9 Things to Stop Hoarding

And 4 things you should actually save

We know what you’re thinking: Someday soon, you’ll host brunch for a dozen of your closest friends and be so thankful you have 12 mismatched mugs.

Not likely. So here, nine things you should definitely trash (plus, four surprising things to actually save).


Toss: Novelty Mugs

That chipped and faded gift from your friend’s trip to Disney World in 2007? Chuck it. Save a few that are special--you know, if your kid made it--and get rid of the rest.


Toss: Shopping Bags

Ah, retail therapy. Keep the clothes; weed out your stockpile of department store bags. This same rule applies to that giant wad of plastics bags you've got crumpled up under your sink. (Unless you have a dog…in which case, put 'em towards poop patrole.)


Toss: Old Cell Phone And Computer Charger Cords

Dear iPhone 6 owners: Please stop clinging to your iPhone 4S charger like some kind of maniac.

Toss: Electronics

And while we’re on the subject, when was the last time you pulled out that Motorola Razr flip phone or candy-colored iBook? Yeah, buh-bye.


Toss: Magazines

We know, they’re hard to let go of. The solution: Tear out your favorite pages--recycle the rest. If you really want to go cold turkey, subscribe to Next Issue and ditch the paper copies altogether.


Toss: Old Paint Cans

Yes, that misty mauve you used in the foyer was really was quite lovely. But that was three paint-color changes ago and now you have wallpaper anyway. Ditch the crusty canister and get on with your life.


Toss: Buttons

Good for you: You’ve saved every single extra button that came with every sweater purchase in the past ten years. But be honest with yourself: Could you actually match these spare guys to the garments they go with?


Toss: Expired Medicine

The fastest way to feel better when you’re sick is to pop an expired pill--said no one ever. In the garbage it goes.


Toss: Expired Beauty Products

While the packaging isn’t always marked with an expiration date, old makeup is another item that goes bad. As a general rule, replace mascara and foundation every year and eye shadow and lipstick every 18 months.


Keep: Tea Tins

They’re too pretty to throw away! Repurpose these beauties in the service of an indoor herb garden. (Here, a quick DIY.)


Keep: Used Dryer Sheets

They’re not just static removers. After performing their main job in the laundry cycle, dryer sheets can be used to clean your iron, dust your baseboards or Swiffer your floors.


Keep: Plastic Takeout Containers

Next time you order the moo shu fried prawns, rinse out and keep the plastic container. They’re great as paint trays, or for storing screws, nuts and bolts.


Keep: Wine Corks

Yes, you can re-purpose them for crafty endeavors, but did you know they’re also a scratch-free way to clean high-carbon kitchen knives? Simply add a drop of dish detergent, then scrub away using the cork instead of an abrasive sponge.

Rachel Bowie Headshot

Royal family expert, a cappella alum, mom

Rachel Bowie is Senior Director of Special Projects & Royals at PureWow, where she covers parenting, fashion, wellness and money in addition to overseeing initiatives within...