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Five Glad Bag hacks to help you move (and every day life)


If you tuned in to Facebook Live a few weeks back you saw that I partnered with Glad to do a tour of our house and show you how we have really tried to keep the house pulled together in a stylish way despite the chaos that 2 kids + 2 working parents creates. While trash bags aren’t exactly flowers or throw pillows, and this might seem like an unexpected partnership, no one needs good strong trash bags more than this garbage lady. Glad Forceflex with Febreze is my go-to because they’re guaranteed to neutralize odors for up to five days and they’re so versatile, providing more than just your average bag.

Listen, all it takes is one time where you buy a lower quality trash bag and something innocuous breaks it open without you knowing it, then disgusting garbage juice drips all over your pants, shoes, feet and carpet for you to never to skimp on bags again, and only get Glad Forceflex.

So, Glad asked me to come up with some hacks to share with you about moving (’tis the season ). Their whole thing is doing small creative things in your home to make a bigger impact. It’s trash bags – they know they aren’t saving the world or ever going to go on your mantel, but when they are good (as these are) they sure are useful.

First up – The ‘constant purge’ use:


Here’s what you do – put a bag over a basket and leave it in the closet for clothing that the kids grow out of. Previously I went through their clothes every few months, but this makes it much easier to keep up with it and then when it’s full it’s ready to donate.


#2 – The easy ‘mini-garment bag’:


This is good for if you are moving for sure, but I use it for my wardrobe for shoots so that they stay protected and clean during transport.


You all know this hack, but it’s a classic and the ‘lightly scented’ Febreze bag it keeps them smelling fresh, too.


(Quick edit: One reader mentioned in the comments that they do this too, but flip the bag to use it the opposite way by tying the drawstrings of the bag around the hangar. That way they don’t put a hole in the bottom of the bag, and are able to reuse the bag once it’s done keeping your clothes safe, which does sounds like an awesome win-win to me. Thanks for the tip!!)


Here we wanted to just give you a sneak into the master bath 🙂


#3 – The ‘delicate/fragile piece protector’:


After getting enough dirt/dust on my many white linen lampshades during transport I learned this EXTREMELY useful/simple hack.




#4 – The ‘plant protector’:


I know I’m not the only one who thinks that a plant can be transported in my front seat without the dirt spilling all over the place. It can’t. It will spill, I promise. So wrap it up in a Glad bag and save yourself some time/money at the car wash.


#5 – Moisture Protector:


Sara recently moved and she had a few of her boxes get damaged with water during transport and storage. Now for some things it’s not a big deal (kitchen-ware) but books and bedding that get wet during a move is quite the bummer.


Before you box them up, throw them in a bag to give that extra protection from moisture damage.


The same goes from throw pillows – as modeled by me, below.


There you go guys – some simple Glad moving hacks. Moving causes stress, as we all know, so perhaps these hacks can help protect your pieces in a simple, affordable way.

I’m happy to say that we Hendersons have boxes and boxes of these on hand because life with two kids means a lot of trash bags (we use them as mini-tarps for glue-glitter projects, too). Good trash bags aren’t just for garbage, folks. Share any other hacks in the comments and happy moving. xx

*Thanks to Glad for sponsoring this post and the FB live. And thanks for supporting the brands that keep EHD blog up and running.

Fin Mark


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Thanks for the hacks! Where are your black jeans from? Love them!


Came on here to ask the same thing!!


They look like the Madewell Cali jean in Kane wash and I think they’re on sale right now! In person they are a pretty grayed-out black

Yep! They are awesome and I wear them EVERY SINGLE DAY 🙂

Liz from Brooklyn

Nice ad. Thanks for the pretty pictures. We also only use Glad, especially notice a difference in the diaper pail (now that’s a bag you don’t want to rip.)

Thanks, Liz 🙂


I agree with all your hacks and like Glad too, but they could be even better if they were made out of recycled materials.


Yeah my only thought reading this is what a massive waste of plastic.


I know!!!! Why is it so darn hard to find trash bags with recycled content???


And without the most chemical, artificial and synthetic stench next to Pine Sol.

We all, including Glad, can’t wait til there is an organic trash bag. 🙂 Lets invent it!


I’ll try not to object to calling the idea of putting something in a trash bag a “hack,” which usually refers to a new or unusual use for an item.

Perhaps also a plug for recycling plastic bags at your local grocery store or recycling center after use? I keep a bin in the garage next to my kitchen door for plastic wrap and bags, then take it to the recycling center when it gets full.

