Another week, another beauty product. If you’re anything like us, then you probably picked up the eighth addition to your face masks collection this month. It seems like each new product promises an enhancement or feature that our current collection is lacking. With new products coming out almost daily, it's hard to resist buying them, even when we don't actually need them. This habit can often result in an overflowing counter and a tray of unused products. How often do you stumble across products you haven’t used in months while digging through your beauty collection? When we’re deep into our beauty routine, we sometimes find ourselves questioning the need for all the products we've gathered over the years. Now we know this might sound a little Marie Kondo ish, but it's time to start letting go of any products that don't spark joy or serve a genuine purpose on your counter. For many of us, our beauty routine is an act of self-care, and that routine should be filled with products that make us feel good. Lessening our load and focusing on our needs can not only streamline our beauty routine but make it more intentional as well. So grab your trash bag and armor up with self-discipline! With these tips, you can take your beauty space from cluttered to cultivated in no time.
1) Make a list of your must-haves
You can put the trash bag down, for now, let's start with a list. If you’ve been practicing a beauty routine for a while then you probably have a good understanding of your must-haves. You know that your dry skin needs an ultra-hydrating moisturizer and that your skin doesn't react well to fragrance. With this information, you can create a list of your absolute must-haves for your beauty routine. For this list, focus more on the product types and not the specific brands. So instead of listing your Moonbeam Bath Butter, just list bath soap as an item on the list. The must-haves list will come in handy when you start decluttering. Your heart may be saying you need that 24-karat gold oil, but your list may say otherwise.
2) Check for expirations
The thought of beauty products expiring is one that still shocks people when they realize it. It’s strange to think that our lotion stops moisturizing us the way it used to after a while, but it does happen. If you haven't checked your collection for expired items in a while now is a perfect time to toss them out. There are a few sites like Real Simple and Check Cosmetic that provide databases and a checklist to determine product expiration dates. Tossing your expired items before the big sweep will help you get some of the products out the way before the big declutter starts.
3) Separate the favs, the “ehhhh”, and the absolute no’s
Let’s admit it, falling in love with a product in-store only to be disappointed when we use it at home happens pretty often. And to spare us our pride and maybe even our coins, we’ve dragged that product along with us year after year, but the ride stops here. Schedule some time to gather all of your beauty products up for evaluation. Set up areas or boxes designated for your keepers, maybes, and no’s. Review each product one by one and ask yourself questions like “When’s the last time I used this?” or “Does this make my skin feel good?” to help you determine what pile the product belongs to. Be sure to take your time and be intentional throughout the process. If you speed through you may make some decisions you'll regret in the future. While you’re at it, pull out your list of must-haves to ensure your “favs” pile is made up of at least one of each item. Your maybes pile will require a second review that determines the products final destinations. When you’re done sorting, set your keepers to the side and prep your no’s for the trash or donating.
4) Test your maybes
Items in your maybes pile will undergo another round of evaluation. In this round, you’ll determine whether their forever home is the trash or the counter. In order to make the most accurate decision, test out your maybes before you make the final call. You may have hated a scrub's texture in the past, but you may like it now. Giving the products one last spin can assure you that the right decision is being made and save you from future regrets.
5) Gift or donate your samples/ unopened products
Raise your hand if you have at least one beauty sample hanging out on your counter! Samples are notorious for adding extra clutter to our bathrooms, but that doesn’t stop us from grabbing more at the store or hotel. If you haven’t used your samples or simply don’t plan to, you can make someone else smile by donating or gifting them. You can make a “just because” gift bag for a friend or host a swap party to give your products a new home. You can also check with your local women’s or homeless shelter to see if they’re accepting cosmetics and toiletries.
6) Don’t go over your designated space
Whether you use your counter, cabinet or bins, you most likely have a designated spot of your beauty products. In order to hold yourself accountable and keep your space cultivated, you should try to keep things organized within your designated space. That means not overflowing to two shelves when you originally used one. Using this strategy will require you to practice a “one in, one out” technique when buying new products. We all know there are exceptions, but hopefully, you can avoid buying new toner when your current one is still half full. If you believe in keeping your products stocked, you can store the bulk items somewhere else and still restock your empties.
When it’s all said and done your beauty space should feel less cluttered and more purposeful. Of course, we can’t expect our shopping to completely stop, so this is something you can do anytime your space gets cluttered again. What step are you most excited about? Let us know in the comments or on social media @theposebox. Don’t forget to share your transformations with us too!