12 Household Items You Can Repurpose Instead of Throwing Away

As we become more diligent about taking care of our planet, repurposing has become a trend that doesn’t show any sign of slowing down. We can save things from ending up in a landfill by upcycling them for another use. Not only is it great for the planet, but it’s also great for our bank accounts. Reuposing is a budget-friendly way to turn used stuff into something we need but don’t want to spend money to buy.

Repurposing crafts have become wildly popular. Just check out Pinterest if you don’t believe us. You can upcycle everything from glass bottles to plastic containers and furniture. Imagine giving new life to that old hutch Grandma gave you instead of throwing it away. Turning that stack of plastic butter containers into craft or office storage. Using mason jars as drink glasses instead of buying the new ones made for that purpose. These are just a few ways to repurpose household items into something new. We have more!

Those old milk jugs, egg cartons, and wine bottles hanging around your home can be more than just trash. Here are twelve household items you can repurpose instead of throwing away.

1. Glass Jars

glass jars used as vases
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Don’t throw away those old candle containers, pickles, and pasta sauce jars. You can use it with sweets or notes as a gift, make it into a flower vase, or ferment foods during the holidays. There are numerous ways to repurpose those glass jars hanging around your kitchen into something useful.

2. Newspapers

recycled newspaper used for seed starting
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Do you have newspapers and magazines sitting around your home and not being read anymore? You can reuse and recycle these in numerous ways. You can use them as wrapping paper in your cat litter boxes, to clean windows with them, or as a firestarter. You can even use them to start seeds for your garden.

3. Shoe Boxes

shoe boxes used for clothes storage
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Since you wear shoes daily, there’s no denying that the stack of shoe boxes in your home is quickly piling up. Although they may seem like trash, you can put these old boxes to good use in many ways. You can use them as drawer dividers, closet organizers, shoe storage, or cord organizers. You can even use the cardboard for firestarter or packing.

4. Plastic Bags

plastic grocery bag used as a trash can liner
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Even if you usually take reusable shopping bags to the store, there may still be times when you have to use a plastic bag. However, you don’t merely have to accept that that will negatively impact the environment. You can keep a couple in your car when you forget your reusable bags, use them as shelves and garbage liners, or even use them as sandwich bags.

5. Toothbrushes

using an old toothbrush to clean a keyboard
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Do you usually toss your old toothbrushes? Stop throwing them away and use your old toothbrushes as new cleaning tools. These are perfect for getting into the tiny crevices you typically can’t reach with larger cleaning supplies. Take your old toothbrushes and get in the tiny crevices of your kitchen sink or bathroom tiles, shine your shoes, or create texture in your art.

6. Used Tea Bags

used tea bags
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What can you do with all those tea bags after using them? Instead of tossing them away, you can reuse them by relieving your puffy eyes, adding them to your bath, soothing insect bites and burns, and feeding your garden.

7. Egg Cartons

egg carton reused to organize craft supplies
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If you enjoy eggs, then you already know the egg cartons that can accumulate. It can be wasteful to throw them away, so you may want to consider effectively repurposing them. You can use egg cartons to start seedlings, store jewelry, make a palette for paints, or use them to organize craft supplies.

8. Paper Towel and Toilet Paper Rolls

recycled toilet paper rolls to grow seeds
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Everyone tosses an astonishing number of paper towel and toilet paper rolls. Use your empty paper towel and toilet paper rolls to store holiday lights, donate them to local schools and churches for craft projects, or make waterproof lint logs. You can even use them start seedlings.

9. Old T-Shirts

macarame wall hanging made with old t-shirts
Image Credit: Macra-Made

Do you have old t-shirts worn too much or stained that can’t be donated? There are still ways that you can repurpose those old t-shirts and ensure you’re not throwing them away. Upcycle them into bags or cleaning rags, or even use them to make a piece of macrame art.

10. Plastic or Glass Bottles

wind chimes made from recycled glass bottles
Image Credit: Anika’s DIY Life

All those juice and soda bottles tend to accumulate, and there’s no reason for them to go to the landfill. Take your plastic water bottles and reuse them as cooking tools, planters, or a rainwater catcher. Use glass bottles to make a wind chime. See how here.

11. Milk Jugs

milk jugs repurposed to start seeds for a garden
Image Credit: Grow Happier Plants

Milk jugs take up space in your trash can and are also awful for the environment. Use them to start seeds before transplanting in your garden. You can use them over and over and reduce waste in landfills. Here’s how to use milk jugs for gardening.

12. Wine Bottles

wine bottles repurposed into a privacy screen
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Wine bottles can be repurposed in a variety of ways. Use them for tikki torches, a privacy wall, bird feeders, or even as a pendant light. Paint them and make them into vases. Don’t forget about the corks. Collect them and make a great message board when you have enough!

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woman kneeling in a kitchen with cleaning supplies
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woman decluttering clothes
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Is clutter taking over your home? Tackle that clutter and get rid of that stuff room by room now with these 100 things to declutter from your home. Get the list here.

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draw filled with junk items meant to be tossed out

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Anika Gandhi

Anika Gandhi is on a mission to declutter and organize all the things around her and is here to inspire and encourage you to do the same!

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