Monday, September 11, 2017

Decluttering Process/Update & Items I Regret Buying

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I recently had the urge to reexamine my entire wardrobe as part of my end-of-summer cleaning and decluttering list, which I shared in July.  I began with about 50 items hanging in my closet, not counting my winter jackets and exercise clothes. While that number is not astronomical, I still felt like I was holding onto items that were no longer working for me. I wanted to see if I cut that down even more. 

Steps I took to declutter my closet:
  • I first looked at the clothing my closet and took note of the items I am definitely not decluttering. These are the clothes I absolutely love.
  • I grabbed everything I was on the fence about or haven't worn this season or year (since January) and put them on my bed. 

  • I tried on every single piece I was unsure about. I examined how I looked and felt (aka the spark Joy method) but mostly checked that it fit and flattered my body.
  • If I decided I wanted to keep the item, I asked myself what other items I would pair it with for a complete outfit. I found that this gave me ideas for outfits for the fall and winter, which made me excited to wear the items again. 
  • I threw the items I felt frumpy in or that no longer fit in the donation pile or listed them online. I had kept some clothes in hopes of fitting into them again at some point after gaining weight in the past year. But I realized that holding onto them was weighing me down and making me feel disappointed in myself when I saw them. They were daily reminders that I am not at my ideal stage. I'm instead choosing to accept where I am and not pressure myself to look a certain way. 
  • Purses: I held them and asked myself how often I use them. I didn't have many to start with, just four. But I realized I could get rid of at least one. I also realized I need a black small to midsize crossbody bag because it would go with most of my outfits and sometimes I don't want to carry a large purse.
  • I don't have much space in our closet, so I hang my scarves on a hanger. I went through and touched each one. I asked myself how many outfits each scarf matched and how many times I wore it last winter. If none, I donated it. I moved my scarves next to my long-sleeve tees so that I will see them when I grab a top this fall and so I will hopefully be inspired to wear one.
  • I went through my race shirts and workout tops and asked myself what I wear most often and why. I typically wear the same tops: tanks or comfortable, soft tees. I had been hanging onto tees from my training groups because I felt like I had to, but I decided to let them go because I simply don't like them and never wear them. No one seems to mind that I don't run in our training shirts when I do group training anyway. I arranged my shirts by color so I can easily find them. (The purple fabric in the corner is the packaging for sheets I bought a long time ago. I use it to store my extra hair ties, running gels, reflective vest, headlamp and lip balm.)

  • I don't own many shoes, but I took a look at them anyway. I decided I didn't need an extra pair of running shoes. I am donating these because they are still in good shape.

  • I can fit my makeup collection into a three-drawer storage organizer**, but I still went through it. I decided to give a few items to family who I know would use them, and my goal is to only have one of each makeup item, except blushes, eyeshadow palettes and lip products. I also set a goal to use up some products this fall, including one I was particularly disappointed with. (More on that below.)
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Three-drawer organizer**
The outcome:


My winter and fall jackets, a couple pairs of shorts, a work blazer, my nightgowns/lingerie (which I hang) and a vest are not pictured. I kept the perfect amount for me: A casual winter jacket, a peacoat, a lighter coat for fall special occasions (weddings), a casual rain jacket, a more formal rain jacket, and a poncho that I pretty much live in during the summer. Also not shown is an army green jacket and a mustard top I recently purchased for the fall. On my shopping list: One or two long-sleeve tops.

Products I wish I didn't buy:

As I've gone through my decluttering list, I've come items I have changed my mind about and wish I didn't buy in the first place. I will admit that at times I've been influenced to purchase items because of hype on blogs and YouTube. I now realize that I need to get back to being more mindful about my purchases and only buying items I really need. Not all of these items have been disappointing; one was simply something I did not need and don't use.
  • Jaclyn Hill/Becca Face Palette: This was one of the first purchases I made when I wanted to get into highlighters. I was influenced to buy this palette by all the hype around it. I had heard so much about Champagne Pop, and Prosecco Pop swatches looked beautiful online. I also liked that the palette came with three blushes, so I figured I would get a lot of use out of it. So what happened? I featured this in my favorites when I first purchased it, but soon after that it broke. I was able to repress Prosecco Pop, but Champagne Pop was mixed with one of the blush colors. After owning this for more than a year, I can say that I only really reach for this for the Amaretto blush color. I use the little bit of Prosecco Pop that didn't shatter, but I was not able to really use Champagne Pop. I don't really think the other two blush colors look good on me, so this palette overall has not been worth the money I paid. My goal is to use the rest of the blush and highlighter this fall.
  • Nikki Blackketter x Gymshark top and leggings: This purchase was another instance of hype getting the best of me. I love Nikki's YouTube channel and I credit it for motivating me when I had lost interest in fitness this year. When she posted about her collection, I loved everything. At least, everything looked great on her. It did not look so great on me, however. I had not purchased much from Gymshark so I was unfamiliar with its sizing. I ended up ordering the wrong size in leggings. I sold them on eBay to get my money back, but I kept the top. I featured it in my favorites a couple of months ago, too. But then I washed it and the logos came off. Call me crazy, but a $60 top workout top should not lose its labeling/logo that quickly. I still plan to wear it, but I was disappointed about that.
  • Milani Even Touch Powder Foundation: I am not saying this is a bad product; I just don't ever use powder foundation, so I am not sure what I was thinking when I purchased this. To be fair, I was on vacation and ran out of foundation. I could not find the Milani liquid foundation at any drugstore I went to, so I gave this a shot in a pinch. The shade matched me perfectly, but I just never use this. I have loved most other Milani products I've tried, though.


Checking in on my cleaning and decluttering list:


I've crossed off many of the to-dos on the list I shared this summer, but I still have some pending. Sometimes I wonder if I will ever accomplish a couple of these, especially the one about decluttering DVDs. 
  • Dust above cabinets and shelves. 
  • Donate DVDs.
  • Get rid of old stroller and other baby items.
  • Store air-conditioning units (when weather eventually changes) and clean off heaters.
  • Donate extra umbrellas.
I have donated about two bags of items, including clothes and toys.

Is there a category that you find difficult to declutter? Share it with me in the comments!