I’ve been noticing that a number of businesses are making efforts to help us reduce the number of clothes that we throw away.
Most people know that we can donate clothes to shops that fundraise for charities. I think it’s a positive step for companies to encourage us to stop thinking of our clothes as disposable.
Some of these companies offer vouchers or points in exchange for the clothes. This is a good incentive for those who otherwise simply throw them away.
- It keeps them out of the landfill
- It helps to lower the environmental impact of our clothing
- It utilises clothing that’s too good to be thrown away
- It helps us move away from a culture of fast fashion i.e. throw-away clothing that’s purchased to be worn once or twice and disposed of, and encourages us to see the positive and negative impact that fashion can have over a longer term.
You can reduce your carbon, waste, and water footprints by around 20 – 30% just by extending the life of a piece of clothing by 9 monthsGym Shark
Smart Works aims to help women feel equipped, confident and more likely to succeed at interviews, by providing interview-appropriate clothing, which they’re struggling to purchase themselves.
How to donate
Gymshark has partnered with Thrift+. If the clothes are sold by Thrift+, the customer could earn credits, which can be spent on the Thrift+ store or converted into vouchers for shops that are partnered with Thrift+. Alternatively, the earnings can be donated to a charity of your choice.
H & M
H & M believes that upcycling and recycling are two of the many ways that it can fulfil its goals towards a more sustainable fashion future.
The mission is to only use recycled or other sustainably sourced materials by 2030.
This is one of many reasons that we can drop off our old clothes and discarded textiles at several of H&M Group’s brands.
What happens to the clothes that are put in the garment-collecting boxes?
- I:CO* takes over
- they collect the boxes and sort the contents into three categories
- Rewear — clothing that can be worn again will be sold as second-hand clothes
- Reuse — old clothes and textiles will be turned into other products, such as cleaning cloths
- Recycle — everything else is turned into textile fibres and used for things like insulation
… far too many textiles end up in trash bins and landfills — we’re talking thousands of tonnes, regularly thrown away with household waste.H & M
More information about H & M’s mission, strategy and results: Reuse and recycling
Sell Your Soles is a scheme for us to donate our old, worn shoes and receive £5 off a brand new pair.
The voucher can be used there and then or we can save it for later and it can be used in-store and online.
Schuh has partnered with Recyclatex, who collects all the donations of which 98% are sold to third world countries where the goods provide a small business opportunity and a living for impoverished families. The remaining 2% usually aren’t suitable for re-sale so it’s recycled in various ways to avoid it going to landfill.
More details: Sell Your Soles
Nike says “when your shoes can’t handle another mile, trip up the court or cut across the pitch, we want them back.“
They recycle and donate used athletic shoes and clothing as part of their Move to Zero journey towards zero carbon and zero waste.
What to do:
- drop off your used athletic gear at a participating Nike retail store
- it will be sorted to determine what can be recycled and what can be cleaned and then donated
- it will be diverted from ending up in landfills
Any brand of trainers, athletic tops or bottoms will do! 🙂
More information: Can I Recycle My Nike Shoes?
What will Asics accept?
The used apparel and/or footwear from any brand as long as it’s clean and dry.
We just need to put the items in a their Recycle Bin and an ASICS expo associate will give us a reward voucher. It can be used at the expo there and then we can save it to use in-store or online on another day.
The donations are sent to their recycling partner, I:CO, where they are carefully sorted in numerous categories to determine their next best use.
Wearable items find new homes to extend their life. By being re-sold and re-worn we can extend its original product life cycle as long as possible. Unwearable items end up in the next best processing cycles. They can be transformed into other products like cleaning cloths or recycled into fibers for insulation, carpet padding, toy stuffing and other.
With every piece of clothing or pair of shoes you bring in, you’re helping to prevent these valuable resources going to waste and save the environment.Asics
More from Asics: Recycle with Asics
What to do?
- bring clothing, shoes and home textiles to your nearest ARKET store
- any brand will do
- any condition is fine
- nothing is too small
- nothing is too insignificant – even the lonely sock in your drawer can be dropped off and given a new purpose
- they also accept ARKET product packaging except for take-away packaging from the café
Arket will give us a voucher worth 10% off our next purchase. It can be used in their stores or cafés.
Textiles and shoes are sent to their warehouse using ARKET’s existing logistic network: the trucks delivering products to the store will return to the warehouse carrying the goods brought in for recycling.
Their partner I:CO collects all items and will sort them into three major categories depending on their condition: REWEAR, REUSE or RECYCLE.
Product packaging is sorted and recycled through the regular waste process of each store.
Any eventual profit made from the donations will be donated to the H&M Foundation and invested in social and environmental projects.
Most garments can be repaired or remade to give them a longer life, and if they’re not for you anymore, they could be swapped, resold, passed on to friends and family, or given to charity.
As a last alternative, your old clothes can be recycled and returned to the circular fashion loop.
Please bring any textiles to our store and we’ll make sure they will be of new use.Arket
New Look has partners with Hospice.
So how does it work?
- Take your good quality, pre-loved fashion and accessories to your local hospice store
- Use your phone to scan the QR code on the store’s counter
- Complete a form to receive 15% off your next New Look shop
Blacks has teamed up with The British Heart Foundation
They accept all clothing and footwear from any brand as long as it’s in a re-sellable condition.
In return, we will receive 15% off our next purchase.
What will TK Maxx accept?
- any clothes
The items just need to be clean, dry and in good condition.
Simply take it into a store and the donation will go to Cancer Research UK shops where they will be sold to raise funds supporting life-saving research into children’s and young people’s cancers.
These companies that have pressed pause on their collection/donation scheme
- Get paid to recycle old clothes and shoes
- Swap old clothes for vouchers
- Where to recycle your old or unwanted clothes and beauty products on the high street
- Freecycle is AMAZING! Give away things you no longer need without leaving your home & receive items for free
- Declutter – reduce, re-use and recycle
- Gifting things to families in need
- How to clear a property, effortlessly, within 30 minutes