How to recycle old clothes

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What to do with old clothes that you don’t want anymore.

Instead of letting old clothes you don’t like or don’t use anymore sit in a closet you can recycle them. Recycling clothes can benefit you or it can benefit others. You likely have a good amount of  old clothes so they can benefit both.


This is one of the best ways to recycle old clothes. Pick out clothes that aren’t stained, torn, or excessively worn. Wash and dry the clothes and place them in clean boxes or bags before donating them. Usually underwear is excluded from being donation worthy unless they are new in the original packaging.

You can donate them at a variety of places ranging from the American Red Cross and Goodwill to local charities, clothing donation drop boxes, and local churches. Donated clothing may end up in the hands of local families or in the hands of poverty stricken countries. Either way, your clothing is getting new life by making someone else’s life a little better. Plus you might be eligible for a tax deduction depending on how much you donate.

Pass them to someone.

I say pass rather than hand me down, because even if you do not have younger siblings you can still give clothes to friends and family. This is ideal for clothes that are in new or almost new condition that you simply don’t like anymore. Just be careful if re-gifting new clothes; you don’t want to regift a piece of clothing back to the person who gave it to

Repurpose old clothes.

If the clothes are unwearable due to holes, damage, or staining, don’t throw them out. While they won’t be donation worthy they can still have uses. Take old shirts and sweats and rip them up into smaller rags. They work great as reusable cleaning rags. From the garage to the kitchen, old clothing can be used for lots of things around the home.

You can also take old clothes and use them for bedding for cats and dogs.  Just make sure the pet does not try to eat torn clothing and make sure buttons, zippers, and clips are removed. You may also want to tear the openings on the clothes so the animal does not get stuck in the clothing.

If you are into arts and crafts you can take the wide range of materials from silk to jeans and turn them into pillow cases, drapes, scarves, and anything else your imagination can come up with.


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