How to Declutter Your Closets

Clean out the closets where the piles of hidden objects have resided for many years... Just because it is out of sight, it isn't out of mind and cluttered closets can create a sense of dis-ease and discomfort that impacts your enjoyment of your home. Time to clear the clutter!


  1. Image titled Start with one section of the closet Step 1
    Start with one section of the closet. Do one shelf, or the floor of the closet at a time. Closets can be intimidating, so you might tackle one area at a time, and do it every day for a week. Each day should only take 15 minutes or so, if you work quickly and make quick decisions about each item.
  2. Image titled Empty out everything hanging Step 2
    Empty out everything hanging or sitting in the closet. Everything. Do the same with the floor of the closet — in fact, remove everything from the floor and keep the floor clear if at all possible. A clear floor greatly simplifies a closet.
  3. Image titled Clean out the closet Step 3
    Clean out the closet. Clear all junk and debris, then clean with a wet rag or use a cleaning product. Make it nice and clean.
  4. Image titled Remove all junk from the pile of things Step 4
    Remove all junk from the pile of things that you have taken out of the closet. And toss it.
  5. Image titled Stuff you want to keep in the closet Step 5
    Go through the remaining things. Sort:
    • stuff you’d like to give away. Put this in a box to give away, and put the box in your car to drop off when you’re done;
    • stuff you want to put in other places in the house (do this immediately after you’re done); and
    • stuff you want to keep in the closet. Only put back what is essential. Get rid of the clothes that you no longer wear or like.
  6. 6
    Enjoy your simplified closets. You'll be able to enjoy things more and find them easily![[Image:Enjoy your simplified closets Step 6.jpg}}


  • Keep smaller closets; you will be discouraged from filling them with stuff you don't need and you will need to make decisions before you even bring them into the house!
  • Have a one in, one out rule. For every new item you add to your closet, toss/donate one item of the same.
  • If you're unsure whether to keep or toss/donate an item hang it backwards in your closet (pants with zippers facing out, tops/skirts/dresses facing left, sweaters neck facing out). If it is in the same position at the end of the season, you haven't worn it once, so immediately put it in the toss/donate pile.
  • Organize your clothes by color or pattern.

Things You'll Need

  • Closet
  • Boxes for sorting and tossing
  • Cleaning product and wet rag

Sources and Citations

  • Original source of article from the very generous Zen Habits. Please feel free to visit and support copyright free information providers.

Article Info

Categories: Clutter Busting