Home Lifestyle 10 Wardrobe Items You Should Immediately Get Rid Of

10 Wardrobe Items You Should Immediately Get Rid Of

by Diane

Do you stand in front of your wardrobe, doors open, frowning at the contents?

You do? Well, take heart. You’re not the only one.

Use this list to find the ten wardrobe items you can throw away immediately.
Remember to PIN this image so you can always find your way back here.

Over the last six months or so, I’ve been working on reducing the clutter in my life. My closet is just one area in which it seems I have a problem letting go.

I often wonder if this resistance is rooted in a fear of lack or becoming too sentimental about objects that no longer serve me.

I’ve spoken about this before and the fact I’m back here again speaks volumes about the real challenge of minimalising your belongings. It’s definitely a process you need to work through and, it takes time.

I had another run at my closet on the weekend and managed to throw out a heap of stuff. I’m definitely getting closer to the ideal of a 10 item wardrobe.

Plus, I also repaired a couple of pairs of pants that have been collecting dust for a while. I’m kind of amazed I still remember how to thread the sewing machine!

10 wardrobe items you can immediately get rid of (painlessly and guilt-free)

1. Any item damaged beyond repair

This one really should be a no-brainer but… I had several T-shirts that were worn to the point of no return. They were super comfy but had to go.

2. Any broken item that won’t get fixed any time soon

It might not be damaged beyond repair but it’s time for a reality check. If it’s broken and you haven’t repaired it by now, and you’re not going to repair it today… it’s time for it to go.

3. Any item of clothing that’s too tight

When I started the process of clearing out my closet a few months ago, I created a Limbo Box. This is where I’ve put the clothes I still love and are in excellent condition but don’t fit (stress and sleeplessness can wreak havoc on your waistline). I’ll revisit the Limbo Box after 12 months. If I can’t fit into that gear by then, I’ll have to either try to sell the contents or donate it.

This time around, I didn’t add anything to the Limbo Box.

4. Surplus shoes

I have very small feet so I don’t tend to have an over-supply of shoes in my closet however, I still found a couple of pairs that have outlived their fashion value and general usefulness. They were still in good condition so rather than throw them out, I put them into the bag for donating to one of the local charity stores.

5. Empty shoe boxes

Like shopping bags, shoe boxes have a way of hanging around long after their usefulness has ended. If you don’t store your shoes in the box they came in, then they’ve served their purpose and need to go.

6. Store shopping bags

Do you hang onto shopping bags? They might come in handy one day, right? Wrong. They’re just clutter. They might be beautiful (Laura Ashley comes to mind) but they are still clutter. Off to the bin…

7. Expired make-up and skin care products

Yes. Cosmetics have expiry dates, too. Check them out here. Even if your make-up hasn’t expired, if it causes an adverse reaction on your skin or makes your eyes irritated, throw it out.

8. Out of fashion

I know, if you hang onto clothing long enough, it’ll come back into fashion. Flares and – the bane of short waisted girls everywhere – high waisted jeans and pants.

Unless you plan on using your wardrobe to open a fashion museum one day, it’s time to get rid of the jackets with huge shoulder pads and any outfit inspired by Clueless.

clueless 90s fashion

9. Gym and exercise clothes

I don’t know the actual statistics, but my guess is that half the gym clothes ever purchased end up stuffed into a dark corner of a wardrobe, worn once, maybe twice, and never seen again.

If you’ve got sad, ignored gym clothes in your wardrobe, drag them into the light of day and be honest with yourself. Will you use them for their intended purpose? Can you wear them around the house? Hello, yoga pants! If not, and they’re in good condition, throw them in the ‘donate’ bag. If not, throw them out.

10. Sentimental school or college gear

I’m guilty of this. I still can’t quite part with my school blazer.

I’m not sure why, but it’s something I’m working on. It’s the only sentimental item of clothing left in my wardrobe so I’m not doing too badly. Having said that, I finished high school a long, long time ago.

If your old school or college gear is taking up space in your wardrobe, now is a good time to deal with it.

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Now Admire Your Clutter Free Wardrobe

And then, promise yourself you’ll never let it get out of control again.

Easier said than done, maybe, but the more you cull from your wardrobe the easier it will be to maintain.

The simpler you keep your style, the less clothing you’ll need. The less clothing you need the better quality items you’ll be able to afford. The more care you take in choosing your wardrobe items, the less likelihood there is there’ll be pieces hanging around that never get worn.

There are no downsides to getting rid of stuff you don’t need!

P.S. Remember to follow Clearing the Clutter on Pinterest for a library full of awesome de-cluttering ideas.

Suggested Reading


Build a Life you Love

The absolute driving force behind my online endeavours is to establish and maintain a life I love. A life that allows me to spend my days the way I want to spend them.

After a short stint back in the corporate world, I’m more committed than ever to spend my days doing things that bring me joy and add real value to others’ lives.

Blogging – Learn how to start your own blog or business web site. Once you get started, there’s almost no limit to what you can achieve for yourself. But, the first step is establishing your foundation and that has to be a self-hosted site. If you’re just testing the waters, I recommend Bluehost as a cost-effective way to get started.

Online Store / eCommerce – Along with this and some of my other blogs, I have another business that includes an Etsy store and a Shopify store. Whether you’re selling stock you’ve purchased, dropshipping or selling your own handmade products, eCommerce is a great way to start an online business in your spare time. Shopify is a great platform to use as it’s intuitive and has lots of help available if you get stuck, and they have a ton of plugins to make it easy to get all of the features you want.

