7 Common Plastic Kitchen Trash Cans You Can Find In the Market

Taking out the trash is not quite fun, but a good trash receptacle can make the chore easier for you. You can then replace your garbage bags and clean the bins with ease. Even though a trash can is not so exciting to talk about, it forms an integral part of the kitchen. It can offer a sharp look to your kitchen with its attractive finishing and material.

Have you ever wondered how these containers became an essential part of our lives? This article explores the origin of garbage cans. Plus, it lists seven common types of plastic kitchen trash cans available on the market. You can buy any of these as per your needs and preferences. Take a look and decide for yourself. 

Who Invented Bins?

The dirty secret of the garbage can date back centuries ago. Humans buried waste underground, dumped them in water, or threw trash into the streets.  

Household garbage bins became popular in Britain in 1875 when the government introduced a controlled system of waste collection. People stored their trash in containers and waited for the public waste collection service to come around and take it away for disposal.  

The trash can invention wasn’t credited to anyone until 1884. French lawyer Eugène-René Poubelle introduced closed containers to all households in Paris. His name became synonymous with waste bins as the French people started calling the waste containers ‘la poubelle.’ 

Until the 1960s, people made garbage bins out of wood, metal, or even old buckets. But, the galvanized steel can was the most common garbage receptacle. It was round, heavy, and difficult to carry. 

So, how did the plastic cans that you know today begin to show up?

In 1966, Charles Harrison, an industrial designer at Sears provided a solution, a garbage can that is made of plastic. This put an end to the everyday nuisance of the early morning clanging of metal garbage cans. According to Harrison, “No more clang-clang metal before breakfast.” 

Plastic trash cans have since evolved in functionality, design, and ease-of-use. 

Types of Plastic Kitchen Trash Cans

Here are some common types of trash cans you would see if you were to go shopping for one: 

1. Step to Open Lid 


Also known as the pedal bin, the step trash helps reduce contact with germs, parasites, and bacteria. This is because you do not have to touch the lid whenever you throw the waste. You only have to place your foot on the pedal to open the cover. 

While a plastic garbage can with a lid can keep your waste out of sight, you should consider how you’re going to open it when your hands are full of garbage. A step trash bin can be a lifesaver when you need to dispose of waste without touching the container. 

2. Swinging Lid 

This type of plastic garbage can has a swing-top lid. One side goes up when you push the lid down to drop your trash inside the bin. But, this type of lid doesn’t keep the odor contained. It also gives pets and pests easy access to its content. 

Besides, fold-in lids can get caught on waste as the garbage can fill up, preventing it from opening.  Then, you have to remove the lid completely before throwing the trash in it. 

3. Lift Top 

This is the most common type of large plastic waste bin. It has a lid to make it more attractive and hide garbage from sight. You manually lift the cover to drop in your waste. The major advantage of this trash receptacle is that it has very few mechanical parts that can break, which are only the hinges on the lid.

Disposing of the waste in this type of trash receptacle is easy; you have to open the lid, drop the trash, and close the lid. However, since you have to touch the cover to throw the garbage, it’s less sanitary compared to a step trash can. 

4. Touch Free to Open

A motion sensor dustbin is a great option if you want a hands-free solution to your waste disposal. These types of can have a lid, which opens through a sensor or voice activation. You have to get close enough to activate the sensor and the cover flips open. This makes it more hygienic than the lift top lid. Moreover, it will last longer as you won’t handle it with too much force, unlike a pedal bin. 

Though most touchless garbage cans come in stainless steel design, there are a few plastic sensor trash cans available on the market. These automatic trash cans simplify your life, making it easier to put the garbage in the trash can. The only drawback of this trash can is that a failure in the sensor system could prevent the lid from opening. 

5. Unlidded Trash Can

If you want to skip the hassle of opening lids whenever you want to throw the trash, you should consider an open-top garbage can, such as the Witt Industries Monarch Series Trash Receptacle. This type of trash receptacle is ideal for homes where you dispose of a lot of garbage.

Not having a cover makes disposing of the trash more convenient, quick, and easy. Besides, you won't have to touch it, making it hygienic. You can also throw plates and food trays easily.

6.  Pull Out Cabinet


No matter how great a garbage can looks, it’s still a trash can. If you want to hide your garbage bin, a pull-out option is an ideal solution. You’ll have to create space inside a cabinet, as most often such bins go in the cupboard under your kitchen sink. While you could use any garbage can that fits under the sink, dedicated in-cabinet cans enable easy access.

Some of these types of trash cans feature metal frames for easy installation within a full-sized drawer and for sliding in and out of the cabinet. This option is also perfect in a small kitchen in limited spaces, where you don’t have room for a large plastic trash can. But, it won’t hide your garbage from sight or keep in the odor. Also, kids and pets will have easy access to the garbage you throw in it.

7. Touch Top Trash Cans

A touch lid garbage bin is the type that opens when you press a button on or near the lid. It’s an ideal alternative for those who can’t use the foot pedal on a step can. But, if you’re concerned about the sanitary aspect, you should buy a step can. This is because then you might have to wash your hands whenever you dispose of the waste as you can come in contact with germs by touching the lid.


Plastic kitchen trash cans come in various shapes and with diverse functionality. Some are open top, such as the Suncast Slim Trash Can, while others feature a lid. There are also garbage cans with a foot pedal or motion sensor for seamless waste disposal.

Your choice depends on the available space in your kitchen. This includes whether you want the garbage hidden from the view and the type of lid that fits your needs. At Trash Can Depot, you can find several trash bin options. These allow for efficient waste management in your kitchen.