The Useful 20 Percent

After reading “Home is Not My Stuff” this weekend, I was inspired to tackle a project I’ve been putting off for ages: the medicine cabinet, vanity and below sink storage in the bathroom. Have you ever heard that we use 20% of our “stuff” 80% of the time? I really do believe it’s true.

For many months now, I’ve stopped using most of the personal care products that had built up over the years, in favor of an all-in-one soap and a few other handmade and non-toxic products. (And I’ve never been one to take a medication unless I really need it.) I hung on to all these old items for reasons I’m not fully sure of; I thought it was because I saw giving them away as a waste of the money I had spent on them. But when I was talking to my husband about it I realized that there were actually memories tying me to bath products—of all things! One body lotion was a gift from a friend at a surprise birthday party I had (and with my birthday being 2 days before Christmas, I haven’t had many birthday parties).

Goodbye BoxWe don’t use any of this anymore!

I took about 80% of the items out of the three storage areas in our tiny bathroom. I told my husband I wanted to give it all away, but I didn’t realize he would get rid of it so fast. A couple hours later he told me he had already taken it next door to a building with many tenants and put a sign that said “free.” At first I felt a little panicked about how quickly it was all going to disappear, but when we went to check on it the next morning and almost all of it was gone I felt relieved. And I didn’t take back what was left!

My Side of the Vanity
This is what my side of the vanity looks like now!

I plan to write more about how we choose our personal care products as soon as I get to the bathroom part of the green tour… Update! Here’s some more information about what I did keep and how we chose our personal care products: Green Tour: Bathroom (Part 1: Products)

To get some more tackling inspiration, check out Tackle it Tuesday.