Want to know what things you should never throw away? How to reuse items around the house in order to reduce waste?

Then you’re in the right place because that is exactly what we are talking about in this article. About items to reuse at home in order to reuse, repurpose and recycle!

You would be amazed at home many items that we throw in the trash that could actually be repurposed. There are so many things that you should never throw away because they are still so very useful!

And the best part is that by reusing items that you already have you just mighty save yourself some money! How wonderful would it be if you could simply use some old household items instead of having to buy new items for a certain purpose!

Not only is reusing more environmentally friendly it is also more economical for your wallet!

So, if you want to know what ten things you should never throw away then keep reading. Because we are going to be talking about how to reuse items around the house.

For more inspiration on how to waste less you should treat yourself to this book on 101 Ways to Go Zero Waste!

Disclaimer: The affiliate links included in this post result in me receiving a small commission. These links are of no extra cost to you, they just help to keep this website up and running successfully. I only advertise products that I have personally used or believe in the quality of. 

Things You Should Never Throw Away

There are many things that we throw away without much though that are actually still very useful.

In this list of ten things you should never throw away you will find items that still can prove to be very useful.

Whether they be food scraps or old cloths they just might have a second purpose in their life. And can still prove themselves to be very handy!

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1.    Citrus Peels

Citrus peels are one of those things that you should never throw away and here is why.

The most obvious reason is that so much of that citrus flavor is stored in the peel so why not zest it and freeze it for later? Lemon and orange zest is great in baked goods!

You could also dry citrus peels in order to add to baths for a lovely citrus scent or to grind down into powder for homemade skincare.

You could also throw a few pieces of lemon peel down your garbage disposal as a deodorizer. Or add citrus peels to white vinegar to infuse for a natural spray cleaner.

To have a similar effect you can put a few drops of lemon essential oil down your garbage disposal or into some white vinegar for cleaning!

2.    Empty Food Containers

Food containers hold a lot of versatility so don’t just throw them away once all of the tasty stuff in them is gone.

You can reuse them as containers for leftovers or as containers to take food to work.

You could even use them as seedling planters or as dog and cat food and water bowls. And if the containers are nice looking you could use them as storage for small items.

things you should never throw away

3.    Coffee Grounds

Coffee grounds often have so much of that marvelous coffee essence still left in them. So much so that you could probably make coffee with them a second time if their high-quality grounds!

You could throw them out into your garden for the plants to enjoy or dry them out for other purposes. Such as to make coffee body scrubs or to infuse body oil with.

You can see a few benefits of using a coffee scrub in this article on Sugar Scrubs vs Salt Scrubs!

Coffee is a natural deodorizer so you could add some to your trash can or trash bin to curb the smell. Or grind some in your garbage disposal to remove food odors. You can even use them to deodorize your fridge much like baking soda does!

4.    Old Cloths

Old cloths though they might seem as though they have outstayed their welcome are incredibly handy to have around.

In fact, when it comes down to how to reuse items around the home old cloths come to the top of the list!

You can cut up old tee-shirts to use as cleaning and dust cloths. Or shred all kinds of cloths in order to use as stuffing for flat pillows or sewing projects.

You could even get extra crafty and make your own dust covers for your Swiffer sweeper.

5.    Plastic Bags

Try as we might to only use reusable grocery shopping bags that doesn’t always work out. Maybe you forgot them or just didn’t bring enough. But don’t worry those grocery bags still have a purpose!

You can save them for future grocery trips or keep them around if you are planning to move as they make excellent packing material.

You can use plastic bags over the top of growing plants in order to create a kind of sauna or to keep them warm in the winter.

They could also be used as potty bags for your cat’s litter box or your dog’s daily walk.

And don’t forget to purchase some reusable grocery bags in order to avoid having to deal with plastic ones! These reusable cotton grocery bags are excellent options.

6.    Plastic Jugs and Bottles

There are many ways that you can reuse containers such as old plastic jugs and soda bottles. Either way they are going to produce plastic waste, but you can at least try to get as much wear out of them as possible.

Plastic jugs are easy to repurpose for homemade cleaning products or as watering containers for your garden. 

Plastic soda bottles are great to reuse for cold drinks for at least several extra uses. And they can make excellent scoopers for dog food or feed once manipulated a bit.

You can use them as a base for home crafts or make a bird feeder out of one!

7.    Old Sponges and Toothbrushes

Old sponges and toothbrushes are my cleaning jam! They are so useful and have so much wear left in them after they are done with their original purpose.

Old sponges make wonderful cleaning tools for cleaning the bathroom or cleaning extra dirty places. Such as floor boards and light covers.

Old toothbrushes are excellent for cleaning those hard to reach places in those dusty nooks and crannies. And the lip of the toilet bowl where a normal toilet brush can’t reach.

Simply sanitize them and you have yourself a new set of cleaning tools for months to come!

8.    Food Scraps

Don’t throw away those tasty food scraps just don’t do it! There is so much more that you can do with them.

Freeze onion scraps, carrot tops and whatever another veggie scraps you are often left with. Freezing them in order to make some homemade veggie broth for another day!

If you don’t feel like making broth you could always compost your scraps in your garden or lawn. Allowing the vegetation there to soak up the last bit of nutrients from the food scraps.

If you have wildlife around your home, you could also just put out food scraps for them to eat.

9.    Glass Jars

Glass jars are endlessly useful things to hold onto. Whether they be old pasta sauce jars, baby food jars or pickle jars.

They are great to reuse as cups or to go cups for cold drinks and as portable food containers. They are great containers to help organize dried goods and little items that have a tendency to get lost.

Glass jars are great for DIY candles and if you want to get extra creative. There are so many crafts that you can use them for.

10. Paper Scraps

There are many creative ways to reuse the things you should never throw away. Paper waste being one of those items to reuse at home.

There is so much paper waste in our homes and absolutely no reason to throw them away as they can still prove to be useful.

You can reuse a lot of paper as wrapping paper for holidays and birthdays. Or you can start on some paper crafts.

Such as DIY paper envelopes or compostable pots for seeds. You could even make your own seed paper with a slurry of paper scraps and flower seeds!

Why Should I Reuse?

If after reading this post, you have asked yourself the question of why should I reuse I think I might be able to help.

Reusing is very important as we all create quite a large amount of waste per year. Reusing of course doesn’t solve that problem but it at least slows it down a bit. Making us more aware of the waste that we produce.

Once you challenge yourself to reuse what you would normally throw away. You might just become more aware of how much waste you really are creating.

It’s an eye opener and one that we could all use from time to time. As it is easy to forget how harmful our actions can be to the environment.

If you are interested in learning more about how to reduce your waste. Check out this book on 101 Ways to Go Zero Waste for more inspiration.

What is something that you regularly reuse? Is it a takeout container or coffee grounds?

Do you have any special tips as to how you have found success with reusing certain items?

Don’t forget to get yourself these reusable cotton grocery bags while they last! They are a great way to reduce your plastic bag waste!