Although you spent more time in your bedroom than any other room in your home, it’s often the most neglected when it comes to practical design and thoughtful decoration. Just because it’s a private space that your guests don’t get to see, doesn’t mean it can double as a dumping ground for clothes (clean or dirty), clutter, and dingy decor.
The biggest single thing you can do to improve the look of a bedroom (and get a more restful sleep) is to take these nine items out of it.
Pillows That Don’t Bounce Back
Are your pillows past their use-by date? To find out if you should replace your pillow, fold it in half and if it doesn’t spring back into shape, it’s probably past its prime. Keep only those which are fresh, fluffy, comfy and help you get a goodnight’s sleep. Find out how to buy the best pillow, based on the type of sleeper you are.
Your Random Garbage
It turns out your mother was onto something when she used to make you clean your messy bedroom — there is no excuse for the disorder. A messy space can lead to anxiety and poor sleep. Throw out your old knick-knacks, papers you don’t need, other items that don’t serve a purpose.
Books You’ve Already Read
Yes, sometimes hardcovers are excellent conversation starters, but your bedroom isn’t a place where guests really visit. Divide them into piles for friends and family, then trash the rest.
Are your dresser and drawers filled with old make-up, perfume, and toiletries that you know you’ll never use again but can’t bear to throw in the trash? Scientists from the London Metropolitan University tested products that were past their prime and found traces of harmful bacteria in four out of five — which is just another reason to make sure you chuck yours once they expire. Arrange the perfume and make-up you do use every day neatly, using decorative trays and storage vessels.
Clothes You Never Wear
Sort your clothing into “keep,” “donate” and “trash.” Everything torn, saggy, shrunken, old, moldy, smelly, or stained goes straight into the trash. Everything too big, small, or unfashionable qualifies as donations. Throw away the clothes that don’t suit you — even if you think of them as old friends. Keep only things that present you in the most flattering way.
Like your cell phone from ten years ago, your outdated laptop, an alarm clock that doesn’t work – if you’re not currently using it, out it goes. Don’t let it sit in your wardrobe collecting dust.
Your Overflowing Laundry Basket
When it comes to laundry, don’t keep it in your bedroom. Pop it in a basket a bathroom, or laundry where you can attend to a little every day, which means you will never have to look at huge piles again.
In this case, just gently close the door in front of your four-legged friend. Why? Well, one study found that 30 percent of participants who slept with a pet woke up because of them, 63 percent had poor sleep quality, and five percent said they had trouble falling back asleep. And, no matter how clean your pet is, a duvet covered in pet hair is not good.
Your Cell Phone
Ban these from the bedroom. They’re literally dirtier than a toilet seat. Reading on your phone also makes it harder to fall asleep at night, leading to less-rested sleep. Plus, it exposes you to radiation. This way you can also eliminate cord-clutter from your bedroom as you won’t be needing chargers plugged in next to your bed.
This article originally appeared on our sister site, Homes to Love.