In a circular economy, the aim is to keep products and materials in use as long as possible. Products are designed for a long life and are durable, repairable and upgradeable. When products no longer can be used, materials are seen as resources that are reused in new products. The more a product can keep its original shape, the more it will retain its value, which is illustrated by the circles in the diagram. Circles closer to the user are more resource efficient than circles that are further out.
A lacking circular mindset, technical difficulties and not enough material reuse are some of the obstacles standing in the way of transitioning to a circular economy.