Many people think paper towels, napkins and tissues are recyclable. If you are one of them, you’re not alone. Even if they’re not used, slightly used, or covered in muck… the answer is always the same: No.
Let us tell you why:
1. They may have organic matter on them (food, grease, bodily fluids, germs, mold, etc). These will contaminate other items that can be recycled, possibly to the point of preventing them from being recycled too!
2. Paper can only be recycled so many times. Each time paper is recycled, the fibers get shorter and shorter. By the time it’s made into a paper towel or tissue, the fiber is extremely short and unable to be reused. Once it gets to that state, it’s the last stop in the recycling process.
What can you do with them?
- You can actually compost them! Even if used, they can all go in the compost and give it some bulk (if your tissues are dirty from a cold or viral infection, check with a medical professional before tossing it in).
- If you’re not into composting, toss these items in the trash and they will decompose in the landfill.