But I love seeing the progress in your home!

thanks 🙂

we do the same thing with the trash bags as garment bags but reverse the bag. I put the bottom of the clothes into the bag first and then strap the bag handles crisscross over the hangar. then you can reuse the trash bag because there isn’t a hole in the bottom of it.



we updated the post with this idea! makes WAY more sense. thank you 🙂

Call me an idiot, but I’ve never thought about using a trash bag as a plant protector. *facepalm*


Plastic is killing out planet! Please don’t push this crap on your readers.


I second this.



Nobody likes wasting anything. I agree. However, there are daily needs that have no organic solutions. Hopefully soon 🙂 Glad is listening and they are an innovative company so hopefully they create something that is biodegradeable soon. xx


My thoughts too, and I would skip synthetic fragrance as well. this seems a little off brand to me, cause i love Emily but i don’t love killing the planet with more plastic


As kids in winter when it had snowed we sat on plastic rubbish / trash bags to sledge down the local hill . They were great as always readily available, light to carry and could be thrown away at the end of the day (usually ripped).


Girl, if you ever want to part with that white and pink striped shirt, I will buy it from you in a hot second! 🙂 Love it so much!!


Ha, I came here to say the same thing, but that bright striped shirt yellow pink and purple shirt!


Too funny!


I would of never thought of some of these ideas:) thank for sharing and partnering with Glad. I recently listened to your interview with Young House Love and loved being reminded of how these partnership bring us your fabulous content! Thank you:)

thank you 🙂


Great ideas, especially using a trash bag for transporting plants. I use the force flex bags, but can’t stand the febreeze smell – it makes me sneeze, so plain ones for me.

Also, sorry to be the spelling nitpicker, but I think you mean mantel and not mantle!

I agree! I LOVE the ForceFlex bags but HATE the Febreeze-scented ones.


I want to see more of Elliot’s room! Have we seen those curtains with the pink fringe? So cute!


You must have pain with the large bunions on your feet? I sympathize!


Wow, that’s sort of a rude comment. To point out something personal that might make her slightly uncomfortable in such a public forum seems a little mean. I highly doubt that is something you’d say to her face if you just met her?

Sad that everyone looses their manners when it comes to the internet.


I get that some people don’t have a filter about stuff like that but it’s usually not okay to publicly point out things on other people’s bodies. And if you do feel the need (for example if you’re a medical professional), the way to handle it is to message the person privately.


so rude!

Ha. no pain but I appreciate your comment 🙂 Sara and I (my in-house photographer) thought about photoshopping it but then I was like – “no, that’s silly, its just a bunion”. and i’m not embarased by it even though looking at the photos i’m look OOOOOFFF. 🙂


I am all about high-quality trash bags and am currently using Glad bags. I will say, however, that you should try to smell the Febreeze bags before you buy them. Some people like them; I found the scent nauseating, I had to wash my hands thoroughly immediately after touching them, hated the smell when I opened the trash can, and didn’t think they did all that much for odors. I’m not saying don’t buy them, but I am saying don’t buy a giant box (like I did) before you know if you like them.

Also, I see a lot of posts here about waste and too much plastic, but most of the ideas listed above leave the bags in a reusable state. We should all try to cut back on our plastic consumption, but most of us are going to need plastic trash bags sometimes. Why not use them a couple of ways first?


My husband simply cannot tolerate scented trash bags (or cat litter or laundry detergent) of any kind and we find the Febreze-scented products particularly nauseating. Totally with you! I agree with your recommendation that people test them first–especially for the uses Emily recommends. Scented trash is not the end of the world; scented lamp shades/bedding/clothing could be a REAL bummer.


Thanks for a great spin on a sponsored post! You know how to have fun with even a trash bag. Loved the plant hack and am going to try that the next time I’m sidetracked by soooo many lovely plants at the nursery. Now, off to put some trash bags in my car 🙂


Thanks for sharing these great ideas! The grey backpack bag that is hanging up in the closet is so cute! Where is it from?


This is in really poor taste, especially given the recent climate tragedy. Putting things in trash bags, not really revolutionary. Rejecting the notion that you should unnecessarily wrap all of your stuff in harmful plastic, better idea.


I love almost everything you do Emily, but I have to agree. Why promote even more uses for plastic.


Oh how I wish I’d have thought of the moisture protecter when we moved. Some good hacks. Thanks!

Where are those fabulous things hanging over the piano?!

