Step 2: Examine Your Products
1. Special occasion items. As you look at each item, ask yourself why you love it so much and how it makes you feel. Write down what comes to mind: “glamorous,” “brings out my eyes,” “makes me feel like Audrey Hepburn,” whatever. When you’ve gone through the whole pile, look at your sheet. You may notice certain patterns. At the bottom, summarize your findings. Write, “I love things that…” and fill in the blank.
2. Items you use everyday. This pile can teach you which styles, colors, and functions not only work on you but are also versatile enough to be used in a variety of situations. On your sheet, write, “The products that work best for me are...” and fill in the blank.
3. Things you never use or expired items. Again, notice your patterns. Do you buy pick-me-ups that languish at the bottom of drawers? Did you fall for a trend or let the sales girl convince you that the specially formulated lotion would change your life? Make a “Never Buy Again” promise list that includes characteristics of products from this pile, i.e. too-bright colors, products that take too much time and effort to use, items that overpromised, etc.
4. Things you might use more if… Go through this pile and be honest. Maybe you think that perfume is too nice to wear anytime except a first date. Perhaps you’ve been keeping that special serum around so eventually, someday, you’ll get in the habit of using it in the morning. Try to move a third of this pile to the “never use” pile.
5. Duplicates. For certain categories like eye shadow and nail polish in the exact same colors, you probably will only get around to using one up before the rest go bad. So choose the one of the highest quality and throw the rest in the “never wear” pile. Keep items you really will get around to eventually, like extra face lotion.