Managing your Money – The framework for everything in life and business is good money management. Keep coming back to our site for more helpful tips, but if you are doing some shopping and want cash back, check out Rakuten (formerly eBates).

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20 comments

chekseagirl February 23, 2020 - 11:34 pm

High waisted jeans are back in fashion! So wear them with pride or give to a young relative or friend.

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Diane February 24, 2020 - 7:38 am

🙂

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Trish January 16, 2020 - 3:22 pm

I take my store bags to the charity shop with my donated clothes. They use them instead of having to purchase bags. They also accept old magazines and books and jewellery boxes. Shoe boxes are great for storing/ organising scarves, socks, underwear, belts in your cupboard or drawers.

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Derek Hines November 13, 2019 - 4:25 am

I’m definitely guilty of keeping old shoes. It just seems wrong to get rid of them, but they take up a lot of space. I’m going to get rid of them!

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Gijanedoe September 16, 2019 - 7:42 am

I have a huge storage bag for seasonal clothing and I rotate ‘warm’ weather clothing with ‘cool’ weather clothing! It’s like getting new and favorite clothing twice a year.
Each change-up period, I review items for size and repair. Then I decide if someone else needs it, or it should become a dutiful rag. But my favorite part is when I get to hug my favorites and a new way to use or wear some of them, ie, a favorite sweater may be annoyingly worn, but I love the color, so this year it becomes an infinity scarf or hoodie drape. Then I kiss last season’s clothing goodby until next year! Of course, this is the point we’re i may go to the thrift store to look for some new treasures!

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Nina September 3, 2019 - 6:00 pm

I agree that a 10-item wardrobe is too restrictive. Classics/ investment pieces are all very well, but some fun stuff is vital too! The thing to avoid is dressing for a lifestyle you don’t actually have. 10 party dresses when “ going out” means a neighbourhood barbecue is not a sensible use of your space or cash …

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Crowharp July 20, 2019 - 5:13 am

If someone tells you that you need a 10 item wardrobe, get rid of them; you don’t need that kind of negativity in your life. ?

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Diane July 20, 2019 - 8:47 am

Ha ha ha… After all this time, I’d have a meltdown if I had more clothes! Too many decisions!!! 🙂

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Candace May 1, 2019 - 11:04 pm

I agree with most of these, except my workout clothes, which I actually wear to the gym. As for store shopping bags. I use them as trash or donation bags. I also feel that clothing really nerver comes back in style the same way. There’s always a modern twist on retro-fashion. One staple fashion that has never gone out of style for me are boot-cut jeans. They’re always in style everth decade.
Sometimes I try to coordinate outfits to make it easier to get dressed.

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Angie April 16, 2019 - 11:11 pm

Hi, just an FYI about shoeboxes: you can donate those to your local animal shelter. Cats, kittens, and other small animals use them.

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Diane April 17, 2019 - 3:58 pm

That is a brilliant idea. Great option for towels, blankets, etc., that aren’t good enough for donating to a thrift store. I’m sure all those critters would enjoy some comfy bedding, too.

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Susan December 28, 2018 - 3:47 am

In Canada we have to pay for bags most of the time. So instead of just pitching mine in the garbage, I donate them to the food bank so they can pack food in them. Usually they are in need of bags as well.

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Rosalin December 12, 2018 - 11:55 am

One thing I’d add here is accessories. I have a whole bunch of scarves, beanies, gloves etc that have been given to me and I really never wear them. Also fashion jewellery, those cheap bracelets, earrings and necklaces etc. Also holiday items that really only get worn once a year, if that (you can have a Christmas without a tacky festive shirt/sweater)
I also disagree with the workout clothes. Track/yoga pants are great to wear around the house or just use as PJs. Track pants come out when I have heavy cleaning to do or when I paint, better than damaging a more expensive item.

Great article. Take care.

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Aja October 2, 2016 - 7:59 am

The general rule of thumb is stuff that you haven’t worn in the last 6 months-1 year or worn out. I disagree with “outdated fashion”, it does always come back in (especially different cuts and type of jeans). If you like it, wear it.

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Skye June 25, 2016 - 2:08 am

Well I’m not sure about the work out clothes but I do agree with the rest of the list. I do at least 2 loads a week that are almost all work out clothes. But we are in the military and working out I’d a part of our daily life.

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Diane June 25, 2016 - 9:11 am

It sounds like you (unlike many of us) are using your workout clothes for their intended purpose. Wish I could say the same! 🙂

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The Thrifty Issue (Kylie) May 25, 2016 - 9:32 am

One year I got robbed of everything, including underwear. The only sentimental item I had then was my cheerleader outfit and I still hate that it got stolen. Every other item of clothing was replaceable. It is hard parting with sentimental items. I can honestly say that everything in my wardrobe fits, is in good repair and is worn now though. After having to replace my entire wardrobe I only bought items I love.

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Diane May 25, 2016 - 10:01 am

I can’t imagine being robbed of everything. It must have been a shocking experience.

But, it sounds like you used the opportunity to start again very wisely.

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Sarah Mueller April 4, 2016 - 3:12 am

I love the idea of a Limbo box! That gives you a little leeway but frees up space right away. Thanks for the list! Pinning and sharing now 🙂

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Diane April 4, 2016 - 6:59 am

Thanks Sarah. I think it also helps with the ‘letting go’ process. Some of us have a problem with that… 🙂

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