Ever since I’ve been on a minimalist journey, I have been able to simplify my life a lot. This includes my material possessions, as I have been decluttering regularly for years. I now realize that there are a lot of things that I do not own now as a minimalist, that other people tend to have in their home.
I find it interesting to do an audit of the things I have. It helps me be more intentional about the things I decide to keep at this point in my life.
That’s something that can benefit you if you want to live more simply and let go of some of your belongings. It will make you realize what you like and what you don’t like.
Here is my list of 20 things I do not own as a minimalist!
These are things that I purposefully choose not to have to live more minimally.
But also because I want to live more sustainably, and producing excess and unnecessary stuff has a big impact on the planet.
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20 things I do not own as a minimalist
1 – Seasonal decorations
I don’t own any seasonal decor because I don’t want to store things for a whole year to only use them for a few weeks. I don’t find it is worth it.
If I fancy decorating a little for Christmas, I will borrow a few decor pieces from my parents, but that’s it.
I do not ever decorate for Easter, Halloween, the New Year, or any other event.
I love looking at seasonal decorations in other people’s houses or the store, but they’re not for me.
2 – Exercise equipment
In my home, you cannot find any work-out equipment, because I never work out at home.
I don’t have any yoga mat, any weight, or other exercising equipment. If I want to work out, I go outside, go walking for a few miles or ride my bike.
I don’t think that we need a lot of equipment to have a great work out session.
There are thousands of videos online that can teach us how to exercise at home, with no fancy equipment.
3 – Special event clothing
I never buy party clothes or clothing that I will use for just one event. I only own one elegant little black dress that I love to pieces!
It is super functional, I can dress it up or dress it down.
And I have never felt the need to wear something else when a special event or a party came up.
4 – High heels
I think that everyone does, but I hate uncomfortable shoes. I find that most high heels fall into this category.
They’re not functional nor practical, and they hurt my feet at the end of the day. If I need to wear a fancy pair of shoes, I can wear my black flats.
I also have two pairs of boots that have a smaller heel which is more comfortable. Nobody should suffer for a pair of shoes, right?
5 – A dryer and dryer sheets
In France, where I live, very few people own a dryer as we’re more used to air-drying our clothes.
I have never used a dryer in my entire life and don’t plan to. I love air-drying clothes either on my balcony or on a drying rack inside when it’s too cold out.
This also means that I never buy dryer sheets which saves waste at the same time.
6 – An iron and an ironing board
One of the things I do not own as a minimalist is an iron. I never iron my clothes. Like, ever. I don’t mind if my clothes are a little bit wrinkly.
If I want a piece of clothing to look perfect, I will let it dry on a flat surface and it does the trick.
I’m happy to live like this because I don’t want to have even more chores to do, so if I can skip one, I will!
7 – A conditioner
I don’t own any conditioner and have never used one. I have never understood why so many people use one after washing their hair.
Of course, some types of hair require the use of a conditioner, but not everybody needs to use it.
I don’t want to put more chemicals on my hair and body, so I only use shampoo to wash my hair. I’m used to doing that and my hair has always looked good.
8 – Air fresheners
I never have air fresheners at home because I find they’re all full of nasty chemicals.
Using them can put our health at risk, potentially causing asthma, headaches, skin problems, or worse.
It is important to stay away from these harmful chemicals if you want to make your home healthy and non-toxic.
If you want to refresh the air in a room, open the window or diffuse some essential oils instead.
9 – Conventional cleaning products
Like air fresheners, conventional cleaning products aren’t good for our health. And I don’t want to bring pollutants into my home.
I also don’t want to support companies who make us think that we need a cleaning product for every possible surface in our homes.
We don’t need different products to clean kitchen counters, windows, sinks, or the stovetop.
10 – Specialty kitchen gadgets
I do not own any toaster, coffee maker, blender, waffle maker, food processor, rice cooker, or any other specialty kitchen gadget.
Kitchen appliances take up so much space in kitchen cupboards!
Not owning them makes my kitchen easier to tidy and clean, which is what I prefer as a minimalist.
