It’s that time of year again. You know, the time to begin that BIG, deep, thorough, Spring Clean. If you are anything like me you probably hate this time of year. Not because you don’t like having a sparkling clean home, but because you loathe, dread, and would even go so far as to say you hate cleaning.
Seriously, I would rather do anything other than spend my time cleaning.
Which is why I have developed a system that keeps me motivated.
I don’t know about you, but I prefer to declutter before I do any deep clean. Once I have decluttered a certain space in my house I am way more motivated to give it the good old top to bottom deep clean – and keep it that way. When I enter a cluttered space I feel super overwhelmed and don’t even know where to start. That usually ends in me getting super distracted and not being nearly as efficient and effective as I could be.
Over the next few weeks I am going to be posting a series about my Declutter and Deep Cleaning Process. I tackle each room, one by one, starting with a major declutter (just wait till we get to the kitchen) and follow with a major top to bottom deep spring clean.
Before you start to declutter any room there are a few supplies that you will need to gather.
I highly recommend the following:
Boxes (one for each group you will be donating products to)
***Note – Now wait, I know I just said that I like to declutter before I clean, but if you are going to be donating any of the items you are purging then I suggest that you give them a quick dust and wipe before tossing them into their designated box.
After you have gathered your supplies it is time to start the mass declutter. I know that there is probably a more efficient way to tackle this list – like starting at one spot in your bathroom and working your way from there – but today it is all about conquering each and every category.
Now get ready for…
Hand and Bath Towels
- Old and worn hand and bath towels
- Any torn hand or bath towels
- Any Stained hand or bath towels – do you really want company drying their hands on dirty looking hand towels?
- Any hand and bath towels that you just hate to use – there is no point in keeping these. Why not donate them
- Any excess towels – Seriously you only need about 2 or 3 bath towels per person in your home. Donate the rest.
Wash Cloths, Loofahs, and Pumice Stones
- Old and worn wash cloths
- Stained wash cloths – who wants to wash with a dirty looking cloth anyways?
- Excess wash cloths – I am definitely guilty of having far too many
- Wash cloths you don’t like using – you know, the ones that are rough or you find yourself skipping over.
- Old Looahs – believe it or not, these guys actually have a shelf life. You should be replacing these at least every two months. Or you could just switch to a wash cloth cause Loofahs are actually cesspools for germs.
- Torn Loofahs
- Old Pumice Stones – if your pumice stone has started to wear away it means you have to apply more pressure for it to work – and increase your chance of injury. If it’s small and worn, it is time to replace it.
Shampoo and Conditioner
- Almost Empty Bottles – I am so guilty of holding on to bottles with a little left – just in case. It is time for these to go!
- Shampoo and Conditioner you don’t like – We have all purchased a new shampoo/conditioner that we end up not liking and in turn not using. You may be able to donate these provided they are mostly full, lots of local organizations are in need of these types of products. If not, toss it. If you aren’t using it, it is just taking up space.
- Excess Shampoo and Conditioner – along with the almost empty bottles and products you don’t use, you may have found yourself with a bit of a collection (before decluttering I had about 8 or 9 different sets). Get rid of anything that you do not use regularly (at least once or twice a week).
- Unused Shampoo and Conditioner – I am guilty of buying in bulk to save a buck. However, I am also guilty of switching the types of shampoo and conditioner I use on a regular basis. If it hasn’t been used in at least 3-4 months donate it to a good cause!
- Old Shampoo and Conditioner – I know that this will likely fall into one of the points above, but if there is shampoo and conditioner that you have had for over a year – toss it. Most expire within a year or two of being opened.
Body Wash and Soap
- Almost Empty Bottles – Just like with shampoo, if it’s almost empty and you are holding on to it just in case – toss it.
- Body Wash and Soap you don’t like
- Excess Body Wash and Soap -. Do you really need 5 or 6 different kinds of body wash. Yes I know they all smell different and you probably got a deal when you purchased them (Bath and Body Works anyone?) but you don’t need them. Toss them or donate them. Give yourself some much-needed space.
