TerraCycle’s 5 Tips and Tricks for Collecting at Home

Our lives and priorities change day-to-day, but now more than ever! Doing your part to reduce environmental impacts and save resources by recycling protects our future and TerraCycle® is here to help! 

Our Free Recycling Programmes are still working to make it as easy and rewarding as possible to save everyday products and packaging from landfills while also raising funds for your favourite schools and nonprofits. You can also put your raised funds towards charitable gifts for our Charity Partners responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, such as The British Red Cross.

So continue collecting your waste so we can recycle it later on, and have some fun while you’re at it! Here are some of our expert tips and tricks for collecting the non-recyclable waste at home:

1. Create cool collection boxes

Sorting your waste as you collect for TerraCycle®’s programmes makes staying organized a breeze. Turn it into a fun activity the whole family will enjoy by designing your own custom collection boxes!

Repurpose (or, upcycle) items and materials you already have, such as an empty storage bin, leftover wrappers, or scraps of paper, to create a one-of-a-kind container for every programme. Need some inspiration? Check out these DIY instructions for creating a Designer Collection Box or an Upcycled Collection Box designed exclusively by TerraCycle®’s team of Design Junkies.


2. Designate a special place for TerraCycle® waste

Set up and place your new collection box in convenient locations throughout your home; it could be where you’d usually use those products or next to your regular bin e.g. placing your home-made TerraCycle® collection box next to the kitchen recycling bin is a great place to start, as is one for the bathroom

The goal is for everyone in the house to clearly notice the collection boxes and what they are for, so they remember there’s a better solution for their empties than the rubbish bin. Take this opportunity to create teachable moments for family, roommates, or children by explaining the differences between locally recyclable and “hard-to-recycle” items as well as how it prevents the waste from endangering nature.

3. Make sure items are empty and dry

Before placing an item into your collection box, double-check to ensure all excess product has been removed. If you choose to rinse your crisp packets, beauty product empties, or snack wrappers, be sure to dry them off completely. This will keep your recycling station neat, clean, and relatively odor-free and make it easier to package up collections when you’re ready to send it for recycling!

4. Store your waste out of the way

There’s no such thing as “waste,” just misplaced resources, but an overflowing collection box of recyclables is not ideal. Ready to empty your collection boxes, but not ready to send them for recycling just yet? Keep items separated by programme and transfer the boxes’ contents into cardboard boxes for easy transportation. Store the boxes in a cool, dry place — a closet, loft, or garage should do the trick!

5. Clearly label collection boxes and hang signs

Active participation and proper separation are essential to the success of any recycling programme and go way up when clear, instructional signage is present, so amp up your at-home recycling with labels and signs that call attention to your eco-activities and leave nothing to chance.

Print and hang the posters you can download at the bottom of every Free Recycling Programme page on or above their respective collection boxes, or get creative and design your own! These signs will serve as a gentle reminder of what goes where.

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Keeping our distance doesn’t mean we have to be distant from our friends and family; share these tips and tricks with them and encourage them to recycle and earn TerraCycle® points for charity!

Have any ideas we missed here? Tell us in the comments! Or better yet, submit your entry to the #KeepOnRecycling contest and you could win up to £1,600! For more details, please click here.

5 thoughts on “TerraCycle’s 5 Tips and Tricks for Collecting at Home

  1. Thanks Claire but I would be ridiculed if I circulated this as it suggests people have more space than the average to store recycling….. we aim to make it as easy as possible for villagers to cut waste so merely suggest people store their recycling already flattened. We normally collect unsorted recycling too so people only need one or two carriers to collect everything. Doesn’t help for massive volumes but does move the area towards zero waste…


    1. Hi Ruth, thanks for your feedback.
      We appreciate that not everybody has a lot of storage space at home. However, we advised people to store their waste only if they can, in order to reduce even just a bit the amount of waste produced during lockdown.
      I hope this explanation helps.
      Best wishes, Claire


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