Top tips for a zero waste bathroom

You might be surprised to learn that the bathroom produces a lot of waste, but it really does: shampoo bottles, conditioner bottles, shower gel bottles, hand-wash bottles, soap packaging, disposable razors, facial wipes, bathroom cleaner bottles, toilet roll inner tubes… you get the idea. In fact, most of our bathroom waste can be recycled, but research suggests most of us don’t even think about recycling when it comes to the bathroom. However, why not go one better than that and cut down on the waste so it doesn’t exist in the first place? The planet will thank you! It’s just about breaking habits.

We have collected some handy hints together for creating a low waste or zero waste bathroom. Even if you make one change towards zero waste, it is better than nothing. What will you try changing? Continue reading Top tips for a zero waste bathroom

Fast fashion & the destruction of developing countries

It’s a little known fact that us Brits wear just 70 per cent of the clothes that we have stored away in our wardrobes, which leaves us with a total of 1.7 billion unused items. On average, a consumer keeps their garments for three years, but even more shocking than this is the fact that something might be frequently worn in the first year, and then phased into the stockpile of unworn clothes later on. That is why the average British closet is so overstuffed: we don’t wear all of the clothes we own.

The spending habits of the average person in the West have changed dramatically over the last hundred or so years when it comes to buying clothing. Between 2002 and 2003, for example, people in the US spent, on average, four per cent of their income on clothes, whereas back between the years of 1934 and 1946, clothing used up 12 per cent of people’s incomes. The current average expenditure per item in the USA is $14.60. Don’t go thinking that we are all consuming less though. On average, just one person in the UK will produce 70 Kg of textiles waste per year – that is a lot of clothing. Cheap, fast fashion means we are spending less yet buying more.

So, what will happen after you clean out your closet? Continue reading Fast fashion & the destruction of developing countries

Win a compost bin for your garden!

This competition has ended, and the winners were Angela Evans and Sophie Jayne. Thanks to all who entered.


Composting has great benefits for you and the Earth, including: dramatically cutting your household waste levels, lessening the amount of waste being sent to landfill, and creating a nourishing matter for your garden plants – saving you money, as you won’t need to buy any special products from the garden centre.

Here at Forge Recycling we are keen to encourage UK residents to get composting, and because of this we are giving away not just one but TWO compost bins for your garden. Two lucky winners will have a Blackwall 330 litre black compost converter delivered to their gardens, courtesy of Forge.

These bins are made from recycled plastic, and are guaranteed for 15 years, so you’ll have many years of composting ahead. Their dimensions are 100cm (H) x 80cm (W), and they require no assembly.

The prize: the Blackwall 330 litre black compost converter

You can find tips on using your compost bin in our Guide to Composting, here. Continue reading Win a compost bin for your garden!

How to organise a local litter pick

If, like me, you get infuriated and uncomfortable about litter in areas you frequently pass, perhaps you would like to organise a litter pick to clear the area of rubbish and return it to its lovely, natural state. Planning a litter pick is a bit harder than it sounds, so below we have gathered some useful tips and created a step-by-step guide for you.

Choose a spot

Choosing a spot won’t be hard; the reason you want to organise a litter pick is probably because you keep walking or driving past an area that is inundated with rubbish. It might be some woodland, at the side of a canal, on farmland, or on a town centre street. It could be the street you live on!

Check to see if there is already a local group

This handy tool by LitterAction lets you search for litter picking groups in your area. You could also have a search on Google. If there is a group near to the spot you’re wanting to pick, get in touch with the group leader and see if they would be interested in picking the area you have chosen. If so, join them. If not, follow our guide below. Continue reading How to organise a local litter pick

How to get kids into recycling

Statistics tell us that adults in the UK are slowly but surely getting better at recycling – especially since the introduction of the fairly recent plastic bag charge, which has forced people to think about their actions – but what about our children? Waste and recycling is tackled by the National Curriculum in schools from Key Stage 1 now, but we all know that kids tend to learn some things better through example rather than simple spoken word. Meaning, if you don’t engage your child in recycling at home, they are less likely to be interested in it, or do it themselves when they are older.

