Six everyday items you can recycle at home with TerraCycle

The vast majority of the rubbish that we generate, accumulate and throw away, comes from our homes. Australians produce 704kg of household waste per person, each year. That’s more than 10kg for every single person, every week of the year. Kiwi’s top that figure at 704kg of household waste per-year.

We are here to help you improve your kerbside recycling habits by avoiding ‘wishcycling’, preventing contamination and improving recycling rates. 

When it comes to the many household items that can’t be recycled in your kerbside bin due to their complex material makeup, TerraCycle steps in. We provide free recycling programs for tricky waste streams by teaming up with brands who sponsor the entire collection and recycling process. 

Kids in school uniforms holding toothbrushes and toothpaste tubes in front of a collection box, ready for recycling via TerraCycle

Here are a few everyday items you can start recycling with TerraCycle. 

  1. Toothbrushes and dental care products

Toothpaste tubes, floss and toothbrushes are all typically not accepted in your kerbside recycling. Over a lifetime we’ll go through countless toothbrushes, which will live on for hundreds of years in landfill.

Luckily, you can combat this waste. TerraCycle’s recycling program with Colgate accepts any brand of toothpaste tubes and caps, manual toothbrushes, toothbrush and toothpaste tube plastic packaging and floss containers. And it’s easy to get involved.

You can join our program for free anywhere in Australia or New Zealand, fill a spare box with your empties, then post your oral care waste to us for recycling. Or you can drop it into a participating dentist to ship on your behalf

  1. Dishwashing and air freshener containers

It may come as a surprise to learn that many dish and air care products can’t be recycled in kerbside bins. But when you think about all the complex packaging, like flexible plastics, spray nozzles, pump bottles and air freshener packs, it starts to makes sense. Thanks to our friends at Fairy and Ambi Pur, you can collect, ship and recycle all dish and air care waste through TerraCycle, anywhere in Australia or New Zealand

  1. Beauty products 

Unfortunately, the majority of cosmetic products you’ve bought over the years will have ended up in landfills, where they’ll take hundreds of years to break down. 

Luckily, there are now many ways you can cut back on beauty waste. You can recycle any of your beauty empties with TerraCycle by dropping used products to MECCA and Sephora stores in Australia or New Zealand. If you don’t live close to a retail drop-off point, TerraCycle partners with countless brands that allow you to ship back your beauty empties for free to be recycled. 

  1. Haircare products, including aerosols 

A good hair day unfortunately can come at a cost to our planet. Most shampoo bottles are made from a variety of materials including a plastic bottle, a pump and a metal spring, and not all of these elements can be disposed of in your kerbside bin. 

However, you can recycle any brand of hair care products for free through TerraCycle in Australia or New Zealand.

  1. Medical blister packs

Medical blister packs – those pesky plastic pill packets typically covered with an aluminium top – can’t be recycled in your kerbside bin because of their complex material nature.

Chemists’ Own and TerraCycle have partnered to trial an in-store recycling program for household blister packs in select Pharmacy Alliance stores in Australia. If you live near a participating pharmacy, this is a great way to make a difference for the environment. 

If you can’t access the free recycling program yet, TerraCycle also recycles blister packs through its pre-paid Blister Pack Zero Waste Box in Australia and New Zealand. You can always contact your local pharmacy to see if they’d be interested in sponsoring a Zero Waste Box solution on behalf of the community. 

  1. Razors

Razors may seem small and innocuous, but over a lifetime of shaving all of those little things add up to create a huge amount of waste. In the U.S. it’s estimated that 2 billion disposable razors go to landfill each year. 

This waste can be avoided! You can recycle any brand of disposable razor through TerraCycle and Gillette’s razor recycling program. It allows households and communities in Australia or New Zealand to safely collect and ship their waste for recycling.

The TerraCycle points rewards system, which awards points for every recycling shipment, sweetens the deal for these recycling initiatives. TerraCycle points are redeemable as dollar donations to a charity, community organisation or school of your choice.  

So, take a closer look at some of those items that make their way into your household regularly and where they end up. Disposing of them responsibly can pay off in many wonderful ways.

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