50 Things to Throw Away for Instant Decluttering

Decluttering feels like I’m organizing my values. By letting go of unnecessary things, ideas, and people, we’re making room for what's truly essential. Still, decluttering isn’t as easy as it looks.

50 things to throw away for instant decluttering

When decluttering, you don’t need to get rid of sentimental objects. Always try to use something up, recycle it, or donate it; use throwing away items as a last resort. If something is at the end of its usability, throw it away. It may be tough to let go, but you’ll feel so light once it’s done. Here are 50 things to declutter.

Photo frames

1. Photo frames

I wanted to dedicate a whole wall to making a gallery. but didn’t end up liking it. I saved the cute pictures and am getting rid of the rest.


2. Vases

I have a ton of vases. I think they are beautiful, but they don’t hold anything and serve no purpose. I’m definitely donating a lot of them.

Dead plants

3. Dead plants

I get really attached to my plants, so it's difficult to get rid of them, even if they are wilting or dying. 

Old or scented candles

4. Old candles

I used to love scented candles. But, now, I have a different opinion about them. The scent is overwhelming and smells artificial. 

Essential oils

5. Essential oils

I was gifted a pack of essential oils but don’t use most of them.

Old magazines

6. Old magazines

Did you ever collect old magazines for vision boards and inspiration? I haven’t done that in forever, so, I’m donating some so they can inspire others.

CDs, DVDs, and vinyls

7. CDs, DVDs, and vinyls

I haven’t had a CD or DVD player in forever. I do have vinyls, but I only really listen to some.

Extra notebooks

8. Extra notebooks

If you like stationary as I do, you know how difficult this one is. I’ve collected free notebooks from work and conferences, that I never end up using.

Books you don’t read

9. Books you don’t read

It's difficult for me to give up my books, but I don’t have space in my house to store the ones I don’t read.

College textbooks

10. College textbooks

There are so many ways to learn nowadays.

Extra earphones

11. Extra earphones

I have so many pairs. I need to let some of them go.

Miscellaneous chargers and cords

12. Miscellaneous chargers and cords

Random cords really stress me out. I put them in a pile somewhere and it just gets forgotten.

Original packaging

13. Original packaging

I hate the idea of throwing away the beautifully designed package, but I really have no use for it.

Camera and laptop accessories

14. Camera and laptop accessories

My camera came with so many attachments and accessories I don’t use.

Warranties and instruction manuals

15. Warranties and instruction manuals

I have all the information online. There’s really no need to keep a paper copy.

Old credit cards and checkbooks

16. Old credit cards and checkbooks

Shred them and forget about them. 


17. Receipts

Are you going to be returning that item anytime soon? If the answer is no, then it’s time to let go.

Blurry photos

18. Blurry photos

I have no use for blurry or unimportant photos.

Board games

19. Board games

Are you missing pieces from board and card games and haven’t played them in a while? There’s no sense in keeping them around.

Craft supplies

20. Craft supplies

If you had a hobby in the past, and have the equipment for it, but haven’t touched them in a while, it’s time to let go.

Old keys

21. Old keys

Sort and throw away what you don’t need.

Foreign currency

22. Foreign currency

We haven’t touched foreign currency from our travels in forever. Unless you will use it at a later date, it’s time to exchange it.

Exercise equipment

23. Exercise equipment

Exercise equipment that you are not using.

Outdoor toys

24. Outdoor toys

This applies to outdoor hobby supplies (basketballs, soccer balls, roller skates, etc…) that you enjoyed in the past, but no longer actively do.

25. Old gadgets or toys

If you have outgrown or upgraded, it is time to throw out the old ones.

Pet and kid toys

26. Pet and kid toys

Don’t forget about your furry friends and your children. They also need to declutter their toys.

Repair pieces

27. Repair pieces

Repair pieces for things you don’t have

Cheap hangers

28. Cheap hangers

I used to keep the hangers that came with new clothes until I noticed they only last a couple of months.

Old sheets

29. Old sheets

My animal shelter will take the flat sheets, but not the fitted ones.


30. Blankets

Same with blankets, as well.

Unused watches

31. Unused watches

I didn’t want to use my phone for telling time so I got a watch that I never used.

Clothes that don’t fit

32. Clothes that don’t fit

You are never going to reach for those clothes that don’t fit you anymore. If they don’t fit your body or lifestyle, it’s time to donate them. 

Fancy outfits

33. Fancy outfits

It doesn’t fit my lifestyle anymore. I recently donated my wedding dress.

Uncomfortable shoes

34. Uncomfortable shoes

This is something I really won’t miss.

Free t-shirts

35. Free t-shirts

I keep no more than one or two free shirts from promotions, work, or charity events, in case I need to paint or do dirty yard work. 

Swag gifts and branded merchandise

36. Swag gifts and branded merchandise

I used to collect those free swag items you get in the mail or from charity events, because who doesn’t like free stuff. 

Unwanted gifts

37. Unwanted gifts

This can be difficult because we associate it with the person and thought behind the gift. But, if it’s no longer serving a purpose in our life, it has no space in our life.

Old bags

38. Old bags

Old totes and backpacks that you’re not using.

Nearly empty bottles

39. Nearly empty bottles

The best thing to do is use it up, or, if you won’t use it for a while, just throw it away.

Travel-sized toiletries

40. Travel-sized toiletries

Get rid of it. If you need one, you can always buy it for two or three dollars.

Old toiletries

41. Old toiletries

They probably do you more harm than good.

Expired medicine

42. Expired medicine

If you have expired medicine or medicine that you aren’t taking anymore, you can throw it away.

Old cooking tools and appliances

43. Old cooking tools and appliances

We all have our favorites and our go-to’s.


44. Duplicates

Choose the one you always reach for, and get rid of the rest. 

Expired food items

45. Expired food items

Jars and containers without lids

46. Jars and containers without lids

They are impractical. 

Extra kitchen items

47. Extra kitchen items 

We just have two sets for two people. 

Old spices

48. Old spices

Things to declutter

49. Empty food containers

I used to collect cookie jars and fancy takeout boxes, but I’m definitely going to get rid of some.

50. Anything else you can think of!

Things to declutter

I’ve learned the biggest lesson of all — be intentional with your purchases. I hope you found these 50 things to declutter helpful. Let me know in the comments if I missed anything.

Join the conversation
2 of 30 comments
  • G"ma Jane G"ma Jane on May 30, 2024

    Light bulbs and batteries. Keep fresh batteries by size and pitch the old ones right away. Don't just set them down for later. Mine go in a handy kitchen drawer along with non-food essentials such as new light bulbs, scissors, tape, string/twine, picture hooks, two screwdrivers, a small hammer, one extension cord, a small first aid kit (for burns and cuts), and I am mindful that this is not an "etc." drawer. It has a specific purpose. The regular tool kit is in the garage but, I find it handy to keep a couple of frequently used items close.

    I also use a portion of this very large drawer for my small appliances, such as electric knife, hand mixer, immersion thingy, and knife sharpener.

    Incidentally, remember to keep your freshly charged fire extinguisher nearby.

    I am confined to a wheelchair so getting and keeping things organized is super important.

  • Vebchambers Vebchambers on Jun 08, 2024

    I have found it’s good to keep items from old hobbies/crafts because a these items are usually expensive and can be reused or repopulated for other things. Often I go back to an old hobby or craft and g doi it again. Just store it properly and neatly.