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How To Declutter Your Kitchen Sink Area

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Today's mission is to declutter your kitchen sink area, such as around the counter surrounding the sink and in the sink itself.

Kitchen Organization Challenge
This decluttering mission is designed to be done while we work on the Kitchen Organization Challenge here on the site, one of the 52 Week Organized Home Challenges.

That challenge focuses on organizing flat surfaces around the kitchen, like your counters, around the kitchen sink, as well as your table. The first step in any organization project is, of course, to declutter, so we're focusing on this small area today.

Don't try to take on too much today. There are additional Declutter 365 missions to focus on the rest of the kitchen countertops or islands, as well as your kitchen table, so today only worry about the area around your kitchen sink.

In addition, there is another mission for decluttering under your kitchen sink cabinet, so today only focus on the sink area itself!

There are actually two parts to this mission, at least if you need for there to be.

The first part is to wash and put away dirty dishes, as well as pots and pans, and other items you and your family have used in cooking or eating food.

How to #declutter your kitchen sink area, including initial cleaning, as well as items to at least consider removing from the area around your sink {a #Declutter365 mission on Home Storage Solutions 101} #KitchenOrganizationuse this Pin it button to save to Pinterest
That's not actually the point of the mission, and it is certainly not something you can do just once a year. Instead, this is a part of the daily chores of cleaning your kitchen.

However, if you haven't gotten this stuff cleaned up from the area you won't be able to do the main part of the mission, so that's why I suggest doing it as part one.

Then, when you've got your normal washing, drying and putting away of dishes done you'll be able to do the rest of the decluttering in this area.

You do need things around your kitchen sink that help you fulfill the functions of that area (namely, washing your hands, washing dishes, etc.), so you probably have dish soap, scrubbers, sponges, and more
in this area.

You may also have things like a dish drainer, a drying rack for baby bottles, and similar items.

Finally, many people's sinks are situated so while doing dishes you can look out the window, so many people have things on their window sill around this area.

You need to evaluate all of these items that around your sink and decide if they should stay there. Are they helpful there, or just clutter?

Would it be better if they were underneath your sink cabinet, and you pulled them out when needed them (like dish soap) or is it more handy for you to keep them out all the time?

These are somewhat a matter of personal preference, and so there's no right answer. But if, for example, you have a bunch of yucky mildewy sponges you don't even want to touch anymore, or three bottles of almost used up dish soap, it's time to get rid of some of this stuff sitting out there!

As for decorative items that you may have around the sink or on a window sill, again this is a matter of personal preference. How much is too much?

Do you want something that makes you smile when you look at it, that you can focus on while doing the dishes each evening, or do you have so many bits and bobbles out there that you don't see any of it anymore?

Only you can answer these questions for yourself, since it is a matter of personal preference.

But removing unnecessary items, to make room for what is needed, will make this space more functional and that will make you feel better, since it will make the daily chore of dishes a much more pleasant experience!

Scroll down below to see lots of photos from readers who've already done this mission, to show you what you can accomplish and get you ready to tackle the task for yourself today.

Top photo courtesy of a reader, Valerie, and before and after collage courtesy of another reader, Rachel

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First Part Of The Mission: Clean & Tidy Up Dirty Dishes, Pots & Pans

The first step in #decluttering your kitchen sink area is to tidy up, and wash dirty dishes, pots and pans. Here's a before and after showing how just this small task can make a huge difference in your kitchen! {on Home Storage Solutions 101} #KitchenCleaning #CleaningTipsuse this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

As mentioned above, the first part of this mission, if you need to do it, is to clean and tidy up dirty dishes, and pots and pans.

Until you get these items out of there you can't really evaluate the area to see if anything else needs to be decluttered from the space.

Obviously, washing your dishes is something that needs to be done daily (or multiple times a day), but practically you have to do it now as well, just to see what to do next.

Just washing up dishes and other cooking items will make a huge difference in your kitchen sink area, even without doing anything else.

Here are some photos from readers who've done this part of the mission and sent in photos.

The photos above are from a reader, Angela. Look at the huge difference this make between the before and after! Great job Angela!

