Extra Petite x Garment Recycling with H&M

As longtime readers know, H&M; is one of my favorite places to shop for petite-friendly work and casual wear. They asked me to share about their global garment recycling effort, focused on not letting fashion go to waste. As mentioned in the video, all H&M; stores internationally now offer garment collection recycling services – anyone can bring up to 2 bags of clothing per day and get a 15% off one item voucher per bag donated. And if you bring in unwanted clothes before March 31st, you’ll receive 15% off your entire purchase and a chance to win multiple prizes. I usually just discard items that are damaged or falling apart, so am happy to hear that garments of any condition are accepted.

Please let me know if you have any questions from the video, or find out more details on www.HMconscious.com. If you end up participating, I’d love to hear about it! Please include #LongLiveFashion when sharing via Twitter or Instagram.

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by H&M; for Style Coalition.


62 thoughts on “Extra Petite x Garment Recycling with H&M

  • Ping March 14, 2013 at 11:53 am

    HAHAHA! the onesie! I need to see you in it before you donate.

  • Kathleen Lisson March 14, 2013 at 12:17 pm

    Thanks for getting the word out about this program!

  • Sydne Summer March 14, 2013 at 12:25 pm

    Great job Jean! And obsessed with your necklace. Beautiful!

  • Vicky March 14, 2013 at 12:32 pm

    I second Ping here. 🙂
    This is a great program H&M; is running, and I'm so glad you share it with us. Do you know how long a voucher is good for typically? (Does it have to be used the same day of your donation?)

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    Hi Jean, I'm a big fan and long time reader of your blog.
    Did you ask H&M;/do you have any idea what happens to the clothes once they "recycle" them for you? Selling second hand clothing to (mostly) Sub-Saharan countries is a huge industry that makes lots of money and destroys local textile industry because it is way cheaper than any (quality) product that can be produced locally.
    The information presented on the website HMconscious makes one wonder… they don't say what they actually do when they recycle the product. It doesn't seem very conscious to me, rather misleading. Please let me know if you know more about it. Cheers, Katharina

  • The Budget Babe March 14, 2013 at 12:46 pm

    so profesh J! i have a small closet too (house was built in 1937 before people had ginormous quantities of clothing lol) but like you, it helps me EDIT and stick to essential pieces I actually wear.

  • Fauxionista March 14, 2013 at 12:51 pm

    I've actually been gathering my clothes and will be making a trip to H&M; soon!


  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 1:09 pm

    LOVE the video!!! Thank you for sharing this with us. I will most definitely be bringing an un-haul to H&M; thanks to you 🙂

  • Jackie March 14, 2013 at 1:28 pm

    I'm definitely doing this! Also, your hair looks great in this video. 🙂

  • Assaba Linda A. March 14, 2013 at 1:29 pm

    Thanks for raising this point; I'm from Sub-Saharan Africa and I know exactly what you're referring to. While I live in the US now, I remember my mom buying such clothes for me as a kid and as a teenager. They were also seen as "cooler" than clothes made with our own textiles by our own seamstresses, because, you know, those clothes came from Europe and the US. Now that I live in the US, I have so much more appreciation for fashion from back home. And I have been amazed at how popular (and expensive) African print is abroad.

    That said. H&M;'s recycling efforts are a good thing; but I'll definitely be inquiring about where the clothes are going!

    P.S. Hi Jean! *Waves hand excitedly* I'm a long-time follower and first-time (I think?) commentor. I discovered your blog (along with other petite-friendly bloggers that seem to be in your circle) about a year or so ago. I was so happy to find a community of 00P/XXSP women just like me. Your fashion tips have been oh so valuable. You have no idea what a difference it's made in the way I view and feel about fashion and shopping for clothes. 🙂 Thank you.

  • Jessy March 14, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    I'm a huge fan of this campaign and was so excited when they announced it a few months ago! The coupon was $5 at the beginning of the launch and I'm guessing they changed it to 15% since the campaign is so popular! I've been slowly going through my closet to find items to donate. It feels good to get started on spring cleaning : )

  • Abby March 14, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    Thanks for the info, Jean.

    What's going through my mind now is that if I were you, I would raise that one rack in your closet a little so that I could put a second one underneath…Maybe just on one side so you would still have room to hang dresses in little section. But I guess it is good to live simply. 🙂

  • Laura March 14, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    I love this idea! I'm going to get to my Spring cleaning in my closet asap! Thanks for sharing, Jean!

    xo Laura


  • Carlene: Healthfully Ever After March 14, 2013 at 3:12 pm

    So glad to hear about this! I've really made a concentrated effort to get rid of what I don't need and ponder what my wardrobe is missing. Perfect!

