Holiday Recycling


Holiday Recycling

No matter what your beliefs or traditions are, 

One thing that spans it all this time of year is gift giving! That means more potential waste when you add up all the giftwrap, ribbons, bows and pretty boxes and bags. The question is, what can I recycle?

The first rule is to try to avoid glitter as much as possible. Don’t buy it or give it, and if you can, do not allow it in your home. Inform family and friends that you are establishing a glitter gate at your door! This includes holiday or other cards as well! If you are not aware of the hazards of glitter, or other micro-plastics, please read up -Micro-Plastic Pollution If glitter does manage to get past your door, be certain to dispose of it by placing it in a plastic bag, then throwing it in the garbage.

Did you know that should a bail of paper/cardboard exhibit even the slightest sign of glitter content at your local recycler, they would most likely throw it in the regular garbage?

About Giftwrap paper, Ribbons, Bows, and Pretty Gift Bags and Boxes...

If you are giving.



Try first to choose wrapping paper, ribbons and bows that can be re-used or at minimum recycled, and be sure to let your giftee know! Communicate with the name tag or card if possible as the recipient may not remember when it is time, and stating it, re-enforces the practice! Make sure everyone in your household agrees to do the same!

Gift Bags, and Gift Boxes are great alternatives. They may not be as personal, but they are more than likely to be re-used.

The *links I have provided are to eco-friendly products.

Bows are difficult to sort out from the really bad ones, but if you pay close attention you can find them. Just be certain to avoid poly-vinyl, or poly-chloride as materials. Look for paper or burlap as alternatives.

If you are receiving.


This can be much trickier! Recology, who serves most of Sonoma and Marin Counties, lists non-metallic wrapping paper as recyclable on their site, but make no mention of bows or ribbons.

The preferred option would be to re-use both if they are still presentable. A frugal addition of tape will reattach a bow if you fold it inside out onto itself, and ribbon can almost always be reused. Just make sure to keep the reused bows, ribbon and perhaps metallic paper in your immediate family to be sure it ends up in the right bin in the end! 

Consider reusing paper as well...

If its life has come to an end, you should be able to discern easily enough if the bow or ribbon is made of paper or burlap. Silk, and "poly" products may seem similar, so if in doubt, toss it in the garbage bin.

And then there is the gift itself.


Were you aware that a large number of returned products are tossed in the trash? 

According to Business Insider if the math of inspecting, repackaging, and re-entering a product into distribution does not add up, it is most likely tossed in the trash.

Instead, if you can think of someone you think might really enjoy it, offer it to them with an explanation of its origin. 

You could donate it to a church, a thrift store or other appropriate organization and you will be keeping the holiday spirit going!

If you have the time, you can always list it for sale on many of the online venues like Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist, just be careful and research safe practices and precautions.

Or throw a White Elephant party!

* Pro-Tip

Do not invite the giver whose gift you are re-gifting...


All of us at Donna Declutter and Hemmin' & Hauling wish you and your loved ones a Happy Holiday Season!

*Donna Declutter is not affiliated with

If you have any questions, or I can assist you in getting your home or office better organized, feel free to contact me below!

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