This month is Plastic Free July, part of a global movement to reduce plastic use—so we can have cleaner streets, oceans, and communities.

At TS Designs, we’re well aware of the damage plastics do to the environment and our health. Microfibers released from polyester and other petroleum-based textiles are a big part of the problem, accounting for 34.8% of global microplastic pollution. That’s why we only make t-shirts from 100% natural fibers like cotton. When you put on a TS Designs t-shirt, you’re wearing plants, not petroleum.

#TshirtAfterlife: Where your t-shirt goes when it’s done being a t-shirt

Our t-shirts are made to last a long time—like, years and years. But nothing lasts forever, so we’re launching a new series called #TshirtAfterlife to highlight sustainable ways to upcycle your old t-shirts.

Plastic-Free July is the perfect time to start exploring how we can replace things usually made from plastic by repurposing natural-fiber clothing. Upcycling also reduces textile waste, so it’s a sustainability win-win.

To get started, here are three easy ways you can use upcycled t-shirts to replace some of the plastic in your life.

1. Make a reusable grocery bag.

With a couple of snips and one or two lines of stitching, Paper & Stitch shows you how to turn an old t-shirt into a grocery bag.

Picture of a t-shirt and a grocery bag made from the t-shirt

Photo via

2. Make reusable makeup rounds.

What are single-use makeup sponges made of? You guessed it: plastic. Replace these throwaways with makeup rounds made from the high-quality soft cotton fabric we use to make our t-shirts. Hello Sewing’s instructions are easy to follow and include a recipe for all-natural makeup remover. Use, wash, and repeat.

A picture of seven round cotton pads

Photo via

3. Line garden paths, beds, and planters.

We love this idea from Stoneyhaw Fiber & Things, who used an old TS Designs’ t-shirt as a garden weed barrier. The double layer of cotton allows water to permeate into soil, and is a biodegradable alternative to standard synthetic landscape cloth.

Close-up of a TS Design shirt laying on the ground in a garden

Photo via @stoneyhaw on Instagram

Keep giving your t-shirts new life

Not into the DIY thing? Get in on the upcycling with TS Designs reusable cleaning cloths, upcycled from our unworn irregular t-shirts.

Share your upcycling projects and stay tuned for more #TshirtAfterlife by following us on Instagram and Facebook!