In your home!
WHENThroughout the year
WHOSE HELP IS REQUIREDAdult
HOW IT MAKES A DIFFERENCE
Resist the urge to toss shoes in the garbage. Once in landfills, shoes can leach plasticizers, heavy metals and other toxic chemicals. They also take a literal eternity to break down. Most of our shoes contain plastic-based components that last much, much longer. Some can be recycled into materials for basketball courts, playgrounds, fibers for insulation, carpet padding, toy stuffing and even new clothing.
Keep your shoes out of landfills and recycle them through programs that use the materials.
Transportation to get to a drop off location.
If your shoes are truly beat and you can't fathom another person loving them — recycle them. Select "VIEW INSTRUCTIONS" below for a list of resources to recycle your shoes.
- For athletic shoes/sneakers of any brand, check out the Reuse-a-Shoe program for locations and more info.
- For unwanted clothing and shoes of any style, in clean, dry condition, you can find a list of drop off locations HERE.
- Before you act on any of the above, take a second look at the shoes in question. Chances are that your shoes aren't actually on death's door and could be brought back to life. In fact, there's almost no such thing as a worn-out shoe in the hands of a good cobbler.
- You can also try your hand at some DIY shoe recovery at home. Shoe adhesives like Shoe-Fix, Barge and Shoe Goo are cheap and effective and can be used to plug holes in those paper-thin soles, reattach a flopping sole and — my favorite trick — build up a worn-down heel so you're not walking at a slant.