Christmas is full of excitement, but all those presents, decorations and cards add up to an awful lot of rubbish!

Here’s a guide to what you can and can’t recycle out of all that mess!* Remember, our planet needs your help all year round –– not just at Christmas!


Recycling Christmas cards

Paper-based cards and their envelopes can be recycled either through your home recycling or at your local recycling point. Sadly, extra decorations like gems, glitter or ribbon can’t be recycled, so you’ll need to tear those parts off the card and bin them. The same goes for gift tags and crackers, too.


Wrapping paper

Some authorities do accept wrapping paper while others don’t, so you’ll need to check. If yours does, it will only accept non-foil paper. You can test this by scrunching the paper in your hand. If it springs back, it’s foil-based and needs to go in the normal bin. Oh and take care when it comes to tape –– sticky tape is non-recyclable, so do your best to peel off any tape left on your wrapping paper and bin it!


Try to avoid buying cards and wrap that’s covered in glitter or extra decorations that aren’t recyclable.


Christmas trees

Good news, real Christmas trees can be treecycled! Some authorities organise special collections or drop-off points. Otherwise, you can take your tree to your local recycling centre. If you have a fake tree, don’t chuck it, re-use it the following year or take it to a charity shop so that it can be enjoyed by another family!


Christmas decorations

Sadly, decorations like baubles and tinsel can’t be recycled and will need to go in the general waste. If your decorations still have some sparkle left in them, re-use them, or donate them to charity!


Christmas lights

Electrical waste like Christmas tree lights can be recycled at recycling centres, but they mustn’t be sent to landfill.



Cardboard boxes are recyclable but sadly, any plastic wrapping they come in or excess tape are not –– be sure to remove those before you recycle, gang!

*Ask mum and dad to check your local authority’s recycling restrictions.


How much Christmas recycling did you do? Let us know by leaving a comment below!




Your comment will be checked and approved shortly.



  • larryryan06

    Me and my family don't yous to much wrapping paper because we don't want to hurt the inviormenent

  • Yashvi p

    Recycling is good habit to save animals life

  • specks

    the planet needs saving and this is how to do it.

  • hoppy

    Recycling is great

  • hoppy

    Recycling is crazy and is so good for the environment. You can make our life out of recycling and can be beautiful. This page and website is for everyone to enjoy because this is full of fun and interesting facts

  • Angelina Kajombo

    Great ways save the Earth.

  • Bishnupriya Behera

    I also recycle my old things into new things!

  • fun idea

  • friendly8unipup

    wow i love recycoling its good for the earth

  • isla

    thats amazing good to know that you can resical these things

  • Frankie

    i think its a good idea to recycle Christmas items but the Christmas lights might warren out.

  • BlastBoxer

    I'll try to recycle them!


    Amazing advice ! I'm gonna share it with my fam >_<

  • Reuse and recycle!

  • Cool!

  • blablabla

    cool info i'll youse it

  • Izzy

    We keep all of our Christmas things to keep them for next year

  • lele


  • Grace Lemongrass

    I'm about to take my Christmas lights down, and before this I made sure to buy charity cards and recyclable paper material.

  • Tina

    I recycle my old Christmas cards by making them into Christmas labels for next year. I also cut attractive bits off of the packaging that Christmas gifts/food etc comes in and with a bit of glue make Card toppers for next year's cards. I also reuse envelopes by carefully taking them apart and turning them inside out and resticking them. Sometimes you don't even need glue for this you can just dampen the glue that is already there to reactiviate it! Wrapping paper I reuse, I carefully unwrap my presents- better that way you make the fun last longer. If the paper is too creased I carefully iron it. I reuse all ribbons and bows and if there are gems or other decorations on crackers or boxes I peel them off and keep them in a pot to make Birthday cards, Christmas cards and labels.

  • dylan

    great now I know what and not what to recycle thanks

  • Thomas


  • Joss

    Great information, I think we should carry on doing this for the next generation

  • Alfonso

    Love it

  • Ava

    Love it

  • Rose and Abigail

    rocked it

  • Ayla

    this is such a good idea the planet really needs the help too

  • Edie

    I recycled our Christmas cards, wrapping paper,cardboard that kept our cool fantastic fabulous toys together

  • let's save our planet

  • lkn


  • Halina

    I will try to recycle more now!

  • Carolyn Ross

    I never knew or had interest until I read that!

  • Deen


  • SavageLlamaGirl

    Llamas are cool

  • xanthe

    this is realy cool

  • domas


  • Teodora

    WOW that was so nice !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • vicky

    lets take action!!

  • Ll123

    Love this

  • Matthew

    Let's take action!

  • john

    hello im john

  • Joseph

    We recycled... Cards & envelopes Real tree Cardboard boxes Wrapping paper Foil Drink cartons Plastic which we are making into an eco brick We also have a compost heap.

  • taylor cooke

    good ideas. I'm not buying glitter anymore

  • Eliza

    We always recycle!

More Like General Kids Club


Home Is Good

Get messy, explore and appreciate nature, all from the safety of home!
General Kids Club

Discover the secrets of beautiful handwriting!

Turn your writing into a work of art with Maped…
General Kids Club

Win £500 worth of Forest Holiday vouchers!

Subscribe to Nat Geo Kids for a chance to win an incredible British holiday!
General Kids Club

Meet Earthshot prize finalist, Vinisha!

She’s determined to clean up India’s air pollution…
General Kids Club

6 helpful tips on how to stop bullying

Bullying happens to lots of different people but that doesn’t make it any less hurtful