27. Toilet Paper Tube Pet Toys: Small pets like hamsters? Toilet paper tubes are awesome to give them tunnels to burrow in.
28. Toilet Paper Tube Packing Materials: Tear them up and use them to give your shipped items a bit more protection without needing to buy peanuts or bubble wrap.
29. Toilet Paper Tube Planters: You can use tubes to start off your seedlings by directly planting them. Paper is biodegradable, meaning you have an easy and environmentally-friendly way to get started.
30. Empty Pill Container Organizers: Use them to hold herbs, jewelry items, or other little objects that could use some organization.
31. Empty Pill Container Sewing Kit: An easy-to-find and all-inclusive mini sewing kit is a must to have around the house.
32. Empty Pill Container First Aid Kit: In the same vein, fill your bottle with Band-Aids, small packets of disinfectant, and other first-aid items that is easy to carry with you on the go.
33. Old T-Shirt Rugs: A unique way of using old T-shirts is tearing them into strips and then “weaving” them into a unique rug.
34. Old T-Shirts for Cleaning: Save your old T-shirts for cleaning towels; you’ll be reusing trash and reducing your purchase of paper towels.
35. Old Pantyhose Orchid Planters: If you have the climate, outside orchids are beautiful to hang from your trees. For an easy installation, secure a new plant in some pantyhose, and wrap it around the tree for support as it grows.
36. Old Pantyhose Rags: They’re also great to use for cleaning up sensitive areas that may be prone to scuffs or scratches.
37. Old Jeans, New Skirt: Jeans are particularly easy to turn into skirts, particularly if they already have holes in them.
38. Old Jeans, New Bag: Cut up old and torn jeans and sew them haphazardly into a unique bag. No need for skill, the more jagged and messier, the more bohemian the look.
39. Banana Peel Shiner: Banana peels are awesome for shining and buffing shoes, particularly leather ones.
40. Lemon Peel for Cooking: Lemon zest comes from lemon peels, so save the skins for further cooking needs.
41. Transform Old Books Into Journals: You can replace pages in old books as journals, or even write over the words if that’s your thing.
42. Transform Old Books Into Sketchbooks: “Altered” books are an art form in themselves, so try your hand by using an old book as a sketchbook, or even as a scrapbook.
43. Styrofoam Packing Materials: Save old fast food containers to create packing peanuts, and if you receive some of the latter, try and save them for your next shipping need.
44. Baby Food Jars For Storage: Their size makes them great for everything from your rings to your screws.
45. Baby Wipe Containers For Storage: A bit bigger in size, these can store everything from your office’s pens to your sewing supplies.
46. Paper Grocery Bags For Totes: Reusable bags are best, but if you already have paper ones, fold them up and reuse them the next time you go shopping.
47. Plastic Grocery Bags for Pet Waste: Cat owner? Save your plastic grocery bags for cleaning up after Fluffy.
48. Plastic Grocery Bags for the Car: Keep plastic bags as an easy-to-transport garbage can for your car.
49. Glass Bottle Candles: Use old wine bottles as candle holders to make for an enchanting effect.
50. CD Coasters: Reuse old CDs as coasters by sealing with a protective coating.
51. CD Ornaments: CDs make great ornaments for Christmas trees, looking awesome when they catch the light.