What is Reuse?
Reuse is the second stage of the waste hierarchy. Product reuse involves the multiple use of an item in its original form, for its original purpose or for an alternative, with or without reconditioning. The table below gives examples of reuse that you can easily take part in.

How can I Reuse my waste?
To find answers to your other Reuse questions, click on the links in the table below.

How to Reuse





Write on both sides.
Print or write notes on scrap.


Wrapping paper

Reuse to wrap other presents.


Food and drinks containers

Use them to store leftovers, take your lunch to work/school or as plant pots.


Boxes and packing cases

Use them for storage.


Plastic bags

Take your own bags to the shops to use again and again.


Cloth bags or “Bags for Life”

Use these for shopping instead of plastic carrier bags.


Comics, books, videos, CDs, DVDs, PC games

Swap them with friends, donate them to your local library or charity shop or sell to second hand shops.


Textiles - old clothes, sheets and shoes

You can mend these, turn them into something more fashionable or donate them to charity shops.


Envelopes, jiffy bags, postal packaging

Stick a label over the address and use again.



Donate to charity or sell to second hand shops to be refurbished.



Use rechargeable batteries to avoid having to dispose of hazardous materials.


Fabric softener and cleaning products

Buy refillable containers to avoid packaging waste.

Avoid disposables

Deodorant, toiletries, razors and handkerchiefs

Avoid disposable versions of these as they are more expensive and create more waste.



Reusable nappies are now easier to use and can save you lots of money.


Deposit bottles

Return bottles you have paid a deposit for instead of throwing them away.

Buy recycled

Paper, envelopes, glassware and plastics

Buying recycled products helps support the recycling industry and your are reusing something at the same time.


Where can I buy recycled products?
Links to relevant companies and products can be found in the Recycled Product Finder on this site. You can also find a database of recycled products at Other useful websites for buying recycled and environmentally friendly goods include:

What can I do about disposable nappies?
You have the option of using reusable nappies, which are becoming increasingly more convenient for even the busiest parents. There are a variety of modern reusable nappy designs available, many of which are shaped and easily fastened with Velcro or poppers. You can significantly reduce the amount of waste going to landfill by choosing reusable nappies for your baby. To find out more about real nappies, contact:

Scottish Real Nappy Network
Tel: 0870 740 4477

You can also visit the WRAP website at


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If you have any queries, please email us, or call 01786 471 333.