What is Upcycling?
Upcycling is defined as the reuse of (often used or waste material) products that can be altered to create a product of higher quality or value. It’s the idea of “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure”. Upcycling is often used creatively, like with fashion or crafts. Upcycled products can also be made for useful purposes. In many cases, the value of the item increases with the alterations. Often we could go onto a social media site and see pictures or videos about people making home décor or beautiful artwork out of items many people simply throw away. In simple terms, upcycling is a physical process that gives ‘new life’ to unwanted or used up items.
What is Recycling?
This process may sound similar to upcycling; the act of converting waste into reusable materials. Recycling is not often done for creative purposes, rather use the material to make another product with minimum alterations for use without changing the essential form of the original item. Taking consumer products such as metal, plastic, paper, and glass to make fresh lesser valued consumer products out of their base materials. In simple terms, recycling is a Chemical process that stretches out the life-cycle of a product.
What is the difference between upcycling and recycling?
The point of both, upcycling and recycling, also happens to be their biggest similarity, they both conserve the environment. The main difference between the two is that upcycling is used to increase the value or quality of the item. Another important difference is that recycling is often a chemical reconstruction of the materials, while upcycling is a complete alteration, making something completely new out of waste or used products. Upcycling does not involve breaking down products to their base materials, rather it uses products as they are, in their current state, to create a whole new item. Lastly, the possibilities each hold, upcycling involves an unlimited usage of materials, while recycling can only use the materials until they cannot be recycled anymore.
Another important difference is the cost. While you may need to buy a few extra supply’s to make an upcycled masterpiece, it generally is cheaper than recycling. Admittedly, throwing something in recycling and not the trash is free to the individual and better for the environment; the actual process of remaking the material from its basic compounds takes fuel, energy, and manufacturing costs. That being said, on an individual level, upcycling may cost more, but in the grand scheme of things, recycling takes the metal for the cost. On another note, many upcycling items may be sold for profit, making the cost worth it.
How do you Upcycle?
There are many ways to upcycle, from art, to waste reduction, to profit. This Blog is dedicated to exploring some of these possibilities; as well as educating our viewers on the methods and forms that may be new or unfamiliar. It’s possible that almost everything (that doesn’t decompose) may have unseen potential.
Why should you Upcycle?
Upcycling is believed to provide a longer term solution for preventing landfill waste and conservation efforts. There is only so many times a material can be recycled before its put into landfill. Upcycling gives new life, Recycling stretches out the end of a materials use cycle. Upcycling has a never ending life span. Bored of what you made? Make something new.