In recent years, cleanliness and hygiene have become a top priority for many of us. As such, protective gear like gloves have become more popular than ever.
And of all the types of gloves out there, rubber gloves are the easiest to buy. So it’s not surprising that many of us regularly have to deal with rubber glove disposal now.
But how should you even dispose of these gloves? Can they be recycled? Are they biodegradable?
Well, that’s what we’re going to talk about today.
Can you recycle rubber gloves?
For years now, rubber gloves couldn’t be recycled. However, TerraCycle recently teamed up with manufacturers of rubber gloves to create a recycling program for them.
To benefit from their program, buy their Zero Waste Box from their website and they will send it to you through direct post.
Once you receive it, all you have to do is fill it with your rubber gloves and mail it back to them. They will then separate the different types of gloves they receive, melt them, and use the result to create new products.
Are natural rubber gloves biodegradable?
Yes, natural rubber gloves are biodegradable and can even be composted. However, they take at least 5 years to fully decompose.
Interestingly, some synthetic rubber gloves are biodegradable – they take a while to completely break down too.
How do you dispose of rubber gloves?
Apart from recycling and composting, the only other way to dispose of rubber gloves is to throw them in the trash. But this isn’t sustainable – it is just contributing to the filling of landfills.
Are rubber gloves bad for the environment?
Yes, rubber gloves are bad for the environment. They are hard to recycle and take a long time to biodegrade.
On top of that, there are some chemicals added to them during the manufacturing process that further complicate matters.
What can I do with old dishwashing gloves?
1. To remove hair from clothes
Wearing your rubber gloves and rubbing them over your clothes, rugs, or sofas can help remove dog/cat fur from them.
2. To make a rubber band
If you need to tie your hair but don’t have a rubber band on hand, you can make some by cutting your gloves into rings of different sizes. You can also use these bands for storage under the shelves or as non-slip tools all around the house.
3. To open jars
Another interesting way to reuse your dishwasher gloves is to use them to open your jars. These gloves provide extra grip and friction that makes opening jars easier.
Compost! Reuse! Recycle!
When it comes to rubber gloves, the most sustainable disposal methods are reusing, recycling, or composting.