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THESE ARE THE 140 NO-BRAINER THINGS YOU CAN GET RID OF TO REDUCE CLUTTER INSTANTLY
When you know you have the mother of all decluttering tasks lying ahead of you to transform your home from a junkyard to an Instagram-worthy haven of serenity, sometimes the best thing to do is go for an easy win. Something quick and easy to do that will let you feel successful and motivate you to go to the next level.
ENTER THE POWER PURGE
I can’t blame you for wondering what on earth a power purge is. So, here’s a quick explanation.
A power purge is an intense decluttering session where you go through everything in your home very quickly and ruthlessly to get rid of anything you don’t need.
The aim is to efficiently eliminate all the unnecessary stuff you have dotted around your home in as short a time frame as possible.
One of the best ways to achieve power purge success is to have a list of stuff to purge to help keep you focused.
So, with that in mind. Here’s a list!
This list encompasses everything you are likely to have around your home that you can get rid of right now.
Now, just one word (that probably isn’t even necessary because I am sure you’re well up on recycling and donating to charity(, the power purge isn’t about just getting a giant bin bag and chucking everything into it.
So remember to recycle what can be recycled and donate to charity shops where possible.
140 THINGS TO POWER PURGE FROM YOUR HOME
1. GENERAL STUFF AND PAPERWORK
- Scraps of wrapping paper – you really will never use them!
- Old print outs
- Expired coupons and vouchers
- Coupons you will NEVER use
- Old invoices, bills and statements – shred! Set up online so you stop even getting paper versions.
- Pens that are out of ink or don’t have a lid
- Old invitations
- Old tear sheets – bathroom inspiration, why keep it once the bathroom’s been made over?!
- Business cards – need the details? put them in your contacts
- Loyalty cards you never use
- Gift cards – what are you waiting for? Use them before they expire!!
- Old printer ink cartridges
- Books you’ve read and will never read again
- Envelopes that you won’t ever get around to re-using
- Payslips older than five years
- Old post-it notes
- The stationery you bought or were given that you’ll NEVER use – bullet journal, anyone?!!
- Old mobile phone covers and accessories – YOU WILL NEVER USE THEM AGAIN
- Multiple pairs of scissors
- Old public transport tickets
- Used theatre and cinema tickets
- Junk mail
- Old birthday cards
- Out-of-date calendars
- Old diaries
- Old notebooks that have no spare room
- Takeaway menus – you can no doubt get them online
- Out-of-date product guarantees
- Gadget manuals – just go online for support
- Old unused batteries
- Ornaments and vases that just sit gathering dust and don’t have any sentimental value
2. KITCHEN AND PANTRY
- Utensils you have more than one of
- Utensils that are half-broken
- Frying pans that have lost their non-stick
- Discoloured tea and coffee cups
- Mismatched crockery – you really don’t need ten spares just in case
- Chipped or cracked crockery or glassware
- Empty bottles you’ve kept just in case you can use them – you can’t, and you won’t
- Almost empty cleaning products – decant into fuller ones
- Cleaning cloths that are beyond rags
- Storage containers and jars that you NEVER use
- Fridge food past its use-by date
- Freezer food that’s been in the freezer longer than six months
- Herbs and spices past their use-by date
- Pantry jars and bags that contain food you know you’ll never use
- Old containers that no longer have a lid or a lid that works
- Excess plastic shopping bags you’re keeping ‘out of guilt, ‘just in case’
- Recipe books you NEVER look at
- Old birthday candles that have already been used
- Takeaway cutlery that you never remember to take on the picnics you are saving them for
- Paper plates – see takeaway cutlery above!!
- Tableware you NEVER use. Start using it, or get rid!
- Food supplements and vitamins that are out of date
- Placemats, napkins and table linen you NEVER use
- Opened packages of flour, sugar or baking ingredients that haven’t been stored in airtight containers
- Empty food boxes or packaging
- Old pots and pans with scratches or rust
- Single-serving condiment packages
- Opened (and now slightly soft) chips, crackers or snack bags
- Expired canned or jarred goods
- Broken Tupperware or Tupperware with lids that don’t match
- Empty plastic containers or lids
- Unused appliances or gadgets
- Stained or damaged towels/cloths
- Plastic storage bags (replace with reusable silicone bags or containers)
- Opened packages of coffee/tea past expiration
- Unused plastic utensils or straws
- Food items in the pantry you’ll never eat
- Expired coupons or coupons you will never use
- Gadget manuals you never look at (you can find all the information online anyway)
3. BATHROOM/DRESSING TABLE
- Samples you will never get around to using.
