Difference Between Recycling & Reusing

Recycle vs Reuse

When you purchase a cloth bag to carry items from the market, you can continue to use the bag for future shopping trips. This is an example of reusing the bag with each subsequent use. Recycling, on the other hand, involves using a product once again by collecting it from trash and converting the raw material into new products. Both reuse and recycle aim to reduce waste and conserve materials, but they work in different ways. This article will clarify the differences between these two terms.

Key Takeaways

  • Reuse and recycle are two distinct ways of consuming less and increasing the lifespan of materials.
  • Using a product multiple times is called reuse, while recycling is the process of collecting trash and converting it into new products.
  • Not every product can be recycled, but those that can be should not be thrown into garbage to provide material for landfill.


One way to avoid purchasing more items and ultimately adding to waste is to reuse existing products. If a product is still performing at its optimum, there is no need to add to the numbers and waste stream. Reuse may not seem glamorous for those who can afford to buy more and new items. However, there are other ways in which a product can be reused. For example, after consuming the jam in a glass jar, you can reuse the empty jar for storing leftovers or biscuits. Buying a second-hand car contributes to the reuse of the vehicle. Sharing a DVD or magazine with a friend is an example of reusing those items. Instead of throwing your old computer in the garbage, you can upgrade it and reuse it.


Most materials thrown into the garbage can be recycled to create new products. Recycling is a process that reduces waste by transforming it into new items. For instance, newspapers are dissolved and converted into raw material for new paper to be reprinted as newspapers. It’s not just paper, but also used bottles, cans, and other materials that can be recycled to make new products. Instead of discarding items to create landfill, recycling makes use of the trash. There are buy-back centers and recollection facilities where people can send their used materials and products so that they can be sent to a recycling facility and used to create new products.

Gil Tillard
Gil Tillard
Gil Tillard is an accomplished writer with expertise in creating engaging articles and content across various platforms. His dedication to research and crafting high-quality content has led to over 5 years of professional writing and editing experience. In his personal life, Gil enjoys connecting with people from diverse backgrounds and cultures. His curiosity and eagerness to learn from others fuel his passion for communication. He believes that engaging with strangers can be both enlightening and enjoyable, making it easier to strike up conversations and expand one's horizons.


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