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5 common household items you can recycle to protect the planet

Earth Day is all about protecting our environment and celebrating our planet. Recycling is a great place to start.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Thursday is Earth Day, when people around the world unite to take steps toward protecting the environment and celebrating our planet. 

Recycling is a good place to start, and there's a good chance you have some stuff laying around the house that can be repurposed.

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Here are five things that might surprise you that can be recycled:

Old Clothes

We all have them sitting around, cluttering up our closet. Not only can our old clothes be reused or put to a good cause, but you can also actually make money. 

There are places around Charlotte, like Clothes Mentor, Plato's Closet and Uptown Cheapskate that will all pay you for unwanted clothing.

You can also donate to Goodwill or a women's shelter.

Makeup containers

Compacts, tubes, and some other containers can usually go in recycling but check with your local service to make sure they accept it.

Many companies like Lush, Mac and Kiehls have their own recycling programs and will give you freebies in exchange for your old containers.

CDs and DVDs.

When was the last time you jammed out to a CD? Do some spring cleaning and help the planet. There are curbside pick-up and drop-off centers in cities nationwide. 

RELATED: How to celebrate Earth Day in Charlotte

Ink cartridges

Office Depot, Staples and Best Buy all accept old cartridges.

Most also offer some kind of reward or discount.


Do your kids have a bunch of old, broken crayons they can't use anymore? If so, consider Crazy Crayons. They take old crayons, melt them down and make new ones. 

RELATED: Lego to ditch plastic bags for paper ones in its boxed sets

Another item a lot of people might not know about is toothpaste tubes.

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