We’ve all been there. No matter how hard you try to avoid it, somehow an underwear drawer always ends up in a scary place. You may even dread cracking it open because who knows what explosion of cotton, lace, and spandex awaits. The mess and confusion only becomes worse as you rummage around the drawer looking for the right pair. Various life events and everyday activities call for different undergarments, and it’s important to be able to have everything you need, right at your fingertips.
But, how?! The best thing to do is Marie Kondo your underwear drawer.
What Is The KonMari Method™?
Ok, so you can’t actually “Marie Kondo'' anything, because although that has become a colloquial thing to say, Marie Kondo is a person, not a verb. However, you can use her KonMari Method™ to organize everything in your home, including your skivvies. If you haven’t read the book or watched the popular Netflix show, “Tidying Up With Marie Kondo,” The KonMari Method™ was created by Japanese organizing extraordinaire, Marie Kondo. It encourages tidying by category – not by location – beginning with clothes, then moving on to books, papers, komono (miscellaneous items), and, finally, sentimental items. This approach requires that you keep only those things that speak to the heart, and discard items that no longer spark joy. Thank them for their service – then let them go.
“Life truly begins only after you have put your house in order,” says Marie Kondo. Ok, but let’s start small –– like the underwear drawer. With that in mind, the first step is to go through all your undies (Yes, holes, stains and all!), decide what sparks joy, and thank the rest for its service before sending it to the Great Underwear Beyond.
What Type of Underwear Do You Need?
Before straightening up your drawer, start by purging any ill-fitting, uncomfortable, hole-y, pairs of underwear. Wondering how many pairs of underwear you should have? We suggest no more than two weeks worth. That should be plenty to wear between weekly or bi-weekly washes, and consider that it makes sense to have a few neutrals and at least one darker color.
Once you’ve gone through the exercise of cleaning out your underwear drawer, it’s time to organize what’s left, and make a shopping list of what needs to be replenished after the big purge. After you’ve gotten rid of unwanted items, it’s time to sort by type. For some, separating full coverage underwear from thongs is enough. If you prefer to take it to the next level and sort your briefs from cheekies, go for it. Like to organize your undies by color? Now is the time to get your rainbow on. We like to categorize by activity and occasion.
The essentials are your everyday workhorses. They’re typically moderate to full coverage, made from a breathable fabric, and don’t get too hung up on frills. Choosing a few pairs with leak and sweat proof capabilities ensure that your undies can go the distance during the day. This category will likely comprise the bulk of your drawer, so make sure to prioritize being full stocked. How many pairs? A good rule of thumb is at least a week’s worth, but if you’re someone who hates laundry … Well, you might want to have a few spare pairs.
The Special Occasion Set
Special occasion panties embody both form and function. They need to simultaneously be invisible under your outfit, while also feeling a little dressed up. Comfortable enough to wear for hours, sweat leakproof to keep you dry on the dance floor, and pretty enough to make an appearance at the end of the night.
The One Night Stands
Not to be confused with your elevated pairs of Special Occasion, the one night stands are for those nights you hope to remember but often forget.
The Activewear Pair
Why would you have special sports bras designed for exercise, and not also have specific underwear for workouts and active days? Sure you could pull a pair of essentials into the mix, but they might not cut it. Depending on your workout schedule, you’ll definitely want to include a few pairs of leak resistant and moisture wicking undies to keep you comfy and dry.
The Period Panties
Ok, we ALL have an area in our drawer where we banish our largest, oldest pairs of granny panties for that special time of the month. But, maybe in the spirit of joy, it might be nice to have leak proof period panties you actually want to wear. Afterall, your period doesn't mean you have to stop feeling like yourself!
The Final Step: Containment
After you’ve sorted the underwear you’re going to keep, and splurged on a few fresh pairs, the last step is to put it all back in a way that reduces the chances of it getting out of control again. It’s important to be able to see everything at once, so it’s best to figure out a drawer organizing system.
If you’re looking to contain your bras and underwear further than inside the drawer, you can use drawer organizers like this or this to keep your categories together. Looking for something simple? Purchase drawer dividers that will keep your categories separated and free from collapsing on each other. Like with any product, measure your drawers first to make sure that your product will fit in the designated area.
When it comes to folding your underwear to maximize space in the drawer, fold them in half by bringing the bottom of the underwear to the waistband and then into thirds. Once you have them sorted and folded, you can fold them in the drawer so you can see all of your pairs front to back.
You can create zones within the drawer for the different categories, making sure you bring all the most worn pairs to the front for easy access.
Though it can seem daunting, taking the time to purge, sort, and organize your underwear drawer can spark some unexpected joy. Underwear is usually an afterthought because we never see it, but investing in quality undies that look good, feel great, and are functional can create a foundation of confidence for your whole outfit.