Is sellotape biodegradable?

This blog post will answer the question, “Is sellotape biodegradable” and cover topics like the biodegradability of sellotape and frequently asked questions related to the topic.

Is sellotape biodegradable?

No, sellotape is not biodegradable. Sellotape materials are soft polymers that are unlikely to be biodegradable due to the difficulty of breaking down plastics.

Can Sellotape Be Recycled?

Sellotape is used so often that there are a lot of inquiries regarding it. Many people are worried about their potential influence on the environment. 

And one method to actually decide this is to take into account how recyclable sellotape is. The solution to this query is given in this section.

Sellotapes, however, cannot be recycled. This has a plausible explanation. Sellotapes are thought of as soft polymers, which are sometimes challenging to recycle. Sellotapes are also manufactured of sticky tapes, which mostly comprise polypropylene components. 

Additionally, because of the challenges the materials might provide, recyclers practically everywhere in the world do not encourage the recycling of polypropylene materials used for items like sellotapes.

Additionally, the sticky nature of sellotapes makes recycling exceedingly difficult or impossible. The gum or other sticky substances are often difficult to entirely remove from the sellotapes. Recycling is not feasible in situations where this is not possible.

Is Sellotape Degradable in Nature?

Sellotape is made of soft plastics, which are unlikely to biodegrade, as was previously said. This is because plastics are hard to decompose. In order to address your question, the majority of sellotapes now in use cannot be degraded.

But this does not mean that it is over. There are currently sellotapes that degrade naturally. These sellotapes are constructed of cellulose film and adhesive with natural origins. The remainder of their components is likewise made from substances derived from renewable plants.

You don’t need to worry too much about the environment while using these sellotapes since they will quickly biodegrade after being disposed of. The issue is that while they are more costly to buy and relatively new, their use is not as widespread as we would have liked to see.

Overall, it is best to think about the materials they are constructed of when you next visit the shop to get some sellotapes. You are helping the environment by carrying out this action and buying biodegradable ones.

Can you compost Sellotape?

In general, anything must have the ability to decompose quickly in order to be biodegradable. This is not the case with commercial sellotapes made of soft plastics. In your home composting container, they won’t decompose very easily. This is why composting sellotape is a poor idea.

Due to the numerous components they contain, sellotapes should not be composted either. In order to make sellotapes, polypropylene materials and gum are utilized. 

These products often include chemical components that may leak into your compost bin and contaminate it or even stop the contents of the compost bin from decomposing.

Sending your sellotapes for commercial composting appears to be the only way you can adjust to composting them. Few industrial facilities in America use home waste that is challenging to compost.

All you have to do is look for nearby industrial facilities on the web that have a sellotape-accepting program. Sellotapes are composted at these industrial facilities using a unique process that makes them suitable for use with plants or for other domestic or commercial applications.

But there might be a glimmer of optimism just around the bend. Recall that we previously indicated that natural and renewable resources are being used to manufacture sellotapes. 

Even if they are still very fresh, you may always throw this sort of sellotape in your recycling bin.

Is Sellotape Environment Friendly?

The popularity of a product’s environmental friendliness appears to have increased recently. It is often cited as the factor that determines whether certain home items are used consistently or not. 

In light of this, we are debating whether sellotapes are environmentally benign or not. The solutions to this question may be found in the paragraphs that follow. Let’s look at it!

Sellotapes may be harmful to the environment depending on the kind of material you are contemplating. Remember how we distinguished between the two commonly used sellotape materials earlier? The first option (soft plastic materials) is not sustainable. There are various but clear reasons for this.

First off, they are difficult to biodegrade due to the materials they are comprised of (soft plastics or polypropylene). Sellotapes are still made of plastic materials, despite their soft touch. Additionally, as far as we know, it might take hundreds of years for plastic materials to degrade.

When you consider that you can scarcely recycle these sorts of sellotapes, the situation is considerably worsened. This indicates that a significant portion of these soft plastic sellotapes are disposed of in landfills, where they contaminate the environment.

They are prone to many eco-unfriendly actions since they don’t biodegrade. For example, because of their little weight, they may easily be carried by the wind or washed away by a flood and deposited in undesirable locations. 

They may wind up in the water, for instance. Here, the sellotape endangers aquatic species as well as the environment since they are generally oblivious and may eat the soft plastic sellotapes.

Sellotape Alternatives

Alternatives to sellotape are listed below:

  • Paper tape
  • Water-activated tape
  • 100% Plant-based adhesive
  • Sellotape Plastic-Free

I will now elaborate on these.

Paper tape

For the so-called paper tapes, there are several possibilities on the market. These goods primarily consist of sustainable kraft paper, but they also include natural rubber (tree-derived).

For instance, Peace With The Wild provides recyclable, biodegradable, and vegan-friendly tape that has no packaging.

For the tesapack® paper ecoLogo®, which is composed of 60% bio-based materials and 40% recycled cardboard and fibers, a different recipe is utilized. Additionally, its sticky covering is devoid of harmful chemicals and solvents.

