How To Be RUTHLESS When Decluttering Clothes in Your Closet


Too Much STUFF in Your Closet, But Not Enough Space? Here’s How To Be RUTHLESS When Decluttering Clothes in Your Closet (without feeling overwhelmed).

This 7 step clothes decluttering system below is what works best for me whether I’m decluttering clothes in small closets or large walk-in closets. I’m ruthless when I do it – and I do it FAST.
How to be ruthless when decluttering clothes and downsizing your wardrobe

Updated on November 5, 2022

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Tired of all the CLOTHES in your closet that are just taking up space? Ready to organize your closet and NOT feel so darn overwhelmed?

Decluttering your clothes sure can feel very time-intensive and VERY overwhelming, but with a realistic system in place you’ll be able to get in there and quickly sort through your clothes, get rid of the stuff you don’t need and then completely organize your closet with the remaining clothing items you DO need.


Let’s do this!

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Read: How To Find Motivation To Clean When Depressed

How to be RUTHLESS when decluttering clothes in your closet WITHOUT feeling overwhelmed

Decluttering Clothes Tips

There are as many clothes decluttering tips as there are closets – meaning, ask any of your 5 friends how THEY declutter their clothes and you’re bound to get 5 different answers.

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As some examples:

One friend of mine keeps all her clean clothes OUT of her closet for a few weeks.

Her theory is this:

When what you actually DO wear is OUT of your closet, you can then go IN your closet and easily find the things you do NOT wear – and get rid of it.

For many, this way of decluttering and organizing your clothes works brilliantly, for others, it just creates MORE of a mess OUTSIDE their closets.

Point is: try and DO what works for YOU to keep your wardrobe minimized.

But above all, you HAVE to be RUTHLESS when decluttering clothes!

If your closet is SO cluttered and you don’t know where to start, take a look at these tips below to help your find a system for decluttering your clothes that works for YOU.

TIP: Be sure to take a good look at every inch of your available closet space to be sure you are maximizing ALL of it.

When you’re trying to figure out how to organize a small house with no storage, ya gotta try ALL the things!

For example, the area UNDER your hanging clothes can be used for valuable storage space.

Even inside tiny houses, there are ways to create more storage space for your stuff if you’re creative about it.

Like these space-savers below – they’re perfect for making more room for the clothes you keep!

They’re also one of my favorite space saving small laundry room ideas for storing clothes in my laundry room.

Yes, there are some clothes I keep in my laundry room (yep, I’m weird, but it’s really convenient!)

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✅ My System

Here are the 7 simple steps I take to declutter my clothes fast – and I am RUTHLESS about it. When you have too many clothes it becomes overwhelming – here’s what to do to minimize your wardrobe and get rid of the clothes you do not need, want or wear.

I’m pretty brutal when it comes to decluttering – especially when downsizing my wardrobe of items that just clutter up my life. I started decluttering clothes like this back in my college apartment days and have been doing it like this ever since.

Are you ready to be brutally ruthless too? Good – let’s go!

Step 1. Make the Time –

First, you have to set aside the time and schedule to do this stuff…probably during the weekends where you’ve got plenty of hours to spare. Not only that, you can also get the kids or your spouse to assist you in getting on with it. You can either sweet talk them, cajole them, or even blackmail them to help you out.

The more hands, the better. This way, things are a bit quicker to accomplish.

Step 2. Get Empty Boxes or Bags –

Grab some empty cardboard boxes or large trash bags and write some labeling words on them such as: accessories, favorite clothes, designer clothes, casual wear, underwear, undergarments, and so on.

Depending on how diverse your wardrobe is, the number of boxes you will need can vary. Naturally, you can still group the clothes together either on the bed or on the floor if you ever run out of boxes.

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Step 3. Consider a Closet Organizing System –

Right now, before you do anything else, is the perfect moment to consider the idea of purchasing a closet organizer.

If you’re organizing your closet on a budget, there are a wide range of affordable closet organizing systems to choose from.

Here are some of my favorites:

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Step 4. Get To Work –

This is the most time-consuming part of organizing your closet. If you’ve got some help, then you don’t have to sweat this out.

But if you are tackling this project on your own, be ready to accept that this will take some time – maybe a LOT of time.

You will have to totally empty all the things inside the closet, one by one, piece by piece, and put them in the empty boxes you just prepared.

Group the clothes belonging to the same category / season together.

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One bonus that comes with this is that you may just end up finding some stuff that you have been looking for earlier.

Heck, you’ll probably find things in your closet that you totally FORGOT you had!

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Step 5. Decide What To Get Rid Of

Once you have grouped the stuff you just emptied from the closet, it’s now time to segregate further those items that you still want to use or wear.

Ask yourself some questions like:

“Do I really even LIKE these jeans?”


“When’s the last time I actually wore this?”

You will just realize that your closet is stuffed with clothes you haven’t worn for years.

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Step 6. Putting Your Closet Back Together –

Now it’s time to put the clothes you want to keep back in the closet.

Keep in mind that you should put things back in proper perspective.

Group similar category of clothes together. You can group clothes by season or by use (ie, casual stuff, work clothes, etc)

Take your time doing this step – If you just hastily put them back and end mixing them up, then you will be back to square one.

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Step 7. Give Yourself a High Five –

Give yourself a pat on the back for finishing and finally organizing your closet.

Most likely, you will find your closet amazing now and you’ll be SO happy your did it.

Decluttering Kid’s Clothes

If you’re decluttering and organizing a child’s closet, here is a chart with some helpful tips to help you decide what clothes to keep and what to toss:

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More Closet Decluttering Tips

How To Sort Clothes in Your Closet

Nursery Closet Organization Ideas

Dorm Room Closet Hacks

Linen Closet Organization Ideas

Baby Closet Organization Ideas

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Declutter clothes checklist and life changing closet organization tips to declutter and organize your closet

More Space-Saving Closet Ideas

Organizing a small closet, like a dorm room closet or apartment closet?

Try these space-saving-closet ideas

More space-saving closet ideas - Organizing a small closet, like a dorm room closet or apartment closet? try these closet organization ideas on a budget for small closets

Organizing the baby’s closet?

Try these nursery closet organization ideas

Nursery closet organization on a budget - space-saving closet organization ideas for the baby closet - organized gender neutral nursery closet

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7 step closet organizing system below is what works best for us whether we’re organizing small closets or large walk-in closets
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