How To Save Money Recycling Old Products

posted in: Shopping Tips

In celebration of Earth Month, or if you’re just trying to live a little greener, here are some of my favorite brands and retailers who are taking the extra step in reducing waste by offering product recycling programs. Better yet, many offer rewards and freebies for participating!

Beauty Products

M∙A∙C Cosmetics

M∙A∙C’s take-back program, BACK 2 M·A·C, helps to reduce the environmental impact of their products and packaging by inviting customers to return 6 empty containers to a M∙A∙C counter in exchange for a free lipstick.  


LUSH USA is asking for all their black and clear pots, which are then used to package new products. Bring in 5 and get a free face mask. 


Kiehl’s offers recycling rewards through their Kiehl’s Family Rewards program. Earn 10 points each time which can then be used towards purchases at the store.


BareMinerals’ Give Back, Get Back program will earn you 20 points or 5 loyalty points for each item – stack those rewards for new products online or in-store. BareMinerals make it easy to recycle by offering recycle kits that can be mailed directly to you.



With Madewell’s Denim Recycling Program, bring it any old pair of jeans (any brand!) into Madewell and it will be upcycled house insulation. Doing this earns you $20 off on a new pair


The North Face offers a program called “Clothes The Loop” where they offer $10 off your next purchase of $100 or more for recycling your gently used apparel and shoes. Just drop off those items at a store or outlet.


Patagonia’s “Worn Wear” program offers different tiers of rewards for old Patagonia apparel – just send it in and they’ll provide a  store credit. 


Universal Standard will accept ANY brand of old clothing for up to $100 in store credit.



Electronics are recyclable too. You can always try to get cash for your electronic trade-in but if it doesn’t qualify, Microsoft will recycle your device so it can avoid a landfill.  


Apple’s trade-in program works very similarly to Microsoft’s – it just depends the type of electronic you need to get rid of. If your device doesn’t qualify for store credit, Apple will recycle it for free.


Spend at least $30 on ink and toner cartridges and recycle them at Staples (drop them in-store or they can be mailed in) within 180 days to earn $2 back in rewards. The monthly maximum is 10 cartridges.


TerraCycle partners with brands to offer “recycle rewards” that can be redeemed for donations to a non-profit or school of your choice. Some of their partnerships include: 

Garnier – Garnier is specifically asking for lids and spray pumps for their TerraCycle campaign.

Gillette – Gillette offers the World’s First National Razor Recycling program through TerraCycle – this is a great way to recycle all your old razor blades (no matter the brand).

EOS – Recycle those empty lip balm containers and earn 100 points with TerraCycle for every pound of packaging you send in!

Credo – Credo will reward you with 10 Credo Reward Points when you bring in empty and clean product packaging – win-win!

Herbal Essences – Herbal Essences offers their free recycling program with TerraCycle, much like Garnier and Gillette.

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Smart Shopping Expert

Trae Bodge is an accomplished lifestyle journalist and TV commentator who has specialized in smart shopping, personal finance, and retail for more than a decade. She has appeared on TV over 1,000 times; including Today Show, GMA3, NBC Nightly News, Inside Edition, and network affiliates nationwide. She has been named a Top Voice in Retail by LinkedIn, and her expert commentary has appeared in Forbes,, Kiplinger, Yahoo Finance, and numerous others.
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