Declutter these 28 items for a tidy home

It's time for a big clear out

<p>Garden Trading</p>

Garden Trading

The transition from winter into spring is the perfect time to declutter your home and refresh your rooms to set yourself up for the months ahead. From shampoo bottles in the shower to pillows that are past their prime, we promise shedding these common clutterbugs will help you clear your mind as well as your space.

Read on for our list of what needs to be shown the door while we're still sheltering inside from the cold...

Dispose of old batteries

<p>Vasileios Karafillidis / Shutterstock</p>

Vasileios Karafillidis / Shutterstock

It's always a good idea to have a sort out of batteries every now and then. First of all, organise them into types. If you’re not sure if they still have power, invest in a battery tester to check.

Make sure you dispose of any used batteries safely rather than disposing of them at home, as they pose a fire hazard. Many supermarkets or shops offer safe recycling points.

Purge your make-up storage

<p>FotoHelin / Alamy Stock Photo</p>

FotoHelin / Alamy Stock Photo

It's so easy to hang on to cosmetics products long past their expiry date, particularly products we don’t use often and feel too guilty to throw away when they’re half full.

However, it can be harmful to your skin and eyes to use products that have been sitting open for too long, as you run the risk of introducing bacteria they’ve accumulated, so take the opportunity to do a good purge of your make-up drawer or vanity. Your pores will thank you!

Sort through your cleaning products

<p>ACORN 1 / Alamy Stock Photo</p>

ACORN 1 / Alamy Stock Photo

Most people have a veritable graveyard of cleaning products stashed under their sinks, but you don’t want too many chemicals cluttering up your space.

Take the opportunity to sort through, figure out what you really need and will use, and throw out any that are out of date or, worse still, you can’t identify!

Have a toy cull



Nothing collects clutter quite like a toy bin, so now's the time to have a sort-through and clear out the kids' room storage. Regift out-grown toys that still have plenty of play in them to charity shops. Then get rid of any broken bits and bobs at the recycling centre.

Streamline your craft stash

<p>Kostikova Natalia / Shutterstock</p>

Kostikova Natalia / Shutterstock

Keen crafters will know how easily your stash can get out of hand. Throw away any paint tubes that have dried up and paintbrushes that have seen better days.

If you have lots of scraps of ribbons, fabrics or yarn, gather them in one bag or basket and either look for quick stash-busting projects to use them up or consider donating them to a local school or charity.

Send mismatched hangers packing

<p>gowithstock / Shutterstock</p>

gowithstock / Shutterstock

Not only is the start of spring a perfect time to clear out your old clothes, but it's also worth reorganising your wardrobe. Over the years, you've probably collected a random assortment of clothes hangers that's left your closet looking unkempt and messy.

It's time to get rid of any hangers that don't match and purchase a matching set that will last. Slim non-slip flocked hangers are a great choice as they take up less room in your wardrobe and clothes stay in place more easily.

Recycle old medicines

<p>David Smart / Shutterstock</p>

David Smart / Shutterstock

Medicine cabinet in a pickle? Have a sort through and dispose of any old medications and medical supplies that you don’t need any more. Any out-of-date prescriptions should be taken to a pharmacy to be disposed of.

Cardboard boxes can be recycled, as can any paper inserts. Inhalers contain gases which are harmful to the environment, so should also be recycled at any pharmacy.

Lose any dead plants



Indoor plants such as peace lilies and orchids will thrive during the light summer months. But come autumn and winter they may have faded.

Take an inspection of which houseplants have seen better days and replace them with lush and leafy species that will be happy in darker spots and cooler corners such as ferns or guzmania.

Free kitchen counters of clutter



It's time to turn your kitchen into a welcoming sanctuary. A breakfast station will make dark mornings less of a chore and a wall-mounted rack for hanging utensils will keep surfaces clear.

Make sure to hide away smaller items in cupboards using smart storage solutions and declutter the sink with a handy organiser  turning draining dishes into a pleasing display. Domestic bliss!

Unburden your bookshelves



We’re all guilty of this one. With so many brilliant new reads published every year, books can easily pile up around the home. It's time to purge what you no longer need and stop buying books before you've read the ones you already have.

For an easy win, get rid of any duplicates or books you are unlikely to read again. Donate them to a charity shop or a community library so someone else can enjoy them and you'll be rewarded with valuable shelf space.

Shred office paperwork and clutter

<p>The Cotswold Company</p>

The Cotswold Company

It's time to clear the decks and start afresh for the new normal of working from home or hybrid. Invest in an accordion file and put all of your bills and household records in alphabetical order, anything from a gas bill to washing machine manuals.

Be ruthless with pens, pencils and other stationery – if it doesn't work or you don't love it, get rid of it! Some random uncategorised items are inevitable, so allow yourself one box or basket to put things like spare batteries and tape measures out of sight.

Evict ancient electronics

<p>DAMRONG RATTANAPONG / Shutterstock</p>


We all have it, that junk drawer of electricals; old charging leads, long-forgotten digital cameras, game console controllers and ancient mobile phones. As overwhelming as it is to tackle these items, you’ll be thankful you did. First, start by sorting and keeping anything you will use again, such as a spare iPhone charger, then look at items you can give away to charity or sell.

Before giving away or selling, just make sure you factory reset any phones and laptops and save any treasured images you want to keep before removing memory cards from cameras.

Oust ugly mugs

<p>Natasha Breen / Shutterstock</p>

Natasha Breen / Shutterstock

Say goodbye to your motley crew of mismatched mugs and choose an upgraded collection of china to impress any guests with. Replace chipped teacups and novelty mugs with a matching set.

You’ll thank yourself when that particular unexpected neighbour comes for coffee and a chat.