So, how can you get your child into recycling at home? Follow our tips below.

Lead by example

Children love to pretend to be adults, so if your little one sees you reusing and recycling at home (and when you are out and about) they are far more likely to want to do the same, and learn more about what it is you are doing. Pique their interest early on, and normalise your actions.

Make recycling fun

Help your child to learn about recycling in a fun way by setting up a home recycling centre, with different boxes for each type of recyclable. This will be a great game for a small child. Label each box, and let your child explore the world of recycling through learning about the different types and choosing which box to place each item in. Why not make up a song about recycling which you can sing when you’re doing this? Continue reading How to get kids into recycling

Community skip placed on Kirkstall Road to help flood clear up

Due to the devastating flooding that has blighted Leeds and other parts of the country, Forge Waste & Recycling has placed a large skip on the corner of Kirkstall and Haddon Road – just outside Café Enzo.

Cafe Enzo location

Both businesses and residents are welcome to deposit destroyed items and debris within the skip, which shall be emptied and replaced throughout the coming week as and when needed. Continue reading Community skip placed on Kirkstall Road to help flood clear up

How to Recycle your Christmas Tree

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas… in fact, many of us now have our Christmas trees up in our homes and workplaces. Each year, 6-8 million of us in the UK purchase a ‘real’ Christmas tree, as opposed to an artificial one. So, what do we do with these trees that we have brought into our homes, once Christmas is over? I often see them abandoned in public in January – fly tipped due to a lack of knowledge, or perhaps just pure laziness and apathy. Yet there are so many options for what you can do.

Here are some ideas for what to do with your Christmas tree after the festive period:

Use a rosemary bush instead

Image credit: Pixabay

Some people have started using festively pruned rosemary bushes instead of pine trees, as they are far more sustainable, and can be moved around in their pot without you having to chop them down like a traditional tree. But, if you still fancy a pine tree, read on for plenty of ideas… Continue reading How to Recycle your Christmas Tree

Five Years of Forge Recycling

“We can hardly believe it ourselves, but it has been 5 years since we started collecting waste in Leeds”.

The early days

Forge Recycling was formed by brothers, Harvey & Fraser Mills. Harvey had a background of working in the waste industry, but was feeling quite uninspired by his employer’s national – rather than local – focus. Fraser had recently finished University and was looking for a new challenge.

The brothers decided to bring their knowledge and experience together, and so Forge was born. In the beginning they bought a second hand Iveco van and the two of them spent the summer clearing out student housing in Headingley.

One van quickly became three vans, plus a small team of employees. Then, with the help of Yorkshire Forward and European funding, the company purchased its first bin wagon. Continue reading Five Years of Forge Recycling

Tips For Being an Eco-Friendly Woman

Research suggests that women are generally ‘greener’ than men. If we look at it at a base level, a French study shows that women emit 32.3 kilograms of carbon a day, compared to men emitting 39.3 kilograms. This difference is due to apparent gender variations in: green attitudes, purchase behaviour, susceptibility to green advertising, transport choices, food choices, and driving habits.

However, whilst women are ahead in many ways when it comes to being environmentally aware and friendly, the majority of people – women included – on our planet are not doing enough to stop, or even slow, the harm being done to the Earth.

This is a small guide for women on how to live in an environmentally friendly way, using ideas you might not have considered before. Most of these tips are relevant to men too, so why not have a read!

Cosmetics, Make-up & Toiletries

Image credit: Pixabay
Image credit: Pixabay

Cosmetics and make-up, alongside toiletries such as shower gel, are often packaged in plastic. Most of these are recyclable, but here are some points to think about if you wish to cut your impact on the environment:

  • Could you purchase items in bulk, therefore using less packaging?
  • If you must use your usual brands and products, could you reuse that bottle or pot for something else?
  • If you really must dispose of your packaging, always recycle everything you can. Remember: a small plastic bottle can take 450-1000 years to degrade in landfill, and research suggests that is where most plastic bottles (around 90%) end up.
  • When it comes to items for removing make-up and cleaning your face, opt for reusables such as flannels and crochet pads, as opposed to disposable and unrecyclable facial wipes.
  • Nail polish is sold in glass bottles, with plastic lids. Perhaps you could use your empty bottle to create your own nail varnish colour.

