Clothes bank.

Five top tips to beat the bin

An estimated £140 million worth of clothing goes to UK landfills every year.

But it doesn't have to be this way. Here are five ways to keep your clothes in the loop and out of the trash.

1. There's money to be made

You can sell clothing online through websites such as eBay, Gumtree, and even Facebook, or through your local cash for clothes outlet or at car boot sales.

Selling online can be amazingly quick with a smartphone as well – just snap, upload and sell in a few minutes.

With two thirds of people already buying pre-owned and vintage clothes, there's a willing market out there. Check out your options and sell, sell, sell!

2. Get giving

Donating unwanted clothes to charity is a great way to support your favourite causes.

You can take them to a local shop yourself or put them in a textiles bank provided by charities – you can find these at supermarkets or through local council websites.

Some charities also make door-to-door collections, so keep an eye out for those plastic sacks coming through your letterbox.

Try and make sure clothes are clean and dry before you donate them. And don’t forget underwear that is clean and in good condition can be donated and is in short supply!

Use this handy charity shop locator to find the shops in your local area.

3. Swap and swish

Passing on unwanted clothing is a brilliant way of maximising its use and getting more value out of it. This is especially the case for children’s clothes as they grow out of them so quickly, often with little wear.

Swap parties or swishing are a fun way to get rid of unwanted items in your wardrobe.

You can invite friends over with their unwanted clothing and see what you can swap – you’re likely to come away with new things for your wardrobe and they won't cost you a thing.

Jewellery and shoes can also be swapped. Nibbles and drinks are a must too! provides all sorts of advice to help you arrange a great event.

4. Share the love

From passing on great fashion tips to friends to actually sharing and borrowing items from one another – they're all great ways to keep your wardrobe fresh.

And they'll save you money too.

5. Bank on recycling

Recycling clothes is another great way to pay it forward. Banks are often found in supermarket car parks. Look out for them next time you go shopping.

Some recycling banks only accept clothes suitable for wearing again, but others accept even stained fabrics, misshapen tops and old underwear for recycling. Check the instructions on the bank before dropping off your clothes.

Damaged clothes are sold and shredded and the fibres made into ‘industrial’ blankets used to protect equipment or even speakers!

And you might not even have to leave your home! Around a third of councils provide a recycling collection from your house for textiles. Check our recycling locator to see if your local council is one of them.