smartthread blog

What to Do with Your Unwanted Textiles as the World Slowly Reopens

If you are like all of us here at SMART, the past few months have been tough. It feels like in the blink of an eye, life as we knew it turned on a dime – both personally and professionally. By now it is no secret that all industries have been significantly affected by the Global Health Emergency (GHE) – and those in our space of textile reuse and recycling are not exempt.

As we are sure you are aware, many textile recycling programs ceased operation out of social distancing restrictions and safety guidelines outlined by their state and local government entities. This largely included your favorite thrift stores, like Savers, or charities like Goodwill, St. Vincent de Paul and Salvation Army, in addition to curbside textile recycling programs and donation bin operations in your community.

If you have taken the time to go through your old clothes, shoes and other unused or unwanted textiles while navigating quarantine, we hope you opted not to toss them in the trash. Why? Because when they find their way to landfills, they have many negative environmental impacts, including contributing to greenhouse gas emissions! While many textile recycling programs came to a screeching halt, SMART is happy to report that many of these programs are gradually reopening across the country. This means that your textiles (as long as they are clean, dry and odor free) can once again be properly disposed of.

Worried about visiting your local donation center, charity, or thrift store? Have no fear! As they reopen, we have heard from many entities that they are taking social distancing restrictions and enhanced sanitation policies seriously. This means you can donate in confidence, while knowing that you are making a significant difference for our environment.