Where To Donate Your Old Fashion Favorites

05/29/2014 11:08 am ET | Updated Jun 09, 2015

The season of budding flowers (and pesky allergies) is upon us and you know what that means...spring cleaning! It’s certainly refreshing to get rid of all the junk you’ve accumulated this winter, but we fully admit that we exclude our closet from scrutiny for sentimental reasons.

So we know: Parting ways with the remnants of your fashion past can be an uphill battle, but you must ask yourself, ‘Do I really need to hold on to that pink tu-tu circa 8th grade prom?’ We think not. That’s why we’ve partnered with Suave Professionals to bring you this list of style staples that may be crowding your closet space and where to donate them. Happy cleaning!

  • Prom Dresses
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  • Try as you may, it's always hard to find other occasions that call for wearing your prom dress. Instead of letting it take up sacred closet space, search for a charity on that will put your dress to good use.
  • Office Gear
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  • Get rid of suits and dress clothing you no longer wear, but that could help other people dress up for work. Dress for Success is an organization that provides low-income women with business attire, while Career Gear does the same for men. Both of these charities also have work mentorship programs that help individuals succeed in their careers beyond simply acing the professional look.
  • Winter Wear
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  • Winter clothing is super bulky and takes up lots of closet space, so once you're over last season's coat, donate it to One Warm Coat. This company holds jacket drives in the Fall and Winter across the country to help local agencies distribute coats to those in need.
  • Shoes
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  • Whether it's heels, sandals or casual footwear, Share Your Soles will pass your gently worn shoes along to needy adults and children worldwide. For athletic shoes, donate to Give Running, which encourages physical fitness by giving tennis shoes to disadvantaged youth.
  • Bridal Gowns
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  • Now this is an item you will really only wear once. Instead of letting your wedding dress collect dust and take up closet space, give it to the Brides Against Breast Cancer Foundation which collects bridal gowns to sell as a fundraiser for breast cancer patients. Another alternative is to donate your dress to Brides Across America, which provides gowns to military brides in need. Who knew your wedding dress could do such good?
  • Costumes
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  • The Theatre Development Fund Costume Collection will take all of your silly one-time Halloween and play costumes off of your hands. They'll rent out the outfits at a discount to nonprofit theater groups.
  • Handbags
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  • Is having over 15 purses really necessary? Probably not. Rummage through your closet for the bags you haven't used in years and donate them to Change Purse or the Animal Guardian Network. Change Purse will sell your bags to fund anti-human-trafficking efforts, while the Animal Guardian Network will raise money to rescue and place homeless pets with loving families. It also helps disadvantages individuals with their pet care.
  • Jewelry
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  • If you give your jewelry away to Indigo Rescue, your glitzy accessories can help your furry friends. This organization will sell your jewelry to assist county animal shelters, rehabilitate pets and place them in adoptive homes.
  • Eyeglasses
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  • For the frames you've outgrown, there are many options for where to donate them. Unite for Sight and New Eyes for the Needy will give your glasses to those in developing countries. One Sight will also donate glasses to those in need, as well as provide free vision care.
  • General Castaways
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  • What do you do with all the other miscellaneous clothing items you'd like to get rid of, you ask? Here are a few options: Clothes4Souls will send your donations directly to small-business owners in developing countries, who will then refurbish and sell the items themselves. Planet Aid will recycle your used clothes and shoes to support international development projects that improve health, increase income, aid vulnerable children, train teachers and enhance overall quality of life. Sew Much Comfort will custom fit your donated clothing to accommodate the injuries of wounded servicemen and women.
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