- Out-of-date toiletries
- Gunky nail polish
- Old make-up
- Travel-size toiletries you never use
- Hotel freebies – just use them already! Or bin them!
- Spa freebies – as above!!
- Old toothbrushes
- Out-of-date medicines
- Hair accessories you never use and won’t ever use again
- Broken hair elastics
- Perfume you no longer like
- Empty perfume bottles you’ve kept because they were expensive!
- Almost empty bottles of shampoo/conditioner/body wash
- Old toothbrushes (you should replace them every three months)
- Empty floss containers
- Broken razors, hair tools, or electric toothbrushes
- Bath bombs, bath salts, bubble bath or soap bars you know you will never let near your skin!
- Empty containers of cotton balls, balls, pads
- Makeup brushes that are frayed or worn (and clean the ones you keep!)
- Broken mirrors, picture frames, or accessories
- Discoloured or frayed towels, washcloths, or bath mats
- Mismatched organizers, baskets, or trays
- Broken tools like nail clippers or tweezers
- Air fresheners, diffusers candles past their prime.
4. TECH STUFF
- Computer cords and cables you don’t need
- Extension cables you never use
- Old mobile phones, tablets and tech gadgets
- Excess chargers – how many do you ACTUALLY NEED?!!
- Old or damaged device chargers/cords
- Outdated cables/wires
- Broken or unused headphones/earbuds
- Extra power strips/surge protectors
- Obsolete remotes
- Broken or unused accessories (cases, mounts, etc.)
- Laptops/desktops no longer needed
- Outdated game consoles
- Extra controllers/accessories for unused systems
- Damaged external hard drives/USB drives
- Old or malfunctioning speakers
- Ink/toner cartridges that are empty
- Obsolete computer mice/keyboards
- Outdated software/applications
- Unused camera accessories (lenses, batteries, chargers)
- Malfunctioning wearable tech (fitness trackers, smartwatches)
- Old or worn smart home devices (Alexa, Google Home, etc.)
- Empty packaging from new electronics
- Broken printers/scanners
5. BEDROOM, LINEN CUPBOARD OR DRESSING ROOM
- Frayed, discoloured or worn-out sheets
- Fitted sheets that have shrunk and no longer fit
- Old pillows that are lumpy or have no volume left
- Discoloured old towels
- Single gloves
- Socks with holes in them
- Tights you will never wear because they’re bobbly or have runs
- Clothes with holes in or other damage that you will never get around to repairing
- Clothes that are too small
- Stuff in your wardrobe that no longer suits you
- All the stuff you know will never fit you again
- Shoes that are beyond repair
- Clothing you were gifted that you don’t actually like
- Accessories that you NEVER wear
- Mistake purchases – admit the mistake, then give it away or resell it
- Hangers – broken, old, ugly, excessive numbers…
- All those buttons you’ve been storing in case a button falls off
- Underwear that’s lost its elastic
- Bras that have wires sticking out
- Purses or bags you never use because you always use the same one
- Dressing gowns that hang on the back of the door 365 days per year
- Extra or worn-out blankets/throws
- Mismatched socks/undergarments
- Worn-out shoes and boots
- Clutter under the bed
6. KIDS STUFF
- Craft supplies that are old and unused
- Children’s artwork – come on, you can’t keep ALL OF IT!! Photograph stuff and make an album.
- Toys that no longer get played with or are broken
- Clothes and shoes they’ve grown out of that hang around in their wardrobe anyway.
- Books they’ve grown out of reading
- Toys the kids no longer play with regularly
- Old artwork, school papers or homework
- Clutter under the bed
- Old stuffed animals or dolls in disrepair
- Single pieces from toys or puzzles that will never be repatriated
- Bike helmets and sports gear that’s been outgrown
- Empty boxes from toys/tech kit
- Old feeding items like bottles, pacifiers
- Cluttered drawers of mismatched socks, underwear
- Old electronics or hand-held game devices
- Sentimental items that you and the kids no longer value
Hello, I’m Luci, founder of Mums Make Lists (Est. 2011). Over the last decade or so, I have combined my experience as a mum, journalist and shopping editor to create useful guides and lists of ideas and inspiration to make it easier for busy parents to plan and host kids’ parties and find great gifts. Read more.