THE 14TH ANNUAL SHORTY AWARDS

The Shorty Awards honor the best of social media and digital. View this season's finalists!

Special Project

Special Project NEW!

Helpsy Keeps Clothes Out of the Trash

Entered in Responsible Consumption & Production

Objective

The fashion industry has a polluting problem, and Helpsy is a Certified B Corp on a mission to fix it. In a world where more than 85% of clothes end up in the trash, Helpsy integrates its three-pronged approach - Helpsy Shop, Helpsy Collect and Helpsy Source - to reuse, resell and repurpose all of the clothing they collect. Helpsy specifically sets out to change the way people think about, dispose of and buy second-hand clothing, standing strong in its environmental mission to keep clothes out of landfills by any means possible.

Strategy

Helpsy is one of the largest textile collection companies in the U.S., working with partners large and small, public and private, to manage clothing collection containers, excess retail and brand inventories, home pickups, textile drives and more. In 2022, Helpsy launched their new DTC platform, Helpsy Shop, as another way to further their mission to keep clothing out of landfills. All of the textiles collected in Helpsy bins, via municipal partners, home pick ups and drives, are first sorted by Helpsy Collect’s staff and their many partners, then get divided into grades. The lower grade clothing collected is repurposed for things like industrial-use rags, stuffing, insulation, and more to maximize each items’ use. The higher grades are resold to thrift stores and ecommerce resellers via Helpsy Source, or directly to consumers via Helpsy Shop. 


Becoming a Certified B Corp was integral to Helpsy’s mission, and now Helpsy is the only Certified B Corp and Public Benefit Corporation in clothing collection. Beyond the environmental factors, Helpsy also naturally decided they would prioritize creating a safe and healthy work environment for their employees. Proudly for-profit and using business as a force for good, Helpsy intentionally creates open-employment jobs that are accessible to everyone, providing livable and competitive wages as well as full benefits that include Helpsy stock options for every single employee.

Results

Helpsy’s collection efforts successfully diverted 29 million pounds of clothes, shoes and other items from the waste stream - equating to 100 items of clothing every minute. Only counting the clothes Helpsy collected which went back into thrift stores for resale, the brand also removed 560 million pounds of CO2 and saved 14 billion gallons of water.

 

Helpsy’s local and community impact includes paying out more than $400,000 to charities and municipalities for bin placements, clothing drives, purchased materials and donations. The brand also launched collection partnerships with 15 new towns and cities, facilitated 340 school and community clothing drives, performed thousands of touchless curbside pickups and helped municipalities reach diversion goals by detailing the weights they collect, saving them more than $1.16 million in waste disposal tipping fees.

 

Helpsy continued to grow over the last year, adding more than 150 full-time employees at living wages, priding themselves on paying the best wages in the industry. Helpsy proudly offers all employees healthcare, medical, dental and vision; and all employees also earn stock in the company. The brand also pays line staff on commission and supplies an educational supplement to its employees, offering to pay up to 50% on courses related to their business development. At Helpsy, there’s longevity and a career path with multiple employees starting at a “ground level” and working their way up, with a history of a lot of promotion and growth within the company.

Media

Video for Helpsy Keeps Clothes Out of the Trash

Entrant Company / Organization Name

Elle Communications, Helpsy

Links

Entry Credits