Do you have a bunch of old shoes in your home that is in bad condition that you want to get rid of? Of course, you do have the option to throw them away, but that’d be rather bad for the environment. Is there something else that you can do with it that’s more eco-friendly? Can you recycle shoes?
You’re not the only one that has asked this question before. Fortunately, there are ways that you can do this. You can actually turn your shoes into something that’s more useful and good for the environment as well. In this article, we’ll discuss some of the ways you can recycle some of the old shoes you have in your house that you don’t use.
Put In a Shoe Recycle Bin
Probably the easiest thing that you can do is dump the shoes in a shoe recycle bin. There are actually clothing recycle bins in most municipalities that accept shoes. Usually, the collectors of these types of things know of ways to use the parts of shoes to turn them into something more useful.
There are also some collectors that can create brand new shoes out of the old ones. In any case, you should ask your local government if there are any shoe recycle bins in the area so that you can give your shoes to someone who can use it.
Donate to Charity
Do you believe that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure? This is definitely true for old shoes. There are actually some charity centers out there that take in old shoes that can be sold in salvation armies.
Of course, this will totally depend on the condition of the shoes that you give. Wearable shoes can still be sold at a cheap price while the really worn-out shoes will be given to shoe recyclers. In any case, the shoes that you cast away will be put to good use or given to other people who may want to have them.
Get In Touch With Shoe Manufacturers
If there are no charity centers or recycle bins in your area, then another good bet is to get in touch with shoe manufacturers. In some cases, the shoe manufacturers will actually want to get old shoes for recycling. In fact, a lot of well-known brands do this. Here are a few of them that you may know about:
Adidas is one of the first shoe companies that offered this type of service to those who want to donate old and tattered shoes. If you give your old shoes back to Adidas, they will either give those shoes a second life or turn the raw materials into something that can be used. In other words, they’ll be the ones to recycle the stuff for you.
Sometimes, I find it easier to work with shoe manufacturers than recycle and charity centers since they really know what they’re doing. That’s why approaching Adidas is definitely an option that I recommend.
Asics is another brand that has a rather similar program to that of Adidas. Just like Adidas, Asics also partners with I: CO for their collection of old shoes. They also recycle old shoes to turn them into raw materials and sell them in the secondhand market. So if you don’t want to approach Adidas, then Asics is another alternative.
Aside from these two brands, Nike is also known to have a really good shoe recycling program known as “Reuse a Shoe”. The program is similar to Adidas’ and Asics’ program in the sense that they will also ask for old shoes. Nike will then think of ways to use the old materials for their textile recycling to turn these old shoes into something else that’s useful. That way, there will be no wasted shoes.
Lastly, the brand Native Shoes also has a similar program that’s known as the Remix program. The cool thing about the Remix program is that you can do everything online. If you want to donate old shoes, all you have to do is go to the Native Shoes website and fill up this form. From there, just bring a bunch of your old shoes to the nearest UP store and you’re done.
The cool thing about this program is that it turns the shoes into playgrounds. So if this sounds like an advocacy that you’ll be into, by all means, try it out. I myself have tried donating my shoes to the Remix Program and am pretty happy with how Native Shoes handle it.
Compost Your Shoes
Did you know that there are now plant-based shoes that can be composted? In the spirit of environmental friendliness, a few brands such as Reebok or Adidas have created shoes that can be turned into compost. It’s not exactly recycling but it’s definitely good for the environment. When your shoes are completely worn out, you can throw them into the compost heap and turn them into food for your plants.
However, do take note that there are only some shoes that can be turned into compost. You need to find the right plant-based shoes in order to do this. I highly recommend that you check out Reebok’s Cotton+Corn material shoes as these are made out of sustainable materials that are really good for the environment.
I admit that it’s pretty hard having a bunch of old shoes in the house and not knowing where to put them. It’s especially difficult if you’re an environmental enthusiast who wants to minimize waste at any opportunity. That’s why you need to know the ways on how to recycle your old shoes. So now that you know the different ways to go about, let’s summarize the steps you need to take:
- Choose the best shoe recycling method for yourself
- Call up the facility/company that supports it
- Give or donate your shoes
- If you choose to compost your shoes, call up the company that sold the pair to know-how
Isn’t it totally easy to recycle your old shoes?
If you have any more questions, feel free to leave a comment in the comment box below.