Hoarders: Get Clean Girls Edition

by Madeleine Hawks

I just moved into a new apartment! Woohoo, funnest thing there is to do! Actually, I don’t mind moving. I love redecorating and being creative about new places. Plus, I was living with four guys who are darling but messy and I’m just ready for my own apartment. I’ve been dreaming of this day for years! No roommates!

In trying to be extra organized about this move, I gave my best effort at not packing a single thing that I don’t use/like/understand, is broken, doesn’t fit, etc. So far, so good. But when I got to the bathroom part, I start breaking into a cold sweat. I am totally a product hoarder.

Afraid of what I might find, I finally dragged everything cosmetic and toiletry related out of hiding and put it all in one place so that I could see the damage and decide how to sort, toss, and give away. I even finally dared to look into THE BAG, which is one of those bags of odds and ends that never really gets unpacked from the last move. It had some lingering toiletries in there that I absolutely never use. I decided THE BAG was going to emptied once and for all as well.

After waiting until I thought no one was home so I could do this in solitude, my roommate Jon emerged from the basement and said “Oh my” about 10 times while he walked in a slow circle around the table. Then he screamed “INTERVENTION”.

I will say, I’ve had a lot of experimental phases.  Like the oh-maybe-this-product-will solve-my-acne-even-though-it-doesn’t-seem-to-be-a-product-related-fix.  Or the well-maybe-I’ll-try-pink-hair-for-a-while-and-buy-lots-of-conditioners-to-treat-my-damaged-hair. etc. etc. Flash forward after 5 or so years of accumulation, and BOOM you have a situation that you need to deal. with.

Anywhoooooo…I got down to business and started tossing all the products I didn’t use or that were expired. This is what my trash bag looked like pretty much immediately:

I started breaking everything into groups next. Like Makeup, First Aid, Skin Care, Essential Oils.

(yes, that is honey in my first aid kit and I use it the most often)

(I made 2 categories for skin care: stuff I use every day and stuff I use sometimes)

At this point I actually realized how many duplicates I have (which is A LOT) and how long it will be before I ever have to buy a beauty product again. I’ll probably be 74 when that day comes along.

Ready for the Big Reveal?

Ok, as my friend Kerry would say: “good; not great”. I wasn’t that impressed by my ability to cull this stuff. However, the key advantage is that I now have an inventory of how much and what kinds of things I have in stock.  And I know that I won’t have to go out and buy anything, so I can keep using up these products until I really get down to the essentials that I use every day. One fine day, I won’t have to bother with a massive pile.

I might add, this is what I was thinking of while I was cleaning….guilty as charged for over-consuming: 

As for the stuff that I got rid of, I threw some away and gave the rest to friends and sisters. For me, looking in The Bag and in all the stash spots in my room and bathroom was akin to looking under my bed for monsters. I so badly did not want to do it! Surely I can’t be alone in the world of Too Much Stuff. Do you need to do some product culling yourself? It feels pretty damn good.

8 responses to “Hoarders: Get Clean Girls Edition

  1. Super impressed by your clean out! I was having anxiety for you. Loved the first video. Saving the second for this afternoon. I can confirm that the boys were/are messy.

    • Oh my gosh, what ISN’T honey for?! Answer: nothing. There is nothing I don’t use honey for, really. It’s got magical healing properties and tastes great. I plan to post a love letter to honey soon, so look out for that in a couple of weeks.

  2. Madeleine, I am glad that you are culling. I am super proud of the first effort, and I know more was done after the move. KEEP IT UP, SISTER!
    -Thug Life
    ps. yes, i am reading your blog now. i have to prep for garlic nation yk12

  3. Yes. this is me. only 10x more so. I have culled and culled but still have faves that i like to “look at” and always need to have a backup stash of the faves that i actually “use”. I am trying to use more on a day to day basis. i still won’t have to buy anything for another 100 years though….

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