How to do an In-Depth Closet Purge

A lot of us are spending more time at home currently, so I figured now would be a great time to learn how to do an in-depth closet purge! Even though now isn’t a great time to get rid clothes, the pieces that we decide not to keep can be stored until later, when they can be donated or recycled.

So here’s a step-by-step guide on how I go about doing a really in-depth closet purge:

1. Come up with a list of requirements for your clothing to meet.

Because I have difficulty being objective with my clothing, I’ve come up with a whole list of requirements. My clothes don’t have to meet 100% of the requirements, but I know that I tend to wear only clothes that meet the most.

Here’s my requirements list:

  • Does it fit me? (3/5 minimum)
    • Sleeves are a good length (shirts/sweaters/dresses)
    • The buttons don’t gap
    • Hem is a good length
    • Fits at the waist (pants/skirts/shorts)
    • Isn’t too baggy or too tight
  • Does it make me feel happy/pretty? (1/3 minimum)
    • Clothing piece is aesthetically pleasing
    • The colors suit my complexion
    • Does it have a fun history/memory associated with it?
  • Does it match the lines of my body? (3/6 minimum)
    • Fitted cuffs/hemline/other elements
    • High neckline / high-rise
    • Easily styled
    • Color blocks
    • Mixed elements
    • Light to moderate weight of fabric
  • Is it comfortable to wear?
  • Is it in good shape?

(Please Note: The body type lines will be different for you if have a different body type than mine. I’m a soft gamine. If you’re not familiar with your Kibbe body type then you can take a test to determine it here.)

2. Organize your clothes into categories

After coming up with a list of requirements for your clothes to meet, you should begin organizing your clothes into categories, that way you can easily see if you have any duplicate items. Organizing clothes into categories will also make step 3 a lot easier.

Here are some category ideas:

  • bottoms
    • jeans
    • leggings
    • slacks
    • skirts
    • shorts
  • tops
    • button-ups
    • blouses
    • t-shirts
    • sweaters
  • other
    • dresses
    • rompers/jumpsuits
    • outerwear
    • athleisure
    • pajamas
    • special event pieces
    • accessories
    • statement pieces

You don’t have to use all of those categories, and you can also come up with your own category ideas. Those are just some ideas to get you started.

3. Try on all of your clothes

Yep, you read that right. Step 3 is trying on every single piece in your closet, and then evaluating what it meets on the requirements list.

This may seem like a really tedious step, and it’ll probably take a while too, which is why your clothes should be organized into categories before trying them on. That way if you need to spread this step over multiple days, you can just do a certain amount of categories each day.

Trying on all of your clothes is important when doing a closet purge, as you may think you know what a piece of clothing looks like on you, but then you try it on and it looks completely different from what you expected (this happens to me so often). Or you may find a piece that looks super cute and wonder why you never wear it, and then try it on and remember how uncomfortable it is.

Tip: Wear tight clothes with the pieces you’re trying on. For example: wear leggings when trying on tops, or a camisole when trying on bottoms. That way you can easily see the lines of your body.

4. Evaluate how well each clothing piece matches the criteria on your requirements list

When you try on each piece of clothing, go through the requirements list that you made in step 1, and see how what you’re wearing measures up.

While you’re doing this, you can also try thinking of new ways to style pieces that you wear frequently. For example: a plain t-shirt can be styled into a crop top by tucking the bottom of the shirt into a bra.

5. Separate and store the clothes that don’t match up with your requirements

When you find pieces that don’t match up with your requirements, then separate them from the rest of your clothes, and find a way to store them.

A good way to store clothes for a prolonged period of time is to vacuum seal them inside of a bag, that way they can’t get moldy, and they’ll take up less space. If you’re a spiritual person, make sure to thank the clothes that you’re getting rid of.


Once you’re finished purging your closet, you should make sure that the clothes that you’re keeping are organized. This will make getting dressed in the mornings a lot less stressful, and can also help you come up with fun outfit combinations! If you’re looking for organization ideas, then consider subscribing to my blog. I’ll be publishing a post next week on different closet organization ideas.

4 thoughts on “How to do an In-Depth Closet Purge

  1. I’m actually a little bit sorry that I have Marie Kondo’d my life so often, there’s not a lot left for me to ‘tidy’ at home, because it struck me the other day that something I’d love to do to ‘keep calm and carry on’ is go through my closet and drawers and figure out what to keep and what to give away. But no… everything I wanted to give away four months ago is out in the car trailer, waiting to be taken somewhere. There’s an idea. Maybe I should haul it all back inside, scatter it around, and re-evaluate it. 😉

    Nice post. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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