• Top 10 Best Biodegradable and Compostable Trash Bags to Buy Online 2019 1
  • Top 10 Best Biodegradable and Compostable Trash Bags to Buy Online 2019 2
  • Top 10 Best Biodegradable and Compostable Trash Bags to Buy Online 2019 3
  • Top 10 Best Biodegradable and Compostable Trash Bags to Buy Online 2019 4
  • Top 10 Best Biodegradable and Compostable Trash Bags to Buy Online 2019 5

Top 10 Best Biodegradable and Compostable Trash Bags to Buy Online 2019

In 2018, there was a lot of news about plastics and the environment. In short, we’re all better off using less wherever we can. Many have taken to switching to biodegradable and compostable trash bags, including several city- and state-wide regulations on organic trash. But with all this hype, there’s also naturally a ton of misleading information and marketing out there.

In this guide, we’ll cut through the rubbish and break down exactly what you should look for when choosing a biodegradable or compostable trash bag. At the end, if you’re still stuck, we’ve also got a list of our 10 favorites for you to start your search.
  • Last updated: 10-24-2019
  • 2,383 views
Table of Contents

How to Choose a Biodegradable or Compostable Trash Bag – Buying Guide

Picking a biodegradable/compostable trash bag has a lot of things in common with finding a normal trash bag–you need to consider things like size, features, and price. However, there are a few extra things that you need to look for when picking out something more eco-friendly.

Get Your Priorities Straight: Biodegradable versus Compostable Trash Bags

Biodegradable and compostable might sound the same, but the difference lies in official certifications, which may matter to you or your community.

Merely Biodegradable Bags Are Sometimes Cheaper but Don’t Decompose Easily

Merely Biodegradable Bags Are Sometimes Cheaper but Don’t Decompose Easily
Bags that are labeled “biodegradable” are often made from special plastics that decompose—under the right circumstances. However, those circumstances require light and oxygen, two things they won’t have under a pile of trash in a landfill. It’s also a lot harder to recycle a bag made out of biodegradable plastic as it needs to be sorted in a certain way.
That being said, biodegradable bags hold together really well and are often cheaper than compostable bags (see below for more on those), which can make them more wallet-friendly if you’re willing to sacrifice some eco-friendliness. Some biodegradable bags may even be fully compostable and just don’t carry the certification due to manufacturing differences.
Just note that if your city or municipality requires compostable bags, they cannot be merely biodegradable.

Compostable Bags Break Down Quickly and Are Best if Potato-Based

Compostable Bags Break Down Quickly and Are Best if Potato-Based
If you’re looking for something that will actually break down over (less) time, look for bags that are “compostable.” Unlike biodegradable bags, these bags are regulated and will decompose under basically any conditions. Keep an eye out specifically for those that are BPI and ASTM D6400 certified. Not only are these bags proven to break down, but your city composter will also be sure to accept them.
Don’t forget, though, that because these bags are compostable, they’re going to start breaking down pretty quickly if you have any wet, organic matter in them. So you’ll need to change your bag fairly often or try to keep food scraps in a separate container.
Most biodegradable, compostable trash bags are made from either potato starch or corn starch. While both will break down equally well, potato starch bags are just a bit more environmentally friendly. Potatoes require less water and take up 40% less land to produce the same amounts. Looking at the bigger picture, potatoes are the way to go.

For Extra-Large, Extra-Heavy Loads, Look for 1-mil Thickness

For Extra-Large, Extra-Heavy Loads, Look for 1-mil Thickness
You might think that an eco-friendly trash bag made from potato starch couldn’t be as strong as a normal plastic bag, but you’d be surprised.
While smaller loads may be okay in any ol’ bag, for your super heavy, kinda bulky loads, look for bags that have a 1 mil (one one-thousandth of an inch) or more thickness. At this thickness, you can almost guarantee that they’ll hold in basically anything the average household might be throwing away.

