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Textile Waste Management

There are copious ways to get rid of old sheets and blankets, depending on the situation. A homeless or vulnerable persons' crisis shelter or charity shop may accept clean bedding in excellent condition. You can donate worn-out or torn bedding to a textile bank if you no longer need it (provided it is clean).

It is also possible to recycle your bed linens if they are packaged with a recycling logo (again, provided it is clean). However, duvets and pillows, which contain filling, are not recyclable. While most duvets and synthetic blankets are not recyclable, there are exceptions. The majority of this waste is made up of textiles, so it can be disposed of in a landfill.

Some textile banks will reject certain types of bedding due to their strict acceptance policies. If you cannot locate a textile bank that accepts bedding or if your bed linen is soiled, place it in an airtight plastic bag and place it in the general waste section of your local waste management facility. Let's look at more specific ways to dispose of your used bedding.

What Can You Do With Old Bedding?

Donate to local animal shelters or charity centres

Look around your neighbourhood to see if any organisations or entities could benefit from your old linens. Shelters for the homeless, animals, and other wildlife rehabilitation facilities all accept used bedding, provided it is in usable condition. Therefore, before donating, take some time to clean them.

Some companies and organisations export used bedding that cannot be sold in Australia to developing countries so that it can be repaired, recycled into rags, or used to make biofuel.

Make a pet bed out of the bedding

Even if you spend a lot of money on those pet beds, your pets never seem to appreciate them, do they? This is often because they want to be able to smell you in the morning.

You can turn old bedding or pillows into a source of rest and solitude by repurposing them. All you need to accommodate your pet's habits is a sturdy fabric covering or old clothes and textiles repurposed as covering. Alternatively, you could turn them into a kid-friendly fortress.

Turn the bedding into a cushion

Just because your bedding is old doesn't mean they can't still provide some comfort even if they're no longer suitable for your personal needs. You could also use them as:

• Cushions for the garden: What better way is there to keep your knees comfortable while weeding and pruning than by using an old pillow?

• Cushions for the floor: You don't need to go overboard with the plushness to make a floor cushion out of your old bedding. You'll never run out of floor cushions again if you buy new covers or crochet your own.

What Happens To Thrown Out Bedding?

When bedding, clothing and blankets are thrown out with the rest of the garbage, they end up in landfills. Rather than wasting them this way, your old bedding can be donated to charity or repurposed into new clothing or bedding after a textile bank accepts it.

Since recycling facilities can't recycle most bedding, most of it ends up in landfills every year. More than half of the population buys new sheets at least once a year, posing a severe sustainability issue for the bedding industry.

Substitutes For Unrecyclable Bedding

The bedding and blanket industry is beginning to produce more environmentally friendly products that last for years and can be recycled. Organic cotton, hemp, Tencel, Lyocell, organic latex, and eucalyptus are just a few materials to watch out for when shopping. If your old bedding is unrecyclable, consider donating your bedding to a friend or to a charity shop if it's still in fairly good condition.

Facts About Bedding

Here are a few interesting facts about bedding that you may not be aware of:

• The higher the thread count, the better the quality of the fabric. Look for long-lasting materials like organic cotton when purchasing your next set of sheets.

• If you overfill the washing machine or tumble dryer, the sheets may not last as long.

• Bedding can be recycled to make anything from seat belts to carpets. Bedding made from natural materials is preferable in terms of environmental impact.

Other Unwanted Items In Your House

If you're wondering if other textile-like items aren't designed to be recycled, you're right on the money. While pillows pose a significant environmental risk when they are disposed of, several other bedding and textile products in your home do not pose the same threat. Call waste removers when such items (listed below) should be disposed of:

Quilt Covers

Quilt covers and bed spreads of any brand can be recycled at any of the recycling programs that accept them.

Old Bed Linen

Old bed linen of any brand can be recycled at any of the recycling programs that accept them. Alternatively, you could use them as canvases for painting, ghost costumes, or re-covering an old pillow for your pet's new bed!

Discarded Garments

Many non-profit organisations will accept your gently used clothing. You can contact local charities if you have unwanted corporate or industrial clothing that needs to be disposed of properly.

Towels and Sheets

Many retailers will take your old towels and sheets off of your hands if you ask. Alternatively, try repurposing them or contacting your local animal shelter instead.


Mattress toppers can be recycled through companies like Soft Landing, which turn memory foam into carpet underlay, depending on the material.

Australasian Recycling Label

In order to make recycling simpler for you, the Australasian Recycling Label (ARL) has been developed for Australia and New Zealand. Doing this will simplify your life, save you some time, and help the environment by reducing the amount of waste you generate. In general, Australians and New Zealanders are concerned about the environment and want to do the right thing.

However, there are hundreds of different recycling labels out there, and even the most experienced recycling gurus can get it wrong. The ARL eliminates confusion over recycling. You can keep recyclable material out of landfills and recycling streams if we properly dispose of our waste.

Unlike other labels, the Packaging Recyclability Evaluation Portal (PREP) serves as the foundation for the ARL. Not all recycling labels will be the same because no two packages are exactly alike. The ARL cannot be assigned to a packaging item without first undergoing a PREP assessment to verify the claims made about its eventual disposal.

PREP evaluates a package's shape, weight, and size, its inks and adhesives, and the materials used in its production. Before its sorted at Materials Recovery Facilities and subsequent processing facilities, packaging in the recycling ecosystems of Australia and New Zealand is simulated by PREP so that recycling facilities can transform it into new packaging or a new product.

Recycle Or Repurpose Your Used Bedding

Don't throw out your old bedding when you need to replace it with something new. This goes for everything from mattress protectors and toppers to pillowcases and quilt covers. Recycling is great, but repurposing is even better! The recycling process usually begins with putting the items in the right skip bins. As such, contact a skip bin provider near you to help you understand where your old bedding can go to be recycled and repurposed.