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    I immediately wondered the same thing as you two – what happens to the clothes? Do they send them to Goodwill? Do they shred them up and make rugs and rags? Do they use them as building insulation? Do they sell them to sub-Saharan Africa as Anon above mentioned? I'm glad I'm not the first to notice this.

  • jules March 14, 2013 at 7:03 pm

    awesome idea! thanks for letting us know about it jean!

    xo julesinflats.com

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 7:53 pm

    Wow, what a great idea! I guess I'll be stopping by my local H&M; soon… 😉

  • Anonymous March 14, 2013 at 8:16 pm

    I love the concept of an "unhaul"!! Thank you, Jean!

  • Steffi March 14, 2013 at 8:43 pm

    Your closet is sooo tidy. I'm always curious to know how many pieces of clothing others have.

    Using that logic, I have to get rid of 3/4 of my wardrobe :O I've been seriously thinking about extreme spring cleaning and this might be the final push I need. I like the idea of having a well curated closet. Of course, we have no H&M; in Australia. I might just sell stuffs off and donate to my regular charity : )

  • FashionEdible March 15, 2013 at 1:58 am

    Great video! What a great idea to get rid of unwanted clothing.

  • AubreyOhDang! March 15, 2013 at 2:51 am

    hair is on point girl. love the skittles necklace too

  • Manon March 15, 2013 at 7:57 am

    I like your outfit (and your hair looks so smooth!) – but not as much as the pink one-piece


  • Jessica G. March 15, 2013 at 8:31 am

    Thanks for sharing this great program by H&M.; I"m impressed with how you utilize your shared small closet space with your boyfriend. If you have any tips to share on how you do it would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

  • Renee Wilson March 15, 2013 at 11:27 am

    Me and childrens jeans are a killer! I understand completely LOL!

  • Lu Yan March 15, 2013 at 12:11 pm

    Did they mention the size of the bag? I typically put unwanted clothes in our big trash bag for donation. I saw you used a grocery bag which is much smaller….

    It seems I'm the only one with this question. Is everybody automatically pretty clear about the bag size?

    Thanks for posting this. Great idea! I'm all for thrift, exchange. Let's make less and reuse.

  • Candice March 15, 2013 at 1:05 pm

    Thanks for sharing the information with us, Jean. Very impressive on how you utilize your small closet space. I'd love to see you model the onesie before you donate it. haha!

  • andrea March 15, 2013 at 5:27 pm

    That's an amazing deal! I'll be stopping by H&M; this weekend! Thanks for sharing!



  • lisacng @ expandng.com March 15, 2013 at 8:25 pm

    Thanks for sharing! I'm glad it doesn't have to be a full bag! I love your necklace!

  • Anonymous March 15, 2013 at 10:58 pm

    Hi Jean, thanks for the video! Do you know if this also applies to H&M; in Singapore? I can't seem to find any info abt it on the Singapore website, thanks!

  • hongnhung March 15, 2013 at 11:57 pm

    Would u make a closet tour and some fashion tips for us?

  • mel March 16, 2013 at 11:40 am

    Hi Jean,

    Thanks for the informative post. I was wondering where the dress you are wearing in this post is from?


  • JT.P. March 16, 2013 at 12:13 pm

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  • JT.P. March 16, 2013 at 12:17 pm

    Hi Jean! I just happened to stumble upon your blog when I Googled "best brands for petites." Your work is already so helpful and informative and you are absolutely stunning! Looking forward to perusing around a bit more and future posts! Love the pics..some of the scenery is familiar! I live in the Boston area too. P.S. Where do you go for alterations?

  • Kasey March 16, 2013 at 1:29 pm

    After watching many of your videos I just have to tell you how great of a speaker you are. So casual yet so professional. I've never heard you say "Um" in any of your videos and I'm always impressed by that. 🙂
    Just thought I'd let you know. Also, great cause!

  • Joy March 16, 2013 at 3:02 pm

    great video, very clear and organized! & thanks for the reminder, I do need to clean out my closet!


