Garbage Pail, Kids
When it comes time to toss your scraps, a stylish receptacle makes a dirty job a bit more bearable. We scoured the scene and assembled a collection of favorites, culling together a mishmash of recycling bins, composting commodes, and trash cans for your viewing pleasure.
An estimated 75% of household trash can be recycled. This recycling center eliminates the clutter of bottles, cans, and paper by sorting, storing, and compacting recyclables. There's also a junk-mail slot and a recycling-day programmable digital alert, so a pick-up is never missed!
Thanks to the Brabantia Pedal Bin, the next time someone accuses you of trash-talking, you can take it as a compliment. First introduced in 1947 in Aalst, Netherlands, the swift pedal function transformed the malodorous trash bin, giving people a sleek new way to keep their paws off last night’s herring. Inspired by the basic shape of the original wastepaper basket, Brabantia brought in corrosion-resistant metal and a plastic inner bucket. Once the province of master craftsman, it’s now mass produced and as ubiquitous in modern kitchens as organic eggs.
If you wince every time you toss a banana peel into the trash and think, I really need to compost, let your guilt evaporate (or decompose). The Green Cone offers a simple, tidy alternative to the homemade heap, and accelerates the decomposition process through thermal heat (created by interior and exterior cones). All household food waste can be dumped into the cone—which is partially buried in your yard—to be eventually released back into the soil as water, carbon dioxide, and a small amount of residue. It’s like a trashcan for your yard, only you know where your waste is going.
The Oko is basic and no-frills. The sheet-steel construction, wide foot pedal, and large mouth are all useful features. Handles adorn the conveniently color-coded bins and look nice against the stark palette of the white exterior. One bin is meant for biodegradable waste, but you be the judge; cans and bottles will fit in there just as well.
The Twin Touch is quite rugged, belying its pristine appearance. The steel body and lid defy rusting and chipping, which is a practical concern if you spend the majority of your time around refuse. The larger capacity and unique pop-up lid are pleasant back-saving additions.
This is a classic steel trash can, but with a twist. Apartment dwellers can make use of other segregated bins, but larger households might need one of these just for bottles and cans. Improvements to the standby include a clip locking system to secure the liner, removable plastic bin, and nonslip feet.
Intended for squeezing into narrower spaces, the Butterfly takes a different approach than the rest of the pack. The cleverly designed lid opens in halves when you press on the foot pedal, and can be locked in the open position. It also closes automatically with a satisfyingly slow return (provide your own Star Trek sound effects).
Though shorter and stouter than the others, the Leifheit has a mouth that’s wider and easier to toss stuff into. The interior bins are made of antibacterial plastic and have handles, both of which are valuable attributes. This functional but diminutive bin is best suited for singles—not a great choice if you’re hosting a Super Bowl party.
This simple, streamlined bin is less conspicuous, without being less functional. The corrosion-resistant construction and well-sealed lid are not to be overlooked. The recycling bin is a smaller insert that hangs from the lip, and is better suited for stashing those pesky plastic grocery bags.