If there’s one thing that we’ve all used before, it’s shampoo. At this point, this hair product has become much of a bathroom staple. So if you regularly find yourself with several empty shampoo bottles at the end of every year, know that you’re not alone.
Many others struggle with how to sustainably dispose of these bottles year after year. I mean, can you even recycle them? And if not, what can you do with them? Well, that’s what we’re going to talk about in this post.
What are shampoo bottles made of?
Such bottles are usually made of a type of plastic called high-density polyethylene (HDPE). This type of plastic is the polymer of a chemical called ethylene.
Can you recycle shampoo bottles?
Yes, such bottles can be recycled. In fact, they are usually recyclable through most curbside recycling programs.
How many shampoo bottles end up in landfills?
In the United States alone, 550 million shampoo bottles end up in landfills every year. That’s why it’s important to recycle these bottles or find other sustainable ways to get rid of them.
Can shampoo bottle pumps be recycled?
Most bottles of shampoo and soap pumps can’t be recycled. Unless they have a label indicating that they can be recycled, you won’t be able to do so. Those that have such labels are usually sent to companies like TerraCycle that specialize in recycling hard-to-recycle materials.
However, this is only possible if the manufacturers of the shampoo bottle pumps partner with such companies to create take-back programs for their products.
Keep in mind though – such partnerships require manufacturers to pay for recycling services. It’s therefore not surprising that most shampoo bottle pumps end up in landfills. For the pumps that do get to appropriate recycling facilities though, shredding and separation of different component materials are promptly done.
Why are pumps hard to recycle?
The main thing that makes shampoo bottle pumps difficult to recycle is the fact that they are made of several different materials. These materials can include different types of plastic, stainless steel, rubber, and even glass.
To make matters worse, the different parts that these materials are used to manufacture are tiny, making disassembly tedious. As such, many recycling facilities don’t find recycling these pumps economically viable.
What can you do with shampoo pumps?
The most sustainable thing you can do with shampoo pumps is to reuse them for as long as you can. You can easily do this by using them with other bottles, like those that hold soap. Alternatively, you can opt for shampoo sellers that provide refill services, allowing you to use the same pump and bottle over and over again.
Should you empty shampoo bottles before recycling them?
Yes, you should empty shampoo bottles before recycling them. In fact, it’s advisable to rinse out these bottles before recycling them. This will keep any leftover shampoo from contaminating plastic recycling streams.
What else can you do with plastic shampoo bottles besides throwing them out?
Apart from recycling shampoo bottles, you can also reuse them in a variety of ways. These include:
1. Creating a bathroom storage bowl
If you cut off the top of your shampoo bottle, you can use it to store your toothbrushes and other bathroom items.
2. Creating a hiding spot
If you’re looking for a place to hide your personal letters and items, you can use an old empty shampoo bottle. This is particularly effective because no one ever thinks of looking in shampoo bottles.
3. Making a storage container for kids
After thoroughly cleaning a shampoo bottle and leaving it to dry, you can cut off its top to convert it to a storage container. Such containers are particularly useful for storing your kids’ crafting items. You can even decorate them so that they can look more appealing to your kids.
Are Pantene shampoo bottles recyclable?
Yes, you can recycle Pantene shampoo bottles. You can easily do this by downloading a free shipping label from TerraCycle and sending your Pantene shampoo packaging to them.
Are Head and Shoulders shampoo bottles recyclable?
Yes, all Head and Shoulders shampoo bottles can be recycled. However, their caps and pumps can’t.
Can you recycle Dove shampoo bottles?
Yes, you can recycle Dove shampoo bottles.
Ultimately, the most sustainable and environmentally-friendly way to dispose of empty shampoo bottles is to reuse or recycle them. After all, you can’t compost them, and throwing them out just leads to the filling of landfills. So whenever you can, reuse your shampoo bottles for as long as possible then recycle them.