- Old Body Wash and Soap – guess what? Body Wash and Soap have shelf lives too. If you have had it for 3 years or longer it is time to throw it out!
- Almost finished Bars of Soap – you know, those little slivers that live in your soap holder forever? When they get to small to handle, toss em.
- Bars of Soap you don’t like – I know that I have purchased a TON of soap in my life, often from little boutiques or the local farmers market. A lot of the time, you get it home and realize that you don’t like it. You don’t like the smell, or how it lathers, or it might even dry out your skin. It’s simple – if you don’t like it, get rid of it
- Fancy or Decorative Soap that you never use or will use – Pretty self explanatory. If you are not using it and you don’t LOVE to look at it, get rid of it. Put something else in its space that you love. Like a plant. Plants love the bathroom.
Bubble Bath, Bath Salts, Bath Bombs and Other Bath Products
- Excess Bath Products – I love bubble bath, bath bombs, bath salts, bath melts, etc as much as the next girl, but how many do you really need? I like to keep a months supply at most. I mean, how many fancy baths can one really take in a month. Any more than that can be tossed or donated.
- Expired Bath Products – Now, if you are a Lush shopper ( I seriously LOVE Lush) than you know that most of their products have an expiry date. If you aren’t a Lush shopper than I would recommend tossing out any products older than 2 years.
- Almost Empty Bath Products – especially if there isn’t even enough for one bath.
- Bath Bombs that have started to crumble or have lost their smell – Part of the reason you use a bathbomb is because of how they fizz and how they smell. If the product isn’t going to work the way you want it to, then why are you keeping it?
- Bath Salts that have lost their smell – With the exception of Epsom Salts (which are actually really great for relaxing sore and tired muscles, in addition to detoxifying) you should be tossing any other ‘salts’ that have lost their smell. If you aren’t getting that aromatherapy benefit and they aren’t Epsom Salts then there probably isn’t much reason to keep them around – unless of course they come in a pretty bottle that you LOVE to look at.
- Bath Products you don’t use – I am positive that at some point in your life you were gifted some sort of bath product. Whether it was a gift set at Christmas or a birthday present from your Grandma, if it is a scent you don’t like or a product you don’t like – get rid of it. No use keeping something around that you are never going to use. Sorry Grandma.
- Old Bath Products – Just like any excess, expired, or unused products. If you haven’t used it in a year – toss it. Especially if it has been opened.
Body and Face Lotion
- Almost Empty Lotion – even if it’s your favorite, if you are struggle to get the last bits out do yourself a favor and toss it.
- Excess Lotion – how many scented lotions does one really need? Keep it simple and toss whatever you don’t use regularly.
- Any Lotion you don’t use
- Old Lotion – This is another one of those things that has a shelf life. If it is more than a year old it is time to be replaced. This goes for Moisturizers, Skin Creams, Eye Creams, etc. If you use something past the expiration you may risk an adverse reaction – no one wants that on their face.
- Expired Sunscreen – Sunscreen is good for 1 year. If you use it past the expiration date you actually risk having it work opposite the way you want it to. You use sunscreen to protect yourself from the sun, not attract it. This is especially important when dealing with children’s sunscreen.
Face Wash and Scrubs
- Old Face Wash and Scrubs – If it’s over 1.5 years old, it is better to be safe than sorry.
- Face Wash and Scrubs that you don’t like – I remember when I first bought a caffeine infused fash wash. It made my face tingle in a way that actually felt like burning. Plus it left me all red and splotchy and definitely wasn’t something I was ever going to use again. If you have anything lying around that you don’t like using, now is the time to ditch it!
- Face Wash and Scrubs you don’t use – Maybe you read a review of some magically amazing product and switched before finishing whatever product you were using before. Anything that you aren’t using can be donated else where, or tossed to free up more space.
- Sample Sized Toiletries – Maybe you picked some up for a trip, or maybe they were a gift with purchase. I totally understand not wanting to throw out something that is perfectly good, but unless you have a few more trips planned in the immediate future, these are items that you don’t really need.
