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How to recycle wrapping paper

18 November 2019

It can come as a surprise to most people that not all wrapping paper is recyclable. So, how do you ensure all that Christmas paper is recycled once the festivities are over?

Non-recyclable wrapping paper

Many people mistakenly think that all paper can be recycled but unfortunately this is not always the case. While the embellishments and accessories added to Christmas wrapping paper make it extra festive, they can mean the paper won’t be accepted by recycling companies. This includes;

  • Paper that is glittery as the glitter is often plastic 
  • Dyed or laminated wrapping paper
  • Foil wrapping paper
  • Very thin paper that doesn’t have enough quality fibres for recycling
  • Wrapping paper that has sticky tape attached 

Tips to ensure your wrapping paper is recycled

So, to make sure your Christmas is as environmentally friendly as possible, follow our simple tips for choosing recyclable wrapping paper. 

  • Remove all sticky tape from the paper as this is made from plastic and cannot be recycled. If peeling metres and metres of tape off paper isn’t for you, use an eco-friendly sticky tape instead! 
  • Make sure all ribbons, tags and bows are removed. To ensure these can also be recycled, avoid buying glittery decorations and instead, opt for ones made from paper or card. 
  • Buy wrapping paper that is 100% recyclable. If the paper has already been recycled, it can most probably be recycled again.
  • Swap Christmas wrap for traditional brown paper. To make it more festive you can decorate it with Christmassy stamps, or a sprig of Christmas tree tied on with twine. 
  • Check that your local kerbside recycling accepts wrapping paper. If it doesn’t, take it to a reputable and professional recycling company, such as W&S Recycling. That way you can be sure as much of your paper will be recycled and in a responsible way. 

There is an easy test to determine whether your wrapping paper can be recycled or not. Simply scrunch it up into a ball and if it stays scrunched, it can most likely be recycled. 


W&S Recycling are the leading recycling company in the South who has years of experience helping households and businesses become more eco-friendly. To learn more about recycling wrapping paper, contact our experts today on 01202 675564 and we’ll be happy to help answer your questions. 

Branch Finder

Locate your nearest household waste centre and scrap yard using the list below. Unsure of where your waste needs to go? Contact our team and we'll be more than happy to help. For your local council charges visit the Oxford Council and Dorset For You websites.

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