A not so fun fact: Each year, nearly 29 million tons of plastic end up in landfills across America, with empty bottles of shampoo, conditioner, body wash, and lotion among the mix. While many are aware that these empties can be recycled, less than half of the people interviewed by Unilever confessed to actually doing so.
In order to determine whether that empty bottle of lotion can be recycled, look closely at the label. Products that can be included will feature the well-known recycling logo with a trio of arrows somewhere on the bottle. Simply rinse out the remnants of the product, then place it among the rest of your plastics and cans you're taking to the curb. And it isn't just your empty bath products that can get in on the fun—metal aerosol cans can be thrown in with your aluminum pile.
Empty tubes of lipstick, shadow containers, mascaras, foundations, and more can be recycled—just not in the same batch as the plastic Dasani bottles in your bin. Make sure to look into recycling programs done by many makeup brands. For example, MAC's Back to MAC service allows you to swap 6 empty MAC containers for a brand-new tube of lipstick (excluding the fund-raising Viva Glam shades). When all else fails, turn the empties in at your nearest Origins outpost. At every store location or counter, Origins recycles all empty containers for free, regardless of the brand, in order to reduce the amount of product packaging that ends up in landfills.