- Hotel Toiletries – One of my favorite things about staying in a hotel is the cute little toiletries they leave for their guests. I have taken more than a few home in my day, and some have even survived a move. If you are anything like me, chances are the ones you bring home never get used. If they never get used, you know what to do.
- Old Deodorant – Who knew that deodorant had a 3 year expiration date? If you can’t remember when you bought it, it is time to toss it
- Deodorant you don’t use – Maybe it caused a reaction or it didn’t work quite as you had hoped, either way, if you don’t use it, lose it.
- Excess Deodorant – Many people are huge fans of bulk stores like Costco, but do you (or I) really need to hold on to a year’s worth of deodorant? Probably not, but there are so many people out there that would appreciate the donation.
- Hair Products that you haven’t used in a year – Even if you have different products depending on the season, if you haven’t used something in more than a year it is time to let it go. Most styling products expire within 1-2 years anyways.
- Excess Hair Products – How many leave in conditions, straightening creams, curling mousse’s etc does a girl need? You want to declutter, so keep your favorites – one of each type if you actually use them on regular basis – and get rid of the rest.
- Empty or Almost Empty Hair Products – by now I am starting to sound like broken record. You don’t need to keep anything that is almost empty, especially if you are already using another product
- Hair Products that you don’t like – Just like with excess products, if you don’t use them on a regular basis – or if just plain hate them – toss em (or donate).
- Hair Accessories you don’t use
- Stretched or Broken Hair Elastics
- Bobby Pins that have lost the little plastic pin – why keep something that just straight out hurts to use
- Stretched or Broken Shower Caps
- Hair Styling Tools that you don’t use – think straighteners, curling irons, hot rollers, crimpers, etc. If you don’t use it, get rid of it. If you ended up needing one down the line, you can always borrow one from a friend.
- Blow Dryer Accessories you don’t need – Don’t keep pieces you don’t use.
Make Up and Beauty
- Old Make Up – ALL make up products have an expiry date. Most of which are a year or under (there are a few exceptions). If there is any make up you have had for 3 years or longer – do yourself a favor and throw it out.
- Expired Make Up – Mascara and Liquid Liner should be tossed every 3 months, Liquid Foundation and other liquid products should be tossed every year, Powder based products should be tossed every 3 years as well as lipsticks and glosses, pencils on the other hand can last up to 5. However, if it goes on your eyes be cautious and toss every few months (no one wants an eye infection!)
- Cracked, Broken, and Crumbling Make Up – If you can’t fix it (there are a ton of online tutorials) throw it out. Chances are it is making a mess every time you use it, and is more of a hassle than anything. Treat yourself and buy a new one.
- Make Up you haven’t used in at least 6 months – No use keeping something you don’t use, especially if it could be expired.
- Novelty Make Up – think Halloween make up, seasonal specific, inexpensive themed make up, etc.
- Make Up you don’t like – If you don’t like it you don’t use it – so throw it out.
- Melted, Old, Almost Empty Chapstick
- Old Nail Polish – Nail Polish has a 2 year shelf life after being opened
- Dried Up Nail Polish
- Nail Polish you haven’t used in at least a year
- Nail Polish you don’t like
- Old Perfume/Cologne – Another product that has a 2 year shelf life.
- Perfume/Cologne you no longer wear or just don’t like
- Empty Perfume/Cologne – I know some of the bottles are pretty to look at, but let them go.
- Novelty “Gift with Purchase” type products – Think face masks, foot scrubs, travel sized anything. If you haven’t used it by now, you probably won’t.
- Duplicate Grooming Products – Think nail clippers, scissors, emery boards, combs, etc
- Old Emery Boards/Nail Files
- Excess Emery Boards/Nail Files – If you bought a package and it hasn’t been opened or used within a year, let it go.
- Old Disposable Razors – eventually the blade dulls, and when it does there is more of a risk of cuts and injury. Don’t risk it. If the blade is older than 3 months (and that is a very generous timeline) toss it.
