How To Get Rid Of Makeup, Cosmetics & Toiletries Clutter

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Today's mission, for today and the next several days, is to get rid of makeup, cosmetics and toiletries from your bathroom, or wherever else you store these items, that are expired, unused and unwanted.


Cosmetics and makeup organization challenge
This mission is designed to be done while working on the Cosmetics & Makeup Organization Challenge here on the site, which is part of the 52 Week Organized Home Challenge, although you can obviously do it whenever you want or need to.

This article discusses how to declutter a wide variety of personal care products and toiletries, but to make it less overwhelming for you, when you check out the declutter calendar for the next few days you'll see it broken down into a small category of products daily.

Breaking it down into small increments is a similar concept to just decluttering 15 minutes at a time. So don't worry, this task doesn't need to be overwhelming at all. Either work 15 minutes at a time or do just one type of things at a time to get the job done.

How to get rid of makeup, cosmetics and toiletries from your home that are old, expired or unwanted, including what to do with items you declutter {a Declutter 365 mission on Home Storage Solutions 101}use this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

Make Sure You Declutter All The Following Categories Of Items

Make sure as part of these decluttering missions that you declutter from each of the following categories:
  • Makeup (including mascara, foundation, powders, and lipsticks);

  • Makeup applicators (including brushes, sponges, etc.);

  • Nail polish and other nail care products;

  • Perfumes and colognes;

  • Lotions and moisturizers, and other skin care products;

  • Dental care products (including toothbrushes, toothpaste, mouth wash, etc.)

  • Hairstyling products; and

  • Personal care products (including shampoos, conditioners, soaps and body washes, deodorant, and more)

Criteria For Getting Rid Of Cosmetics & Toiletries

As always, I'm not suggesting you should get rid of everything you've got.

However, you need to look through what you've got and get rid of anything that meets the following criteria:

1. Products that have expired or gotten too old.

I've got an entire article that explains the expiration dates of common makeup and personal care products, which includes a free printable cheatsheet you can print out for your reference while doing the mission. It will help you make decisions, so grab your copy before you begin!

2. You don't like it for whatever reason.

3. You have not used it within the last approximately 6 months.

It's actually really important, for health reasons, to get rid of old and expired makeup and other personal care products. If you don't believe me, make sure to read my article about expiration dates for more information on that topic!

Once you've decided what makeup and other toiletries to get rid of, you need to decide what to do with those things, so scroll down to get my advice what to do with the items you've decided to declutter.

Top photo courtesy of lindyi

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What To Do With Your Decluttered Makeup & Personal Care Products

Once you've decided to get rid of makeup, cosmetics or other toiletries while decluttering, you've got to decide what to do with them, and here are the pros and cons of various choices including donating, selling or trashing these products {on Home Storage Solutions 101}use this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

Once you've decided what personal care and beauty products to declutter from your own home, your next big decision is what to do with these items so they'll leave your home.

Can You Donate Or Sell These Items?

As discussed in more detail in my article about how to declutter there are often several choices for what to do with items, including donating or selling them.

While it can seem really tempting to donate or sell these products, my quick answer is don't donate or sell these items if you've opened and used them even once.

This is especially true of things like makeup and beauty products, or those items used directly on the skin like deodorant and skin care products.

A lot of these items cost a lot of money, and they're always very much appreciated as donations at places like food pantries and homeless shelters (at least when they're new), so I totally get why your first inclination would be to donate them to someone who will appreciate and use them, or sell these items to recoup some of your money back.

However, as explained in more detail in my article about expiration dates for beauty and personal care products, once these items are opened and used, even once, they are exposed to bacteria and germs that breed inside the products and can cause infections and skin breakouts once the bacterial levels reach high levels.

Since you should never donate something for someone else to use that you, yourself, would not take, I don't think it would be fair to either donate or sell such items that are "contaminated."

Remember, this rule about not donating or selling beauty and personal care products only applies to those items that have been opened and used, so feel free to donate or sell unopened products!!!

Trash Or Recycling The Containers?

