Use the scrunch test to check if your wrapping paper is recyclable

Does your paper pass the scrunch test? (Picture: Getty)

Can Christmas wrapping paper be recycled?

That’s a question you’re likely Googling as you clear the remains from under the tree and ponder whether to separate your cards from your ribbons.

Before you go ahead and bung all the torn-off paper straight in a big bin bag, it’s worth knowing there’s a quick trick to tell if wrapping paper can be recycled.

It’s called the scrunch test. The good news is that it’s super easy.

All you have to do is get a bit of the wrapping paper in question and crumple it into a ball. Now open your hand and see if the paper stays scrunched together or bounces back open. If the paper stays in its ball, it can likely be recycled. If it bounces back open, it can’t be recycled.

Simple, right? Bonus: if you have a cat, those scrunched up bits of paper make great toys.

There are steps to take before you pop your paper in the recycling bin, however.

Make sure you remove tape from the paper beforehand, as well as any ribbons or tags.

Remember that glitter isn’t recyclable, so even if your paper scrunches, if it’s covered in glitter it cannot be recycled. The same goes for any super fancy paper that’s laminated with plastic or decorated with gold or silver foil accents.

Of course, even paper that can’t be recycled can be reused. If someone’s given you a gift in the most glittery, shiny, plasticky wrapping paper going, it’s worth taking it off carefully rather than ripping it so you can use it to wrap another gift next year.

Hopefully your friends and relatives are eco-conscious and efficient wrappers and haven’t absolutely covered your present in tape – otherwise you’ll be spending your post-Christmas-dinner daze picking the sticky stuff off your pile of recycling.

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