- Unused and Excess Disposable Razors – if you have had them lying around for at least 6 months, why not donate them to an organization that could really use them – like a women’s group?
- Old Replacement Razor Blade Cartridges – I am totally guilty of placing an old cartridge in the spot where a new one used to be. Don’t hold on to these and potentially confuse yourself later.
- Old Shaving Cream – Shaving Cream has a 2 year shelf life.
- Old Toothbrushes – You should be switching out your toothbrushes every 3 months at least.
- Excess Toothbrushes – how many back ups do you need? Donate any that are unused, and toss any extras you have kicking around in your toothbrush holder.
- Unused Whitening Strips or Trays – If it isn’t part of your regular routine and they are getting used, donate or toss.
- Almost Empty Toothpaste – if you are struggling to get the last bits out, toss it.
- Old Toothpaste – Some of you might have a separate little tube that you use when travelling. Toothpaste actually has a 2 year shelf life. If you have any opened tubes nearing on that timeline, toss it.
- Old Mouthwash – Is just like toothpaste and only good for 2 years.
- Old Floss Dispensers
- Empty or Almost Empty Floss Dispensers
- Excess Floss Dispensers
- Excess Baby/Kid Bathing Products – Yes, there are regular bubble baths, nighttime bubble baths, bubble baths for when they are sick, but there are also a ton of different shampoos, soaps, lotions, etc. Stream line as best you keep and keep only what you need and use regularly and let go of everything else.
- Empty or Almost Empty Baby/Kid Bathing Products – unless your kid uses empty bottles as bath toys (regularly of course) then there is no reason to hold on to anything that is empty or close to empty. If you can’t get a full bath out of what is left it is time to let it go.
- Bath Products your Baby/Kid no longer uses
- Old Bath Toys
- Bath Toys no longer played with
- Bath Toys that could potentially be mouldy – no one wants their kid getting sick from a bath toy.
Medicine Cabinet and First Aid
- Old Over the Counter Medicine – If you don’t know when it expires, and you have had it for longer than a year, toss it – but please make sure to do so safely.
- Expired Prescriptions – all prescriptions have an expiry date. Bring them back to your local pharmacy to have them disposed of properly and definitely NEVER use an expired prescription.
- Expired Vitamins
- Empty and Almost Empty Band Aid Boxes
- Empty and Almost Empty Polysporin, After Bite, etc
- Empty Packaging – I think every household has someone who is guilty of leaving bandaid wrappers and empty boxes behind.
- Empty Q-Tip containers
Bathroom Cleaning Supplies
- Extra Cleaning Rags – you only need a few
- Old and Worn Cleaning Rags
- Old Bathroom Cleaning Products – even these have an expiry date
- Empty or Close to Empty Bathroom Cleaning Products – Please read the label to dispose of these properly
- Bathroom Cleaning Products you don’t use
- Old and Worn Sponges
Misc. Bathroom Items
- Old and Worn Bath Mats – invest in something new that you love to step on and makes you happy to look at
- Old and Worn Shower Curtains and Shower Curtain Liners
- Empty Tissue Boxes, Toilet Paper Rolls, etc
- Empty Plastic Bags from Toilet Paper, Cotton Balls, etc
- Old Air Freshener
- Empty Air Freshener
- Old Potpourri that has lost its smell
- Excess Candles – I love taking a candle lit bath just as much as the next lady, but how many candles do you really need.
- Old Candles – If you can barely light them, or you hate looking at them, toss em
- Unused Candles and Tealights – if you haven’t used them in at least a few months, find another use for them, or donate them.
- Old Bathroom Decor that you hate looking at – if you don’t love it, donate it and replace it with something that you do.
- Old bathroom “reading” materials
I know this was a very thorough list of items to toss from your bathroom and might have seemed a little overwhelming first. If there is one thing that I can assure you of it’s that once you have completed this list you are going to be way much more motivated to give your bathroom that big deep spring clean. Not to mention you will also feel the satisfaction of a job well done.
Is there anything that you would like to add to this list?
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