The Best Ways to Declutter Your Closet


One of the most challenging parts of decluttering a home is addressing the closet. We tend to get more attached to clothes and accessories than we do to décor or other things around the house. Although it makes sense, especially if your clothes are associated with meaningful memories, wardrobes that just keep getting bigger and bigger often do more harm than good. We may lose track of our favorite staple pieces or get so overwhelmed with options that we continue to wear the same thing over and over again. Coincidentally, the less items you tend to own, the more variation you may choose to wear. To help you reap the benefits of a smaller wardrobe, consider some of the best ways to declutter your closet.

10 Tips on How to Declutter Your Closet

Everyone’s decluttering style is unique. What worked for your friend may not be the best option for you and vice versa. The key is trying out a few tactics and being patient with yourself. Getting rid of clothes can be scary, but once you start the process, you’ll find it quite liberating. To get started, try one of the following 10 tips for decluttering your closet.

1. Give Yourself a Goal

Before you get started, take the time to set a goal for yourself. You may want to declutter your closet in order to find the pieces you love more, or you may want to get rid of certain items so that your mornings go a little more smoothly. Whatever the reason you choose to declutter, consider a number goal—i.e., donate 20 items, toss 5 things, put 40 pieces in storage. This can help give you measurable objectives to work towards.

2. Use a Questionnaire to Evaluate Items

Deciding whether to throw a top into the keep or toss pile can bring forth a lot of emotions. Maybe you think you’ll wear it… someday. Maybe you used to wear it all of the time, but it hasn’t left your closet in years. Whatever the case, try to evaluate every item using the same scale. You can do this by incorporating a type of questionnaire into your evaluation process.

For example, when you pick up each item in your closet, ask yourself:

  • When is the last time I wore this?
  • Does it project the style I want?
  • Do I feel confident in it?
  • Does it itch, scratch, or hang in the wrong places?
  • Does it actually fit?
  • Is it dirty? Smelly? Stained?

If you’re evaluating your shoes, ask yourself if they’re comfortable, the right height, and easy to walk in. Pro tip: get rid of any shoes that physically hurt when they’re worn.

3. Track What You Don’t Wear

Another great way to declutter your closet is to track the items that you don’t actually wear. One of the easiest ways to do this is by turning all of your hangers in the opposite direction. Then, whenever you take something out and actually wear it, you can replace it in your closet with the hanger facing the correct way. At the end of six months, get rid of anything that hasn’t been touched.

4. Try the Three Box Method

When you’re sorting through your clothes, consider using the three-box method at the beginning. This will include a box for keep, donate, or trash. Put any clothes that are ripped, torn, falling apart, stained, etc. into the trash bin. Taking them to donations will inevitably result in the same thing, so you may as well do the scrapping yourself. Put any clothes that you absolutely can’t live without in the keep box. Put things that you’re unsure about in the donate box. You can revisit this later, but many people find that once they mentally let go of an item it’s easier to declutter.

5. Use a ‘Maybe’ Box

You could also use a box that’s solely dedicated to indecision. Maybe you’ll get rid of this shirt, maybe you’ll donate these shoes… Although it’s not a good practice to have if you actually want to declutter, giving yourself a middle ground can help with the transition of finally getting rid of unworn items in your closet.

6. Get Rid of Things Regularly

Although it’s best to go through all of your clothes at the same time, you should make it a habit to get rid of things regularly. The more you keep up with decluttering, the easier the process becomes. You can utilize the method of “one in, one out” or simply reassess your closet every week or so. This is especially beneficial if you track the items that you don’t actually wear, as it’ll help you become more cognizant of your style needs and wardrobe essentials.

7. Check in with Seasonal Changes

Another great decluttering habit to keep your closet relevant throughout the year is to check in with seasonal changes and make adjustments as needed. Creating a seasonal wardrobe allows you to keep your closet filled with only the items that you’ll actually need. During winter, store summer clothing in a self-storage unit to give yourself the most room. Once the weather starts to warm up again, thoroughly clean all of your winter items, transfer them into storage, and re-stock your closet with your favorite spring and summertime accessories.

8. Look into Capsule Wardrobes

Capsule wardrobes are great options for those looking for a truly minimalistic wardrobe. A capsule wardrobe is basically a very small selection of clothing within a complementary color palette. This allows you to mix and match different pieces together to create drastically different looks without taking up much space in your closet. You can experiment with a capsule wardrobe before making a concrete jump, but in doing so you may find some newfound freedom and flexibility. Keep a few essential items within the same color palette and store the rest of your clothes offsite for a few months while you experiment with a capsule wardrobe.

9. Maximize Your Storage Space

Organization is one of the best ways to reduce clutter, regardless of how many items you have in your closet. If you’re strategic, you can maximize your storage space to accommodate all of your favorite items. To do this, consider getting some closet storage products like hooks, shelving, and shoe organizers. This can help you stay organized and maintain a minimalistic feel, even if you weren’t able to get rid of as many items as you’d hoped.

10. Store Lesser Worn Clothes Offsite

There are some pieces of clothing, shoes, or accessories that are more difficult to part with than others. However, these items also tend to be the ones that are worn the least. You don’t have to get rid of them entirely. Rather than donating or throwing them away, consider storing your lesser worn clothes offsite at a climate-controlled self-storage unit. This gives you the peace of mind that they’re accessible if you want them without taking up precious room in your closet. Plus, when you store things out of sight, you may be more willing to get rid of them for good upon your next wardrobe review. Just make sure that you take the proper preparations in order to keep your items in good condition during long-term storage.

Although it may be a little difficult at first, decluttering your closet has a lot of benefits. You’ll also find that the more you get rid of things, the easier it becomes. If you’re not ready to completely abandon your ‘maybe’ pile or donate some of your all-time favorite (albeit a little worn down) clothes, utilize a self-storage unit from The Lock Up Self Storage. We have several options for self-storage units ranging from small to large, so you can accommodate all of your clothes without causing clutter in your home. As an added bonus, all of our units are climate-controlled so your clothes and other belongings stay in good condition for as long as you need to store them. The Lock Up also prioritizes security with perimeter alarms, gated access, individual access codes, and CCTV. We have flexible leasing options that can be upgraded as time passes. To find a storage unit for your closet overflow, contact one of the representatives at The Lock Up Self Storage by calling 1-866-327-LOCK or find a unit online today!