Do you ever look in your bra drawer and think I’ve had that bra for far too long or it just doesn’t quite hold me in place? We’ve got a solution for you: donate your underwear to charities that send them to people in need or to companies that recycle them!
With an estimated 235 million items of clothing going to landfill each year it’s time we tackle the problem at home. With schemes to recycle old bras and rehome new/lightly worn there are options for everyone.
While having a bra is a basic and affordable everyday garment for the majority of women in the UK there are women throughout the world who don’t have them. In Africa having knickers allows women to remain in the workforce and helps girls to remain in school which gives them a better chance of making their way out of poverty.
One great charity is Smalls for All who collect and distribute underwear to help women and children in Africa and the UK. In Africa they help those living in orphanages, slums, internally displaced persons camps and schools, as well as those in hospitals. In the UK they help charities that focus on alleviating poverty in the UK by providing them with underwear. On their journey so far they have collected and distributed over 1,089,963 items of underwear!
Now for the old bras in your drawers that are fairly worn, of which we have a few, they can be recycled at Bravissimo. They run a bra recycling scheme in store and for every kilogram they collect they donate 70p to charity. Each year they ask their staff to nominate a charity to support and this year they chose Mind, so the proceeds from your bra will go towards supporting people with mental health problems.
All of the bras that are donated are then recycled for good use. Those in a useable condition go to women in developing countries across the world. Any bras which can’t be used are broken down into parts which are recycled into new items.
If you’re outside of the UK the following websites also recycle bras:
Alternatively there are many other schemes both UK and worldwide just search ‘recycle bras near me’ for your closest results!
Lauren works for a public health charity, is our resident vegetarian (11years!) and volunteers for an animal charity in her spare time. Her favourite eco product is the Face Halo.