So what should you do with the items you want to get rid of from your home? The quick answer is that they belong in the trash, although you can recycle some of the containers that these items come in.

Recycling personal care and beauty containers could be an article all to itself, so instead of explaining it all here, here's a link to a program you can use if you choose to recycle your makeup and cosmetics containers.

Next, scroll down to see some before and after pictures from readers who've already done this mission, to get you excited about how much it can improve your bathroom or other areas of your home once you've decluttered the junk and only have the good stuff left!

Photo above courtesy of Linda, who said, "This is a trash can full of all of the way out of date makeup, lipsticks, mascara, snd miscellaneous stuff i will never use again. Feels good!"

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Here's What Happens When You Declutter Beauty & Personal Care Products

Decluttered and organized makeup drawer from a reader, Robin, who did the declutter makeup and toiletries Declutter 365 missions on Home Storage Solutions 101


Decluttering can be so rewarding! To get you excited to tackle your own cosmetics and toiletries, here's some photos sent in by readers who've already done this mission.

The one above is from a reader, Robin, who said, "I downsized a tackle box, 2 make up bags and random make up I found and purged enough that it now fits in a small drawer next to my mirror! There were some tears but I did it."

You can save a lot of room by getting rid of the stuff you don't use, and then it makes it much easier to organize what you've got left.

In addition, you can make such a significant difference in the way a room, such as your bathroom, looks once you've decluttered. Here's some photos below, from a reader named Michelle, who decluttered once her daughter, Taylor (no relation to me!) left for college. Michelle said, "My daughter (Taylor) left for university last week. This weekend I decided to reclaim the bathroom that she has been using (pretty much alone) for the last five years. I don't have a 'before' shot of the bathroom itself, but I took photos of all the stuff I removed."

How to get rid of makeup, cosmetics, toiletries and similar beauty and personal care products in your home that you're ready to declutter, plus tips for what to do with the stuff you've decided to remove from your home {on Home Storage Solutions 101}use this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

Are You Ready To Declutter Your Home?

declutter 365
I hope seeing these pictures has inspired you to declutter cosmetics, personal care and beauty products from your bathrooms and home.

When you begin to declutter the feeling you get is contagious, so if you're loving the results you're getting I would encourage you to keep going.

I've got a whole series of 15 minute decluttering missions (eventually 365 of them!) that you can do.

Just pick and choose the ones you want to do, that will make a big impact in your home. But if you want someone else to tell you the order you can also grab the 15 minute daily decluttering mission calendars and follow along as we all get our homes clutter free together!

Related Pages You May Enjoy

Getting Clutter Free 15 Minutes At A Time Hall Of Fame

Getting Rid Of Bathroom Hall Of Fame

Go From How To Get Rid Of Makeup & Toiletries Clutter To Home Page

Comments for Here's What Happens When You Declutter Beauty & Personal Care Products

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How I keep track of when I opened makeup
by: Roberta

Take a Sharpie and write the date the makeup was opened on the bottom. Six months later, out it goes!

I have lots of old makeup, I had no idea you had to get rid of it!
by: Shawna

I had no idea that makeup should be discarded by 'x' date. Yikes... I have a lot of old makeup. Time to replace!! And get rid of the 'extra's' that I've held on to for such a long time. Love this page!!

Buy less!
by: Katy

I think people hate to trash this stuff because some of it is so darn expensive. My mission is to buy less of it!

simplicity wins over having stuff
by: Shirley

I only own one set of powder, eyeshadow, lip gloss, and blush. One eyebrow pencil, 2 eyeliners, and 1 mascara and small bottle of perfume. I guess when I was a teen it was messy though. As you get older, simplicity wins over having stuff.

limit yourself to what fits in a make up bag
by: Amelia

The best thing I ever did was to limit the make up to 5 items the must haves, what I use daily, along with a face cleaner & Oil of Olay lotion, which all fits in the make up bag.

what I did for this mission
by: Karan

I threw out old make- up, sample bottles from cosmetic companies I have not used.

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