11 – Cookbooks
While I love the idea of a cookbook, I do not own any because I know that I would never use it.
I have some go-to meals that I like cooking and I don’t need a cookbook to make them. And if I want to change things up and cook something new, I usually go online.
I can look for great recipes, according to what I want to eat and what ingredients I have in my pantry and fridge.
12 – An air-conditioning unit
I know that, in the United States, most people own an air-conditioning unit.
But in Europe, at least in France where I live, we usually don’t have any AC in our homes as the heat is rarely unbearable.
If it’s too hot, we’re used to opening the windows or plugging a fan to cool the room down.
I actually tend to get sick every time I’m near an AC and it uses a lot of energy to run, so I don’t plan on owning one anytime soon.
13 – A fancy phone
I own an old smartphone which is 6 years old and I got it as a hand-me-down.
It is not perfect and doesn’t have any fancy functionalities, but it does everything that I need at the moment.
I only use it to make calls, send text messages, take pictures, and browse the web. I don’t need it to do anything else, so I plan on keeping it until it is no longer usable.
14 – Mobile data
As I mentioned in the previous point, my phone isn’t anything fancy. I also choose to have a very basic mobile plan.
It includes unlimited text messages, 2 hours for calling, and only 50 Mo of data.
But I always use the Wi-Fi at home, and I rarely check the internet when I’m out, so it is enough for me.
The great thing is that my mobile plan only costs me 2€ per month, which saves me tons of money each year.
15 – AirPods
If I want to listen to music, I always use traditional earphones. I don’t understand the trend of AirPods.
I get it, it is way more practical than normal earphones. But I don’t think that it is healthy to put Bluetooth devices into our ears, right next to our brain.
We don’t know the long-term effects they can have on it, so it’s better to be safe than sorry.
While I understand the appeal of AirPods, I choose not to own any for health reasons.
16 – A smartwatch
Smartwatches can be very useful as they have many functionalities.
But this is something that I choose not to own because I don’t need any. I have a normal watch that I rarely use but that I still love.
And I find that my phone is a multipurpose tool that does everything I need. I wouldn’t be able to justify having a smartwatch.
For me, it would be another piece of technology I would need to care for, and I don’t want to.
17 – An e-reader
An e-reader is a great minimalist item because, once you have one, you don’t need to store any physical books anymore.
However, I prefer reading physical books. I love the texture of the paper when I’m reading, there’s something special to it.
That’s why I don’t plan on getting an e-reader anytime soon, even though it’s super practical, especially when traveling.
18 – Cable TV
I have never paid for cable TV in my entire life. I find that it is always very expensive, and I cannot justify paying for it as I wouldn’t spend enough time watching it.
Instead, I have the basic channels that my TV offers.
But my favorite way to watch a TV show or a movie is through Netflix, which is affordable and offers a great selection of entertainment.
19 – CDs and DVDs
As a minimalist, I do not own any CDs and DVDs because I always look for music and TV shows or movies on YouTube and Netflix.
It is a blessing that the internet allows us to do so many things, all in one place!
Thanks to it, we can now declutter all the CDs and DVDs, because we can find all these media online.
Of course, if you love yours, keep them. But I choose not to have any as they take up so much space in my home.
20 – A car
Not owning a car is not doable for most people, but at this time, I don’t need any.
I live in the city so I can walk or take public transportation everywhere, which is very practical.
Not to mention that walking or taking public transit is a more eco-friendly way to travel!
And for the rare occasions when I need a car, I can borrow one from my parents which I’m super grateful for.
I love this lifestyle because owning a car can be very expensive. You have to pay for maintenance, repairs, parking, gas, and insurance.
There you have it! I hope that this list of 20 things I do not own as a minimalist could inspire you in some way!
My goal with this is to help you become more intentional with your material possessions and decide what you do not want to own.
Excess clutter to manage can be overwhelming! Practicing minimalism and decluttering the things that don’t add value to your life is a great way to live more simply.
If you want more inspiration, check this list of 70 things you can get rid of in your home, to embrace minimalist living.
Tell me in the comments, what things do you purposefully choose not to own? I’d love to know!