Before and after when clean and #declutter kitchen sink area {featured on Home Storage Solutions 101} #KitchenOrganization #KitchenCleaninguse this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

These photos above are from another reader, Sabrina. She said of the before picture, "My kitchen counters are super small and packed full of stuff all the time. I am hoping that by hiding the dish rack between washes it will look cleaner."

Then, of the after photo she said, "I also got rid of the bottle rack because it was just siting there with old bottles the baby doesn't use anymore."

As you can see, once Sabrina cleaned up the dishes she was able to "see" the rest of the clutter, and found even more things she could declutter from the area!

How and why to adopt a daily tidy up routine

Scroll down below to see even more photos from readers who, once they cleaned up the dishes, were able to also further declutter the space around their kitchen sink.

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Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to kitchen clutter.

Second Part Of The Mission: Declutter Non-Essentials Around Your Kitchen Sink

Before and after photos when decluttered kitchen sink area, including removing foldable dish drainer {on Home Storage Solutions 101} #Declutter365

Here are photos from readers who had cleaned up their kitchen sink area enough to then be able to evaluate what was left, and decide what was essential versus just clutter in the area.

The photos above are from a reader, Megan. She said, "Top = Before; Bottom = After. I'm still going to see what I can find for my soaps and jewelry cup. This makes me content though!"

She then continued, explaining about what she did with the dish drainer. She said, "Forgot to mention: my dish rack is bamboo and folds flat. I store it under my sink."

That means Megan decided it was more important to her to have a clear counter than to keep out her dish rack, and she will fold it up after each use and put it away from now on.

Each person's preferences are different, and so you need to decide for yourself what you think should stay out, versus what should be put away!

How to declutter the area around your kitchen sink of unnecessary items {on Home Storage Solutions 101} #Declutter365

These before and afters were sent in by another reader, Sarah, who said, "Feels and looks nice!"

How to #declutter your kitchen sink area, including lots of before and after photos to get you inspired and ready to tackle your own sink area today! {on Home Storage Solutions 101} #Declutter365 #Declutteringuse this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

Finally, here's a before and after from a reader Samantha. I chose these photo as an example because I noticed how much stuff she removed from the window sill behind her sink, which is an often forgotten area when decluttering! Good job Samantha!

Now scroll down to see some really awesome "after" photos also sent in by readers who did this mission, that I just thought were WOW!

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Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to kitchen clutter.

Decluttered Kitchen Sink Areas That Make You Say Wow!

How to #declutter your kitchen sink area of unneeded items, so you can have a calming space to look at, plus a good work space for all sink related tasks in your kitchen {on Home Storage Solutions 101} #Declutter365 #Declutteringuse this Pin it button to save to Pinterest

Here is a collage of just some of the outstanding looking sink areas sent in to me by readers who worked through this mission.

The photos are from, going in order from top to bottom, left to right, Alison, Angela, Denisia, Emily, and Kari. Each of you ladies did an amazing job and your kitchens look great!

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Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to kitchen clutter.

Are You Ready To Get Rid Of The Clutter Around Your Kitchen Sink?

Are you ready to declutter around your kitchen sink? If so, here's instructions for how to do it, including lots of pictures from real people who've done this #Declutter365 mission {on Home Storage Solutions 101}

Finally, here's a photo above from a reader, Leah, who said, "All cleaned up! Now to keep it looking pretty!"

Kitchen sink organization ideas and storage solutions
Yay Leah, you did great, and now, are you ready to do the same thing for the area around your sink?

Plus, remember that once you declutter you'll want to organize what's left. Here's an article with lots of kitchen sink organization ideas you can use!

Want To Do More Decluttering Missions? Get Started With Declutter 365 Today!

Declutter 365 missions: 15 minute missions for your entire home

Once you declutter one type of item in your home I bet you'll want to declutter some more. After all, decluttering gives you a great reward for even a small investment of time and energy.

The Declutter 365 system is designed to help you declutter, over the course of a year, your entire house, with just 15 minutes of decluttering each day!

Hundreds of thousands of people use this proven system to get rid of their clutter, and bring peace and calm back to their homes.

Declutter 365 works to guide you to clear the clutter without overwhelm, focusing on just one small area at a time, and without making a huge mess in the process, so you see consistent forward progress without all that "messy middle" that makes it even harder to function in your home than before you started.

