Clever Ways to Reuse and Recycle Detergent Bottles

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Thunk, thunk, thunk…silence…”Oh come on!” I shout while tapping my laundry soap bottle and patiently watching as one tiny dribble slides out like a sad little tear. As usual, I am desperately trying to wash one more load of laundry which conveniently contains my outfit for work in the morning and 10 pm is looming.

Every time I get to the very last of the detergent, I find myself dancing around my laundry room like a crazy person trying to get every last drop. I hit it like a ketchup bottle, I balance the bottle on its lid, I fill it full of water and shake out any trace remains of soap. I will go to extraordinary lengths to use every available ounce of pretty much anything I buy.

If you’re like me, here are some tips to use those remaining drops of detergent that just won’t handle an entire load of laundry.

  • Mix detergent with a little bleach and use it scrub off all that grease in your stove.
  • Put some of the leftover detergent in a spray bottle and dilute the solution. You can use it to spritz all of those daily stains and do a little spot cleaning especially on those items that you cannot put in the washer.
  • Laundry detergent can clean up those oil stains in your driveway. Use some of that leftover soap to clean up those unsightly spots.            

If you are really crafty or love to reuse and recycle, here are some ideas for those empty bottles.


  • Instead of buying buckets or storage containers, your laundry soap bottles are perfect to store almost anything.
  • Cut the top off and use it to store home maintenance items that can be messy and hard to contain.
  • Try dressing up the bottle with a little fabric and glue and you have a perfect container to display items around your home. 

Other uses

You can also simply repurpose your empty bottles.

  • Fill your bottle with sand and create your own kettle bell for free! Put in enough sand for resistance and use it during your workout. Add more as it gets too light.
  • Fill two bottles and use them as free weights.
  • Try using the sand filled bottle as a doorstop.
  • Get creative and decorate them with motivational photos or sayings to stay active and reach your fitness goals.
  • If you have a green thumb, just poke holes in the lid of the bottle and you have your very own watering can. This is also great for adding liquid plant food and mixing before watering!

Kids projects

For those with kids, detergent bottles are great for arts and craft.

  • You can cut them up to make masks for your little ones to decorate.
  • Turn the bottle into a piggy bank. One cut near the back turns this bottle into a bank! Unscrew the top to get the coins out. Have your kids decorate it as a piggy or another one of their favorite animals.
  • Save and wash the lids to use as a cookie cutter for kids. They can use them to cut circles in play-doh and roll patterns into the dough. 

What are some clever ways you have reused your laundry detergent bottles?

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