*Ahem…cue Jerry Seinfeld voice*

So, what’s the deal with plastic hangers? I buy a shirt and they give me the hanger. I have a closet full of them, why are there so many hangers?

It’s the age old question, isn’t it?

Can I recycle my extra or broken plastic hangers?

No. They are a blend of plastic resins, it’s almost impossible to know which plastics are used, rendering plastic hangers unrecyclable in your household recycling.

Now it’s time for some…..

Crazy Plastic Hanger Facts

According to earth911,

  • Plastic hangers are the most prominently manufactured hanger, given that most U.S. clothing is imported and arrives on plastic hangers
  • 40 billion hangers are imported to the US each year
  • 85% of those plastic hangers end up in landfills
  • After some quick math (don’t worry about that burning smell, it’s just my brain) that works out to 34 BILLION hangers ending up in landfills every single year

That is an astronomical number, in my opinion.

So what can we do to limit our contribution of plastic hangers ending up in the landfill?


Plastic Hanger Conundrum

There are a couple of things we can do to either limit our plastic hanger possession or to repurpose the ones we have or that squeak into our lives.

  1. Just say “No”: When purchasing something on a plastic hanger, just ask the cashier to keep the hanger. I sometimes just take the item off the hanger while it is still on the rack, it may be a shopping no-no, but I’m not taking home another hanger. This allows you to be hanger free and the store to reuse the hangers so maybe they won’t have to purchase as many new ones.
  2. Repurpose them:
    • You can make something creative that serves a purpose or just looks cool. Check out Only Hangers for inspiration or just to see what’s new in hanger art these days
    • You can add acquired plastic hangers into your everyday closet hangers (that’s what I tend to do since I’m not too crafty or creative)

I hope this article has been at least a little bit helpful. Maybe one day all plastic hangers will be recyclable….aahhh, it’s nice to wish!


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