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You don’t have to be a hippie to recycle. It’s nice to care for the environment, sure, but recycling can be beneficial to you too. As long as you’re smart about it, you can save a good bit of money by re-purposing your waste into handmade products that will prove useful. You may not expect it, but Instagram is a great place to find some awesome recycling ideas.

New to Instagram? Check out Nancy’s wonderful set of tips for Instagram newbies New To Instagram? Top Tips For Newbies New To Instagram? Top Tips For Newbies When you’re getting started on Instagram, there are a few tips and tricks to bear in mind to make sure that you hit the ground running. The popular app is part photo-sharing site and part... Read More to get you started on the right foot. Otherwise, let’s dive into those recycling ideas!

Cork USB Drive


If you drink a lot of wine — or know anyone who does — take the leftover corks and transform your USB drives into something remarkably simple yet unique. These cork-drives not only look awesome, but can be shaped however you like with very little effort. This is also a good way to recycle unused bulletin boards (as long as they’re cork, of course).

By @redesign_studio

Boxes and Mirrors



If you have leftover wood lying around, you could always toss it into your fireplace for some warmth. Or you could take the healthy pieces, shape them up, sand them down, and build boxes and mirrors like in the photo above. It’s always nice to have furnishings that you’ve made by hand.

By @brcdesigns

Pallet Lawn Chair


Here’s another use for wood: chairs. You can go the traditional route and craft full chairs made entirely of wood OR you can inject a bit of modern taste by using a metal frame like in the picture above. Junked pallets are a great source of wood for projects like this.

By @popol_11

Bicycle Fender


If you have plastic bottles waiting to be tossed, take a moment and think of ways you could reuse them before junking them into a recycle bin. One idea that’s great for bikers is slicing a plastic bottle in half length-wise and attaching it to the bike frame over the tires as fenders. This way, they can protect against water and mud kicking up. The longer the bottle, the better.

By @giftmeapp

Ambient Lamps


Another way to make use of plastic bottles is to use them as “lampshades” over your lightbulbs. This requires a bit of effort to get right but it can have some amazing results as you can see in the picture above. Make sure to use opaque bottles since clear bottles are likely to produce harsh light instead of soft light.

By @giftmeapp

Garden Spade


This particular idea has floated around the Internet for a while, but it’s so ingenious that it deserves repeat mention. With a pair of heavy scissors and a quart-sized milk bottle, you can make one of two types of spades: angled and flat. The durability will depend on the milk bottle itself, but this idea is too cool to pass up.

By @miyaaaaaang

Bird Feeder


If you have a bottle that’s sturdy enough, you can cut out a hole and insert a thick stick to create a bird perch. For larger bottles, you can create a cheap bird feeder by filling it with bird seed and leaving a sizeable opening. For containers that are wider and shallower, hang them up and fill them with water to make a bird bath. It’s a good day to be a bird.

By @dwaynedb89

Plant Vase


What can you do with glass bottles? Turn them into vases! A proper vase crafted by an artisan’s hands can be a beautiful sight, but there’s a charming quality that shines when you turn a glass bottle into the home of a healthy flower. Try this with many different bottle types for maximum variety!

By @liannemills

Air Freshener


Glass bottles can also be used as scent diffusers. It’s a viable alternative to buying aerosol sprays, cloying candles, and suffocating plug-in fresheners. All you need is a glass bottle or jar (doesn’t really matter what kind), a mixture of scented oils, and a couple of reeds or wooden skewers. The oil gets soaked into the wood and disperses through the air.

By @andy351004

Unconventional Art


Perhaps the most obvious recycling tactic is to take whatever you have lying around and turn it into art. This particular example shows a massive collection of discarded phones arranged by color to produce a message. “What a waste” these pieces would’ve been if they hadn’t been turned into something meaningful.

By @krimilars


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Have you seen any other cool recycling ideas on Instagram? I’m sure there are plenty that I’ve missed so please share them with us in the comments!

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