If you have used your time in lockdown to clear-out your old clothes and shoes you can help the environment and make some extra cash by recycling them.
Helping the environment is something that is becoming increasingly important to retailers. This is why many of them run schemes where customers are rewarded for recycling their old clothes. Customers may receive discounts on items or gift vouchers when clothing is recycled.
The idea behind these schemes is that clothing can be reused or the material used for other things. This prevents old clothing going to landfill.
Some of the schemes that are being run by major retailers are listed below….
Adidas – In order to recycle clothes and shoes with Adidas, you will need to download their app and join the Creators Club.
When you have joined you should go to the Infinite Play section. You can give details of the items you want to recycle and you will be told how much they are worth as an e-gift card. You will also get 200 Creator Club points as a bonus when you recycle your first item.
Creator Club points can be redeemed for rewards such as invitations to special events and early access to certain products. You can also earn points by making purchases, leaving reviews and tracking your exercise.
You can use a free courier service to send your items to Adidas if you live in London. People in other areas will have to print off a free postage label and send their package via the post.
You can only trade in items that you have bought directly from Adidas UK and the total value of the items must be more than £20.
Items that are returned to Adidas will be cleaned, repaired and resold. If they are really worn then they will be turned into something new.
According to their website, the scheme is still running during the coronavirus pandemic.
BooHoo and Pretty Little Thing – These online retailers are both part of the same group and do their recycling through the ReGAIN app which will need to be downloaded.
Once you have registered on the app you can start to collect clothing, shoes and accessories to be recycled. You need to send at least ten items at any one time.
You can parcel up the items that you want to recycle and take them to a local collection point, which is usually a charity shop, or print off a shipping label and have it picked up from a drop off point.
You will then get discount codes that can be used in store or online at any store that ReGAIN partners with. As well as BooHoo and Pretty Little Thing, this also includes stores such as Missguided, NewBalance and Superdry. The amount of discount that you get may vary between stores.
H&M – will give a £5 off voucher to anyone that brings a full bag of used clothes into their store. The clothes can be in any condition and from any brand.
In order to redeem the voucher you need to spend at least £25. You can redeem the voucher in store or take it away to use online.
All of the clothes that H&M collect will be repaired and reworn. They can also be recycled into products such as insulation for cars. The Sun reports that this scheme is still being offered during the pandemic.
Marks and Spencer – The recycling scheme that Marks and Spencer ran before the lockdown is no longer operational.
You used to be able to recycle clothes, soft furnishings, jewellery and accessories from any retailer and regardless of their condition. These items could be placed in ‘Shwop Drop’ boxes in store and they would be donated to Oxfam. You would get 50 Sparks points for every bag that you donated.
M&S closed the Shwop Drop program at the beginning of lockdown but it is something that they say they want to get up and running again. However, a revamp of the Sparks loyalty program means that donating will no longer get you any points.
It is still possible to get a £5 voucher for the store by donating clothing and soft furnishings that were bought from M&S directly to Oxfam. You can spend this voucher in store on clothing, beauty or home products. You can only use one voucher per transaction, and they are only valid on spends of £35 or more.
It is recommended that you contact your local Oxfam store to check that they are open before you make the trip with your bag of recycling. During the pandemic all donations are being quarantined for 48 hours and so you will also need to check that the shop has room for your donation.
Schuh – The Sell Your Soles scheme has been restarted by Schuh, after it was halted due to the pandemic.
Under the scheme customers can bring any brand of shoe in to be recycled. This includes shoes that were bought at other stores. The only condition is that the shoes you are donating are not faulty.
In exchange for your donation you will be given a £5 voucher to redeem when you spend £25 or more on full price items. The voucher cannot be used with any other offer.
All shoes donated are then collected by Recyclatex. They are able to recycle 98% of the materials and components of these shoes.