Water-activated tape

You might also use gummed tape, brown paper tape, or water-activated tape. Typically, a paper backing is covered with an adhesive that has a starch foundation.

What does the term water-activated tape mean?

Since the glue only becomes sticky when wet, wax, which cannot be composted, is not required to coat its surface.

Noissue Custom packaging tape is what you need if you want to mark your boxes in a stylish and environmentally responsible way. Their gummed tape is created from 100% recycled materials, and the paper they use is acid-free and Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) certified.

The brown paper tape from Max pack is 100 percent recyclable and biodegradable. The company lists ten reasons why you need to choose their water-activated tape over a typical plastic-containing tape. 

These have cost-effectiveness, a stronger seal, and greater endurance to damp and icy conditions in addition to being more environmentally friendly.

100% Plant-based adhesive

The only two ingredients in EcoEnclose Cello Carton Sealing Tape are cellulose (for the backing) and natural rubber (for the adhesive), making it entirely plant-based, renewable, and biodegradable.

Sellotape Plastic-Free

Only renewable plant-based materials, such as cellulose, and natural rubber, are used to make this plastic-free sellotape (or glue). The whole tape—including the core and packaging—can be composted.

So, what would be the finest sellotape substitute?

A multipurpose product, Sellotape Zero Plastic may be used to assemble tiny products like cards, envelopes, packages, etc.

You might be better off using either paper or water-activated tape for shipping larger products (such as corrugated boxes) when you require a stronger seal.

Additionally, the eco paper from The Plastic Free Shop and the gummed tape from Max pack are both appropriate for cold storage.

As you can see, switching to plastic-free tape is a simple way to increase your company’s sustainability; just be sure to choose the one that best suits your requirements.

How Should Old Sellotape Be Disposed Of?

Every community will always find it ideal to dispose of obsolete goods. The methods used to dispose of these used items, however, are more significant. Different home items call for different methods of disposal. 

The methods for getting rid of used sellotapes are listed below.

  • Recycling them
  • Give them away
  • Market Them
  • Compost them 
  • Gift Them

I will now elaborate on these.

Recycling them

Every time you ponder how to dispose of home items, this will always be your best alternative. There may not be simple solutions to recycle sellotapes manufactured of soft plastics due to their particular materials and makeup. 

However, sellotape produced from sustainable and natural resources may be readily recycled. Therefore, you may always modify this choice for their use.

Give them away

When sellotape becomes old, you don’t have to worry about it losing its functionality. The excellent thing is that they will continue to be used almost extensively. Therefore, you may get rid of the sellotapes by giving them away if you don’t need them again.

Those used sellotapes are welcome at many charitable institutions. If they don’t need them, they can always sell them to others who do and utilize the proceeds for other philanthropic endeavors.

Market Them

Who says you can’t sell your used items for a profit? Sellotapes, on the other hand, may be used to generate some cash by being sold at neighborhood shops or thrift stores. You may also look at online selling options like Facebook or eBay. You must check to make sure your sellotapes are still highly durable.

Compost them 

You may manufacture compost with your sellotapes as we said previously. This is an excellent technique to get rid of it. 

The difference in materials must then be noted since it will determine whether you may compost used sellotape at home or whether you need to send it to an industrial facility.

Gift Them

It is possible to give your used sellotapes to friends, coworkers, or neighbors. Your friends and family may tape their presents with the sellotapes provided they are still sturdy enough to do so.


In this post, I discussed the biodegradability of sellotape, eco-friendly alternatives to sellotape, and how to dispose of old sellotape.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs), “Is sellotape biodegradable?”

Sellotape—is it plastic?

Sticky tape, often known as sellotape, is not recyclable since it is typically comprised of polypropylene, a material that many people would incorrectly think can be recycled.

Does Sellotape decompose?

In your home composting container, they won’t decompose very easily. This is why composting sellotape is a poor idea. 

Due to the numerous components they contain, sellotapes should not be composted either. In order to make sellotapes, polypropylene materials and gum are utilized.

Can Sellotape be thrown in the recycle bin?

Sticky tape or Sellotape should be disposed of in your home black trash or pink bag since it cannot be recycled. Before recycling cardboard boxes & wrapping paper, try to get rid of any stray strands of adhesive tape.

Can Sellotape-covered wrapping paper be recycled?

Collection of household recyclables

Although it might be tedious, be sure to remove any adhesive tape, tags, or ribbons since they cannot be recycled. 

Try to use as little Sellotape as possible while wrapping your gifts. Do not forget that cardboard wrapping paper tubes may also be recycled.

Is masking tape a green product?

Typically, masking tape is not biodegradable. Masking tape may have a paper-like appearance and feel, but it is not really constructed of paper. 

Masking tape is created from recycled materials, thus in a way, it is environmentally benign even if it is not designed to be biodegradable.


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