The lowdown on recycling your packaging…or avoiding it altogether

I’m delighted to introduce this guest blog by Caroline who is the owner of A Tidy Mind – West & South Yorkshire, covering Wakefield, South Leeds, Calderdale, Kirklees & South Yorks. Like a lot of us, Caroline is trying to live a more sustainable life. But it’s easy to feel confused over what can & can’t be recycled. Her blog includes some easy to read facts. Hope you enjoy!
Kate (A Tidy Mind founder)

caroline watterson professional organiser

When my children were small receiving an on-line order in a massive box was great, they would use their imagination & play houses, cars or aeroplanes in it for ages, which gave me a bit of a breather! 

Now they’re teenagers & we’re trying to live sustainably, the amount of packaging & how we recycle it as a family is important to us.

In fact, according to a study by Whistl, 75% of adults in the UK want less packaging used for their on-line orders.

The good news is that most of the packaging you receive with on-line orders can be recycled, even the magazines & junk mail which are usually included. 

There are other positive steps you can take too.  Read below for a little of what you need to know…….

Cardboard, magazines & junk mail

Any type of cardboard can be recycled in your household recycle bin once all tape has been removed from it


Cut off any plastic windows & remove any bubble wrap prior to recycling envelopes in your household recycle bin

Bubble wrap

If you’ve ordered something breakable it will probably come wrapped in bubble wrap.  Bubble wrap isn’t recyclable however most large supermarkets have a recycling drop off point for it along with plastic bags


Polystyrene packaging generally can’t be recycled & should be placed in the household waste bin

Wrapping paper

I’m not going to say the C word however at certain times of year we use a lot more wrapping paper than others!  The only wrapping paper which is recyclable is the brown type so why not opt for that this year.  Stylish & simple!

Tissue paper

Wrapping gifts in tissue paper is a great idea as it looks super cool & can be recycled or even re-used

Shredded paper

Did you know you can’t recycle shredded paper but you can compost it!

Pet sawdust

Cleaning out guinea pigs & rabbits weekly can create a lot of sawdust waste.  Did you know this can be recycled alongside garden waste at your local recycle centre

Telephone Directories

Do you still use one?  Don’t we all just google phone numbers now?  Clear the clutter & get those telephone directories in your household recycle bin

Top tips

recycle declutter professional organising
  • Put 3 bags for life in your car for those impromptu trips to the supermarket & put them straight back in the car once you’ve put away the shopping at home
  • Many local shops allow you to take & fill your own containers, seek out the nearest one to you!
  • is a great website for more information on recycling.  It’s the national recycling campaign for England, supported and funded by Government, & used locally by over 90% of English authorities.
  • Morrisons are the first supermarket to offer “buy bagless” fruit & vegetables giving customers the option to buy their fruit & vegetables loose with no plastic packaging, they’re going back to the traditional green grocery
  • Lidl have introduced reusable bags for fruit & vegetables, available 69p for two
  • Buy soap, shampoo & conditioner bars from Lush, no plastic & they smell amazing
  • Lego has a new range of plant-shaped bricks built from sugercane plastic.  The eco-friendly building blocks are now available for purchase

I hope you yielded a few nuggets of information from the above. Helping with recycling is a significant part of the A Tidy Mind service. No-one wants to see things ending up in landfill, least of all us! However, reducing consumption is the most important piece of the puzzle…so that we don’t have as much in the first place to recycle. If you are feeling overwhelmed by ‘stuff’ and would like a free consultation (we cover Yorkshire, London and the West Midlands), don’t hesitate to get in touch on [email protected]

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