The Lazy Girl’s Closet Clean Out

The Five-Things Method

With the Marie Kondo phenomenon and ongoing minimalism trend, I’ve seen countless blog posts and articles popping up about how to best tidy your apartment, or how to create a capsule wardrobe, and the vast majority of them involve some kind of all-weekend project that includes taking everything out of your closet and putting it back in again. In the midst of all of this streamlining, I have a confession to make: I am awful at cleaning out my closet, and as admirable as I think it is, I do not have any desire to create a capsule wardrobe. However, given that I live in a tiny Manhattan apartment where I’m using a hall closet as my personal closet, keeping my wardrobe in check is a must, so I came up with this little “method.”

Every night before I go to bed, I pull five items out of my closet that I’m not wearing and need to donate/sell/toss. The first few days are super easy – everyone has 5 or 10 things they never wear – and it gets increasingly difficult. You can repeat this process for as many days as you need – I did it for two weeks, so in all, I removed 70 items in total. I love that each day provides a fresh look at my closet. My set of five items on day 11 is being compared to a closet with fifty less items than my set of five items on day 1. It takes no more than 3 minutes a day, and it is infinitely less overwhelming than, saayyy…switching all of your hangers backwards or choosing only 20 things to wear in a season. Only requiring myself to choose five items a day gets me started, and really, that’s all I need.

Now, everyone is different. If you are a organization guru, and you have endless hours and patience to revamp your entire closet, that is amazing. You do you, and know that I envy your focus! But, if you’re anything like me and you a) never have 5 hours to spare for a closet makeover and/or b) would never spend an available 5 hours on a closet makeover, this is for you.

My goal in this endeavor is to fill my closet with only items I am excited about wearing at my current weight, in my current life. So that top you only wear on “skinny” days? It goes. Those jeans that are cute but stretch out in the knees when worn for more than 10 minutes? They go. The classic suit that you wore like every day to your finance internship three summers ago, but now you don’t work in a corporate environment so you never wear it? Maybe it gets put into storage, but it shouldn’t be taking up space in your closet. So far, I haven’t regretted a single item I’ve culled from my closet.

How do you go about keeping your closet organized?

All three pairs of jeans in the photo: AYR

Five Favorites: January 2016

January Five

Happy Year of the Monkey / 新年快乐! Maybe it’s just me, but I couldn’t be happier that January is over. Have you ever felt like instead of riding on top the wave of life, you’re getting pummeled by tides? That’s what happened to me in January. While everyone was talking about “starting fresh” and “stepping into 2016 on the right foot,” I was just trying to stay afloat! So, I’ve decided to celebrate Chinese New Year instead – better to start late than never, right? Anyway, all bad analogies aside, here are the five things I most enjoyed last month:

  • Red, White & Blue Jacquard Scarf from Zara (on eBay here, similar here): I bought this gorgeous scarf on a complete whim in Zara two summers ago (it’s worth noting that I am completely powerless against a beautiful scarf), and then never wore it. I loved looking at it in my closet, but I never reached for it. That all changed this month when I decided that this scarf went with everything and wore it 10 out of the 31 days in the month. I’m also wearing it as I type this. I’m obsessed.
  • Aveda Intensive Hydrating Masque: This mask has been a life saver this month. My skin has turned into a dry, flaky mess in the frigid New York winter, and one application of this a week sincerely helps. Plus, it smells lovely and feels so nice on the skin.
  • Urban Decay Naked Skin Powder Foundation: Due to the dry skin issue, liquid foundation has just been awful on my skin – it sits on top, emphasizes dry patches, etc., so instead, I’ve just been swiping on this super smooth powder foundation in the morning. If you’re in the market for a powder foundation, I’d highly recommend this one. I have the shade “Light Neutral,” but there is a wide range to choose from.
  • Maybelline Lash Stiletto Mascara: I’ve written about this mascara before. I love the long, thin wand, and it gives easy, natural length in one coat. What more can you ask for in a mascara?
  • theBalm’s Mr. Write Now Eyeliner in Bordeaux: I actually got this in an Ipsy bag, and I wasn’t excited about it at all initially, but I used it the next morning because it was the nearest eyeliner to my hand when I was in a rush in the morning, and wow, did this exceed expectations! Bordeaux is a gorgeous deep brown/purple, and it stays on all day without smudging. Win.

How is everyone this month?

xx, M


Masks: Not Just For Winter

Fresh Rose Face Mask & Perricone MD Chloro Plasma

Am I the only one who feels like I only do face masks in the fall & winter? No? Cozying up on the couch with tea, and a luxurious clay-based, exfoliating, or super-moisturizing face mask feels like a mid-January evening, rather than activity for the sweltering heat of a New York City summer. That being said, while my skin may not be peeling from the winter chill, it still needs some love in the heat!

I’ve been using this little duo over the past few months, and they are just so pleasant in the heat. I’ve liked the Perricone MD Chloro Plasma mask for detoxing my skin after a few days of hard workouts or spending a lot of time outside. Sweat can clog pores, and this green wonder-mask helps prevent any issues from this! It’s clay based, but it feels much lighter than any of the charcoal-based ones I tend to reach for in the winter. It goes on light green, and activates to a darker green, and I just love it.

The real star, though, is the Fresh Rose Face Mask. I don’t love floral-scented things, so I have resisted joining the rose-product party that has started over the past year, but this may just render my conversion. It is a lightweight gel that you can apply almost like moisturizer. It has a slight rose scent, and a refreshing cooling-effect on the skin, making it feel clean and balanced afterward.

Neither one is particularly exfoliating, but since I do have a little bit of a summer tan, I haven’t wanted to over-exfoliate anyway. I do love them though and would highly recommend them to all skin types!

Do you use face masks in the summer months?

Summer Nail Polish Picks

So, I just got back from vacation with my family. I was absolutely not ready to get back to work after a week on an island (who ever is?), but somehow a little polish on my nails makes me feel a little more put together and a little more ready for Monday! Despite using sunscreen every day, I did still manage to get a little color on the beach. I spent quite a bit of time in a beach chair, drink in hand – not a bad way to spend a week!

Some nail polishes just look better with a tan. Essie’sGrenadine is one of them. It walks the line between bright red and neon coral, and just looks stunning on nails in the summer. If you can’t find Grenadine, Fifth Avenue Red is very similar. By way of nudes, Topless & Barefoot is one of my favorites. It has just the right balance of pink and brown for my skin tone, and it is totally opaque. I know, Blanc is a typical pick, but there’s nothing more fitting for summer than crisp white. It’s a little unexpected, but still office appropriate, which I like! The only downside to white nail polish in general is its propensity to show chips, so I tend to use this for a one or two day occasion and then take it off.

The formula on all of these definitely lives up to Essie’s standard – two coats for opacity – with the exception of Blanc, which may require three if you want super-true white.

What do y’all reach for in the summer?

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