Latest COVID-19 Health and Guidance Information - Read here ›

Request a quote
Request a quote
Request a quote
Banner 2x

J&B Recycling Knowledge

Can You Recycle Birthday Cards And Wrapping Paper?

Can You Recycle Birthday Cards And Wrapping Paper?

Sending and receiving birthday cards and beautifully wrapped presents is a cherished tradition for many. However, as environmental consciousness grows, it's important to consider the impact of these festivities on the planet. In this article, we'll explain the recycling process for birthday cards and wrapping paper, shedding light on how you can make your celebrations more eco-friendly.

Can You Recycle Birthday Cards?

The good news is that most birthday cards are paper-based and can be easily recycled. You can put them, along with their envelopes, into your kerbside recycling bin. It's a simple way to ensure that the paper materials are given a second life.

However, there are a few things to keep in mind to make the recycling process as smooth as possible:

1. Remove Embellishments: Any embellishments on the cards, such as ribbons or glitter, cannot be recycled. To recycle the card itself, simply tear off the sections with these non-recyclable elements.

2. Musical Cards: If your birthday card contains a musical element powered by batteries, it's essential to remove the batteries before recycling. Check with your local recycling authority to see if they accept batteries in kerbside recycling. If not, drop them off at designated battery recycling points, often found in local supermarkets.

3. Remove Sticky Adhesive on Envelopes: Although paper envelopes are generally recyclable, the adhesive strip can be a concern. To address this, simply tear or cut off the adhesive portion of the envelope before placing it in the recycling bin. This step ensures that the adhesive doesn't interfere with the recycling process and allows the paper to be reused efficiently.

Can You Recycle Wrapping Paper?

When it comes to wrapping paper, the recycling process is a bit more nuanced, and it depends on your local recycling guidelines. Some councils accept wrapping paper in their household recycling collections, while others do not. To make sure you're doing the right thing, check with your local authority first.

Here are some tips for recycling wrapping paper effectively:

1. Remove Tape and Decorations: Before recycling, make sure to remove any sticky tape, as well as decorations like ribbons and bows. These items cannot be recycled.

2. Avoid Foil and Glitter Paper: Wrapping paper with foil or glitter accents is generally not recyclable due to the non-paper materials present. It's best to avoid using these types of paper if you want to make recycling easier.

The Scrunch Test:

A useful rule of thumb for wrapping paper recycling is the "scrunch test." If the paper is plain and can be easily scrunched into a ball that stays as a ball, it's likely recyclable paper. However, if the paper resists scrunching and bounces back when released, it should not be recycled and should be placed in the general waste bin.

In summary, as you continue to enjoy the tradition of giving and receiving birthday cards and wrapped gifts, remember that you can contribute to a more sustainable future by following these recycling guidelines. Most birthday cards and wrapping paper can find new life through recycling programs, reducing the environmental impact of your celebrations. So, recycle responsibly and make a positive difference in your community and the planet.

For more information on recycling and environmental responsibility, visit

J&B Recycling are based in the North of England. Our commercial collection services operate from the Scottish Borders down to Hull and North Yorkshire. Our main areas for collecting and processing commercial waste include Teesside (Darlington, Hartlepool, Middlesbrough, Stockton), Durham, Gateshead, Newcastle, Sunderland, North Tyneside and Northumberland. Get in touch for more information and to request a quote.

Banner2 2x

Delivery & collection
services covering
the UK

Where we operate

Request a quote

For an instant quote, call our team on

01429 276 614
i For general enquiries, please send an enquiry here or call us
  1. 1. Waste type
  2. 2. Company Details
  3. 3. Enquiry Details
  4. 4. Thank you
Please select your waste type(s)…
C&D Waste
Garden Waste
General Waste
Skip Hire
Submit request
Thank you for requesting a quote

A member of our commercial collections team will be in contact with you soon with your quote.

Return to website