CLOSET CLEAN OUTS. These can be anxiety inducing and refreshing all at the same time. At least that’s how it always feels for me. If you follow me on Instagram, you might have watched my closet clean out that I did on stories. I hadn’t purged and edited my closet for years, and it had been nagging at me for awhile.

There were a few things that I did differently this time, and I’m pretty pleased with the results. So, let’s get right to my top tips for cleaning out your closet!

♡ Get your mindset in check

You might be thinking, “oh, shut the fuck up” about the mindset piece, but this really is an important step before you start the clean-our process. If you’re anything like me, you are easily attached certain clothing items because they were gifts from someone special, or they bring back certain memories. Most of the time, keeping something in this instance doesn’t mean that it’ll ever be worn again. For example, if your grandma gave you a sweater that you think is just hideous, but you feel bad about letting it go. Just let it go. When it gets hard to let something go, remind yourself that when you get rid of something that no longer serves you, you are making room for pieces that do. And: one woman’s trash is another’s treasure. So, think of it as being generous!

Empty your entire closet

Yes, the whole thing, shoes and jewelry included. Don’t worry about sorting yet. Just get it all out. If you store any of your clothes in containers, your dresser, or other areas of your home, get those too. Dump them on the bed.

♡ Make piles

Start 3 piles. Mine are: Sell, Donate, and Keep. As you gather items to sell, I recommend setting up an account on eBay, or taking your clothes to a local consignment shop. My preference is eBay – the process is so easy. I prefer to donate over selling, however my personal rule is that if I want to get rid of a designer or pricey item, I will usually sell it. For nice, non-designer pieces, I donate to a women’s shelter or I ask friends and family if they are interested in any of the pieces. Separating everything into specific piles will help the process flow more smoothly, and the clean up will be a lot quicker once you’re done going through your entire wardrobe.

♡ The 1-year rule

There are certain items that will be hard to decide on which pile they should go in. If I need an extra push, I ask myself if I’ve worn that item in the last year. If the answer is “no”, I put it in the sell or donate pile. If you haven’t worn something in a year, chances are you won’t wear it again.

♡ Wash your closet

Yes, actually scrub, wash, and vacuum your closet while everything is out.

♡ Organize & restock

Once you’ve decided what you’re going to keep, being strategic about organizing makes getting dressed so much easier. I like to color code my closet like this: White to black, tanks to sweaters. For example, I’ll start with all of my white shirts and sweaters. I add them into my closet in order of lightness, so tanks go first, then tees, then light button-ups, then sweaters.

Now the really fun part: take inventory of what is missing from your closet. When I did this, I felt so much anxiety because I had gotten rid of 1/2 my closet. I am still slowly adding pieces back in. Tip: Write a note in your phone of everything that is now missing, and check them off as you add these items back in.