5 Clutter-Causing Items You Should Throw Away in Your Bathroom

Having a clean and organized bathroom provides a sense of relaxation and tranquility when you need it most. However, many bathrooms become dumping grounds for items that cause clutter and make the space feel small and stressful. Here are five common clutter-causing items that you should consider throwing away to create a more peaceful bathroom environment:

Expired Medications

We all accumulate medications over time that often go unused or forgotten. Pharmacists recommend disposing of any prescription medications that have expired, especially if it has been over a year since they were dispensed. Hanging on to old prescription medicines takes up space and can be dangerous if accidentally ingested or misused. Expired medications also become less effective over time.

Go through your medicine cabinets, drawers, and any baskets or boxes where you store pills. Check the expiration date on all prescription medications, over-the-counter drugs, and supplements. Dispose of any that are past their expiration date. Be sure to follow disposal recommendations to avoid contaminating the water supply and harming the environment. Many communities have take-back programs or designated drop-off locations for getting rid of prescription medications properly.

Clearing out the expired prescriptions will free up space and reduce bathroom clutter instantly. Getting into the habit of checking expiration dates periodically will also prevent build-up of outdated medicines over time. Your bathroom will be safer and more organized without the expired pills.

Old Makeup and Skincare Products

Just like food and medications, makeup and skincare items also have a shelf life. Chemical compositions in these products break down over time, making them less effective and potentially irritating or unsafe to use on your skin.

Go through all of your makeup and skincare products and look for any changes in consistency, odor, or color. Mascara, liquid eyeliner, and liquid foundation tend to dry out quickly and should be replaced every 3-6 months. Powder eyeshadows, blush, and bronzers may last longer, up to a year or two. Skincare products like moisturizers, serums, and cleansers can expire even faster than makeup, especially if they contain active ingredients and antioxidants. When in doubt, check the packaging for a symbol showing an open jar and a number representing the amount of months the product is good for after opening.

Tossing old, expired makeup and skincare creates space on your vanity and drawers while also preventing skin irritation and infections. Establish a schedule for replacing makeup and skincare items to avoid clutter build-up going forward. Your skin will thank you!

Old Toothbrushes

Toothbrushes wear out over time and need to be replaced regularly for optimal oral hygiene. The American Dental Association recommends replacing your toothbrush approximately every 3-4 months or sooner if the bristles become frayed and bent. Continuing to use an old toothbrush with bristles that are no longer straight and firm will not effectively remove plaque and bacteria. This puts you at risk for cavities, gum disease, and infection.

Look at all of the toothbrushes being stored in your bathroom. Toss any with bristles that are frayed, bent out of shape, or falling out. Also be sure to discard any toothbrushes used while sick to avoid reinfection. Replace with new toothbrushes for each family member every 3-4 months. Add a reminder to your calendar if needed. Removing worn-out toothbrushes from your bathroom lets you start fresh with products that can actually do the job.

Hand Soaps from Hotels or Homes

It’s common to want to take home the decorative hand soaps from hotel bathrooms as souvenirs or bring home leftover soap when moving out of a house. While keeping these extras may seem harmless, the soaps often get neglected and lead to clutter. The small size also means they don’t last long before needing to be replaced anyway.

Declutter by using up then discarding any hotel, apartment, or guest suite hand soaps taking up space in your cabinets or drawers. Try keeping just one or two full-size hand soap bottles that can be easily refilled. Having fewer reusable hand soap dispensers creates less clutter and makes it easy to maintain cleanliness when washing hands in your home bathroom.

Old Loofahs and Shower Poufs

Loofahs and pouf shower sponges rarely dry out fully between uses, allowing mold and bacteria to grow quickly. Dermatologists recommend replacing these items about every 3-4 weeks to prevent infection and skin irritation. Yet it’s easy to let them accumulate in the shower long after their useful life.

Toss any loofahs or poufs that feel slimy or stiff, look discolored, or have an off odor. Also discard any that are clearly past the 4 week mark, even if they seem fine. Keep just 1-2 in rotation and set calendar reminders to swap them out monthly. Removing the old, bacteria-laden scrubbers creates a fresher, cleaner shower environment.

Extra Plastic Bottles

Shampoo, conditioner, body wash, and skincare products come packaged in plastic bottles that can clutter up shelves and bins once empty. It’s tempting to hold on to these bottles with the mindset that they’ll be useful for travel or decanting larger products. However, the reality is most people acquire far more empties than needed.

Limit yourself to reusing just 2-3 plastic bottles, then get in the habit of recycling the rest. Pick bottles that are good quality, sturdy and easy to clean and refill. Letting go of the clutter of excess empties makes much more space for the products you actually use daily. Recycling plastic also helps reduce your environmental impact.

Frequently Asked Questions about Decluttering the Bathroom

How often should I declutter my bathroom?

Aim to do a thorough decluttering of your bathroom every 6-12 months. Set aside time to go through all medications, toiletries, cosmetics, cleaning items, and accessories to clear out anything expired, almost empty, or no longer needed. Doing a major declutter session yearly prevents too much clutter build-up.

What’s the easiest way to declutter a bathroom?