  • Anonymous March 16, 2013 at 7:38 pm

    Yes, I feel that this cause is a bit dubious. Love this blog, but sorry H&M;, I'm not quite buying it. Even if they send them to Goodwill, they can claim an exorbitant cost on those clothing and use them as tax breaks. They can claim the donation as theirs while the customer is left with a measly 15% off one item or purchase (but let's face it, it's rare someone spends hundreds and hundreds of dollars there).

  • PetiteAsianGirl March 17, 2013 at 7:11 pm

    Hi Vicky, the voucher is good for 30 days (possibly more) I believe…I saw one but forget the exact expiration but it does not have to be used on the same day.

  • PetiteAsianGirl March 17, 2013 at 7:16 pm

    Hi ladies – thanks for taking the time to say hello and getting your questions out there. I passed all of them along and they responded that everything that happens to the garments post-collection at H&M; stores is managed by I:Collect and their website is at http://www.ico-spirit.com/de/startseite/. This site has some info on what I Collect may do with the items depending on their condition: http://www.hm.com/us/longlivefashion#path=1.1.1&transition;=10&duration;=500

  • PetiteAsianGirl March 17, 2013 at 7:16 pm

    Hey Abby – I've definitely thought about that! For the time being, a large hamper is taking up that lower space : )

  • PetiteAsianGirl March 17, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    Hi Jessica! The only tip I have (which isn't really a novel one) is to layer multiple items on one hanger – I have a sheath dress, maybe a pair of pants, blouse, or cardigan, plus a blazer on each hanger.

  • PetiteAsianGirl March 17, 2013 at 7:19 pm

    Hi Lu – I believe the bag size is not strict, so you can probably use a regular grocery bag as a "standard."

  • PetiteAsianGirl March 17, 2013 at 7:20 pm

    Hi there – I was told by H&M; that it is in every single one of their stores globally.

  • PetiteAsianGirl March 17, 2013 at 7:20 pm

    Hi Mel! It's from ASOS petites a year ago, but they often have similar style items.

  • PetiteAsianGirl March 17, 2013 at 7:21 pm

    Hi there – are there any specifics on what you'd like to see? If so I'll keep them in mind!

  • Anonymous March 17, 2013 at 7:22 pm

    Oh this is great, Great for H&M; to do, and for you to share, Thanks, Jean! >>Americans throw away about 70 pounds of clothes per person, per year.< <
    Swapping, or "swishing" (google it) clothing is a great way to recycle and get "new" clothing. i do it both locally (there is a xs adult clothing swap group near me =)and at various online sites. i won't plug them, but i highly suggest y'all consider the idea of less consumption and sustainability. peace!

  • PetiteAsianGirl March 17, 2013 at 7:22 pm

    So nice to her from a fellow Bostonian! Thank you for your kind words. I used to go to Hemmingway Tailors in Belmont, but haven't recently as I've been trying to do most of my own alterations.

  • PetiteAsianGirl March 17, 2013 at 7:23 pm

    Thanks so much, Kasey! I think everyone has something they do when speaking wihle nervous, and the "um" habit especially is a hard one to break. Mine is excessive hand gestures : )

  • PetiteAsianGirl March 17, 2013 at 7:24 pm

    Would love to hear what these sites are – please do feel free to share!

  • Anonymous March 17, 2013 at 11:18 pm

    Hi Jean,

    I have just found your youtube channel throughwhile surfing the internet. I love your videos. You said in this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mZxH6rGv2ac that you will make Part 2 of the Building a professional wardrobe. Have you posted it? I couldn't find it in your channel. If you haven't, please make it. I am looking forwards to it.

    Thank you for posting the H&M; recycling program. I will check if my local store participate in it.

    Have a good night and don;t forget about the professional wardrobe.

    Have a sweet dream.


  • Anonymous March 18, 2013 at 9:14 am

    Great thanks! 🙂

  • Unknown March 18, 2013 at 12:22 pm

    Hi Jean!

    Just saw your video and was wondering if you'd be willing to sell me the white tube top shirt that you put in the "donating" bag. I have been looking for something like that ever since you styled it with your old navy blue dress/skirt last summer. As always, thank you for your style advice and inspirational videos! Keep them coming 🙂


  • j. March 20, 2013 at 1:57 am

    I find this initiative dubious for two reasons.

