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30 Different Uses for Newspaper

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I’ve been very inspired by repurposing projects I’ve seen on other blogs. Consequently, I’ve been looking for new uses for common items that I would typically throw away or into the recycling bin. Last week, I shared different uses for plastic grocery bags. This week, I’m taking on another recycling bin occupant–newspapers.

title text reading 30 Ways to Reuse Newspaper on a gray background

You’ve probably tried a lot of these uses for newspaper already, but hopefully you’ll find a few new ideas that will inspire you to think twice before tossing yesterday’s paper.

Different Uses For Newspaper

  1. Stuff things
  2. As a drop cloth or placemat
  3. Wash windows or mirrors (no streaks!)
  4. Clean chrome
  5. Papier mache
  6. Scrapbooking
  7. Collage
  8. Paper hat
  9. Paper boat
  10. Wrapping paper
  11. Packing material
  12. Line animal cage
  13. Dry wet shoes
  14. Remove oven residue
  15. Deodorize food containers — ball up newspaper and put it in lunchboxes, coolers, etc. to absorb odors
  16. Ripen fruit (avocadoes, bananas or tomatoes) — just wrap the fruit in newspaper and leave it overnight
  17. As compost/mulch material — lay down in the fall to make fertile spring soil
  18. Keep veggie drawer clean and odor-free — line drawer with newspaper
  19. Fire starter logs
  20. Kite
  21. Basket
  22. Seed cups
  23. Bowl
  24. Use to make clothing patterns
  25. Cat toy (my cat’s not the only one that will chase a balled up piece of paper, right?)
  26. Shape preserver for shoes, purses
  27. Prevent ice and snow buildup on windshields
  28. Weed preventer – lay down instead of plastic after you’ve tilled the soil
  29. Paper chains
  30. Grease absorber — under a car with a slow leak or before changing the oil in your car

One More Use For Newspaper

My husband wanted me to add “ransom notes” to the list since this seems to be the preferred letter-writing technique of kidnappers in the movies. I didn’t want to actually add it to the list and encourage bad behavior, but I’m offering a special mention here as a nod to his (albeit warped) sense of humor.

a stack of newspapers on a crossword puzzle

8 thoughts on “30 Different Uses for Newspaper”

  1. We use it as kitty litter. We got a cheap-o $30 paper shredder, and I run all the adverts, junk mail and any other paper product we don’t need through the shredder. A full bin of shredded paper acts as kitty litter for two days. I use newsprint, and office paper, not glossy stuff. Glossy stuff isn’t very absorbant. Newsprint is very absorbant. A full load of shred can absorb poop and pee smells for two days.. basically changing his box every other day. The only issue with it is sometimes the shred gets caught in his toes and he tracks it out onto the carpet. But, I vaccum once a week and that takes care of that, as well as pet hair and dander on the carpet anyways.

    The perks to this…

    1) no more buying expensive kitty litter.. seriously, that stuff is expensive!
    2) no more lugging around heavy kitty litter.. not good for someone with back issues
    3) no more bloating up the landfill with clay kitty litters .. shredder paper mixed with cat waste is basically biocompostible plant food waiting to happen (b/c it’s a fecal waste mixed with a plant waste, which is combined in a ratio that can turn into compost easily). Dig a hole in your backyard, chuck it in, let it compost. We throw ours out in the trash, but since a lot of landfills are starting to siphon off methanes from the composting trash, it’s basically just biodegradeable compost trash that will eventually just turn into soil at the landfill.
    4) free kitty litter! We live at an apartment that gets bombarded by adverts. They put 2 big recycle bins next to the mail boxes, and I just dig thruogh them and grab big handfuls of them to use for kitty litter all week. Only expense was the one-time cost of a shredder and the electricity cost to run it. (and the time to shred it, but that takes all of 5 minutes.. I shred one load to use while I change the box, then shred a 2nd to keep in reserve.)

    Our cat got used to the shredded newspaper immediately. We use a 1.5-2′ high plastic tub for his litter box that he can jump in and out of, that way he doesn’t flick it all over. We have to put it up high to keep the dog from getting in there for a “snack”.

    To empty it, we use large black trash sacks for kitchen sacks. Small white kitchen trash bags are too small to fit the entire kitty litter tub into. Every other day, when I change the cat box, I make a trash run, too. The large black trash bags make it easy to collect all the trash from around the house, dump the vacuum bin in, dump the cat box in in one go (by engulfing the box with the bag and just dumping it all into the trash bag). Then tie it all up and take it out.

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  4. Thanks for sharing great ideas! I use newspapers to clean my windows. I had no idea that you could use newspapers for fruit ripening.

  5. These are some great ideas. You can also donate them to a local vet, most of them use newspaper to line the kennels with for boarding animals.

  6. I appreciate hubby’s warped sense of humor. How about ransom notes while wearing a newspaper hat? But seriously, you know I’m always interested in repurposing tips. Thanks for all these. Off to pin now.


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