…. from. Too quick to hit enter! 🙂

They are from Lost and Found LA by M. Quan. My favorite bells ever (but a splurge :))


i love the last pic with the stray grape under the chair. keepin it real Emily ;–)

Lindsay P

yeeessss! i smiled to see someone else noticed it too. i can identify with the toddler mom grape hunt. at least that one looks fresh….


While I might not subscribe to that much plastic usage in my life and I stay away from the toxins in chemical air fresheners (lots of fabric/glass and all reusable bags here) I can’t hate – Make that paper Em! For the plants in the car I keep one of those big Ikea blue bags in my trunk – bonus it’s sturdy, reusable, big enough for multiple plants (I rarely buy just one plant, ha!) and I can wipe or rinse it out if/when it gets dirty. Keeping one of those in my car has come in handy so many times over! I have used the clothing trick when I’ve moved but the bags get opened and used for the trash can after so it doesn’t feel that wasteful to me. As someone who seems to have moved an absurd amount of times – another great tip is to see if your town has a company in it that rents those plastic moving crates/boxes. I think U-Haul does now but I’ve usually used a local company. It’s great! No hunting down boxes, assembling and breaking them down, dealing with tape, etc., plus it forces you to actually unpack everything rather… Read more »


Hi Emily,
I saw you wear that red and pink shirt in a post a while ago and now I see it again here (being put in a mini garment bag) and I LOVE IT! Where is it from?? xo


I use Glad Contractor Bags under painting projects as drop cloths. I split them up the side and at the bottom to make a bigger surface. They are heavier and easier to use than the hardware store drop cloths that I used to buy.

They are also a god send when traveling – on shoes, for anything that might spill or break , etc.


I understand this is a sponsored post and you’ve probably had it scheduled for weeks. That being said, I can’t help but feel like it’s really poorly timed and a bit tone deaf considering the news yesterday about the US withdrawing from the Paris climate agreement, and the implications that news has on the future of our world. We could all use some tips on how to reduce our reliance on plastics and reuse what we’ve already got around the house – some “life hacks” I’d actually be interested in reading about.


I couldn’t agree more….


If you understand all that, why this comment? Yes, Trump has announced the withdrawal, but the terms of the agreement provide for nearly a 4-year withdrawal process, and it can’t take effect until the day AFTER the 2020 election. So, while I agree that is a a dire decision and sad day for America as a leader in the international world, criticizing this post based on political decisions out of Emily’s control seems unnecessarily mean.


Hilary, I don’t think the comment was mean at all. There’s a definite difference between a critical comment and just being mean. Things that are written online that don’t expressly fall under the “praise” category aren’t just relegated to being mean by default. The timing of the post definitely feels off considering yesterday’s news, and it’s clear from numerous other comments that Virginia is not alone in feeling this way. The uses Emily cited in the post could clearly have been done in a much more environmentally-friendly way. Kudos to Virginia for providing a well thought out and articulate point.


Totally disagree, Hillary. We all need to do whatever we can for the earth, especially since the president won’t. Virginia (and others) are pointing out how this post encourages extra use of plastic (obviously — it’s sponsored by Glad). Lots of us don’t appreciate that kind of post, especially in light of yesterday’s news. It’s really interesting how even the slightest, most politely worded criticism of Emily gets attacked.

I’m bummed about the paris accord. Believe me. Its why I avoided these comments for two days – I was so sad and pissed. We avoid unnecessary waste at our house and recycle EVERYTHING possible and are starting compost next week. But trash still happens regardless of the environment and until there is the perfect organic all natural trash bag I will continue to use one that I can trust to not break while I’m wrangling two kids out the front door. I believe in being responsible in every way – including the climate and mother nature. But I still have trash and won’t compromise on that quality. Glad bags are VERY good quality for the prices. If you don’t have trash, don’t buy them. But if you do, I will recommend them.


@Emily, thanks for the response. Totally get that when you need garbage bags you have a preferred brand that also pays you to advertise. I think the issue most readers are taking is that you’re promoting new uses for these bags besides garbage, some of which can’t be reused after your proposed “hack”. EHD encouraging people to buy more/use more plastic bags is just not what our planet needs right now.


Love you Emily but Mother Earth doesn’t need any more plastic. I’m trying to rid my house of plastic bags and refuse them at the store. As another reader pointed out, at least try to get several uses out of each bag. The scented bags aren’t good for your health either. Just sayin!


Exactly, Kim. You brought my thoughts about this post into straight sentences. We should cut back the use of plastics, not encourage it.

