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Recycling Baby Gear

Find a new home for those baby necessities with these 5 spots for recycling baby gear.

Recycling Baby Gear

When you’re stocking up on necessary items in preparation for baby, the prospect of recycling baby gear feels a million years away. But there gets to a point when all those baby things that you needed so badly in the beginning suddenly aren’t so useful. Your baby grows out of them or you move on from that particular stage.

Rather than throwing them away, there are many resources for reuse and recycling that can give these important baby items a new home--or at least offer you avenues to dispose of them properly. Here are a few of our favorite recycling spots for some of the most popular baby (and new mama!) items.

Car Seat. Most people don’t realize that car seats can expire 5-6 years after they are made, and the plastics that are used to make these seats can weaken and deteriorate over time. Although there are currently no companies in NYC that accept car seats for recycling, we found one in nearby New Jersey at Shade Tree Garage. Through this program, you can submit your expired infant and car seat for recycling and as an added bonus get a $20 discount on oil changes! Don’t live in the NYC area? Find your local car seat recycling destination here.

Baby Clothing. Babies grow out of their clothing so quickly. The best way to get maximum use out of your kids’ clothing is to reuse it by passing it along to someone who may need it. Bring your like-new items to a swap meet like Little Swappies, an event where you can exchange items that you no longer need for someone else’s like-new items. Little Swappies also offers textile recycling through their partnership with Reuse NYC, which is a great family-friendly way to teach your kids how to reduce, reuse and recycle. Everything that’s not swapped at Little Swappies is donated to their charity partner Room to Grow, so you can rest assured that every item is going to someone in need.

Crib Mattress. Even if you convert your crib into a toddler bed, eventually that child-size mattress will just be too small. Rather than send your crib mattress to the local landfill to join the other 40 million mattresses disposed in the U.S. every year, choose a crib mattress made with recyclable materials. Newton crib mattresses, for example, are made with no foam, glue, latex or springs, making it 100% recyclable. Since not all recycling facilities will accept mattresses, Newton will either direct you to the closest recycling facility or send return packaging and arrange recycling for you. You can also find a list of mattress recycling facilities here.

Breast Pump. Breast Pumps are a great tool to help you get baby on a bottle, and keep your baby breastfed longer. But at some point, one day, you’re not going to need it anymore. A new program, Medela Recycles, has created a way for moms to properly recycle electric breast pumps. Every pump they receive will support the donation of a brand new hospital-grade Medela Symphony® Preemie+TM Breastpump and breastfeeding supplies to a mom staying at a Ronald McDonald House due to having a baby in the NICU. That way, she’ll continue to have the same high-grade pump she had in the hospital while easing her nursing transition when she goes home. Medela Recycles provides a way with both recycle and impact another mom’s breastfeeding journey. For more information, visit Medela’s site.

Nursing Bras. Breastfeeding mamas can build up quite a collection of nursing bras. After you’ve weaned, you’ll likely have many nursing bras that you no longer need but are still useful. The best option is to pass them along to someone in need via The Bra Recyclers. With a mission to recycle textiles so that they don’t end up in landfills, this organization recycles and reuses bras, redistributing them around the world to families in need. Learn more about how to submit a bra to be recycled and/or reused here.

This post was brought to you by Newton, and innovative new crib mattress designed to help your baby get a safer, healthier sleep. Get an exclusive 20% discount* on a Newton crib mattress with the code GREENWEEK.

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Create a school-ready capsule wardrobe for your kids

Dress for success whether virtual learning or in the classroom!

Tina Meeks

Going "back to school" this year may be less of a literal statement than in years past—but there is just as much reason for your kids to celebrate moving on to new grades. Just like in every new school year, a big part of the fun is refreshing your kids' wardrobe with clothes that allow them to express themselves.

Even if finding back to school clothes this year doesn't include a trip to the mall, you can still make an event of it by shopping H&M's kids collection from your computer. Pull up another chair for your shopping buddy and get the cart started with these fave capsule wardrobe options we've already scouted.

Here are our favorite picks:

A t-shirt made for play

H&M t-shirt

Call them essentials, not basics. A graphic t-shirt aces the test when it comes to being perfect for school. And because your little student will probably want to wear something that expresses their personal style as often as possible, it's great to know the shirts can stand up to school time, playtime, downtime and everything in between!

$4.99

Dressed-up casual shorts for total comfort

H&M boy shorts

Whether pulling up a chair for a virtual meeting with the class or heading back to the school for in-person learning, some comfortable, yet stylish, shorts will help your kid focus on the real tasks at hand: learning—and having fun while doing it!

$19.99

Layers for when seasons change

H&M sweatshirt

When it comes to feeling comfortable at school, layers are the MVPs. Whether the AC is blasting or the day started off cool and is warming up quickly, having a unique sweatshirt to shed or add will help your kid look cool while staying warm.

$9.99

A bit of flair with distressed denim

H&M distressed jeans

A school staple for generations, denim is both classic and continually fashionable with updates like distressing and new wash colors. If you're shopping online for jeans this year, take note of H&M's generous return policy—your kids can try on the orders at home and return anything that doesn't fit without a trip to the store.

$24.99

A fashion statement piece

H&M girls skirt

What's better than expressing yourself through a stylish outfit when school is back in session? Still feeling perfectly comfortable and ready to tackle anything the day holds while looking so good. With so many fashion-forward looks available at budget-friendly prices, H&M's children's collection means every kid can find an outfit that speaks to them.

$14.99

Some comfy kicks

H&M boys shoes

A sure way to put a little pep in your child's step this year, cool and cozy shoes are a staple on all back-to-school shopping lists for good reason. (Plus, it's fun to compare them to last year's shoes to see how much your kid has grown!)

$19.99

Anything-but-basic blouses

H&M girls blouse

Whether in the classroom or showing up for a video call with the class, a styling blouse or button-down shirt is a great way for your student to comfortably dress up the day. Better yet? Style doesn't have to come at the expense of comfort with so many made-to-move tops designed just for kids.

$14.99

A shirt ready to go whatever the day holds

H&M boys shirt

With "going to school" meaning anything from showing up in the classroom to doing a virtual session, it's important to have clothes that are perfect for anything the day holds. A classic, cotton shirt with a fashion-forward design is a great way to keep your student feeling ready to start the year with an A+ attitude.

$9.99

This article was sponsored by H&M. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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