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Cotton Inc. Promotes Circularity with First Ever Denim Stack Challenge

In honor of America Recycles Day on Nov. 15, Cotton Incorporated invites denim lovers to “snap their stack.”

The organization’s denim recycling program, Blue Jeans Go Green, announced its first ever Denim Stack Challenge, which encourages consumers to take inventory of their wardrobe and recycle unused clothing.

Participants stack up their old denim shirts, jackets, pants and shorts, take a photo and share it on Instagram with the tag and hashtag @DiscoverCotton and #DenimStackChallenge. They are encouraged to tag three friends in the post and invite them to join to the challenge.

The last—and most important—step is to recycle the stack of clothes, either by dropping it off at a participating brand or retailer or mailing it in for free. To do so, participants can download a prepaid shipping label from Zappos for Good.

As long as the denim garment is at least 90 percent cotton, it can be recycled.

“America Recycles Day is an ideal time to encourage people everywhere to participate in a movement for a greener world, also shining a light on natural textile recyclability,” Andrea Samber, Cotton Incorporated’s director of consumer marketing, said. “It’s important for everyone to know that the denim they buy is sustainable and can be recycled because it is made from cotton.”

The campaign takes place from Nov. 11–18. In partnership with Caravan Stylist Studio, Cotton Incorporated will feature a denim stack challenge installation at The Gregory Hotel in New York City, where guests and locals can drop off their unused denim garments for recycling.

The hotel will also be the site for a sustainable fashion and beauty pop-up event taking place on Nov. 17, which invites attendees to sell and repurpose their clothing and accessories. Anyone who recycles an article of clothing with receive a $5 credit to shop the sale.

“The Denim Stack Challenge is an interactive way to raise awareness of our program’s mission and inspire consumers across the country to support sustainable living through a simple, meaningful act,” Samber added.

Clothing collection programs are the latest way that retailers and brands are encouraging a circular economy. Stores like Zara and H&M offer take-back programs in exchange for store credit, and resale sites like ThredUp provide prepaid mailing labels to promote textile recycling.