I absolutely agree that we should reduce waste and trash. But when there is trash that needs to be disposed of, I honestly will recommend these bags. When a really good organic and all-natural/biodegradeable option comes to market that won’t leak garbage water all over my body I will happily purchase and promote 🙂


REALLY saddened to see you pushing plastic, especially today.



It’s weird timing. I agree. But the politics of this weekend doesn’t change that I will still need to put some garbage in my trash cans this week. This post isn’t sexy or cool, I know that. I appreciate that you guys understand that good trash bags are a necessary thing to buy and I totally understand that talking about plastic on this day feels weird. I get it. Thanks for reading and commenting 🙂


Everyone needs trash bags, but scented ones? Have a Google of endocrine disruptors and please keep these away from your kids. Or better still just use normal unscented bags and take the trash out more often?

I love this blog and have never commented before and I hate to be negative, but I couldn’t let this pass.


I was thinking the same thing concerning the scented bags. I have cut out all scented candles from my house for the same reason. I cringe when I see people spraying scented sprays like Fabreze and lighting candles and tarts. It’s just poisoning the air you breathe.


Where can I get that pretty full size mirror with the curved edges in your master bedroom?


I am so disappointed that you are promoting plastic.
In this day and age when we have so much trash
and some buisinesses and individuals are try ing to use less
you are promoting plastic. Plastic bags are not biodegradable
they stay in earth for thousands of years.
I have told many friends about your beautiful web site but today
I feel only sadness and get no joy from your post..
Thank you for making the world more beautiful but PLEASE help save it for your children,

I really appreciate your comment and thank you for reading the blog and telling your friends. I’m so sorry that I’ve disappointed you. We really try to reduce our waste over here and will continue to do that. But when we have to throw something away, I don’t want that garbage juice all over my legs. But point taken. I don’t want to ever be a proponent of unnecessary waste. I’ll make sure that you guys know that from now on 🙂 xx


I feel like I live on a different planet. I haven’t had “garbage juice” in decades. We recycle most waste, compost all food waste (via the city), and put out a weekly trash receptacle that is the size of a shoe box squared. (We have weekly pickup but it would take us many weeks to fill this box.) The only trash we generate that goes in that box is used tissues, used dental floss, bottle caps/jar lids smaller than three inches across, and an occasional throw-away item like a broken dish. These we collect from bathroom and kitchen baskets in a paper bag. I feel grateful to live in a progressive, green city that educates their citizens and makes our environment a priority. GO SEATTLE! (Whole Foods does carry a compostable bag that functions like plastic but is made of potatoes and is fully biodegradable.)

I never knew about the trash bag garment hack! Genius…


Searching everywhere in your site to see if you mention where the chairs are from in your last picture? Thanks for the tips/hacks!

Hello Emily,

I like the easy ‘mini-garment bag’… My recent thinking has been towards simplifying everything and I have been thinking about this. Although, this may be out of style, but I’m going to enjoy something mini to keep some of my garments…

Thanks you for putting this idea in my head.

very nice post i like it so much


My family is trying to drastically reduce our plastic usage. No offense to you, Emily, but I am heartened to see so many comments from readers who likewise try to avoid plastic. It’s no easy task since plastic is everywhere. I’m not totally plastic free yet, but I’m on the path because the amount of waste from single use plastic is obscene and so harmful. If anyone needs some motivation watch this video (so many good documentaries out there too):


Thank you for the link. Yes, plastic is destroying our environment!

See the following link for a family that only makes A small jar of trash in a full year. They uses no plastic and they live beautifully. Our family is working in this direction.

Emily, you are so creative. I hope we see more from you that promotes less consumption and rethinking/using what we already we own in decorating our homes.

I really appreciate all your comments and feedback, guys and so does Glad. I think we all want the same thing – convenient, quality ways to dispose of as little waste as possible. Thanks for your comments and know that it really has helped us. xx


you’re to be congratulated Dana. I too am trying to reduce my families usage of single use plastic. It’s not easy but we all have to try.

the earth needs more people like you.

Great ideas for packing! I’ve thrown away so many things after sloppy moves. Murphy’s Law is always at work when I’m in a hurry. Next time I’ll buy plenty of Glad bags before I pack.


Since everyone seems to be getting political on your posts lately and I can’t remember which post you put it on before, can you remind me where to get those lovely peace bells you have hanging over the piano? Peace, everyone!


Apparently no post is safe from politics! But I think it’s a cute post and liked seeing the multiple views of your house with you in multiple outfits. 🙂


Your house looks amazing! I love the way you mix in vintage pieces. I can’t wait to see more of your bedroom and all the rooms in your home. Thank you for sharing your decorating tips and the wonderful content.


