While white HDPE (like milk bottles) is the most recycled plastic, there is much less demand for coloured HDPE because the coloured material is hard to sort. Even properly cleaned and placed in the blue bin, the chance of coloured HDPE being recycled is quite low. So if there is no recycling bin handy, do not feel bad about throwing away non-white HDPE. Or better yet, clean it and save it for a local recycling project as suggested above.
Shampoo & Detergent Bottle
Blue Bins & Chutes
Recycling Bins & Chutes
These bottles are almost always type #2 plastic (HDPE) or sometimes clear type #1 (PET). Both can be recycled. Wash the bottle out and throw away the dispensing pump which may have a metal spring and/or may be made with unrecyclable material .
HDPE is a wonderful material for local recycling projects.
Plastify (The Plastic Project)
Tips & Suggestions
Be weary of in-store take-back programmes
Most in-store “recycling” take-back schemes are just for marketing: an attempt to get you back in the store to buy more. They often come with an extra incentive ("Recycle with us and get a coupon for 10% off!").
These companies do not disclose how they are recycling. And how could they if the container is not recyclable? While HDPE containers are recyclable, most take-back programmes say they will take “any container” regardless of brand or material.
Sadly, many are just throwing collected containers into the blue bin and hoping for the best. There's a word for that: wishcycling.
So when you participate in these schemes, you may be facilitating wishcycling.
So…. ASK the store HOW they are recycling!