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Reusing plastic and glass Gatorade bottles is one way to keep them out of landfills, but reusing them for drinking is not safe or sanitary. The type of plastic drink bottles are made from breaks down with heat and soap, resulting in harmful chemicals leeching into the liquids you refill them with. Though glass bottles can be sanitized with boiling water, bacteria can build up in the lid which may not fit properly after several washings. Fortunately, there are many functional, creative and safe ways to reuse any kind of Gatorade bottle.
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Glass Gatorade Bottles
Bury glass bottles neck-down along the edge of your flower garden to create an interesting border. Leave approximately 3/4 of the bottle above ground or vary the heights for added interest.
Remove the label from the bottle and use it as a vase. The narrow opening holds up a small bouquet better than a traditional wide-mouthed vase. This idea works for plastic Gatorade bottles as well. Just add some stones or marbles for extra weight and stability.
Fill the bottle with liquid soap and insert a pump into the opening for an instant soap dispenser.
Break the bottle into large chunks. Wrap it in a towel and tap it lightly with a hammer to prevent glass from flying. Carefully put the broken pieces in a rock tumbler and make your own "sea glass" for decorative projects.
Plastic Gatorade Bottles
Wash and dry the bottles and use them as organizers in the laundry room, craft room or work shop. Fill them with nuts, screws, beads, jewelry findings or other small objects. Use them to hold paint brushes, feathers, glue sticks and other tall, loose items that need wrangling.
Cut the tops off of three or more clean Gatorade bottles and make your own desk organizing set. Use a serrated bread knife and "saw" the bottles in half. Set them on your desk to hold change, paper clips, pencils and other loose items. This idea is also a good kid's craft for Mother's or Father's Day.
Discard the lid and slide the bottle into an old tube sock. Tie a knot in the end of the sock and give it to your dog as a chew toy. Dogs enjoy the crunching sound the bottle makes when they chew on it and the sock will protect their teeth and gums from the damage that could be caused by chomping on a plain bottle.
Fill the bottle with equal parts plain water and vegetable oil. Add a few drops of food coloring. Run a bead of white glue on the threads of the cap and screw it in place. Shake and jiggle the bottle to watch the oil "lava" move through the water.
Cut the tops from the bottles at random heights. Stack and glue them with both threaded ends together and the open "cups" at each end. Place a taper candle in one end after the glue has dried to form your own candle holders. You can also use uncut glass Gatorade bottles as candle holders by fitting a thick taper into the opening or resting a sphere-shaped candle on the top.