Feminine hygiene products

It is no secret that women menstruate, and in doing so we get through a shocking amount of disposable sanitary towels and tampons during our time on Earth. These items are bad for our health; most aren’t made from cotton, and contain plastic chemicals, and those that are made from cotton have been bleached. Cotton crops are also often sprayed with a variety of chemicals, so even the cotton itself is not clean. Now think about where you wear these items! Tampons, too, carry a heightened risk of you developing TSS (Toxic Shock Syndrome).

Not only are these sanitary items bad for your health, but they are bad for the environment too. The majority end up in landfill, and when you consider how many are used by every woman, that is a lot of waste to landfill. The average woman uses over 16,000 disposable sanitary items during her lifetime.


Image credit: Pixabay
Image credit: Pixabay

If you are needing some new clothes, it is so easy to buy clothes from shops which don’t consider the environment in their clothing production. This process involves energy consumption, the use of toxic chemicals, the use of land and natural resources, and the use of water.

Instead of buying new clothes from places that don’t consider the environment, you could:

  • Upcycle items you already own
  • Make your own clothes
  • Organise a clothes swap party, or attend one
  • Buy second hand, from a charity shop or similar
  • Buy new clothes from an eco-friendly shop, such as People Tree

Don’t forget to wash your clothes on as low a temperature as possible and hang your clothes up to dry rather than using a tumble dryer. Also consider which laundry detergent you use.

Featured image credit: Pixabay

Win 3 Months’ Free Business Waste Collections!

Please note: This competition has now ended. The winners were Hamilton’s Sandwich Shop in Horsforth. Thank you to all who entered.

It’s Forge competition time again! We are feeling full of festive spirit, so we wanted to help out a fellow local business by doing what we do best – waste management! Do you have a business in our coverage area? If so, why not enter our competition today to win a whole 3 months of free business waste collections? You have to be in it to win it!

How do I enter?

All you have to do to enter is follow and RT us on Twitter – don’t worry if you already follow us; just retweet one of our tweets about the competition to enter! You may RT us up to once a day, and each tweet will be counted as an individual entry, meaning you’ve a higher chance of winning the more times you retweet us.

Competition Terms & Conditions

  • The competition will run from 10am GMT on 16h November 2015 until 10am GMT on 14th December 2015. Any entries made before or after this time will not be included.
  • The winning business will be announced on 14th December 2015, and will be selected at random. The winners will be contacted by us on that day.
  • If the winner does not respond before 14th January 2016, the prize will be forfeited, and we will be within our rights to draw a new winner – again, at random.
  • The competition is only open to businesses located within the areas of Yorkshire we cover: Brighouse, Leeds, Bradford, Dewsbury, Keighley, Ilkley, Otley, Huddersfield, Halifax, Harrogate, and Wetherby. Please check our website for further details.
  • We reserve the right to draw a new winner at random if a winner’s business is not located within the areas we cover.
  • Entrants may enter up to once per day.
  • There will be one winner.
  • This competition is open to businesses only.
  • Forge Waste & Recycling reserve the right to publish the winning business’s name on our website, and in media regarding this competition.
  • There are no cash alternatives to the prize.
  • The prize is for 1 collection per week, for up to 3 waste streams (for example: General Waste, Mixed Recycling and Glass). Any extra waste on top of this will be payable.
  • The 3 months’ free waste collection will begin at the end of your current contract, and will require you to sign a 12 month contract with ourselves, which includes the 3 free months.
  • If you require any further information about our services, please give our friendly local team a call on 0345 50 50 905.