About uniform recycling

Corporate wear is defined as any clothing and footwear provided to employees by an employer. It includes workwear, protective wear, career/image wear, corporate casual wear and uniforms.

Because employees are given a limited number of items which can be returned when they're replaced with new, it's relatively easy for the employer to collect items when they're no longer needed. But it's not always easy to recycle or reuse corporate clothing effectively. Here are some of the reasons why:

  • Security, branding and corporate image can be a big issue: "We don't want our uniforms being reused inappropriately, or ending up somewhere which will give us a negative image."
  • Uniforms which are made using blended fibres are currently impossible to recycle easily. Technologies for separating fibre blends are being researched but are not yet commercially available - and it could be some time before they are.
  • Deconstruction is not always considered in the design and manufacture of corporate wear: if it's complex to disassemble, it can be difficult to recycle.
  • It can be difficult and time consuming to find out which recyclers or charities are prepared to accept corporate wear.

Uniform Reuse can advise you on setting up the right infrastructure to collect and sort uniforms, and can help you find the best solution to the problem of what to do with your end-of-life corporate wear.