Life

Where to Mindfully Donate Your Once-Loved Items

Just because something isn’t for you doesn’t mean it couldn’t benefit someone else.

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Part of going minimalist is getting rid of whatever you’re holding on to that no longer fits into your life. But just because something isn’t for you doesn’t mean it couldn’t benefit someone else. One person’s trash is another’s treasure, after all. While Goodwill remains a perennial favorite for donations of all kinds, check out the resources below for more-specific item donation sites so you can maximize your impact while minimalizing your space.

Dresses

Becca’s Closet is a nonprofit that collects formalwear for high schoolers who can’t afford new prom dresses. There are chapters all over the country, so look for the one nearest you.

Jeans

It takes 1,800 gallons of water to produce the cotton needed for a single pair of jeans. Help make those resources go further by recycling your old pairs. Bring any denim jeans to a Madewell store, and they’ll recycle the fabric into home insulation for in-need communities—and give you $20 toward a new pair.

Household Items

Habitat for Humanity will come pick up gently used furniture, appliances, dinnerware, and building materials through its Habitat ReStore network. You can schedule a pickup online and look up exactly what your nearest location needs.

Books

Most local libraries take book donations (find a branch near you). For children’s books, Kids Need to Read accepts donations and distributes them to under-funded schools, literacy programs, and libraries throughout the country. And like-new paperbacks can be donated to the Prison Book Program, which has been helping incarcerated people get access to reading material since 1972. Both drop-offs and mail-in donations are accepted.

Electronics

Best Buy is the biggest electronic recycling retailer in the country. Turn in your old, outdated gadgets, kitchen appliances, and rechargeable batteries (to name just a few). Doesn’t matter whether they’re working or not. Bonus? Best Buy offers discounts toward future purchases when you bring in used ink cartridges and networking devices such as routers and modems.

Read more:
When Less Is Really More: How to Declutter Your Life With Intention
The Mental Health Benefits of Minimalism
How to Create a Minimalist Wardrobe
A Guide to Minimalism in the Kitchen