The 20 Something's Guide To Recycling | RE.BIN
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March 08, 2016

20 SOMETHING'S GUIDE TO RECYCLING

Guide to recycling in your 20s

While recycling probably isn't the first thing on our minds in our 20’s, we’re not against the idea as long as it doesn’t keep us from getting to work on time, meeting friends for happy hour, or kill the vibe of our first grown-up apartment. After all, we all want to be stewards of the land….right?

We know recycling can seem overwhelming with all the rules and regulations. That’s why we’ve created our 20 Something’s Guide to Recycling to clear up the confusion so you can sit back, relax and participate in the eco-movement, stress free.

HERE ARE EVERYDAY ITEMS WE USE IN OUR 20'S THAT YOU CAN CONFIDENTLY RECYCLE IN STYLE:

#BINIT

1. ANNIE'S MAC & CHEESE

Sorry Kraft, we upgraded to Annie’s in our 20’s because we felt it was the healthier, more adult thing to do.

Annie's Mac and Cheese Photo Credit: Annie's

2. TRADER JOE'S PASTA SAUCE

Not only do we love this sauce because it's within our budget, it also makes us look like the next Iron Chef when we have friends over for dinner. When these pasta sauce bottles are recycled, you’re helping the environment and saving electricity too because recycled glass needs less energy than virgin glass to be transformed into the next Organic Vodka Sauce bottle.

Trader Joe's Pasta Sauce Photo Credit: Trader Joe's

3. BAREFOOT CHAMPAGNE

You can feel a little better about Sunday Funday knowing you can recycle your champagne bottles.

Barefoot Champagne Photo Credit: Barefoot wine

4. TOSTITOS SALSA

Taco Tuesday wouldn’t be complete without Tostitos salsa. Salsa jars are made of glass and can easily be recycled - just make sure to clean out the jar before you do so because leftover tomato chunks are not allowed. (*Tip: No matter the color- brown, green or clear- glass is always recyclable.)

Tostitos salsa Photo Credit: Tostitos

5. DIET COKE

Diet Coke basically doubles as water in your 20’s. While it may not be as hydrating as you’d hoped, you can feel better knowing that those cans will be back on the shelf within as little as 60 days after you drop them off in the recycling bin.

Diet Coke Photo Credit: Diet Coke

6. SPECIAL K CEREAL

The Special K diet may come and go but at least Kellogg’s cereal boxes are easy and fat-free to recycle. Whether you’re munching on cereal for breakfast or dinner, be sure to drop the cardboard box in your RE.BIN when you’re done.

Special K Photo Credit: Special K

7. DOVE BODY WASH

After a quick rinse with Dove Body Wash, check the bottom of the bottle for a triangle or other recycling symbol that indicates the type of plastic the bottle is made of. Most will be plastics #1 and #2, which are generally accepted by recycling programs.

Dove body wash Photo Credit: Dove

8. US WEEKLY (or any other) MAGAZINE

While some say celebrity gossip is trash, we beg to differ! Don’t believe the rumors that glossy paper and catalogues aren’t recyclable; they are.

US Weekly Photo Credit: US Weekly

9. OLD COLLEGE TEXTBOOKS

Let’s face it, you’re never going to look at these anyways. Now that Google exists, you can say goodbye to your old textbooks by recycling them and save a few trees in the process.

College Textbooks Photo Credit: Pearson Edu.

10. VITAMIN WATER

Vitamin Water is our go-to thirst quencher, whether we’re hitting the gym or recovering from a late night out. The bottle is made of #1 plastic, which is recyclable. Of course, we suggest doing the more responsible thing and opting for a reusable water bottle.

Vitamin water Photo Credit: Vitamin water

11. AMAZON CARDBOARD BOXES

When you get that online delivery, you can feel a little less guilty knowing that you can recycle that cardboard box from Amazon. Approximately 70% of commercial boxes are recycled into other common household products, like cereal boxes and paper towels.

Amazon BoxesPhoto Credit: Amazon

12. STARBUCKS PRE-PACKAGED SALADS

These pre-packaged salads are super delicious and beat cooking for one. The packaging is not only convenient, it’s also recyclable. (*Warning: don’t be fooled by by the Starbucks coffee cups, which are not recyclable).

Starbucks Salads Photo Credit: Starbucks

13. MASCARA BOTTLES

Getting ready to go out is a weekend ritual and extra long eyelashes are key to successfully flirting the night away. Mascara bottles and other cosmetics packaging can be recycled through the Origins recycling program that accepts all shapes and sizes, no matter the brand.

Origins mascaraPhoto Credit: Origins

14. COSTCO COFFEE CANS

We’ll be honest, we can’t function at work without the help of Kirkland coffee- yes, it’s that serious that we have to buy coffee in bulk. Steel and tin cans are recyclable and make up approximately 90% of the U.S. food can market.

Costco CoffeePhoto Credit: Costco

DESPITE WHAT YOU MAY HAVE HEARD, HERE ARE SOME ITEMS THAT YOU SHOULD NEVER RECYCLE:

DON'T FALL FOR THESE RECYCLING FAUX PAS

1. PIZZA BOXES

Pizza may be our favorite thing to order at 2am, but the boxes are not recyclable if there’s any grease or cheese leftover. These contaminated boxes can’t be recycled - no exceptions!

pizza boxes

2. STACY'S PITA CHIPS BAG

There's nothing like a bag of pita chips with hummus to tide you over until dinner. Don’t be fooled - chip bags are never recyclable. Apparently, it’s called junk food for a reason!

Frito Lay pita chips Photo Credit: Frito Lay

3. PLASTIC SARAN WRAP

Just like chip bags, this type of plastic always belongs in the trash! That’s why we prefer reusable tupperware to keep our food fresh.

cling wrapPhoto Credit: Johnson & Johnson

4. BOUNTY PAPER TOWELS

It’s a common misconception that paper towels can be recycled, so keep them out of your RE.BIN. The same goes for tissues and napkins. *Tip: you can compost these paper products.

Bounty paper towels Photo Credit: Bounty

5. TARGET CERAMIC DINNERWARE

Target is our go-to for all kitchen and home essentials when decorating our first apartment. Ceramic plates may be great for entertaining, but they can’t be recycled, even though they seem earthy and eco-friendly.

Target plates Photo Credit: Target

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