Start with the medicine cabinet and any under the sink cabinets first. Pull everything out and get rid of expired or old products you no longer need. Use this as a chance to wipe down shelves too. Then declutter one drawer, shelf, or storage bin at a time. Being methodical makes it less overwhelming than tackling the whole room at once.

Should I keep extra bottled products under my sink?

Try not to accumulate too many backups or extras under the sink. For everyday items like handsoap and toilet paper, keep just 1 backup. For shampoos, toothpaste, etc. hold onto just 2-3 unopened backups. Too many extra bottles and boxes under the sink create clutter.

How can I declutter bathroom surfaces?

Limit what sits out on the countertops to what you use daily, like soap, lotion, etc. Store away all other items in cabinets, drawers and baskets. Consider mounting hand towels and decor on the walls to clear more counter space. Remove the clutter of anything you don’t need on a regular basis.

What’s the best way to organize a cluttered bathroom?

Use baskets, turntables, and drawer organizers to neatly hold necessities. Group like items, like makeup or first aid supplies, to keep things tidy. Store cleaning supplies together under the sink for easy access. Have hooks on the walls and backs of doors to hang towels within reach. Just be sure not to overload spaces.

Key Takeaways on Decluttering Your Bathroom

  • Get rid of any expired medications and old makeup/skincare products taking up space.
  • Toss out worn out toothbrushes every 3-4 months and old loofahs/poufs monthly.
  • Recycle empty plastic bottles instead of letting them accumulate.
  • Do a thorough declutter session every 6-12 months.
  • Organize categorically and don’t overload storage areas.
  • Limit surfaces to daily essentials and put away the rest.

Decluttering the bathroom by throwing away old products, expired items, and unnecessary backups creates space and makes room to store the items you actually use. Establish a regular decluttering routine to prevent clutter from taking over again. With just a few simple tips, you can enjoy a clean, fresh, and serene bathroom environment.

Here is a 500+ word article on “5 Clutter-Causing Items You Should Throw Away in Your Bathroom” specifically focused on expired medications:

Expired Medications: The #1 Clutter Culprit in Your Bathroom

That jumbled mess of ointments, pills, and half-used bottles of cold medicine under your bathroom sink? It’s not just an eyesore. Out-of-date medications actually pose a safety hazard and contribute to bathroom clutter. Here’s what you need to know about properly disposing of expired meds as part of your next bathroom decluttering session.

Dangers of Keeping Expired Medications

It’s tempting to stash partly used pills or leftover prescription medicines in the back of your cabinet. However, hanging on to medications past their expiration date can be risky. Drug compounds break down over time, making them less effective and even potentially toxic. Taking an expired medication could result in unexpected side effects or drug interactions.

Outdated medications also run the risk of being accidentally ingested by children if improperly stored. And if they ultimately end up in the trash, they can contaminate landfills and water sources. So those expired meds are more problematic than just taking up space.

How to Identify Expired Drugs

The first step is to pull everything out of your medicine cabinets, drawers, and any boxes where you store healthcare products. Check the expiration date printed on the labels of any pills, supplements, ointments, or liquids. Note that the expiration dates for drugs are typically formatted as Month/Year to indicate the last date that the medication is expected to be safe and effective.

Also look closely at the physical condition of any medications. If they have changed color, smell, or texture, they may be compromised and should be discarded. When in doubt, remember that effectiveness declines over time. Even unexpired pills that are over a year old often need to be replaced.

Safe Disposal of Medications

Simply throwing expired or unused medications in the trash often leads to environmental pollution and misuse. Instead, follow these recommended disposal methods:

  • Find a community drug take-back program that allows you to drop off medications at designated locations for safe, anonymous disposal.
  • Use drug collection receptacles or mail-back envelopes provided by some local government agencies and pharmacies.
  • Mix medications with an unpalatable substance like cat litter in a sealed container before putting in the regular trash. Avoid crushing pills.
  • Flush certain high-risk drugs like opioids to render them inactive, if advised by the FDA and your pharmacist.

Proper disposal protects the environment while also guarding against misuse of medications. Reach out to your pharmacy, health department, or community website to find more details on your area’s recommend procedures.

Regular Removal Prevents Clutter

Getting rid of expiring or leftover medications should become part of your regular bathroom cleaning routine. Set reminders every 3-6 months to identify and properly discard anything that is expired or unnecessary. This prevents potentially harmful build-up and clutter.

Establishing new medication disposal habits keeps your family safe while freeing up needed space. Focus your medicine cabinets and drawers on storing only what you currently use. Your refreshed, decluttered storage areas will make mornings easier and your home safer.

Key Takeaways on Removing Expired Medications

  • Check expiration dates and discard any medicines past their use-by date to avoid health risks.
  • Look for changes in smell, texture, or color as signs medications are no longer good.
  • Use recommended disposal methods like take-back programs instead of throwing in the trash.
  • Set reminders to remove expiring or unneeded medicines every 3-6 months.
  • Regular removal of outdated medications prevents clutter and protects your family.

Prioritizing the removal of expired medicines when decluttering transforms cluttered cabinets into organized storage spaces. Medication expiration dates matter, so be diligent about properly identifying and discarding outdated or unnecessary drugs. A few minutes invested regularly saves space and, more importantly, protects those you love.