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how to clean out your closet
Organization and Tips

Considering Cleaning Out Your Closet? Here’s How To Do It

Most of us have been spending much more time at home this year. So if you haven’t considered cleaning out your closet (or perhaps you’ve been putting it off!), now’s the perfect time to finally tackle this task. Keep reading for some tried-and-true tips on how to clean out your closet, getting organized, and the best websites to sell your clothes.

How To Clean Out Your Closet (And Make $$$ Selling Your Clothes!)

Take Everything Out Of Your Closet

Don’t just take a few things out — completely clear out your closet and put everything on your bed. You’ll be able to see all of your clothing, shoes, and accessories, and you’ll also be able to tell what kind of dimensions and space available. Once it’s empty, vacuum/sweep it out and wipe down the baseboards. If your clothing rack is squeaky, take some wax paper and clean that off, too. Start with a completely blank canvas!

Get A Donation (And Trash) Bag Ready

You’re bound to find some clothing and accessories that are ready for a second home. Instead of just making an additional pile of the things you no longer want or need, have two bags ready to go. Once you’ve made the cut and put them away in a bag, you’ll be less tempted to revisit them and change your mind. 

Be Cutthroat About What Stays And Goes

Try not to be too sentimental about clothing and accessories that you no longer wear. Remain objective about each item in the pile. It may even be best to make snap judgments on each piece. However, if you begin to struggle, here are some questions that may help you decide:

  • Do I like this item?
  • When was the last time I wore this item?
  • Is this item for a special occasion? 
  • Do I like how I feel when I am wearing this item?

There will be instances where you may not wear a certain piece because it’s formal or for special occasions only, so keep that in mind! But those shoes that you never wear because they give you blisters or that dress that you never reach for… those items may need the chop.

how to clean out closet

Organize Your Clothing By Type

A color-coordinated closet may be visually appealing, but if it’s not functional and easy to navigate, it’ll be a mess before you know it. So, once you’ve gone through all of your items and decided what you’ll be keeping, separate the pieces by category. Outerwear, denim, tops and so on. If you’re noticing you have a ton of stuff in one category, you may want to revisit the above steps. Once you’re done, start placing things back in your closet and keep everything together by category — belts with other belts, coats with coats, etc. Keeping your stuff organized by type will also help you figure out how much space you need to assign to each category when you’re putting everything back! Remember, you’re organizing this for YOU!

What’s Your Closet’s Prime Real Estate?

If you use certain pieces a lot, you need to keep them easily accessible at eye level. Think of this space as your closet’s prime real estate. You may be tempted to show off those sparkly formal blouses and dresses, but keeping those in your closet’s prime real estate will also lead to you digging to find one of your wardrobe staples. This will inevitably lead to your closet becoming a disaster zone again.

Fold As Much As You Can

Your closet may be big enough to hang all of your t-shirts, but if you’re working with a smaller space, fold-down anything that doesn’t need to be on hangers. Sweaters, denim, t-shirts, workout gear… fold everything that doesn’t require a hanger, and then see what kind of space you’re working with. If your dresser drawers are overflowing, Marie Kondo has a great method for folding everything down to instantly create more space. 

Commit To Keeping It That Way!

When learning how to clean out your closet, it’s all about maintenance! When you’re actively maintaining your closet, you’ll find that you won’t have to dedicate a ton of time to seasonal clean-outs. Give yourself a little time for monthly or biweekly tweaks and tackle another overhaul every season. 

Tips For Selling Your Clothes Online

If you come across some clothing that you’d like to sell, good news — there are plenty of websites you can try! Just keep the following tips in mind when selling your gently used clothing and accessories: 

  • Closely inspect your clothing for any snags, holes, and imperfections of any kind. Do you have pets? Do you smoke? You’ll want to include every little detail in the listing.
  • Grab a measuring tape! Sometimes just listing the size on the tag isn’t enough. Measure your item’s length, inseams, etc. 
  • Always ship on time! We’re all familiar with how frustrating it can be to wait on an item to ship, so don’t be that person! 
  • Take well-lit pictures. Don’t wait until nighttime and rely on your phone’s camera flash to truly capture the color and texture of your item. Wait until daytime and take photos in natural light. And don’t use any filters! 

The Best Websites For Selling Your Clothing & Accessories

  • Tradesy — When you spend your earnings on Tradesy, the Tradesy commission is 19.8% (subject to minimum commission fee as noted below). All listings with a sale price of less than $50 will incur the minimum commission fee of $7.50; in addition, the minimum sale price for all new listings on Tradesy is $10.
  • ThredUP — ThredUp takes 5 to 80 percent of the anticipated selling price. (The more valuable the item, the higher your percentage.) ThredUp commission: 20 to 95 percent of the selling price. (The more the item sells for, the lower ThredUp’s commission.)
  • Poshmark — It’s always free to list an item for sale on Poshmark. After your item sells, they deduct a small fee from the final order price. For sales under $15, the fee is a flat rate of $2.95. For sales above $15, the fee is 20% and you keep 80%.
  • Mercari — Mercari will take a 10 percent commission on everything you sell. You don’t pay to list your items for sale. You only pay the commission when your items sell. You will get paid when the buyer rates the transaction.
  • eBay — Sellers with a basic eBay account pay a 10% final value fee for most items (with a $750 maximum), 12% for books, DVDs, movies, and music (with a $750 maximum), 2% for select business and industrial categories (with a $300 maximum), and 3.5% for musical instruments and gear (with a $350 maximum).

The Takeaway

Clearing out your closet is always a good idea — it makes space for new things and ensures that everything in your closet has a purpose! And if you decide to sell some of your things online, it can be a pretty rewarding experience! Just be sure to commit to keeping it organized and remember to be mindful when shopping online for new pieces. Consider how often you’ll wear it, the purpose it will serve, and most importantly, whether or not the item will make you feel like a million bucks! 

Related Article: Who says you have to wait until spring to start deep cleaning your space? We’ve all been cooped up in our homes for the past few months, so now’s the perfect time to make sure our living spaces are properly cleaned and tidy. So slip into some comfortable gear and check out our favorite items to stay organized.

How To Clean Out Your Closet (And Make $$$ Selling Your Clothes!

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