What to do with old magazines?

What do you do with your old magazines?

I am a magazine junkie. Currently, my husband and I get about 5 subscriptions in the mail each month. Those don’t include the ones my mother gives me that she subscribes to.


For the longest time, I saved my old magazines and tried to give them away to people who might be interested. But no one was interested. Not even when I offered them up on

Some magazines should go well on If you get a subscription to a magazine dedicated to something niche and specific (guitar playing, woodworking, knitting, etc.), there very well could be an audience.

My fashion and home magazines have not garnered any interest. I ended up recycling all of the magazines just to clear out some space in our garage.

But I feel like there were so many better things I could have done with my magazines.

Here are some of my ideas for the next stockpile:

  • Donate them to a local hospital, med serve or doctor’s office. These places can always use some new (er) reading materials. You can usually just drop them off in the lobby of your local hospital. You might want to call first to make sure they will accept used magazines.
  • If the magazines are in pristine condition, many libraries will accept them for resale. Our library will accept any magazines except for Smithsonian and National Geographic. (I’m assuming certain adult magazines would also fall into the not-accept category.)
  • Many pre-schools and after-school programs would probably welcome the magazines, and could use them for numerous different craft projects.
  • Know of an artist who makes collages or works in multi-media? That person might also want your old  magazines.
  • You could also save the magazines to do craft projects at home if your kids are crafty (mine is not.) Or if you are crafty. Magazine pictures are great for decoupage.
  • If you live near a fashion school, and have several fashion magazines, students at the school might be interested in your magazines.
  • If you have a shredder, you could shred them and use them as pretty filler in boxes, in place of Styrofoam nerdles.
  • Or wrap small packages with them.
  • Maybe even collage some pieces on a plain box to dress it up?

What about you? Any other good ideas to recycle used magazines?


3 comments on “What to do with old magazines?

  1. Leticia
    September 19, 2009

    I am an 11th grade teacher tha has a few female students that will bring fashion magazines to my class and read them while I am teaching the class. I confiscate them and then speak to their mothers’ about this, after getting their approvall I shred the magazines and take the scraps home and use them for mulch in my garden along with my finished newspapers. If the girls don’t wan to see their precious fashion magazines shredded, leave them at home!

  2. Meredith Swanson
    September 21, 2009

    That’s a great idea! What a creative, and productive use of classroom disturbances.

  3. Leticia
    November 12, 2009

    Why Thank You, Meredith One of My other teacher friends handles this by taking the mags away and bringing them home to her younger daughter and giving her some craft scissors and snip whereever she pleases and then she brings the “ArtWork” back to her class and hangs it up in the room for the rest of the year as a reminder of what will happen, Very Ingenious

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This entry was posted on May 11, 2009 by in At Home, Green, Light Green, Medium Green and tagged , , , , , .

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