Clear the Clutter in 2018: 20 Things to Throw Away

05 January 2018

One of the most popular New Year’s Resolutions is cleaning up around the house. Whether it’s a major cleaning or just some clutter removal, we have some help for you. Check out our list of 20 things you should throw away, you won’t even miss them but you will enjoy the clutter-free living.

  1. Old Shoes: When was the last time you wore each pair of shoes you have in your closet? If you haven’t worn them in the past year, it might be time to get rid of them. If they are in need of repair, definitely throw them away, if they are in good condition, donate them.
  2. Clothing You Don’t Wear: While you are in the closet looking over your shoes, go through your clothing. Same rule applies, if you haven’t worn it this year, give it away or donate it.
  3. Expired Makeup: You may not even realise this, but your makeup expires. Go through everything you have in your makeup bag. Foundations and concealers expire after one year. Blush, eye shadows, and lipsticks expire after two years.
  4. Expired Medications: Sometimes medications get left in your medicine cabinet after you feel better. The New Year is the perfect time to go through it all and throw out anything that is expired or unidentifiable.
  5. Old Glasses: If you got a new pair of prescription glasses this year, you can donate your old glasses so that someone can make the use of them.
  6. Old Chargers: If you are like me, you are always getting new chargers for your phones and other electronic devices. However, what happens to the old charger cords? They usually end up in some drawer somewhere in a tangled pile. Instead of keeping them, throw them away.
  7. Old Electronics: If you have old electronics that either don’t work or you don’t use, get rid of them. If they are broken, then you would throw them out, but if they still work, put them in the donation pile. Selby Acoustics has plenty of ideas for replacing old electronics.
  8. Appliance Manuals: Whether your appliances are new or old, there really is no reason to keep the manuals. Almost everything can be found online now and if you have an old appliance with no online manual, when do you really need it anyhow? You already know how to use it.
  9. Cereal Boxes and Bags: Instead of keeping cereal boxes and bags which are never airtight storage options, throw them away and transfer your cereal to airtight storage bins or glass containers that look nice and keep your cereal fresher longer.
  10. Your Dish Sponge: Did you know that your dish sponge should be thrown out every month? It harbours too much bacteria and germs. At least once a week, you should wash it in the dishwasher too.
  11. Dirty Air Filters: Dirty filters on your HVAC system should be changed or cleaned regularly whenever they are dirty. Whether you clean them or throw them away and replace with new ones depends on the type you have. The New Year is a great time to check on them along with the other cleaning resolutions you have made.
  12. Clean Out the Kids’ Rooms: Right after the holidays is a great time to take the opportunity to evaluate which clothes and toys the kids have outgrown. Most of the kids’ things can be donated, but used up toys and torn clothes can be thrown away.
  13. Old Spices: Most spices should be thrown away after a year. The key to knowing is if you smell them, they should still have their scent. No scent means no flavour and they are done.
  14. Your Toothbrush: The New Year is a good reminder to throw away your old toothbrush. Actually, you should switch to a new toothbrush every three months to get the maximum brushing power out of them.
  15. Unidentified Food Objects in the Freezer: If you have unlabeled and unknown items in the freezer, throw them out and start fresh for the New Year.
  16. Cookbooks You Never Use: Other than family heirlooms passed down, when do you look in a cookbook when preparing a recipe? If you mostly use the Internet to find recipes, then it might be time to recycle or donate your cookbooks that are just sitting around taking up space and collecting dust.
  17. Old Receipts: If you need to save your receipts, then take a picture of them to save them. There are even apps that will help you keep them organized. However, there is no need to keep all that clutter of old receipts.
  18. Takeout Leftovers: Just like you would throw out food leftovers that are too old, you should also clean house on all of the extra takeout menus, chopsticks, and condiment packets too.
  19. Ratty Old Towels: We all have them, old towels that we just never find a time to part with. Most stores have white sales in January, so you can get new towels on clearance to replace the ratty ones that shouldn’t be on display any more.
  20. Plenty of things in the Kitchen: There is probably so much in your kitchen that can be thrown out or donated. Look at chipped coffee mugs, plastic containers with no lids, duplicate utensils and tools and throw away or donate what you don’t need.


Starting the New Year fresh and clean is a great way to feel good and celebrate the new beginning. Sometimes, you just have to get into a frame of mind for throwing things away. Once you get started, don’t stop with the clutter removal and go through each room in your home. You will be happy once you are finished. Psychologists have studied this and show that a clutter free home reduces stress and makes you feel better. When you start the New Year out right with a clean and clutter-free home, it will help propel you through keeping it that way throughout the year and beyond. This New Year’s resolution can become a new annual tradition.


Matt Thames is blogger and Brand Manager for Selby Acoustics. He enjoys sharing tips on home entertainment topics.