8 Things in Your Closet to Throw Out Right Now!

closet makeover

If you've been putting off cleaning out your closet because you don't know where to begin, we hear you!  

Personal stylist and closet makeover maven Elaine Wang Yu of Simply Chic Styling acknowledges that going through your wardrobe can be a daunting task, which is why she suggests breaking it down into "manageable chunks."

"Start by looking at all your sweaters and T-shirts," Wang Yu advises. "Then the next day, take a look at your shoes or workout clothes. Break it into sections because trying to tackle the entire closet at once is overwhelming."

Wang Yu says as you go through your clothes, you may find yourself on the fence about whether a piece should stay or go. The stylist shares her insights into how to make those decisions a little bit easier. 

Here are 8 things in your closet you need to toss (or donate) now ...

closet makeover

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1. The Stained. These items are sending the wrong message and need to go, Wang Yu says. If you've been promising yourself that you're going to bleach that once-white cami but it's been sitting on your dresser for a year not moving any closer to the laundry room, ditch it. With so many affordable pieces available, replace stained items, she suggests. 

2. The Damaged. If something has a hole in it or a button is missing, toss it. "You're never going to find that exact button," Wang Yu says. 

3. The Ill-Fitting. Do you find yourself slipping into that comfortable nursing bra despite the fact that your baby is headed to kindergarten? That's not a good look. If it doesn't fit correctly, it needs to go.

4. The Outdated. Remember those suits you wore to work 20 years ago? They're pretty easy to spot thanks to their enormous shoulder pads. It's time to say good-bye to those big blazers too. Sorry.

5. The Unflattering. Have a pair of cropped pants that are flared at the bottom? Let's face it: Those aren't doing you any favors. Toss 'em.

6. The Duplicates. No one needs 15 pairs of jeans. Hone it down to a good group. Keep the pairs you might wear to your kids' baseball games and your dressier styles. If you're hanging on to some because you may wear them camping next year, donate them now.

7. The Not-Age-Appropriate. That Elmo T-shirt? It's not for you, it's for the kids. Anything with bows, rainbows, or unicorns is no longer age-appropriate, Wang Yu says. Leave those styles behind. 

8. The Uncomfortable. Whether it's clothing or shoes, if it's uncomfortable, it shows in the way you carry yourself. We've all bought super-cute shoes for a wedding, but if they hurt your feet after a couple of hours, that pain is going to show on your face. There's really no need to hang on to something that hurts you. 

"If it falls into any of those categories, move it out or donate it," the stylist advises. "If you're still unsure about a piece, reverse the way it hangs in your closet. Give it one year. If it's still hanging that way a year from now, it's got to go." 

How often do you clean out your closet? What's the hardest item to part with? 


Images via ©iStock.com/sswartz; ©iStock.com/ttatty



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Cer An

I don't agree with throwing away something because you lost a button.There are many stylists who recommend replacing all the buttons.So you feel like you have a totally different piece of clothing,it feels new.Problem solved:economically and creativily.

LaFarat P. Shauna

Or, I don't know, you could just replace the missing button, or wear it even though it has bows. I don't care what Wang Yu says, be economical before being fashion-forward.

Katie Brown

I agree with most of these except number 7. No elmo? Come on! If you like Elmo, wear it!! I still wear Mickey Mouse. A LOT! And hair bows. Pig-tales. Short skirts and tights. It's up to you to decide when you WANT to start looking mature (old, whatever). Not saying these would necessarily be appropriate for interviews or work attire, but maybe a pajama top or something u wear on the weekend, when you want to sass it up.

Silve... SilverFire85

I disagree with #7.  I'm terrbly sorry that it's not fashionable enough for Wang-Yu, but I like my unicorns and rainbows, thank you very much.

nonmember avatar Caitlin

No bows?!??? Since when? I mean every major designer has some type of bow in their line. I agree with some of this but I have way more than 15 pairs of jeans lol oh well and tons of not so comfy shoes but I only wear them on occasion. I like my comfy shoesuch more :)

Roche... RochesterGal

A few years ago, I got tired of my crowded and unorganized huge closet.  I bit the bullet and went cold turkey and I could not have been happier.  I had piles; things I gave to Goodwill, outdated, things to give to friends and things to keep.  I pretty shocked by the huge piles.  Now I do it every 6 months during season swap.  I can find things, it is organized and I know what I need to buy (which is, not much.)  I do follow her rules of clothes and it took me a long time to do it and I am much happier and organized.

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