Whether you feel like you have too many clothes and want to declutter, or you are moving out to a new place, it's time to go through your clothes and donate some of them.
If you are a hoarder like me, you don't like decluttering, especially your closet. But it has many benefits such as less stress, more time, space, and money.
Our lifestyle changes over time. Plus our wardrobe evolves constantly. It's reasonable to clean out our closet from time to time. We all have clothes we don't wear that often and take precious space without purpose.
When decluttering, the environment needs you to get rid of unwanted clothes responsibly. Don't throw them in the trash. It makes more sense to donate them if they are still in good condition.
Here are 10 ways to help you decide when it's time to donate your clothes.
1. You possess clothes that don't fit
It's a good idea to go through all your clothes, take them out, and try them on. If they are one size too big or too small, donate them. There is no need to keep clothes that don't fit you perfectly.
Loose-fitting clothes don't improve your look or fashion style. Clothes that are too tight are just uncomfortable and take unnecessary space in your closet.
Read up my article on letting go of clothes that are too small for more tips on finding and keeping fitting clothes.
2. You have too many clothes
If you feel like you have too many clothes but nothing to wear, it's probably time to donate your clothes. Being tired of an encumbered wardrobe is very common.
If you think you are going to miss something eventually, place the clothes you don't wear into a bag or suitcase away from your closet. If you miss an item, pull it out and place it back in your wardrobe for a while. When the bag gets full, donate all of it.
Check out my article on I have too many clothes but like them all for more solutions to this issue and tips on how to avoid regrets.
3. You made lifestyle changes
Maybe your lifestyle has changed recently. If so, it might be time to organize your closet. It's better to get rid of the excess and keep only what you need and want to wear.
I used to try out many different sports and end up with sports equipment I don't need anymore. When the activities you do daily change, for leisure or work, it's time to declutter your closet and donate what is superfluous.
4. You are moving to a new place
When cleaning out your home and preparing to move out, don't forget to go through your clothes. Most of us will have amassed over the years many garments we don't need anymore.
Consider donating them to your nearest charity if they are still in good condition. Be sure to contact them beforehand and ask what kind of clothes they accept.
5. You own multiples
You don't need every color of the same piece of clothing. I encourage you to take the duplicates out of your closet and make a conscious effort to choose.
It's understandable to have multiples if you particularly love one style. Just keep the best ones and donate what you find worst. You can't wear them all as often anyway.
6. You chose a new fashion style
You can donate clothes that don't fit your style. You don't need anything that isn't you anymore. Make room in your closet for something more valuable.
It's completely normal to change your style and taste in clothing. Just make a conscious effort to get rid of the pieces that no longer do it for you.
I follow a minimalist fashion style which is great for my closet, my budget, and the environment. Read more about minimalist fashion here.
7. You hold nothing to wear it with
This is a common issue. Buying trendy clothes only to realize they don't fit with the rest of our wardrobe occurs too often. The latest styles are frequently difficult to combine and we don't wear them that much.
A solution is to keep things simple. Prefer timeless, classic pieces that last a long time so you can wear them over and over again in different outfits. Donate the clothes you can't easily combine.
Follow my ultimate guide on minimalist fashion for advice on how to keep your look minimal and original with simple fashion aesthetics.
8. You keep overused, faded, or worn-out clothes
If you have clothes starting to fall apart, consider donating them. If you don't have any set plans to repair them very soon, it's time to get rid of it.
Clothing pieces that are pilling out, stained, missing a button, threadbare, or have ripped seems shouldn't stay in your closet.
9. You wear uncomfortable clothes
Fashion is an art form that invites you on a journey of self-expression. Apparel and footwear should make you feel beautiful, confident, and comfortable at all times.
If you own clothing that makes you feel uncomfortable, make space for something you'll enjoy wearing a lot more. Donate any item coming up too short.
10. You own unworn clothes
If you've made a purchasing mistake in the past, it's better to forget about it and get it out of sight. If you forgot you had something in your wardrobe, it's a sign you don't need it as much as you think.
If you have never worn some of your clothes or haven't worn them for over 6 months, it's time to donate them. Make space for a new and better item that will be more fashionable and useful to you.
I hope these tips are helpful to you. Read up my list of 10 ways to keep your clothing out of landfills for some amazing places that accept donations.
How do you tell it's time to declutter your wardrobe? Let us know in the comments below.
About the Author: Alex Assoune
Alex Assoune (MS) is a global health and environmental advocate. He founded Panaprium to inspire others with conscious living, ethical, and sustainable fashion. Alex has worked in many countries to address social and environmental issues. He speaks four languages and holds two Master of Science degrees in Engineering from SIGMA and IFPEN schools.