Drawstrings and Handles are Normally Not Included

Drawstrings and Handles are Normally Not Included
Most biodegradable and compostable trash bags don’t have ties and handles in the way that many traditional trash bags do. Handles and drawstrings are normally made with heftier, more reinforced plastic than the bag itself, so it’s harder for manufacturers to produce these in line with the rest of the bag.
So be aware that unless the box explicitly states that the bags do have drawstrings, you’ll likely be left to tie the corners together. But considering the fact that these bags generally need to be changed more frequently than normal plastic bags, that might not be much of an issue.

Top 10 Best Biodegradable and Compostable Trash Bags to Buy Online

Now that you know what to look for in an eco-friendly trash bag, here’s a list of our ten favorites to help you get started.

10. Eco-Smartbags 13-Gallon Biodegradable Trash Bags (6 x 24 Bags)

$40.66

CompostableNo
Main MaterialsRecycled plastic, biodegradable additive
Thickness
Other Features

9. UNNI 2.6-Gallon 100% Compostable Bags (100 Count)

$10.95

CompostableYes
Main MaterialsPlant starch
Thickness.71 mils
Other Features

8. Green Earth Compostable 13-Gallon Biodegradable Trash Bags (50 Count)

$15.95

CompostableYes
Main MaterialsPlant starches
Thickness1 mil
Other Features

7. Biobag 3-Gallon Kitchen Food Scraps Bags (100 Count)

$19.80

CompostableYes
Main MaterialsPlant starches, plant oils, compostable polymers
Thickness
Other Features

6. Primode 13-Gallon 100% Compostable Bags (50 Count)

$16.99

CompostableYes
Main MaterialsCorn and vegetable starch
Thickness.87 mil
Other Features

5. Second Nature Bags 3-Gallon Kitchen Trash Bags (100 Count)

$16.95

CompostableYes
Main MaterialsSugar cane, plant starches
Thickness
Other Features

4. Stout by Envision 30-Gallon Compostable Bags (48 Count)

$32.08

CompostableYes
Main Materials
Thickness1.10 mil
Other Features

3. ProGreen 2.6-Gallon 100% Compostable Bags (100 Count)

$12.99

CompostableYes
Main MaterialsCorn starch
Thickness.71 mil
Other Features

2. JTSC Products 13-Gallon Compostable Trash Bags (100 Count)

$34.99

CompostableYes
Main MaterialsPlant starch
Thickness1.0 mil
Other Features

1. Bag to Nature 13-Gallon Compostable Tall Kitchen Bags (50 Count)

$29.36

CompostableYes
Main MaterialsPlant starches
Thickness
Other Features

How to Keep Your Garbage Bag from Smelling like Garbage

How to Keep Your Garbage Bag from Smelling like Garbage
If you’re getting a biodegradable or compostable bag, you might have to give up some fancy features, like odor elimination. However, you can add it back in using the following tips and tracks.
Add an odor absorber like baking soda, cat litter, or even dryer sheets to your trash can before putting the bag in. Mask scents with citrus peels or a few drops of essential oil. Be sure to drain off any excess moisture before tossing anything. Remember to regularly wash your trash can as part of your cleaning routine.

Looking to Greenify Your Cleaning Routine? Some Other Products You Might Like

Looking to Greenify Your Cleaning Routine? Some Other Products You Might Like
We tip our hats to anyone ready to get off their butts, throw out the familiar chemicals and perfumes, and start afresh. In fact, we want to do more than whip off our hats–we want to help. So we’ve compiled a list of eco-friendly articles below for your perusal.

Summary

So there you have it–a quick and dirty guide to kicking plastic trash bags to the curb and finding a better bag that’ll make your garbage feel a little less nasty. Hopefully you’ve managed to find the right biodegradable/compostable trash bag for you and your home and are well on your way to helping the Earth, a little bit at a time.
By Jacqueline Oshiro

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