Can You Recycle Bubble Wrap? (And Alternative Uses of Them)

Bubble wraps are a great way to catch fun as a kid. Even as grown-ups, not everyone has come off the idea of popping those bubbles.

It’s a great way to relieve stress and catch more than enough fun. However, beyond just popping the bubbles, is there any other thing you need to know?

Well, you need to know a lot, and we have brought everything to your desk. Enjoy and follow through.

Are Bubble Wraps Recyclable?

It seems that after you have unwrapped your products, the bubble wraps become useless. The only use for it seems to be just popping the bubbles. This is not so true, but we will get to it later. Let’s talk about recycling bubble wraps first.

Now can you really recycle bubble wraps? The answer to this is YES! You can put bubble wraps in the recycling machine. But wait, there are things you need to know about recycling bubble wraps.

Although you can recycle them, you can’t put them in your recycling bin with other materials. You have to put them separately, probably with your plastic materials.

Many recycling centers, too, do not accept bubble wraps. The reason is that bubble wraps are soft plastics, and can be a problem for the recycler.

This is because they can find their way into the machine belts and jam the recycling machine. Because of this, many recycling centers would instead not collect bubble wraps than allow them to damage their device.

However, there are still centers that have no problems collecting bubble wraps for recycling. You just have to find the nearest one to you. If you look well, they are not difficult to find.

Can You Dispose of Bubble Wraps?

Like you know, bubble wraps may be difficult to recycle. And not all recycling centers accept it. Now, you have a shipload of bubble wraps. You look around again, but you are tired of popping.

Disposing of them seems like the right thing to do. It’s okay to think this way. But then, in disposing of bubble wraps, you have to do so in the best environmentally friendly way possible. So, how do you this?

Remember that many recycling companies don’t accept bubble wraps, so don’t put them in your recycling bin. If you want to put them there, confirm with your local recycling center if they accept bubble wraps.

In the case that they don’t, you have to bag them, tie the bag and place it in the trash can outside. Ensure your trash can is visible, and no heavy object is blocking it.

Since bubble wraps are still soft plastics, they may end up in the landfills. So, we advise that you reuse them multiple times before disposing of them.

As a way of saving the environment, you can switch to more eco-friendly packaging material.

How Long Can You Use Bubble Wraps?

You have heard that you can reuse your bubble wraps. You are probably thinking of ways to do that. Well, we will get to that soon. First, let’s talk about how long it lasts.

An average bubble wrap can last you as long as you don’t pop all the bubbles. Yes, we know this seems like a hard decision for you. You almost can’t resist the urge to pop those little wonders. However, the truth is if you are looking to reuse them, you would have to find something else to pop.

Because it is soft plastic, it can last you for months or even years. If you don’t tear it, you’ve got a lot to enjoy reusing your bubble wraps.

Is Bubble Wrap Biodegradable?

There are so many concerns about the end of bubble wraps. Does it end up in the landfill, or does it degrade? It’s of concern to us too, that’s why we are talking about it.

Bubble wraps come in plastic materials. Although their kind of plastics is very soft, it still does not degrade on time. It might take thousands of years before it degrades. Hence, many of them end up staying in the landfill.

Besides, plastics contain toxic chemicals for the environment. Thus, rain could wash them away into the sea. This could cause significant problems for aquatic life.

So, the best way there is to find an alternative to bubble wraps. Help save the environment in your little way.

Are Bubble Wraps Toxic?

Bubble wraps come from plastics. You should know what plastics do to the environment, but let’s break things down.

Many manufacturers make bubble wraps with plastic polymer films. These polymer films take years before they degrade and can be ecologically toxic.

Asides this, bubble wraps are easily flammable. If you keep them in the house, and there’s a fire, it could assist the spread. Remember, it is made of plastics.

So, always try to avoid bubble wraps as much as you can. Don’t place them near the fire. And if you can’t avoid them, try to dispose of them properly.

Are Bubble Wraps Compostable?

Many bubble wraps come from plastics. Hence, it might be a bad idea to put them in the compost bin. However, there are some new bubble wraps that manufacturers make from shredded corrugated sheets.

These new bubble wraps can enter the compost bin without any worry. You can also recycle them. There are also oxo-degradable bubble wraps. These, too, are more eco-friendly than the typical bubble wraps.

So, when next you are making a choice, always go for the bubble wraps that are compostable and more eco-friendly.

Are Bubble Wraps Eco-Friendly?

Daily, there is more sensitization about the safety of everyday products. The first question to ask is if that product or its packaging materials are eco-friendly.

