Materials that can be recycled include many kinds of glass, paper, metal, plastic, tires, textiles and electronics. You pretty much know what recyclable materials are and how the recycling process goes thanks to our waste management glossary.
Now, the purpose at this post isn’t showing you the most weird or unusual recyclable products list, but to make more people participate in the developing of recycling streams for materials and items which people didn’t recognize as items that can be recycled, until now.
Here’s a list of the most surprising items you can recycle and some creative and useful recycled materials projects. You can find most of the recyclable materials at home.
Keep in mind that before going for the process of converting waste materials into reusable objects you need to be very familiar with materials that can be recycled and waste that cannot be recycled!
9 Surprising Materials That Can Be Recycled
Fur from your pet: You love pets, but you hate fur. Don’t worry, a San-Francisco-based company converts clean pet fur into oil-absorbing hair mats and hair-stuffed containment booms made from recycled pantyhose. The extremely high absorbing level of these booms allows them to effectively soak up oil, preserving new resources.
Baby diapers: Knowaste, a UK based recycling company recycles diapers and other absorbing hygiene products. Plastic and fiber can be recycled into new useful products like benches or flood defences and even roofing shingles.
Running shoes or trainers: Shoes recycling is becoming more popular in the recent years. You can search for organisations near your location. Before giving up on this, know that even extremely worn out shoes can be recycled. Here is an interesting fact – a month ago, Adidas made shoes from illegal fishing nets.
Chewed gum: The Southampton Airport in the UK became the first airport to install gum recycling bins to collect chewed gums. These gums are used in making toys, car tires, mobile phone covers and other stuff.
Compact discs: If you have an old CD with music you don’t really appreciate no more, why toss it into the garbage, when you can send it to CD recycling center? They shred the CDs into a powder and then melt it down. The recovered materials are used in building materials and in automotive industry.
Pantyhose: Your pantyhose is primary made from nylon, which disposed of in landfill will take 40 years to decompose. There are companies that can recycle your old pantyhose by grinding it. They use the materials to make carpets and playground equipment.
Corks: There are plenty of recycling companies that will take your corks. And since cork is a quite durable material, it can be converted into a variety of things from floor tiles to shoes. With some creative approach, cork can easily be used to make DIY lamp shades, bath mats and the list can go on forever.
Used bras: You can dispose of your unwanted bras by donating them to the Bra Appeal initiative. It is their responsibility to send them to an organisation which sells them to traders in developing countries. For each kg of used bras collected, 1£ goes to Breast Cancer Campaign.
Trophies and awards: If you were a winner while growing up, you must have won at least a dozen trophies. But there comes time to get rid of old stuff and those trophies can be recycled, but with the pride from past wins remaining untouched.
We hope we’ve changed your attitude regarding these materials and items that can be recycled even a little bit and gave you some recycling ideas with this post. Sustainability is everybody’s responsibility and we will continue to try even harder to get there, it’s in our favour after all.