We are a small country but with a huge appetite for consumerism. At the rate we’re going, Singapore will need to build one new incineration plant every 10-15 years and one new landfill the size of Sentosa every 35-45 years!

Your first few times recycling could be confusing, you'll wind up constantly googling if this or that can be recycled. It's hard at first but don't let that bring you down, the little red dot needs recycling. So here's a condensed guide to help you out if you happen to be struggling with recycling in Singapore

Singapore Recycling Policies

Recyclable waste must be clean and not contaminated with food waste or liquids. Containers must be empty and residual food or drinks must be rinsed off before disposal.

Some substances, like food waste, from a unwashed plastic container can contaminate an ENTIRE recycling bin. Once contaminated, the whole bin becomes non-recyclable and is instead dispose off at Semakau Landfill or incinerated.


Photo by: American Economic Association

If you've read online, the common practice is to recycle only paper that are has no waxy textures to them. But in Singapore, you can recycle more than just that, printer paper, brochures, even magazines are accepted in our recycling bins.

However do not recycle waste that has any contamination of food or personal waste. The more common ones are listed below.

Wax paper

Toilet paper

Paper towel

Tissue paper

Used paper plates or cups

Disposable wooden chopstick

Paper packaging that are contaminated with food


Photo by: Collective Evolution

Singapore recycling bins accept all types of plastic. Some things you might not know you can recycle are film wrappers from books or packet drinks) and bread wrappers as well. Also, just like paper, avoid those contaminated by food plus a few extra items.

Plastic Drinking straw

Disposables cutlery and crockery

Styrofoam cup and takeaway container

Plastic packaging contaminated with food

Blister Medicine Pack

Cassette and video tape


Photo by: American Chemical Society

All are accepted:

Glass Bottled Drinks (Soda - Beer - Wine - Hard Liquor) -

Glass Food Containers (Sauce and condiment bottle, Jam spread)

Glass Cosmetics (Foundation Bottles)

Glass Medicine and supplement Bottle

Glass Cups and Plates


Photo by: Science Struck

All are accepted:

Metal Aerosol*

Metal Food tin

Metal Canned food

Metal bottle Caps

Metal Canned Drinks

Metal Aluminium tray and foil

Metal Paint Containers

*Please empty Aerosols Cans as they are a household hazardous waste if any combustible content is found inside


Photo by: Craftsy

Sadly, fabrics are not accepted by our recycling bins. If you can't reuse, donate them or give them away, companies such as Greensquare is happy to take them off your hands. Just drop it off at one of their two collection points. And if your items are more than 10kg, they'll come to you instead. They also accept wearable paired shoes, bed linen, belts and bags.

Greensquare : Zhai @ Tanglin Mall, FoliAge @ United Square.

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