Clutter is emotional—we hold onto things for a reason. “I always ask my clients how the item at hand makes them feel. If it brings up any negative feelings, let it go. If it brings happiness of course it stays! The idea here is to only be surrounded by things you absolutely love, says Morgan Ovens, owner of Haven, a home organizing company in Los Angeles. It’s hard to part with your favorite books, and you don’t have to. You do, however, need to consider whether you’re actually going to finish that book you’ve read half of, or the one you bought at a second-hand store four years ago and will never read again. They take up much-needed shelf space that you can use for new books, photos, candles, or general storage space. Here are thoughtful ways to donate your used books.
These collect like the hair in your shower drain, except you only clean one of those things regularly. When getting ready to de-clutter, Felice Cohen, professional organizer and author of 90 Lessons for Living Large in 90 Square Feet suggests, “When dealing with toiletries, separate into categories: lotions, feminine hygiene, teeth, medications, etc. Toss anything outdated, dried up, hotel shampoos.”
If you’ve been using the same tube of mascara for more than three months it’s time to toss it out. Blush, eye shadow, and powder, can last up to one year. Either way, take a look at the contents of your makeup bag and start tossing the old items away.