I have good news for you: I’ve found a wonderful place for your old clothes to go when you’re done with them. For Days, an innovative eco-friendly startup, will take all of your garments–no matter what the brand, or even how gross they are from years of wear. The company will even give you $4 for every item you send in, up to $50, to use on its website.
Sure, I know you diligently bundle up your old clothes and send them to Goodwill, hoping they will have a happy second life in the closet of some spunky teenager or philosophy grad student. But the dark secret of the donations industry is that a lot of clothes given to donations centers end up in landfills anyway.
In some ways, sending your old clothes to For Days is a surer bet. The company works with a range of recycling companies that either break down the clothes chemically to create new fibers (like cotton or polyester) or breaks them down mechanically by cutting them into smaller bits so that they can be used for other things, like pillow stuffing. In either case, your garment will not end up in a landfill, but will live on in the world.
And the reality is that our clothes are clogging up the planet. Every year, the fashion industry churns out more than 100 billion articles of clothing. For reference, there are only 7 billion people on the entire planet. And thanks to fast fashion, people increasingly think of their clothes as disposable items. The Ellen MacArthur Foundation has found than many clothes are worn 10 times or less before they their wearers dispose of them. The vast majority of clothing are made of plastic-based synthetic fibers, which will never decompose. So they will live on forever in a landfill somewhere, or get swept into an ocean, where sea animals may choke on them because they look like food.
So do the planet a solid and dispose of your clothes responsibly. Who knows, your favorite jeans that no longer fit may have a happy second life stuffing someone’s couch.