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M - P of Recycling


Item  What to do 

Old magazines can be reused as materials for art projects such as collages and handmade greetings cards.

Alternatively donate them to your local school for use in art projects.

Magazines can also be recycled as part of your  Kerbside Recycling service, at your local  Recycling Points or in On Street Mixed Recycling Bins.  

See Textiles in Q - Z of Recycling


Take any leftover or out-of-date medicines and medicine bottles back to your local chemist for safe disposal. Do not put unwanted tablets or medicine down the toilet or in your general refuse bin for disposal.

See Syringes in  Q - Z of Recycling

Metal See Scrap metal in Q - Z of Recycling
Milk Bottles / cartons

Wiseman Dairy offers a doorstep delivery of milk in returnable glass bottles in some areas of Aberdeen. Tel: 01224 890444. Please rinse bottles before returning them.

See also Plastic Bottles and Tetra Paks in Q - Z of Recycling


Mirrors cannot be collected for recycling by Aberdeen City Council.

Unwanted, unbroken mirrors can be donated to your local charity shop for reuse. A full list of charity shops can be found in your local directory.

Also, some local artists will reuse mirrors in various projects.
Mobile phones

Most mobile phone stores and supermarkets offer a recycling collection service for unwanted mobile telephones. There are also numerous charitable organisation who accept mobile telephones including:

Monitors              See Electrical and Electronic Equipment in D - F of Recycling


Item  What to do 

There is currently no way to recycle disposable nappies in Aberdeen so please put them in your general waste bin.

Cloth nappies - or real nappies as they are also known - are an environmentally friendly alternative to disposable nappies and can often work out cheaper overall.

For more information see:

  • Go Real - the real nappy information service.
  • Our Green Baby Guide which has links to real nappy suppliers.
Needles See Syringes in Q - Z of Recycling 

Newspapers can be recycled as part of your  Kerbside Recycling service, at your local Recycling Points or in On Street Mixed Recycling Bins.

Add shredded paper or scrunched up newspaper to your compost bin.

A thick layer of newspaper can be used in the garden for mulching bare soil and suppressing weeds.


Item  What to do 
Oil - engine           Used engine oil should be taken to one of the  Recycling Centres for safe disposal.
Oil -cooking             

Leftover cooking oil can be used as a substitute for creosote as it is a good preservative, does not discolour wood and is safe to use near animals and plants.

By adding nuts and seeds to the fat collected, you can make a bird cake to feed birds in your garden.

Small quantities can be disposed of with your general waste in a container, such as a plastic bottle, which must be securely sealed.



Item  What to do 

Paints, varnishes and wood stains must never be poured down the drain or put in with general refuse.

Unwanted but useable paints, varnishes and stains can be donated to local community groups or charities, for example Community Re-paint for local reuse projects

Try to buy natural pigment based paints. Manufacturers of eco-paints claim that they can be composted as they break down easily. Paint should be dried out before being composted.

For advice on disposal please see Hazardous Waste in  G - L of Recycling
Paint Thinners See Hazardous Waste in  G - L of Recycling
Pet waste See Animal waste in A - C of Recycling
Pesticides, Herbicides and Fungicides

To reduce the chemicals used try exploring organic or natural alternatives.

See Hazardous Waste in G - L of Recycling


Old pillows can be reused by cutting them down and re-covering them to make cushions.

See Duvets and Pillows in D - F of Recycling

Plastic bottles All types of plastic bottles can be recycled as part of your  Kerbside Recycling collection or at your local Recycling Points. Please rinse, squash bottles and replace lids to save space.
Plastic bags

Say "No" to plastic carrier bags at check-outs and take your own reusable bag or crate instead.


  • supermarket carrier bags when you are doing your grocery shopping.
  • carrier bags as pedal bin liners.
ASDA, Morrisons, Sainsburys, Somerfield and Tesco supermarkets offer a plastic bag recycling container in-store. Ask at the Customer Service desk for more information.
Plastic cups See Vending Cups in Q - Z of Recycling
Plastic Magazine Wrappers

Plastic wrapping, (for example, from magazines received in the post and lifestyle magazines in weekend newspapers) can be recycled by sending them to: Polyprint Mailing Films, Mackintosh Road, Rackheath Industrial Estate, Rackheath, Norwich, Norfolk NR13 6LJ. Tel: 01603 721807; visit: Polyprint Mailing Films.

Make sure the wrapper stretches when you pull it. If it crackles or snaps it is not polythene and cannot be recycled by this service.
Plastic Packaging

Plastic packaging such as yoghurt pots, margarine tubs, plastic food trays, fruit punnets, detergent liquid tablet containers, ice-cream tubs and salad trays cannot be collected for recycling by Aberdeen City Council as part of the Kerbside Recycling serivce, however these items are accepted in the On Street Mixed Recycling Bins.

You can reuse plastic packaging by:

  • punching holes in the bottom of yoghurt pots and fruit punnets to make seedling pots. Plastic food trays can be used underneath seedling pots to catch water.
  • donating yoghurt pots to your local school to be reused as paint pots in arts and crafts projects.
  • reusing margarine and ice-cream tubs as storage containers.
Plastic rings that hold together multi-packs of cans can cause life-threatening injuries to wildlife when they become tangled up. Always make sure to cut each ring before disposing of it in your refuse bin.

Polystyrene food trays or egg boxes cannot be recycled in your white bag and should be placed in your general waste bin for disposal to landfill.

If you have large blocks of polystyrene following a home delivery of furniture or electrical equipment, ask the delivery staff to take the packaging away.

Styropack, Craigshaw Road, West Tullos Industrial Estate, Aberdeen AB12 3AS can accept clean polystyrene for recycling. Tel: 01224 873166.

Please see Egg Boxes in  D - F of Recycling
Postage Stamps See Stamps in Q - Z of Recycling
Printer Cartridges & Toner

see Cartridges in A - C of Recycling

Pyrex See Crockery in  A - C of Recycling

Back to the  Household Waste and Recycling home page.