6 Mar 2018

Keep calm and clutter free

We all have that one friend. The one who could use a little help organizing their home by removing accumulated clutter. In my circle, I’m that friend.

If you can empathize, you don’t have to wait for spring to hit your cleaning stride. Instead, make a resolution to say ‘so long’ to the growing collection of rarely used items in the most commonly used areas of your home like your bedroom closet, bathroom and kitchen.

Here are some easy solutions to help us all reclaim your much-needed personal space in the most popular rooms in your home.

Closet cleanout

When it comes to cleaning out your bedroom closet, be tough. Donate any clothes that no longer fit, are out of style or haven’t been worn in a year.

Need help determining the later? Try the coat hanger trick. Here’s how it works: Reverse all the hanging garments in your closet so that the open end of each hanger is facing you. Every time you wear an article of clothing, hang it back in the closet the opposite way, with the opening facing away from you. After three to six months, you’ll be surprised to see exactly which clothes you haven’t touched.

Don’t want to donate? If you want to score some extra cash, consider selling your clothes at a garage sale, traveling consignment sale or through an online company like Poshmark.

Purge your powder room

Keeping a bathroom clutter free can feel like a losing battle. A bottle of dry shampoo here, a toothpaste cap there and the room can quickly feel cluttered. Whether you’re a product junkie like me or a minimalist, the key to keeping a tidy bathroom is adopting the mantra lose it if you don’t use it.  

Take inventory of everything under your sink and in your cabinets. Toss out the half-used bottles of lotion, exfoliator, makeup and hair products you haven’t used recently. If you purchase items in bulk from a retailer like Costco or BJ’s, gather up all your duplicates and put them in a clearly labelled storage box elsewhere in your house.

Many medications should not be exposed to moisture. Read your prescription labels carefully and relocate any medications that are sensitive to moisture. Also, purge any expired over-the-counter and prescription drugs properly by returning them to your local pharmacy or participating in community events like National Prescription Drug Take Back Day.

Clear your kitchen counters

When it comes to what’s on your kitchen counter- unless it’s Thanksgiving dinner, less is definitely more.

An easy first step toward a de-cluttered kitchen is by tackling the dishes. Put all of your dirty dishes in the dishwasher or wash them in the sink as soon as possible after using them. Practice putting clean dishes away immediately after washing to keep your dishwasher vacant for dirty dishes.

Next, take a good look at the small appliances that actually belong on your countertops. Think coffee pot, toaster and blender. Chances are you consume more cups of Joe per day than bagels and smoothies, so consider moving your toaster and blender to a lower cabinet in your kitchen.

A word for the wise–don’t try to do it all in one day. Set aside time, 15 minutes a night or several hours on the weekend when your kids are napping. This way you won’t get overwhelmed sorting through your unwanted and unneeded belongings.

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