I really try to make sure that no clothes goes to a landfill ever so my family practice minimal wardrobe, clothes that are too small I hand them to my friends kids, we donate and But the reality is that with a family of five we do end up with socks, bras and underwear that is ripped or stained and needs to be tossed. What to do with your old underwear and socks?
The sad part is that most old clothes and textiles will end up in a landfill eventually. About 11.1 million tons of textiles such as t-shirts, pants, blankets, tablecloths, sheets and baby clothes are thrown into the trash and then into landfills in the U.S. each year. Now, if everyone would get into the habit of coming up with clever ways to reuse, recycle and donate old textiles, it would be more sustainable.
Sending clothes to a landfill is simply not an option because it has a terrible effect on the planet. Until a couple of years ago, I did not know about textile production’s effect on our planet. The fact is that when clothes end up in landfills they create greenhouse gases, so recycling them instead helps diminish the forces that contribute to climate change.
What is the solution? Reusing and recycling old things, and preventing them from going into the landfill are great ways to reduce the use of raw materials and energy, air pollution and water pollution, waste and greenhouse emissions. The next time you have a bag of old textiles, take a moment to research what you can do with them, and keep them out of the landfill because ruined textiles do not belong in landfills. Currently, textiles account for 5.2% of the waste in landfills. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the average person discards 70 pounds of clothing per year despite the fact that there are recyclers who accept all fabrics in various conditions.
Recycle—Some places have textile recycling where any old worn out clothes, including underwear and socks, can be discarded. Worn out bras can be recycled into carpets at Bra Recycling Agency. I:CO recycles textiles into yarn, shoe soles and Terracycle has a zero waste box specifically for textiles you can purchase.
On Secondary Materials and Recycled Textiles, you can find your nearest drop-off location.
At Recyclenow.com you also can find the nearest textile recycling bin.
Our underwear and socks are made of natural materials like hemp so we actually can put them in the compost. We cut them up and remove any elastics.to speed up the decomposition, You can compost any undies and socks that are made from cotton, wool, hemp and silk.
If your bras and underwear are still in good condition but you are just cleaning out or they don’t fit then consider to support the Girls collects and distributes essential items, including bras, underwear, and menstrual hygiene products, that will go to women and folx experiencing homelessness, impoverishment, or distress.
You can check a donation site near you or mail products to:
I Support the Girls
Attn: Dana Marlowe
P.O. Box 2736
Wheaton, Maryland 20915
The Bra Recyclers give out gently used bras to women in need, and also take bras that are too worn to proper textile recycling facilities.
They have several drop-off locations, but you can also mail your recycled items directly to The Bra Recyclers, and the mailing address is:
The Bra Recyclers
3317 S. Higley Rd, Ste 114-441
Gilbert, AZ 85297
To read more about recycling clothes check out my other posts:
Recycling textiles for a sustainable future