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Re-Use and Re-Cycle

While recycling things like plastic bottles and aluminum cans may seem like no-brainers, other products may be more complicated to correctly dispose of.

Empty cosmetic containers, appliances, electronics and chemicals for instance, may take some researching in order to properly recycle them.

Empty makeup containers that are made of things like glass, metal and plastics can usually be recycled at local facilities.

Mail-in-programs are available through some cosmetic companies, and many other eco-friendly manufacturers are offering recycling incentives or services for their products and packaging.

Once the makeup is gone, you can also see if there is something the container could be reused for. For example, small jars with lids or bottles can be refilled with other cosmetics or things around the house.

Larger household items, like furniture, can be donated if it is still in good condition. If any parts are recyclable, like wood, it can be broken down, sorted and recovered. Appliances that no longer work are usually accepted at scrap metal locations for recycling. Also, if purchasing a new appliance some companies will take your old one and properly dispose of it or reprocess the parts to be used again.

Electronics, batteries and chemicals all contain harmful components. Special drop offs may be available for these items, or offered at certain times during the year. Companies like ink cartridge and cell battery manufacturers may provide return mailing labels with their products in order for consumers to send in their old ones.

The Freecycle Network is a non-profit organization which links people with others in their area who wish to donate or find things that are in good condition to keep them from being tossed out. Items are free, and so is the membership to be part of the group. Also, some cities may offer certain annual events, like a community spring cleanup in which residents can put things curbside that they want to get rid of, but don’t know how or where to take it. Participating objects will be picked up and delivered to their proper designation.

Taking steps so that what you intend to recycle actually makes it along its reprocessing journey will ensure that your efforts come full circle.

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