I don’t understand what the problem is with a plastic trash bag. I live in a place where disposable plastic shopping bags are banned but we still have garbage that goes in a plastic (we use Glad, too) trash bag. We recycle and compost but still have waste. Are people cleaning their litter box and chucking cat turds in the street or something? And I forgot to mention all the hacks, with the correction of the clothes bag, leave you with a bag to reuse. -Seriously befuddled.


I honestly do not use trashbags. We have small bins for trash at home that we carry to our big trash can that stands next to our house. Just like that:


We have to use a bag in our bin for the trash collectors. Or else it would be a horror show if one of the bins got knocked over with rubbish blowing in the wind.


Hi Emily, I love your blog and how creative you are. FWIW, your site is starting to feel less creative and more advertising, between the pitch for Target, trash bags and the giant advertising banner that is at the bottom of every page. I know it must be a tricky thing to balance these things, but just wanted to share quick feedback.

Thanks for the feedback, Holly. As a company grows things will change, but I hope you read regardless of the banner ads at the bottom. Do they annoy me, too? Sure. But they are an incredibly important part of our business that supports a very talented staff that creates this daily content – a staff that has good benefits and health insurance because of those ads. But every time I read a comment like this I do analyze the blog and make sure that we are creating enough creative content. Thanks for reading 🙂


omsosh, to all the plastic garbage bag haters out there…then you design a product that repels/holds moisture, is cheap, doesn’t rip, and is biodegradable/compostable and i’ll buy it. thank goodness for plastic trash bags! what would you have people do? burn their trash like the olden days? talk about air pollution & a safety hazard!


Emily’s post isn’t about using plastic garbage bags for garbage. There are many other things that can be used for the scenarios for which Emily suggests a plastic garbage bag. Reuse a cardboard shipping box or an unwanted pillowcase to collect clothes/items your child has outgrown. Use an actual garment bag that you can use over and over. As another commenter mentioned use a reusable shopping bag or reuse a cardboard box to transport your plants. Use a painters drop cloth for messy kid art projects. Yes, the bags can be reused as actual garbage bags, but Emily doesn’t emphasize that in her post. Sadly I think many people would toss them after the non-garbage use. The other point is simply that we need to reduce our waste so we don’t need to use many trash bags. Since our trash disappears from view once the trash collectors pick it up, we don’t have to confront our insane amounts of waste we generate. I’ve spent time india where there were local, unhidden trash mounds into which people dump their trash, much of it generated by tourists. Seeing it was so impactful and it was a tiny fraction of what we generate… Read more »


love your blog. love you. don’t love this post.


Hi Emily. Loved your ideas for using plastic bags in other ways besides trash. We try to reduce our footprint wherever possible and I started using biodegradable plastic bags called Bio-Bags. They’re only 3 gallon, so I use them for smaller things; i.e. cat litter.. But still haven’t figured out a way to keep garbage in it’s place without actual plastic bags. Maybe some of your readers can offer a suggestion? We do use plastic trash bags made from recycled materials so that helps with the footprint a little and they are readily available at most grocery stores. Maybe Glad can start making bags from recycled materials as well. Thanks for your great tips. .

You are just so creative! I never would have though of using these bags for these ideas. Thank you for sharing them!


Plastic garbage bags have only been around for 50 years, so they’re not exactly a necessity, people lived without them for a long time. Recycled paper versions are available. It’s estimated that it takes a plastic garbage bag 500 years to decompose. 500 years!! Sure, they make life easier, and people are going to use them, but that doesn’t mean you have to show people new ways to use them, increasing their demand. Maybe that into consideration when looking at sponsorships in the future. This truly isn’t meant to be critical, just hopefully informative feedback.


I’ve phased out almost all plastics from my life and one idea that would work in many of the examples above, with the exception of moisture protection, is old pillow cases and sheets. I use them as garment bags to wrap clothes, and as protection for pillows, comforters, etc. that aren’t being used. They also make great salad spinners (my mother-in-law taught me that one – old school).


Hi Emily,

Where are those pretty gold hooks from in the first photo?


I love the two sconces behind you in the photo with the blue velvet chaise. Where are they from? Thanks!

Whether plastic bags are used specifically to wrap clothes or just plain plastic.


Thank you for all of your wonderful, informative posts! I would love to know where you purchased those beautiful brass hooks on the inside of your daughters closet door.. please! Thank you!

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