For some, this has a way of influencing their decisions. So, it is essential to know if bubble wraps are eco-friendly before purchasing them.

Many bubble wraps you would see around probably come from plastic films. Hence, they may pose some dangers to the environment. This, however, does not mean there is no eco-friendly bubble wrap. You can always find them around if you look out for them.

One way to quickly get an eco-friendly bubble wrap is to patronize brands that have committed to making the environment safer.


What Can You Do with Bubble Wraps? (Alternative Uses)

Just like many other things, bubble wraps, too, are reusable. The only use you put it to is probably to pop it in your free time. However, there’s more to bubble wraps than just popping everything out.

Let’s walk you through how to get more creative with your bubble wraps.

1. Steering Wheel Covers/ Steering Screen Cover

If you always wake up to find that snow has filled your wheel screen, here is an opportunity to stop that. Place your large bubble wraps on the steering glass and use your screen wiper to hold it down. This is to prevent the wind from blowing it away.

This way, when you wake up, you have to remove the bubble wraps and set out to drive—no wasted time on cleaning and some other boring stuff.

Also, you can tape bubble wraps to your steering. This will give you more comfort while driving.

2. Drinks Insulator

Of course, bubble wraps come from polythene. So, they can help you contain heat for a while. If you love to take your coffee hot, you can use the bubble wraps to cover it. This would help you retain the heat until you are ready to take your drink.

3. Shelf Liner

You can protect yourself from dust. All you need to do is to line the top of the shelf with bubble wraps. You can also use the bubble wraps to cover any items you want to protect from dust or dirt.

4. Footwear Protector

You can put bubble wraps in your shoes or bags to maintain their shape for a long time. If you also need to protect them from dust, dirt, or scratches, the bubble wraps got you covered.

5. Kids Toy

It is what you enjoyed as a child, so why do you want to take it away from your kids? Bubble wraps offer so much fun for kids.

You can get a handful of them, sit your kids down, and begin to pop. You would be surprised how interesting your kids would find it. You can even make it more fun. Set a stopwatch and see who pops the most.

Bubble wraps are great items to catch fun with. Still, don’t leave them littering the environment.

What Alternatives Do You Have to Bubble Wraps?

You have pretty much seen the effects of your favorite bubble wraps on the environment. Now you are feeling sorry for contributing to climate change. It’s okay, now that you know, we hope you slow down on it.

We realize you would need some alternatives to bubble wraps. Here, we have given you some perfect packaging materials that are eco-friendly. Here you go

1. Newspapers and Magazines

If you have some stacks of old newspapers or magazines, then your packaging needs have been solved. Newspapers and magazines are great items to package your breakable products.

They provide sufficient cushion between your products. This prevents cracking and make your fragile products last longer.

To make it fun, you can shred the magazines and newspapers before you use them.

So, if you have old newspapers lurking around, this is the time to put them to fair use. The bonus is that both newspapers and magazines are biodegradable. You can reach your bubble wraps with these and not feel sorry for contributing to the degradation.

2. Mushroom Packaging

One thing about mushroom packaging is that they come from agricultural waste (especially mushrooms). Hence, they are highly degradable. They don’t also release toxic chemicals to the environment.

They come in a very mild and dry form to give your fragile products excellent protection. The bonus of using mushroom packaging is that they are compostable. So, after unpacking, just toss them in your compost bin; that’s another boost for your garden plants.

4. Air Pillows

We need not stress that what contains air offers soft protection for everything. When you use air pillows, they protect your products against cracks and punctures. They are eco-friendly and cheap. They are also recyclable. So, if you are considering replacing your product packaging material, you should look towards air pillows.

5. Cornstarch

Like Mushroom packaging, cornstarch also comes from agriculture waste (maize). Hence, they are readily biodegradable.

Cornstarch offers excellent protection for your products for a long time. So, if you are shipping some fragile products from overseas, you should consider packaging them with cornstarch. The bonuses are that it doesn’t contain any toxic chemicals, and it is highly degradable.

4. Paper and Cardboards

The chances are that, if you work in an office or school, you would have papers and cardboard to deal with. If you have plenty of them, you can put them to fair use.

Papers and cardboards can easily replace bubble wraps. You can use them as plain sheets to cushion your products or shred them. Whichever way, they provide excellent protection. The bonuses here are that they are don’t contain toxic chemicals and are very degradable.


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About Rinkesh

A true environmentalist by heart ❤️. Founded Conserve Energy Future with the sole motto of providing helpful information related to our rapidly depleting environment. Unless you strongly believe in Elon Musk‘s idea of making Mars as another habitable planet, do remember that there really is no 'Planet B' in this whole universe.