In addition to building a daily decluttering habit, the Declutter 365 program, along with the accompanying 52 Week Organized Home Challenge, teaches you the skills, habits, routines, and mindsets necessary to maintain the clutter free and organized state of your home from now on, so it'll never be as messy and cluttered as it is right now, ever again.

If you haven't already, make sure to get your copy of this year's Declutter 365 annual calendar here (it's FREE!), find today's date, and do 15 minutes of decluttering on the day's mission. Then, repeat again tomorrow, and again and again. Over the course of the next year, if you do this 15 minutes per day, you'll declutter your whole house!

Click here to take me to this year's Declutter 365 calendar

Get This Kitchen Decluttering Checklist + 32 Other Decluttering Checklists For Your Home

Right now you're decluttering your kitchen, and there's a lot of stuff to declutter in this space.

Get your 2 page kitchen decluttering checklist, plus 32 other decluttering checklists, to help you declutter your entire home here.

Get this kitchen decluttering checklist and 32 other decluttering checklists for your home {on Home Storage Solutions 101}

I've done the hard work of breaking down these tasks into smaller more manageable steps for you, so you don't get overwhelmed or worry you're forgetting a task, and you can go at the pace you want, whether that's fast or slow.

In addition, you can tackle these decluttering tasks in whatever order you want when you use these checklists!

Click here to learn more about 33 Decluttering Checklists Pack

Related Pages You May Enjoy

Getting Clutter Free 15 Minutes At A Time Hall Of Fame

Getting Rid Of Kitchen Clutter Hall Of Fame

Go From How To Declutter Your Kitchen Sink Area To Home Page

Comments for Are You Ready To Get Rid Of The Clutter Around Your Kitchen Sink?

Click here to add your own comments

Drying rack
by: Anonymous

I never know where to begin. I do not want to keep my drying rack out every day full of dishes. That's what ends up happening though. There is no room for it in a cupboard. Do people stash it in their oven? Ideas?

Re: Drying Rack
by: Anonymous

I have nowhere for mine, either. When it was time to replace my clunky plastic rack, I opted for a simple, streamlined metal rack on a tray. I think it cost maybe $7. It's still there, but since it takes up less visual space, my counter looks much more clear!

I just did this last week !
by: MJ

Was finally motivated to tackle all the little items collecting dust on the window sill and get rid of other bulky items surrounding sink ;) Suddenly faucet was gleaming since nothing else was competing with it for my attention ;)!

Drying rack alternative
by: Rebecca

Instead of a drying rack, I use a cloth drying pad. It's flat already and folds up smaller to be put away.

Drying rack
by: Sarah

We have a dishwasher, so we only use our drying rack for large or hand washed items. I also use it when I hand wash dishes that don't fit in a current dishwasher cycle so I can get that feeling of task completion when I'm cleaning the kitchen. I store the rack under the kitchen sink when it's not in use and that makes a HUGE difference!!

No drying rack
by: Anonymous

I used to use a drying rack, and I thought I’d never get rid of it. Now I just use a drying pad, and it forces me (and my family) to clean dishes and dry them pretty quickly. We do have a dishwasher for the majority, but still like to wash and dry quick use plates/cereal bowls/good pots/pans, of course. It forces you to put away quicker as well, because the space the pad provides is limited.

However, like I said before, I do have a dishwasher. Not sure you can let go of a drying rack if you don’t. :(

Drying rack
by: Monica

I bought a metal drying rack and keep it in the oven. Then if I forget and preheat the oven while it is still inside (I have twice now) nothing is ruined or catches on fire!

Drying rack
by: Donna

I purchased a plastic collapsible drain tray that fits inside my sink. I let the dishes dry. Sometimes I will cover it with a dishtowel to look neater. The counter is clean and knowing the dishes are clean and drying, they do not seem like clutter. I can also pick it up and set it on a dish towel on the counter if needed.

Getting Started
by: Anonymous

A couple of weeks late for getting started but happy to have the first couple of missions done. I did this same program a few years ago before a big move. Many life changes and it’s time to do it again.

