Are plastics recyclable?

In most cities across the US, recycling of paper, glass, and metal is commonplace. But what about plastic? Is plastic recyclable?

The answer is: It depends on a few things: size, rigidity, composition, and your locality.

1. First thing to consider: size. If the item is smaller than 3", it's usually not recyclable because small items get caught in recycling machines and disrupt their operation. This includes tampons, small pill bottles, eye contact cases, etc.

Small plastics

2. Another important factor: rigidity. Generally speaking, rigid containers such as bottles, tubs, and clamshell food containers are recyclable, whereas flimsy plastics such as wraps, bags, straws, and polystyrene foam are not.

Plastic Bag

3. Composition: If the item is made of several different types of plastic, it can be challenging to recycle. Deodorant containers, for example, are made of several plastics, and are therefore difficult to recycle.

Plastic Containers

It's important to note that curbside recycling depends on locality as well. Check the type of plastic that is recyclable with your city, as it can vary based on recycling capability.

You can avoid non-recyclable items by switching to reusable or low waste items. Check out our products to see how you can make the largest impact on reducing your waste. A product with a "high impact" score means that the item will remove the largest amount of waste from oceans and landfills.

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