What to Do with old pillows

What to Do with old pillows

Written by Nectarsleep editorial team

Last Updated on Jun 20, 2022

In this article:

    We should replace our mattresses every 8 to 10 years. But, that’s not the case with pillows. It’s recommended to change our pillows every 1 to 2 years. If your pillows have turned yellow or started to smell, or you are waking up feeling tired, it’s time to buy new pillows. 

    But, what can you do with old pillows?

    It would be best not to throw pillows in the garbage as these go into landfills, which is terrible for our environment. There are various eco-friendly ways to get rid of your old pillows, like repurposing, donating, and recycling. Here, we will discuss all these options.  

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    How to Repurpose Old Pillows

    What to do with used pillows? A great way to get rid of old pillows is to repurpose them. You can use old pillows for making pet beds, throw pillows or use it for making a floor bed. 

    Here are some ways to repurpose your old pillows:

    • Pet Beds: Used pillows can help add extra padding to your pet’s bed. Also, you can add your old pillows to a new bed for your pet, like Necatrsleep dog bed. If your pet is tiny, the old pillow can be a bed itself for it. If not, you can utilize and adjust according to your pet’s needs.
    • Throw Pillows: Your old pillow can still be a little comfortable. You can re-decorate the pillow with covers or pillow shams to make it an addition to your living room couch. 
    • Floor Cushion Seats: Put a beautiful fabric on your pillows and make floor seats around the coffee table. Floor cushion seats can be an exciting addition to your house. 
    • Packaging Material: Pillow material can be used to protect fragile items during moving and shipping. 
    • DIY Draft Stopper: Stop whistling wind beneath doors with a DIY draft stopper made from your old pillows. You can also use the pillowcases as a stopper lining.
    • Build a Fort: Kids can use anything! Old pillows can be used to hold a blanket fort, to make a mountain or anything at all. Make sure you wash the pillows before handing them out to kids to prevent allergies. 
    • Floor Bed for Kids: You can sew many old pillows together to create a floor bed for kids. Wash the pillows before sewing them. Cover the floor bed with a playful blanket to make it look attractive. 
    • Make Rags: Open up the old pillow and take out its stuffing. Cut the remaining fabric into square shapes and use them as rags for cleaning things around the house. 
    • Stuff Another Pillow: Do you have a pillow that requires more stuffing? Use stuffing from your old pillows. This way, your old pillow can save the life of a dying pillow.
    • Knee Pad: The old pillow can be used as a knee pad while gardening and doing other work. It can bring you comfort without spending any more money. 

    How to Donate Old Pillows

    If your old pillows are in usable condition, you can donate pillows. But, where to donate pillows? Many organizations actively receive pillows, mattresses, blankets, and other bedding. If you research well and make a few calls, you can find many pillow donations looking for your old pillow. 

    Where to donate old pillows? Clothing donation organizations like Salvation Army and Goodwill may not accept old pillows due to sanitary reasons. But there are still many options. 

    Here are some places you can check:

    • Animal shelters
    • Old Age homes
    • Charities
    • Adoption centers
    • Homeless shelters
    • Daycare facilities
    • Thrift stores

    Call them ahead to ensure they are looking for old pillows. 

    How to Recycle Old Pillows

    If your pillows are not good enough to repurpose or donate, the next best option is to recycle them. But, where to recycle pillows? Here are the best ways to recycle old pillows:

    • Send It to a Textile Recycling Facility: These facilities will ensure your pillow doesn’t end up in a landfill by reusing the pillow stuffing to make something useful like rags, carpet padding, or insulation. American Textile Recycling Service specializes in textile recycling. Contact them to learn about their nearest drop-off bins. 
    • Compost the Stuffing: What to do with old feather pillows? If the pillow stuffing is of down or feathers, you can take it out and put it into the compost bin. Then, you can use the cover as rags. 

    When Do You Need to Get Rid of Old Pillows?

    How long do pillows last? Many people think that pillows last forever. Unfortunately, that’s not true. You may have an attachment to your pillow, but eventually, you will have to get a new one. 

    Here are some signs that you need to replace your old pillows:

    • It has been used for more than two years
    • It is stained
    • It has started to smell
    • It feels lumpy
    • It looks shapeless
    • You experience neck pain every morning. 
    • It has torn, and stuffing is coming out.

    If there are any of the above signs, you should invest in a new pillow

    How Often Should You Replace Pillows?

    Experts believe that you should replace your pillows every one or two years. Over time your pillow loses the ability to support your neck and head. This can lead to uncomfortable nights and wake up with neck pain.

    Your pillow absorbs dead skin, dirt, and oil, making it dirty and smelly over time. It can lead to skin infections.

    You can wash your pillow every six months with detergent in hot water for hygiene purposes. However, the best way is to replace the pillow every one to two years. 

    Conclusion

    We all have our favorite pillows, and it might be difficult to bid them goodbyes. However, for so many reasons, we need to replace our pillows on time. Try to repurpose and donate your pillow if possible rather than throwing it in a bin. 

    This article is for informational purposes and should not replace advice from your doctor or other medical professional.
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