The ambitious quest to recycle the world’s bras

An innovative partnership between the brands Harper Wilde and For Days aims to recycle a nearly unrecyclable garment.

I have a confession to make. I have converted one of my dresser drawers into a bra graveyard.

Over the years, like most women, my bra size has changed. Pregnancy and breastfeeding, in particular, can utterly transform your body in a short amount of time. But when I move to a new bra size, I never know what to do with the heaps of beautiful, expensive bras I will never wear again. Goodwill doesn’t accept underwear of any kind. Some women’s shelters accept gently used bras, but many of mine show signs of wear. And it just feels wrong to just throw them in the trash. So I created a drawer where my old bras would go to die.

I’m not the only one in this boat, it turns out. Bra startup Harper Wildehas received similar feedback from customers. “Everybody is talking about the Marie Kondo phenomenon,” says Jeff Borsuk, Harper Wilde’s head of growth. “But bras are completely excluded from this giant swell of donation and decluttering. For many women, the only solution is to throw bras away in the garbage, and there is a lot of guilt in that.”