Pantyhose & Tights Recycled into Amazing Things

recycle your pantyhose

I don’t know if anyone is still wearing pantyhose. Personally I don’t buy them anymore and I’m using up all my old pairs to keep warm under my long skirts, jeans and as a second layer under tights, but eventually they will run and so I’ve found some great ways to use them around the house. FYI: I use the techniques below also with tights that have a run or snag.

Air Freshener

Cut a pair of old pantyhose off at the knees. Spoon one of the mixtures below into the foot and tie closed. Then just put it under the seat in your car, stash it in a dresser drawer, in an inconspicuous spot in the bathroom or kitchen. Yes it’s ugly, but that’s why you hide it.

  • approximately 1 tablespoon each whole cloves and allspice and several cinnamon sticks
  • store-bought potpourri – you can buy the ugly potpourri which is much cheaper but smells wonderful, remember you’re going to be hiding this air freshener.

Arm Warmers

A pair of thick tights can be used as arm warmers to allow you to wear your favorite short sleeve t-shirt into colder weather or under long sleeved shirts and sweaters to keep you even warmer. Just cut off the foot section and then cut off each leg at the top. Leave as is or turn under and hem to give it a more finished edge. You can even cut a little thumb-slit at the foot end for a cooler look and a warmer warmer. Pantyhose arm warmers work if you’re going to be using them under long sleeves, but they look a little strange if you’re wearing them with a short sleeve shirt.

Candle Cleaner

Cleaning a dusty candle is easy when you have a pair of old pantyhose on hand. Just slip the candle inside the leg of the hose and roll it around, making sure to carefully wipe the top of the candle with the hose.

Candle Making

Smooth rough spots on your homemade candles by rubbing them with a piece of pantyhose.

Car Emergency Kit

Wrap a quilt made from old blankets (doesn’t matter if it’s ugly) around a large coffee can filled with emergency supplies and secure with a pair of old pantyhose or tights which can then be used for a variety of emergencies such as:

  • to replace a broken belt in your car’s engine
  • as a tourniquette
  • to filter liquids (hey, you never know where you might get stranded)
  • to secure a splint to a broken arm or leg

China Cleaner

Delicate china can benefit from a gentle cleaning with a pair of old pantyhose. The pantyhose are abrasive enough to get the china clean and gentle enough to avoid scratching it.

Computer Protector

Stretch a pair of panty hose over the back of your hard drive to keep dust out.

Deodorant Stain Remover

Remove deodorant stains from clothing in a flash by rubbing with a wadded up length of pantyhose.

Doll

Ehow has a great tutorial for making pantyhose dolls.

Draft Dodger

Stuff the leg cut from a pair of pantyhose or tights with newspaper or scrap fabric. Position at the bottom of a door that’s letting in a little too much air.

Elastic

Cut pantyhose into strips to give you the length of the elastic that you need. I like to use them to replace the drawstrings in my workout pants and shorts because I can tie them at the length that will hold my pants up and they are stretchy enough that I can take them off and put them on without having to constantly untie and retie the drawstring. Love a makeover that makes life a little easier :)

Eyeglass Cleaner

One pair of pantyhose with a run can save you from ever having to purchase disposable eyeglass cleaners again. Pantyhose are lint free and have enough of an abrasive surface to clean without scratching.

Cut a pair of pantyhose which you can no longer wear into small squares and stash them where you can easily grab them to clean your eyeglasses and sunglasses. Stash a few in your purse, in a desk drawer, in your automobile glove compartment … I’m a bit obsessive so I store them inside snack-size baggies but you could use recycled envelopes as well.

You can also use them to clean your computer screen and the glass or acrylic in your picture frames.

Place used pantyhose squares in a mesh lingerie bag, wash and re-use them over and over again.

Filter

A clean pair of pantyhose makes a great filter. Make sure that if there is a run you are not using that area for your filter as it will not filter effectively. Here are some of the ways I’ve used them, but I’m sure once you get the idea you’ll come up with many more uses for them:

  • Stretched over a paint bucket. Pour paint with debris in it through the pantyhose into the new container.
  • When I forgot to bring a colander on a camping trip a pair of pantyhose stretched over the pasta cooking pot was a lifesaver. And for those of you who are wondering – no I did not pack pantyhose to wear on a camping trip; an old pair of pantyhose is part of my emergency gear kit.
  • An old pantyhose leg can stand in for an expensive metal lint trap for the hose on your washing machine. You can easily attach an section of a pair of old pantyhose to the washing machine hose with a rubber band then just throw the pantyhose away when it’s full.

