Skip To Content
  • Viral badge

"Throw It Away!": This Professional Organizer Is Going Viral For Calling Out The Everyday Items In People's Homes That Belong In The Garbage

If you, like me, are putting off spring cleaning, these tips can help you get started the easy way.

Spring is in full swing, but if you're anything like me, you might still be putting off spring cleaning your home.

I've always been a bit of a clutter bug, but I'm reeeally trying to do better (just please ignore the dirty mugs and piles of old mail on my desk, okay?). 

Recently, I came across a viral video series by 25-year-old Allyson Cartwright (@WonderlandAllys). Cartwright is a professional organizer based in Baltimore, and she's taken to TikTok to share the bite-sized decluttering tips that I (and thousands of other viewers) desperately needed to see this spring.

Woman in a sleeveless top smiles at the camera, a phone interface with various icons is overlaid, indicating a social media app

In her videos, Cartwright will typically call out three things you probably have cluttering up your home that she thinks you should just throw away. She explains at the start of one video, "I use the phrase 'throw away' as a blanket statement. So please donate items that can be donated and recycle items that can be recycled. But some things belong in the garbage can, and that's okay."

Person holding a cardboard box labeled "DONATION" filled with various folded clothes

In the video that started the series, Cartwright urges people to throw away the old electronics boxes taking up space in their closets, piles of old mail (she got me on this one), and clothes that don't fit. She explains, "It is so beyond unhealthy to have clothes in your closet that you feel like you need to shrink or grow into. Have clothes that fit you and make you feel good."

The video got over 1,800 comments, with many viewers begging her to do a part two.

In subsequent videos, Cartwright shares many other things around your house that you can absolutely get rid off, like expired beauty products. She says, "Lotions and makeup do expire, and they can harbor some pretty gnarly bacteria. So give yourself permission to get rid of the things that you're not using." She even made a video showing her method for decluttering beauty products, and it's really practical and helpful.

Woman with long hair smiling at camera, wearing a green top, in a social media screenshot with interface elements

In other videos, Cartwright suggests getting rid of expired food and medications, stained or holey socks and underwear, wire hangers, those random cables that you're not even sure what they're supposed to be used for, and excess pens.

For some of these items, like medications and beauty products, she says you may want to look into safe disposal practices, as some things aren't safe to toss in your regular old garbage can.

As someone who tends toward clutter, I love how Cartwright's videos break down what can be an overwhelming process into bite-sized three-step chunks. I can easily follow her instructions in about a half hour or less, and it honestly feels great to eliminate some of the extra junk that I've been holding on to for way too long.

I wanted to learn more about her approach as a professional organizer, so I reached out to Cartwright via email where she explained her process to me. First, she says she always starts organizing a home with the bedroom. "I like to equate the bedroom to the 'head' of the home. When your bedroom and closet area is super cluttered and overwhelming, this has a huge impact on your own mental clarity."

A cluttered room with clothes strewn across the bed and floor

Once the bedroom is in order, she moves to the kitchen. "I equate this to the 'heart' of the home because it is generally a coming together point in the house. When your kitchen is super cluttered and overwhelming, it's easy to feel shame or embarrassment. No one deserves to feel that way!"

Kitchen sink and counter cluttered with unwashed dishes and utensils

From there, it really depends on your goals and your particular home. She advises, "I find it’s best to visualize your goals and how you want to operate within your space. It’s hard to achieve a goal if you don’t know what it is."

And if getting rid of things brings up difficult emotions, Cartwright can definitely empathize. However, at the end of the day, she says, "I've never had a client tell me that they regretted getting rid of the things that weren't serving them!"

She also shared one thing that you might think is helping you get organized when it's actually just contributing to the clutter. "The biggest misconception that people have about organizing in their homes is that they need to buy fancy organizing products to get the job done. I think this narrative is pushed heavily by social media."

Assorted stackable storage bins and drawers in a home organization setup

Finally, she says, "A lot of people equate professional organizing services to cleaning services, but I like to think of it more as a home renovation. Instead of regular maintenance, it's more about building new systems that better serve your lifestyle. And I don't have to tear down walls to make it happen!"

Now I'm curious: are you doing any spring cleaning or decluttering this season? What kinds of things do you plan on getting rid of? Let's talk about it in the comments!