Glass is 100% recyclable. It has an unlimited life and can be melted and recycled endlessly to make new glass products with no loss in quality. Americans dispose 10 million metric tons of glass annually. Most of it ends up in the trash. Only about one-third gets recycled. So instead of trashing used glass jars and bottles, here are some great ideas on how you can upcycle glass jars and bottles.
10 Ways to Upcycle Glass Jars and Bottles
1. For bulk shopping
If you have access to bulk stores (where you can put food directly in your own containers to avoid packaging), glass jars are perfect. Ensure the weight of the jar is recorded (do it yourself at home or a staff member at the store can help you do this) on the jar so you don’t end up paying for it.
Shopping this way makes it easy to unpack straight into the pantry!
2. To propagate plants or use as a flower vase
Use empty soda bottles to propagate plants. A lot of house plants like photos, Pilea, and Monstera can be easily propagated at home.
Re-purpose empty wine and olive oil bottles as a vase for fresh flowers or dried grass. Paint the jars if needed to go with your home decor.
3. Hold brushes and Utensils
Reuse empty jars to store cleaning brushes /makeup brushes /toothbrushes. Fill the empty candle jar with pebbles. This makes it easy for the brushes to stand up and can look really beautiful.
Free up your drawer space by storing cutlery and kitchen utensils in the glass jar.
4. Store herbs and produce
Use empty pasta sauce jars to store herbs like Cilantro, Mint, and Parsley. Fill the glass jar with 1 cup of water. Place the herbs in the jar like a bouquet of flowers. Loosely cover the jar with a reusable plastic bag. Store it in the refrigerator and change the water every 2-3 days.
Similarly, you can also store carrots, celery, and peppers, in glass jars.
5. Soap/Oil dispenser
Add a sprayer head to create a sprayer bottle. Glass bottles of vinegar, juice, soda, and other beverages with twist-off lids typically fit the average spray/pump nozzle
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6. To keep your Pantry organized
Repurpose empty glass jars to store spices, flours, nuts. pulses, and beans. Clear glass lets you take a peek at the jar’s contents, so you’ll be able to see when you’re running low on something.
7. Store food
Re-purpose glass jars to store homemade sauce, jam, and chutney, to freeze sauces and broth, to ferment veggies, and to make overnight oats or chia pudding.
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8. Plant an Indoor Herb garden
Repurpose glass jars into seed starters. Add about 1-2 inches of rocks, pebbles, or marbles to your glass jar. Since jars do not have holes for drainage. This will prevent roots from damage from excess water.
Then fill the jar with potting mix, leaving some space at the top for more potting mix after planting the seeds, about 1 inch. Plant herbs seeds of choice and top with a small handful of potting mix. Lightly water the top of the soil.
Place indoor near a windowsill or on a countertop that receives at least 6 hours of sunshine a day. Keep herbs watered, but do not overwater.
9. Non-food Storage Container
Jars can be used to store non-food items, like pencils, batteries, nuts and bolts, spare change, dishwasher pods, buttons, and sewing threads.
10. For gift packaging
Jars can be used as gift packaging for store-bought or homemade scrubs, treats, or soaps. Add a ribbon and tag and you are good to go.
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What are some of your favorite ways to upcycle glass jars? Let me know in a comment below!