Komono Breakdown, Part 1: CDs, DVDs, Skin Care, and Makeup

Here's your first installment of the Marie Kondo komono breakdown. Like everything else in The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, she says there's a proper order to tidying the KonMari way. Komono is no different. Here are your first three mini-komono categories.

CDs and DVDs

I also add 8-tracks and cassette tapes because I actually have some of these relics. My cassette tapes are special to me because they were the first pieces of music I bought as an angsty teenager driving around in my first car. There are only 3 of them however and I keep them in a little box next to my now downsized CD collection.

When I started I had spindles and spindles of CDs and DVDs from the Dark Ages when you had to burn music to a CD to play it in your car (post-cassette tape era). But, we now live in a digital age where things like music and movies can be digitized.

If You Keep It...

Make a space for it.

I have a narrow shelf that holds my CDs and a little box for the cassettes. My DVDs are inside a little four-drawer organizer that’s just DVDs. I have several TV-series boxed DVDs, plus all the Harry Potters that take up two drawers.

How to Recycle CDs and DVDs

DVDs are easy enough to take to a thrift store or pass along to friends, but those CDs are difficult. Most people don’t use them anymore, especially all those “mix-tape” CDs. Your best bet is to go to the CD Recycling Center website to see if there’s a company near you, or send them directly to the center through the mail.

Skin Care Products

Most of us have a few products that we use everyday. My skin care routine is rather minimal. At night I use witch hazel on a wash rag to scrub my makeup off. This lives right under the sink in the front where I can easily grab it.

I also discovered I had an overabundance of lotions. Lotion is one of those sweet gifts people give, but they’re not used fast enough before the next gift exchange comes around and you wind up with a stockpile. Or you get one that has a scent you don’t like, or it’s too oily or it’s too watery.

Pick your favorites! Keep them somewhere you will think to use them. That way you remember you have them (and hopefully use them) so you don’t wind up purchasing more and just adding to the Lotion Conundrum.

If You Keep It...

Make space for it (this is going to be a broken record I know).

Keep your skin care products together if possible. I don’t keep all of mine together, but I do keep my witch hazel near my makeup, since that’s what it’s removing. I keep my lotion near my bed on the front of my night stand only because that’s where I’m more likely to use it. Maybe you’re good about putting lotion on right out of the shower. If so, keep it near the shower.

Whatever you do, as Marie Kondo points out, it’s preferable things in the bathroom are easily accessible but also hidden. This cuts down on the mental clutter. It also keeps things cleaner. It is a bathroom after all.

Use your medicine cabinet or drawers. If you have shelves, I recommend using containers to tuck things away.

How to Recycle Skin Care Products

If you have some full lotions, re-gift them. Or, if you work in an office, take them to work. Put them in the bathroom there or somewhere communal. It will get used up eventually. Offices tend to dry out everyone’s hands.

Most skin care packaging is recyclable. As long as it’s empty and rinsed out things like lotions and soaps and cleansers should be okay to rinse out then place in your curbside recycling. As long as it has a #1 or #2 on it, it should be ok.

If you’re unsure, Johnson & Johnson has a quick help guide that shows what can and cannot be recycled.



This includes:

  • Foundation
  • Powders and bronzers
  • Makeup brushes
  • Eye makeup
  • Lipstick
  • Nail polish, nail polish remover, nail tools
  • Makeup remover
  • Any other makeup stuff I'm not even aware of!

I have to admit I’m not a big makeup user, but I do wear it. I’m pretty plain with just foundation, powder, and blush. Since I wear it everyday, I keep those items and the brushes that go with them in my medicine cabinet.

Then I have makeup for special occasions, like eye makeup, lipstick, and my nail polish. Those things live in a cabinet next to my sink in their own little bins.

For awhile I subscribed to Ipsy.com, a makeup and perfume delivery service that sent you a small bag filled with sample goodies every month. I think I wanted to try it because I don’t wear makeup that often, so I thought maybe I could learn some stuff. In any case, I had samples that didn’t really work for me. When I first went through all these little things I felt guilty I hadn’t used them. It was wasteful. At the time I didn’t know about some of the recycling services out there, because I wound up tossing most of the samples into the trash. Even if I had used them, I still had an empty tube or packet that needed to go somewhere, which was usually the trash.

If You Keep It...

Yep, make space for it.

Sometimes gathering what remains together gives you a better idea of the type of container you need. Maybe you have a little box or container sitting around already. Maybe you want certain pieces of makeup for daily wear like me. Sometimes it helps to choose where you ideally want something to go, then finding that container that will fit perfectly. Those containers will find you. And you don’t need to spend much money, if any.

How to Recycle Makeup

Did you know nail polish is hazardous waste?!

I never knew that. So if you have any nail polish bottles they need to go to a hazardous waste disposal place. Your county should have a local drop-off and it should be free. Mine is just like a drive-thru. You drive up, someone comes over, you hand them your things, and drive off. Takes about 30 seconds.


Origins Stores Recycle Everything

I thought most makeup was basically non-recyclable. But did you know, the company Origins recycles all makeup packaging? Apparently they started the first ever recycling program for makeup!!

Mail-In Your Makeup Packagin

What if you don’t live near an Origins store? There’s a mail-in program at Terracycle. They take most empty makeup packaging. There’s a wait list for the program right now, but it is free!

Brand-Specific Recycling Programs

Some companies have recycling programs specifically for their products:

Consider the Packaging

Think about switching up your makeup purchases. There are companies out there offering more enviro-friendly products with less packaging, like Sephora, Smashbox, Tarte, even Mary Kay!

Stay tuned for the next komono breakdown!

Happy Tidying,


KomonoDanielle KlenakComment