    First, it is unclear where profits derived from selling the donated clothing will go. Based on this H&M; webpage (http://about.hm.com/AboutSection/en/About/Sustainability/Commitments/Reduce-Reuse-Recycle/Garment-Collecting.html), it appears that H&M; will market clothing that can be reworn as "second-hand" goods and convert clothing that cannot be reworn as industrial materials. And for those who are wondering, I:Collect is for-profit business (that has, admittedly, a nice corporate agenda). The partner's website FAQ states that "for every kilogram of textiles collected, 0.02 eurocents is donated to a charitable project on http://www.charitystar.com". Absent from the picture is any discussion of where the profits derived from reselling the clothing would go. As fellow commenters have pointed out, there is a global industry built entirely around selling used clothing and textile waste. So does H&M; get a share? And if so, will H&M; also donate such proceeds to other charitable causes?

    Second, this "recycling" program is hypocritical given that H&M; is built entirely on a model of cheap, fast and disposable fashion geared towards constant consumption. And of course, the reward for participating consumers is a 15% coupon, which fosters further consumption. Essentially, H&M; is asking its customers to help "cure" the problem of textile waste, which it and other fast fashion retailers have created, by encouraging such participants to engage in behavior that will further exacerbate that problem. It just looks more like a "feel good" marketing campaign that allows the company and its clientele to perpetuate the current cycle of over-consumaption without actually altering any underlying structural flaws (i.e., fast fashion, preference of quantity over quality, and extreme price pressure on contractors in developing countries that prevents such contractors from using sustainable practices and materials).

  • Anonymous March 21, 2013 at 6:04 am

    would love to see how you organize your closet since i have a small space on my closet too

  • Piyusha March 24, 2013 at 5:47 pm

    Hi Jean,

    First off, love love your blog! It's definitely been a big influence. I wanted to ask a question about the H&M; conscious campaign. I called my local H&M; before going in with my donations and was told they were giving a 15% off coupon for one item unless I could show them on an H&M; newsletter or site that they were giving 15% off your entire purchause voucher if you donated by March 31st. I checked their site and my newsletters but other than your blog, I can't seems to find it stated anywhere else. Could you show me where you found the 15% off your entire purchase promotion? Thank you!

  • Lu Yan March 25, 2013 at 5:25 pm


  • PetiteAsianGirl March 26, 2013 at 2:15 pm

    Hi Christina! You have such a great memory. Unfortunately, I wouldn't feel comfortable selling that because I sewed it and made alterations and have worn it quite a bit so it's in poor condition…if you are interested in something similar, it was a basic white tube top which I added some stitching down the front center and then pulled the thread tight so that it would "ruche." You can find plain white tube tops from H&M; right now (under $12), F21, Target, and the like. Good luck in your search!

  • PetiteAsianGirl March 26, 2013 at 2:16 pm

    Hi Piyusha, if you go on this site http://www.hmconscious.com/ and scroll to the bottom past the "About" header, you will see some arrows that you can click on titled "rewards" or "prizes." This explains how if you donate before 3/31, then you will get a ticket. If you enter that ticket online to redeem your code, everyone with a ticket will get 15% off your entire purchase and some will win additional prizes. Sorry it's a bit tough to navigate! Took me a while to find it as well.

  • PetiteAsianGirl March 26, 2013 at 2:17 pm

    Hi there – thank you for the reminder! I'd love to start making videos again, perhaps this summer once my job slows down a little. I appreciate your encouragement!

  • Jen K March 28, 2013 at 3:19 pm

    Hi Jean,
    Thanks again for sharing about this! I ended up donating a bag of clothes and posted my H&M; fitting review on my blog, if you are interested. I credited you as well. 🙂 http://www.lifeunrefined.com/2013/03/28/hm-fitting-room-review/

  • Anonymous March 29, 2013 at 4:39 pm

    I got the voucher yesterday, it expires June.30.

  • Unknown April 1, 2013 at 10:55 pm

    Thanks jean for the tip! I will try it 🙂

  • Janki April 12, 2013 at 5:39 pm

    Great video… you bring such a nice change of pace to the blogging scene by focusing on a carefully curated wardrobe instead of just mindless consumption. I like that you don't buy 4 H&M; blazers of the same style but different color like some I've heard of. I really like that you talk about how to make the tough decision to let go of some items. Often, it's great to think that you may be blessing someone else for whom the item is perfect. Or, in the case of the H&M; situation, saving worn clothes from landfills. I wish I'd known it when I cleaned out my kiddo's socks.
    I'm starting Project330 this spring and am finding that it's making my self-alteration task a lot easier.

    Keep up your blog. It's fantastic and this petite loves it. I feel like it's easier for me to get dressed every day and I can chose trends wisely.

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