Find Lost Items

Next time that you drop a small earring, a contact lens or a beaded necklace breaks don’t despair. Slip the leg of a pair of pantyhose over your vacuum cleaner hose. Move the hose over the area where the dropped item is and in a flash you’ll find it clinging to the mouth of the hose.

Fishing Net

If you have an old tennis, badmitten or racquetball racquet that’s no longer fit for a good game you have the beginnings of a new fishing net. Remove the strings from the racquet. Cut off one leg from an old pair of pantyhose. Using a staple-gun, staple the leg to the racquet. Grab you pole and head to the river!

Flowers

refashioned pantyhose flowers

This doesn’t work well for nude pantyhose, but colored pantyhose and tights can be easily made into flowers to use for your refashions,  flowers for pillows or curtain trim or curtain tiebacks … Check out these tutorials for detailed instructions with pictures:

Wired Pantyhose Flowers

More Wired Pantyhose Flowers

Flowers for Fashion

Note: you can toss your nude pantyhose into a dye bath if you want to use them to make up some flowers.

Frisbee

Frisbee? Yes, you can make a frisbee out of old pantyhose or tights.

Garden Pest Control

This one is a bit odd and many of you may forgo doing this, but I’m here to give you options and this is a viable option AND a two-fer since you’re also recycling cut hair. Ask a local salon or barbershop for swept up hair. Wearing gardening gloves (the hair ends can be sharp), stuff used unwashed panty hose with the hair scraps. Place these in your garden. You may want to hide them under bushes or in trees since let’s face it, they’re ugly. The human smell generated from the hair and unwashed pantyhose will help to keep many pests and animals away from your garden.

Garden Ties

Cut pantyhose across legs into ½ inch wide bands. Cut each tube band apart so that you have ties approximately six-inches long. These are ideal to train climbing plants and to tie plantings to stakes.

Garden Hammock

For fruits and vegetables that are growing on a trellis and need to be supported a pantyhose hammock is a great solution. Tie both foot ends of the pantyhose to the trellis arranging them so that the pantyhose  is supporting the produce in its own hammock. For extra protection tie a knot at the top and bottom of each fruit or vegetable. Don’t worry about making these knots close to the produce as the pantyhose will stretch as the produce grows.

Hair Scrunchies

Cut pantyhose across the leg for ponytail scrunchies. What I love about these is that pantyhose scrunchies look so much more elegant than the ones you buy at the store that have gathered cotton fabric sewn into a tube. Don’t believe me? Try it. They really look quite elegant. Or if you want a really unique scrunchie check out this tutorial on Fingerweave Hair Scrunchies.

Hair Headbands

Cut your pantyhose across the top for headbands. If your pantyhose are the same color as your hair they’ll appear invisible while holding your hair in place. If your pantyhose are colored you can pair them with several different color pantyhose for the effect you want. You can even clip a lightweight brooch to the headband for a different look.

Paint Saver

A pair of pantyhose can save a can of paint. Stretch the pantyhose over a paint bucket that has debri in it. Pour paint through the pantyhose into a new container.

Poster Storage

Slip a rolled up poster into a pair of pantyhose leg to keep it from unrolling and the edges from tearing. If the leg isn’t staying up around the poster, use the waistband of the pantyhose as a tie around the poster.

Recycling Helper

Use the waistband cut from a pair of pantyhose to hold a pile of newspapers or broken down boxes together.

Scrubber

Slip a sponge into a length cut from a leg of pantyhose. Knot both ends to keep the sponge inside. You now have a non-abrasive scrubbing pad you can use for dishes and cleaning up around the house.

Shine Shoes

Rub pantyhose over your leather shoes to shine them right up.

Soap Mitt

Drop bits of soap into the cut-off leg of a pair of old pantyhose. Tie the top of the leg just above the soap pouch and tuck the end of the long leg into the tied portion so that you have a loop. Hang your pre-soaped mitt in the shower.

Stuffed Animals

stuffed animals made from tights

Use old tights to make stuffed animals for your little ones. Bonus – these tend to have a nice vintage look.

Stuffed Animal Repair

If your child has a favorite stuffed animal that has seen better days you can give it new life by picking a couple of inches apart along a seam and stuffing a pair or two of pantyhose inside then stitching it back up.

Trash Can Liner

Cut the waistband from a pair of old panty hose and use as a giant band to secure the trash bag onto the trash can.

Wrapping Paper Storage

Slip a roll of wrapping paper into a pair of pantyhose leg to keep it from unrolling and the edges from tearing. If the leg isn’t staying up around the wrapping paper roll, use the waistband of the pantyhose as a tie around the roll.