Toothbrushes are one of the easiest things to recycle and reuse, even if you are unable to find a company to take your old ones off of your hands. Each toothbrush is used up in roughly three months and is then discarded forever. Millions of toothbrushes go into landfills each year. Instead of throwing that old toothbrush away, reuse it or recycle it into something new. Here’s how!
Toothbrushes can, of course, be reused for cleaning purposes. They are great for getting into crevices, cleaning around drains, and scrubbing behind and under bathroom fixtures. Keep a few toothbrushes under your sink to use for cleaning purposes. Keep a few of them in the garage and one in the trunk of the car as well. You never know when you’ll need it for cleaning up car parts, removing corrosion from battery terminals, or degreasing things such as bicycle chains. Save one or two for cleaning your jewelry as well.
Toothbrushes can be made into neat jewelry. Some crafters even make money from recycling toothbrushes for bracelets. To make a recycled toothbrush bracelet, use a pair of pliers to pull the bristles out of the head of the toothbrush. Submerge the toothbrush in a pot of boiling water for a few minutes. This will make the toothbrush soft and pliable.
Remove the toothbrush from the boiling water. Either using two pair of pliers or while wearing oven mitts, slowly bend the toothbrush into a c-shape. You may need to submerge the toothbrush into the boiling water several times while bending. Once the toothbrush is the size you want it, submerge it in a bowl of ice water while holding it in shape. These recycled toothbrush bracelets are very pretty when made from clear jewel-colored plastic. You can even decorate them using paints or glued-on rhinestones.
Old worn-out toothbrushes can be reused with your cosmetics as well. Used toothbrushes can be cleaned and disinfected and used as eyebrow brushes. If you color your eyebrows, keep a separate toothbrush for each color that you use. They can be used to scrub dirty combs as well as in between the bristles of your hairbrush.
Old toothbrushes make fantastic nail brushes. Keep on in the shower or in the medicine cabinet over the sink to clean grime out from under your fingers after gardening or working on your car. They do a great job at removing grease and dirt.
You can prevent having to reuse your toothbrushes in the first place by purchasing toothbrushes with removable, recyclable, replaceable heads. TerrAdenT manufactures toothbrushes called Eco-Dent with replaceable heads, so that all you need to throw away is the part with the bristles. Preserve toothbrushes are fully recyclable and can be mailed back to the manufacturer to be melted down and made into new toothbrushes as well as other recycled plastic products.