Say goodbye to surplus food containers

<p>patpitchaya / Shutterstock</p>

patpitchaya / Shutterstock

We are all guilty of hanging onto old takeaway boxes and plastic containers. It's time to rid ourselves and our cupboards of anything without a proper fitting lid and cut down to a manageable number.

Glass containers are the way forward for a stylish yet practical storage solution for your food.

Clear the kitchen cupboards

<p>Miroslav Pesek / Shutterstock</p>

Miroslav Pesek / Shutterstock

We're all guilty of buying new food products and shoving old ones to the back of the cupboard without checking the expiration date. Now is the perfect time to check the dates on every box, bottle and tin, freeing up space in your cupboard and making room for new products.

Ageing cookware, away with you

<p>Gary Barnes / Pexels</p>

Gary Barnes / Pexels

When it comes to cookware, you’re allowed to treat yourself to a non-rusty pan set for the sake of your cooking. The health implications of using rusty old pots and pans are fairly minimal, but it does impair the flavour of your precious stews and roasts.

You’re also compromising the cooking process itself, as those rashers will fry a lot easier in a nice, new non-stick.

Get rid of the shampoo graveyard

<p>lapushkina / Pixabay</p>

lapushkina / Pixabay

It's tempting to leave old shampoo bottles balancing on the edge of the bath just in case there’s enough left for next time. A new year is the perfect time to organise your bathroom storage.

Shake off plastic soap dispensers

<p>New Africa / Shutterstock</p>

New Africa / Shutterstock

Let’s make this the sustainable season to invest in some refillable glass soap dispensers. Not only are they an eco-friendly swap but they also add some personal style to your sink area. You could even invest in some new fluffy hand towels and facecloths in coordinating colours.

Sort through scented candles

<p>Ekatrina Bolovtsova / Pexels</p>

Ekatrina Bolovtsova / Pexels

You may not be aware of the harmful side effects of burning scented candles, especially those that don’t drip – meaning the wax is evaporated into the air and inhaled. Improve your air quality and replace those candles with LED versions for cleaner air.

Or, if you simply can’t give up the warm glow of a pillar candle or two, invest in soy-based ones instead.

Clear away the chair wardrobe

<p>Damian Lugowski / Shutterstock</p>

Damian Lugowski / Shutterstock

Don’t fall into the trap of thinking a spare chair in your bedroom won’t attract clutter. It’s far too easy to throw your discarded clothes onto a chair at the end of the day rather than hanging them up in your wardrobe.

It's time to re-home your chair to another room to free up floor space in the bedroom and force you to put clothes away.

Refresh old pillows

<p>TabitaZn / Shutterstock</p>

TabitaZn / Shutterstock

According to the experts, pillows should be replaced after 1-2 years. If you are waking up with a sore neck or finding it hard to get comfortable at night, it means that your pillow isn't giving you the support you need, so it's time to invest in some fresh bedding.

Shake off old sheets and towels

<p>Roman Odintsov / Pexels</p>

Roman Odintsov / Pexels

No one likes an old, rough towel or bobbly bed sheet, but sometimes it's hard to part with these handy items. To avoid throwing out perfectly good linen, pop those items you’re unsure about in a box and leave them for up to three months.

Anything you don’t use within those three months can be given to charity shops, animal shelters or recycled.

Drop off old pet items

<p>Andrew Neel / Pexels</p>

Andrew Neel / Pexels

We indeed become adjusted to our own house smell and over time will not notice the scent coming from old pet toys in the basket. Remember to keep pet beds, blankets and germ-laden toys regularly washed.

It's also best to keep their treats and food in airtight jars shut away in cupboards, ideally away from your own food.

Clear out Christmas decorations

<p>Patrick Hatt / Shutterstock</p>

Patrick Hatt / Shutterstock

Now is the time to review and cull those Christmas decorations. Dispose of any broken baubles or lights which no longer work after a fuse change, and if there are any you no longer love, list them on selling sites, such as Facebook Marketplace and put the money towards next year's present budget.

A thorough clear-out will save you vital room in the loft or garage too. Love upcycling? See if you can give any ornaments a brand-new look first.

Banish broken furniture

<p>sabath / Shutterstock</p>

sabath / Shutterstock

Broken chairs or shabby furniture cluttering up your garage? If it is salvageable, consider donating or selling it online. If it’s in bad shape, take it to the recycling centre or repurpose it in the home or garden.

When it comes to replacing, it’s tempting to scroll the end-of-season sales of furniture shops online but you’d be doing the planet a favour by looking into second-hand items. Try thrift shops and vintage furniture stores instead, or trawl the treats of eBay for one man’s trash to turn into your treasure.

Be selective with winter warmers



When the time comes to pack away those bulky winter clothes, go through your wardrobes and get rid of any items you haven't worn all season.

Before woollen knits, hats and scarves go back in the loft or under the bed, asses their condition and decide if they are still to your taste. A good sort-through will keep wardrobes uncluttered and spacious, ready to fill with any new seasonal buys.

Get rid of broken summer gear

<p>StoreYourBoard / Amazon</p>

StoreYourBoard / Amazon

Once the warmer weather comes around, assess picnic wear, park toys and beach gear that may have seen better days. Throw away or repair saggy deck chairs, ripped picnic blankets or broken buckets and spades.

Give anything that still has plenty of use a good clean, ready to use as soon as the sun pokes out from behind the clouds.

Override an over-crowded hallway



Sick of shin bruises from the corridor of clutter that greets you on your return home? Whether it be bikes, shoes or coats, it's time to utilise space in your hallway.

Winter outwear requires a hefty amount of hallway storage so put in wall-mounted coat hooks and slimline shoe storage to save on floor space. A boot rack will lift wet wellingtons off the floor and can even be kept outside as long as the boots are stored upside down.