15 Survival Uses for Old Clothes to Save the Day

15 Survival Uses for Old Clothes to Save the Day

15 Survival Uses for Old Clothes

1. Making Bandages

If you find yourself in a survival situation, having access to medical supplies may be limited. However, old clothes can come to the rescue as makeshift bandages. Cut or tear strips of fabric from the clothing and use them to wrap wounds or secure dressings in place.

2. Starting a Fire

Cotton clothing, especially those made from natural fibers like flannel or denim, can be used as tinder to start a fire. Tear or cut the fabric into small pieces and use them to catch sparks from a fire starter or friction-based fire-starting methods like a bow drill or hand drill.

3. Creating Cordage

Fabric from old clothes can be unraveled and twisted together to create strong cordage. Use this cordage for various purposes such as setting up shelters, securing items, or making traps. Braiding multiple strands together can increase the strength and durability of the cordage.

4. Improvised Dust Mask

In situations where the air quality is poor or you need to protect yourself from dust or debris, old clothes can be fashioned into an improvised dust mask. Simply cut a rectangular piece of fabric, fold it in half, and tie the ends around your head to cover your nose and mouth.

5. Stuffing for Pillows or Cushions

If you have old clothes that are no longer wearable or fashionable, consider repurposing them as stuffing for pillows or cushions. Cut the fabric into small pieces and stuff them into pillowcases or cushion covers for extra comfort and support. This not only reduces waste but also gives your old clothes a new purpose.

6. Insulation Material

In cold weather, old clothing can provide insulation to keep you warm. Use layers of fabric to line your boots, gloves, or hats, or stuff them into the gaps in your clothing to trap body heat. This can be especially useful in emergency situations where access to proper insulation is limited.

7. Emergency Sling

If someone in your group suffers from a shoulder or arm injury, an old shirt or long-sleeved garment can be transformed into an emergency sling. Fold the fabric into a triangle, place the injured arm in the center, and tie the ends around the neck to provide support and immobilization.

8. Making Rags

When old clothes are beyond repair or reuse, cut them up into smaller pieces to create rags. These rags can be used for cleaning, wiping, or as a general-purpose cloth. By repurposing old clothes as rags, you can save money on purchasing disposable cleaning wipes and reduce waste.

9. Protective Wraps

In survival situations where you need to protect delicate or valuable items, wrapping them in layers of old clothing can provide cushioning and absorb shock. This is particularly useful when packing fragile items for transportation or storing them in a bug-out bag.

10. Making Improvised Shoes

If you find yourself without proper footwear in a survival scenario, old clothes can be fashioned into improvised shoes or foot coverings. Cut and wrap fabric around your feet, securing them with cords or strips of fabric, to provide some level of protection and comfort while on the move.

11. Weed Control in the Garden

Old clothes can be repurposed as weed control fabric in your garden. Cut the fabric into strips or squares and place them on the ground between plants to suppress weed growth. This can help save time and effort spent on weeding and also prevent competition for nutrients in the soil.

12. Improvised Snares and Traps

When it comes to survival hunting, having the ability to set traps and snares can greatly increase your chances of catching food. Old clothing can be used to construct improvised snares and traps by creating loops or tying pieces of fabric together. Consult local regulations and laws before setting up traps.

13. Patching Holes in Tents or Gear

Tents, backpacks, and other outdoor gear often develop wear and tear over time. Instead of expensive repairs or replacements, old clothes can be used to patch holes and reinforce weak areas. Cut out patches from the fabric and sew them onto the damaged parts to extend the lifespan of your gear.

14. Improvised Water Filter

In situations where clean water is scarce, old clothes can be used to filter out impurities. Cut a piece of fabric and layer it over a container, then pour water through the fabric. The fabric will help to remove larger debris, improving water clarity. It’s important to note that this method does not sterilize the water and additional purification is necessary.

15. Camouflage and Ghillie Suit

If you are in a survival situation where you need to blend in with your surroundings, old clothes can be used to create camouflage or a ghillie suit. Choose clothes with colors that match the environment and attach or weave natural materials like sticks and leaves into the fabric to break up your silhouette.

My 2 Cents

Before you toss out old clothes, consider the many survival uses they can serve. From bandages and fire starters to insulation and cordage, repurposing old clothes can be both practical and resourceful. By getting creative with your old garments, you can extend their lifespan, reduce waste, and enhance your survival skills. So, the next time you clean out your closet, think twice before discarding those old clothes – they may just save the day in a survival situation.

Remember, improvisation and resourcefulness are key to survival. Use what you have and think outside the box to make the most of your resources. Always prioritize safety and be mindful of local regulations when using improvised survival techniques. Stay prepared, stay adaptable, and make the most out of every item at your disposal.