At the age of 40, you have come far too far in life to hold on to possessions that do not fulfill a function… right? Check out our list of 40 things to purge before you turn 40!
Every decade in life is worth celebrating – and why not kick-start your new life as a 40-year-old by clearing out things you don’t need? Here are 40 things you should consider throwing away or donating.
1. A bed robe. Hand on heart – its main function is to hide knick-knacks you never use, right?
2. Yellow towels. Sure, sometimes you can restore the towel to its former glory by using a clever laundry trick, but if this doesn’t work, it’s time to part ways.
3. Shoes that hurt. Sure, they’re pretty. And of course, they go perfectly with your black dress. But it doesn’t matter – your feet deserve better.
4. Shoes that smell bad. A simple rule: If you can smell the stench from your shoes when you get up, it’s time to invest in a new pair.
5. Souvenir shot glass. We dare say you’ve never used those shot glasses with the Eiffel Tower on them – and you probably never will either. End the suffering and give them away.
6. Vintage bridesmaid dresses. There is something about bridesmaid dresses that means they are rarely worn more than once, except in exceptional cases. Give them away to someone who needs them instead.
7. Uncomfortable bras that don’t fit. Get rid of that “spare bra” that makes your body crawl with discomfort as soon as you see it in the back of the underwear drawer.
8. Jeans too small. Having a pair of jeans in your closet that hasn’t fit in ten years doesn’t make anyone happy – and as Marie Kondo would have said, if it doesn’t make you happy – get rid of it.
9. Unmake socks. Maybe one day someone will solve the mystery of where individual socks go, but until then we have to accept that socks sometimes disappear for no apparent reason. Do yourself a favor and throw away those old socks you haven’t worn in years.
10. Edge-supported plates. It may feel a little sad to throw away rimmed plates, but we all know that they just take up space in the kitchen cupboard.
11. Old newspapers. We promise you’ll feel much lighter after clearing out those old magazines you never read.
13. Posters without a frame. If you still like the poster, frame it!
13. CDs on the bookshelf. Unless you’re something of a collector, you probably never play your old CDs again, and that’s okay. So why not fill that shelf with something you actually use?
14. Old gardening gloves. The idea of gardening gloves is to protect the hands. If yours no longer do, it’s time to replace them.
15. Dilapidated outdoor furniture. When those plastic chairs from the 00s start falling apart, it’s time to invest in new ones. Is the outdoor furniture not broken, but just dirty? A hot tip is to clean them with vinegar.
16. Strings of lights with broken lamps. Invest in a new light loop instead.
17. Old spices. As a rule, ground spices last for three years, while unground can last up to four years.
18. Frying pans that have seen better days. Good quality frying pans and pots can of course last as long as you want, but that budget frying pan that you never use because it only burns food, you might as well scrap it.
19. Old telephones. Give them away to someone who needs them!
20. Broken clothes hangers. That gallows that almost works, you can do without it.
21. Old makeup. You can keep liquid foundation and concealers for up to six months, mascara for up to three months, and lipstick and lip gloss for up to two years. Because surely harmful bacteria and your face are not a good combination?
22. Menus for restaurants that you rarely or never order food from. You will definitely find the menus online, should you need them.
23. Fountain pens without ink. You know you have them and you likely know where. Make it a rule to throw away pens that don’t work instead of putting them back where you found them.
24. Old paint. Properly stored paint can last a long time, but that doesn’t mean it’s right for you. Find someone to give it to.
25. Broken umbrellas. It’s hard to say why we cling to broken umbrellas as long as we do. Invest in a new one today!
26. Old food boxes. Durability in all its glory, but if a lunch box is both discolored and smells strange, you are allowed to replace it.
27. Single buttons that belong to clothes you no longer own. Even when you owned that dress, there was little chance that you would actually use the extra button, but now there is no doubt that you will never use it – and that probably applies to the other 99 buttons in the same jar.
28. Old greeting cards. Truth be told, those cards are just gathering dust in a drawer. Throwing them away does not make you an ungrateful person!
29. Nasty old dolls. Unfounded fear or not, if those old dolls that you inherited from someone or got as a gift as a child seem to follow you with their eyes, it’s actually completely okay not to want to keep them anymore.
30. Materials for a hobby that you put off. You probably won’t be struck by an irresistible urge to learn to crochet if you’ve already tried once. Forgive yourself and move on.
31. Books you don’t plan on rereading. Unless it’s an unusually nice edition, or a real classic, it makes more sense to give away – not throw away! – books you don’t plan to reread.
32. Old documents that do not serve a purpose. Don’t forget to tear them apart just to be on the safe side.
33. That collection of cords and chargers that only grows with each passing year. We all have that box of cords with unclear uses. Chances are you’ll never get to use them again – especially if they’re a few years old.
34. Collections that you save for your grandchildren. Sure, it may have taken you years to build your snow globe collection, but the truth is, it may not mean as much to your family as it does to you. Ask yourself – is this something that only you appreciate? And would it actually be something of a liberation to get rid of most of the collection?
35. “Laundry day clothes”. We all know how boring it feels to walk around in clothes that have both holes and stains. Trust us, you can do without them.
36. That ice cream/baking/pasta maker you bought on impulse a few years ago. And then used once, if even that. A classic thing to give away to someone who will (hopefully) get more use out of it.
37. Hair ties that tear the hair. Your hair deserves hair ties that protect your curls!
38. Your child’s old drawings. Of course, you should keep the drawings that make you happy – but it can be difficult to fit every single drawing your child made as a child. Take photos of them instead, and frame the ones that hold a special place in your heart.
39. Old slippers with holes in them. Especially during the winter, a pair of comfortable slippers is something you use almost every day – so why not invest in a pair without air holes?
40. Dead plants. Sure, it’s sad when plants die, but holding on to them doesn’t make anyone happy.