You already know why you're here.

You're a product junkie, and you're proud. But you KNOW you need to clear out the old to make room for the new. No one here, least of all my hoarding behind, is asking you to stop being the product maximalist you are in your soul, but you DO have to be able to move around your house without falling into all of your puddings and sprays.

It's not easy to get started with removing things from your space, but asking yourself these questions will help a little with what you should do to whittle down your product plethora before you inevitably start building it back up.

A black woman with shell earrings and a thick twistout clutches full shopping bags in excitement

iStock/kate_sept2004

Is the container broken? Toss it.

Gravity is a product junkie's worst enemy. Think of how many poor innocent products have been unjustly hurled from the countertops by an errant hip, or helplessly left to roll down the parking lot when you open your car door. Don't even get me started on what happens with a full bag on public transport. And when bad things happen to good products, it's awful! But what happens when lids crack, or pumps malfunction on…"just okay" products?

Listen, I've been there myself, but you know full well that that butter/crème/etc never worked for you. With a broken container, it's not going to work for anyone else either. No, actually, you're NEVER going to decant it and give it away. Yes, really. Take your space back and let it go.

Is it dusty? Donate it

I grew up in a money saving household. Thankfully, I never went hungry or wanted for books, shoes, or time from either parent, but there was a period when mom and I shared a room. And while I never did inherit her sunny outlook on life or her slender ankles, I definitely got hit with the 'Buy it on sale now for emergencies later' gene. HARD. It probably would have left marks, but the melanin covers them up.

Because I get a lot of products for free here (WOO!), my little grabby goblin hands are all over them. And you'd think that would keep me from buying stuff on my own...but it doesn't. However, there comes a time when I do have to admit—I haven't gotten to this. I'll never get to this. When the hurricanes rolled through our state, I was more than happy to dump pounds and pounds of unopened products on Leslie's desk to give to the naturals that got flooded out. But truth be told, it probably shouldn't have taken as long as it did to give any of it away. If you KNOW you haven't used some of your products, and more are still coming into your home, something has to give. Why not let that something be someONE! You!

If you're anything like me you will have several 'Ooooooh, but I know I want to try this still' moments. At that point, nothing works better than guilt tripping yourself a bit. Think of how good someone who just lost everything they had in a fire or from fleeing a violent situation might feel to receive just a portion of your personal bounty! Then wipe your empathy tears, strengthen that resolve and get to giving.



A bookshelf filled on multiple shelves with various hair products and two graphic novels

This is only a FRACTION of my hoard...

Is it almost empty? Recycle it.

Are you that weirdo that leaves one splash of juice in the fridge because you just didn't want the rest? That used to be me, since I'd just take a poured out sip to swallow a pill...but now that I'm regularly sharing community things in the work fridge, I see how annoying it was. Have you been saving like half an edge's worth of oil in a bottle just because it's not TECHNICALLY empty, but you knew it wasn't enough to use for a full treatment? And you're still buying other oils? Stop the madness.

You've probably used enough that you can easily wipe out the product with a paper towel and put it in the appropriate bin. Do yourself and the environment a favor.

So are you ready to take the purge plunge?

I like to hang on to things too, and I know it's not always a pleasant experience, but we have to rise above before we drown in a sea of products. We'll get through this together. I promise.

By the way, are you following us and our Spring Cleaning endeavors? You should be, it's going hilariously. Stay tuned to learn AND laugh.