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Is Your Wrapping Paper Recyclable? Here’s a Simple Test

A present wrapped up with craft paper and twine.
Olga Zarytska/Shutterstock

American’s spend billions on wrapping paper and wrap untold millions of gifts with the stuff every year. Curious if you can throw the piles of it that drift up like snow in your living room every Christmas morning? Here’s a simple test.

At Popular Science, they have an interesting article laying out arguments against wrapping paper, including the fact that many types of wrapping paper aren’t recyclable. In the article is this little nugget about a fast way to check to see if your wrapping paper can be easily recycled:

The American Forest and Paper Association recommends trying something called the “Scrunch Test” as a first guideline to determine whether to trash or recycle it. Crinkle the paper up into a ball—if it stays that way when you let go, it’s fine to put in the recycle bin. If it tries to go back to its original shape, there’s a good chance it’s going to the landfill to stay with the other estimated 2.3 million pounds of plastic wrapping paper that reportedly end up there every year.

Want to plan for a more sustainable holiday the next time around but love wrapping paper? You could always go for the rustic look with craft paper wrapping paper and a bow made of twine—craft paper is easily recycled thanks to the lack of plastic coating, metallic sheen, or glitter.

Jason Fitzpatrick Jason Fitzpatrick
Jason Fitzpatrick is the Editor in Chief of LifeSavvy. He has over a decade of experience in publishing and has authored thousands of articles at LifeSavvy, Review Geek, How-To Geek, and Lifehacker. Read Full Bio »
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