Sink declutter
by: Anonymous

I use the Italian Grandma solution. No dish rack. Simply dish towel that can then be folded in the frig handle.

Drying Rack Alternative
by: Anonymous

I used to have a big, plastic drying rack to dry my hand washed items. It always looked horrible so I bought an (referral link) "Over the Sink Multipurpose Roll-Up Dish Drying Rack" off Amazon. I love it! It stores compactly under the sink, but even if it's out and in use, it looks tidier and is very inconspicuous. :)

Dish rack
by: Anonymous

My grandmothers taught me to wash dishes, let them dry on top of dishtowels on the counter, flipping them upside down after a few minutes, to dry the other side. Then I put them away and the towels are put on the oven door handle to dry. If company is coming, I dry them immediately and put away.

Fitted in rack
by: Anonymous

A suggestion from Italy if someone is going to refurbish the kitchen... We always have a cabinet over the sink with a drying rack fitted in, and a tray underneath for preventing water from dripping in the sink. I discovered it is not such a common item when traveling abroad. Of course you can’t have a window then, which is also a pity, but this is the only con. Otherwise I really suggest going for a fitted in rack! Ok, I have to declutter it, but at least you don’t see the clutter every moment.

Dish Rack always there, and it's OK
by: Rose

I alway have a dish rack in my sink! Always, and it doesn't bother me at all. I alway keep my kitchen counters clean, but most times I have dishes drying IN the sink on a rack. It's more sanitary than using a dish cloth or a mat to dry dishes, look it up. If you know me, you know there could be dishes drying in my sink and you just need to accept it. I use a rack that matches the sink color and I spend the money to get a "nice" looking rack.

keep everything in a tote, you can put away when done
by: Pam

I have all my necessities (dishwashing and hand washing soap, counter-cleaning spray, sponge, and a container to baking soda and salt for scrubbing pans) in a clear acrylic tote, next to my sink. When I want to tidy up for company I can just set it underneath the sink in the cabinet.

Kitchen sink improved
by: PattieinVA

Thanks for this. This is my first mission and I am sold on your guidance. I was able to toss 3 empty bottles that have been sitting there for an embarrassingly long amount of time. I also removed 4 decorative items that I had in my window. I am considering removing 2 more items. Happy New Year. Ready for 365 Decluttering!

Drying Rack
by: Anonymous

I use a bamboo rack like the one in the photos above. When it’s empty, it stays on the counter, but since it folds flat, it stands against the back wall and out of the way!

Just do it!!!
by: Tracie

Today before I went to work I cleaned up my sink area. I put all the dishes in the dishwasher and put the dishtowels in the washer. DID IT!

Dish drainer
by: Melissa

I have a dish drainer that fits in the sink. I don’t leave dishes in there for long.

I ditched the ugly dish rack
by: Anonymous

I just use the draining board itself and lean items up against each other. It works fine and much less clutter

Over the sink dish drying cupboard
by: Barbara

In Spain, it is very common to have your sink facing a wall with a bottomless cupboard on top of it that has metal racks for shelves. When you wash your pots & pans, dishes and whatever else, you put the wet things straight on the rack so they drip dry (drips fall straight onto the sink) and you also leave then there to store. Drying & storing done in one step - genious! I live in England now and most sinks face a window so no chance of having one of those, unfortunately...

Undersink solution
by: Kim K

Using a pair of Command hooks, I've mounted a small coated-wire dish rack on the inside of the door under the sink. When I'm using the rack, I put a dishtowel underneath. It's been a space-saving game changer!

Kids and dish soap=danger
by: avid teader

Years ago I moved dish soap and cleaners from kitchen sink cabinet to above counter cabinet next to sink to make it safer for toddlers. I actually liked it so much I have kept it that way.

I have a garbage can, kitchen aide mixer and cutting boards under my sink, none of which are harmful to toddlers, well, maybe trash but it never was an issue!

No rack needed
by: Anonymous

I have a dishwasher but in the event I do some hand washing like my good nonstick skillets, I take a clean dish cloth out and lay it on the counter for the dishes. By the time I'm done they're at least partially dry then I will finish with another cloth and put them away. I don't have a lot of room on my counters to leave dishes out so that's a big incentive to put them away!

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