Repurposing Toilet Paper Tubes: Creative Ways to Reduce Waste + Add Functionality to Your Home

seedlings growing in starter pots made from recycled toilet paper cylinders

Toilet paper tubes are one of those things there is no way around. We all use toilet paper and the majority of them have a cardboard roll. Of course, if your concern is not even having the tubes to begin with, you can always purchase special toilet paper without the tube. Many people do not realize the potential for these cardboard tubes beyond their initial use. Recycling these tubes is important to reduce waste, but repurposing them can also provide many creative and useful ideas. In this blog post, we explore various ways to repurpose tp tubes, including crafts, gardening ideas, organizational ideas, and more.

Importance of Recycling Toilet Paper Tubes:

Before we dive into repurposing ideas, it is important to understand the importance of recycling tubes. Cardboard is a recyclable material.  Therefore, recycling these tubes can significantly reduce waste. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), cardboard and paper products make up approximately 25% of landfill waste. Recycling toilet paper tubes helps reduce this number and decrease the amount of waste that ends up in landfills. In addition, recycling cardboard helps save energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Ways to Repurpose Toilet Paper Rolls


Toilet paper tubes transform into a variety of crafts that are both fun and useful. These crafts are a great activity to do with children or as a creative outlet for adults. Here are some examples of crafts that can be made from toilet paper tubes:

Toilet Paper Bird Feeders: Make bird feeders from toilet paper tubes. Simply cover the tube in peanut butter and roll it in birdseed. Next, hang the tube outside with string or ribbon.  Finally, watch as birds flock to it. Benefit the environment by providing food for birds. You can check it out here.

Repurposed Plant Pots: Use tubes as repurposed plant pots. Cut the tube in half, fill it with soil, and plant your favorite seeds. When the plant starts to grow, transfer it to a larger pot or directly into the ground.

TP Gift Boxes: Turn tubes into gift boxes by flattening the tube and cutting it into sections. Then, use decorative paper or fabric to cover the sections.  Fill them with small gifts or treats. These gift boxes are a unique and eco-friendly way to give gifts to friends and family.

Toilet Tube Fire Starters:  Dryer lint or shredded paper stuffed inside tubes work as fire starters. Simply place the tube in your fireplace or campfire, light the end, and watch as the fire ignites.

Repurposing Gardening Ideas:

Repurpose tubes for the garden. They help improve the health of plants and reduce waste. Here are some examples of gardening ideas using toilet paper tubes:

Seed Starters: Use them as seed starters. Cut the tube in half, fill it with soil, and plant your seeds. The best part about these is when the seedlings start to grow, you transfer them directly into the ground!  The cardboard tube decomposes making the soil richer. Plus no fuss!

seedlings growing in starter pots made from recycled toilet paper cylinders

Soil Amendment: Toilet paper tubes are great to rework soil and make it more rich. Simply bury the tubes in the soil and as they decompose they improve the soil.

Compost Bin: Toilet paper tubes can be used in a compost bin. Cut the tubes into small pieces, and add them to your compost bin. The cardboard will decompose and add carbon to your compost.

Home Organizational Ideas:

TP tubes  are great for organization. They help keep items in place and reduce clutter. Following are some examples of organizational ideas using them:

Cord Organizer: Toilet paper tubes can be used to organize cords. Finally!  A solution to cord chaos!  Simply wrap the cord around the tube and label it with a marker or tape. This helps keep cords untangled and easy to find.

Cable organizer toilet paper roll

Jewelry Organizer: Organize jewelry with tubes. Cut the tubes into different lengths and cover them with decorative paper or fabric. Get creative!  Then, use them to hold bracelets, necklaces, and other jewelry items. This will keep your jewelry untangled and easy to find.

Drawer Dividers: Divide your drawers!  Because of their length, paper towel tubes are best for this.  Cut the tubes to the length of your drawer, and then place them in the drawer. Use these dividers to separate different items, such as socks or underwear.

Desk Organizer:  Have a messy desk?  Toilet paper tubes tackle this one. Cut tubes into different lengths and cover them with decorative paper or fabric. Again, get creative!  Have FUN!  Use your decorated tubes to hold pens, pencils, and other office supplies.  Because this is so affordable, you may want to redecorate your desk often!  Another idea shown in the picture below is attaching tubes to look like a caterpillar for a pencil holder.  Great craft to do with the kids!

simple activity for kids, toilet paper roll craft, rainbow caterpillar figurine holder for pencils, reuse and recycled material concept

Other Ideas For Toilet Paper Tubes:

In addition to crafts, gardening, and organization, there are many other ways to repurpose toilet paper tubes. Check out these additional ideas:

Cat Toys: Toilet paper tubes can be used as cat toys. Cut the tubes into different lengths.  Next, tie them together with string or ribbon. You can also stuff the tubes with catnip for added enjoyment.  Kitty will be happy for hours!

Christmas Ornaments: Create Christmas ornaments from tubes. Cut them into different lengths, and then decorate them with paint, glitter, or other materials. You can also add a ribbon or string to hang them on the tree. Here is a Christmas decoration on our website.

How to make white Christmas candles plugs toilet paper rolls, hot glue, paint and candles. Children's creativity. Christmas diy. Step by step on the photo, instructions

Napkin Rings: Cut toilet paper tubes for napkin rings.  Cover different lengths with decorative paper or fabric. Place the napkin inside the tube.  Personalize napkin rings affordably for special gatherings.  Here are some great ideas for Christmas napkin rings made out of toilet paper rolls.

Wall Art: Create wall art. Cut tubes into different lengths and then arrange them on a canvas or board. Next, paint or decorate the tubes to create a unique piece of art.

As you can see, there are a variety of ways to repurpose toilet paper tubes.   Crafts, gardening, and organizing just got MORE fun. You reduce waste when you repurpose.  So, the next time you finish a roll of toilet paper, don’t throw away the tube. Instead, consider how you will repurpose it and give it a new use. You’ll be surprised at how many creative and useful ideas you come up with!

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