We all start out with the bare minimum when moving out of home: a mattress, a set of sheets, a couple of mismatched mugs, maybe an IKEA kitchen starter kit (for the lucky few). But just like any good wardrobe, we gradually acquire basic home items (and maybe even décor accents!) that speak to our personality and our tastes, and make us feel at home—naturally, that means other items need to go. Somewhere in our 20s, we go from dorm room to adulthood in the time that it takes to say freshly pressed linens.
While there really is no true age for when it's no longer appropriate to hold on to remnants from our former college lives, there definitely are items that one should gradually let go on the journey to adulthood. And 30 is a great age to hit the reset button on our belongings and move into a new phase of life. Know a 30-something bachelor who definitely needs to get rid of his preloved futon and ratty towels? We list the worst bachelor-pad offenders all men should toss before turning 30—along with a handy replacement guide. Ironic beer mugs need not apply.
Toss: Your Old Box SpringTry: A Bed Frame
A mattress on the floor or on a box spring (without a headboard) hardly screams I have my life together. As an actual adult, it's time to invest in a real bed frame. It doesn't need to be fancy, upholstered, or tufted; it just needs legs (or hidden storage) and some kind of headboard.
Toss: Paper PlatesTry: Basic Dinnerware
No grown man should be eating on paper plates—unless he is tailgating or attending a kids' birthday party. It's better for the environment, and not to mention less embarrassing when you're cooking for someone new. Pick up a simple dinnerware set that you can keep for years and elevate your TV dinners.
Toss: Dark BeddingTry: Crisp Linen Sheets
There's something about dark bedding that feels a little teenage-y. You can't really tell what stains are hiding in the dark fabric, and after a few washes, the sheets tend to loose their color and look worn and faded. Sounds familiar? Upgrade to chic linen sheets in a light gray or white. They come in a naturally wrinkled look, so you'll never have to worry about ironing your sheets—because who has time for that?
Toss: Dry Cleaning HangersTry: Matching Nonslip Hangers
We love the fact that you send your shirts to the dry cleaner, but the hangers are not meant to be collected. Matching hangers are more than just visually pleasing—the nonslip types will also help your closet stay in check and organized.
Toss: Unframed PostersTry: Original Art
You really can't call yourself an adult with a capital "A" until you've thrown out all your posters—and that extends to mass-produced store-bought "art prints" too. The misconception is that original art is expensive, but it doesn't have to be. Some cool online shops are changing the game and offering original art from upcoming artists at seriously attractive prices.
Toss: Ironic MugsTry: Stackable Japanese Mugs
Ironic mugs may seem funny on the edge of your desk, but not so much when you're handing your new prospect a coffee in the morning. Instead, opt for chic and space-saving Japanese stacking mugs and practice your latte art skills.
Toss: Your Ratty TowelsTry: Matching Fouta Towels
Similar to dark bedding, there's really no telling what hides beneath those ratty forest-green towels. And if they feel more like an exfoliating glove than a towel, it's time for an upgrade! Fouta towels are great because they are thinner, dry more quickly, and take up less space—but they're still super absorbent.
Toss: Your Stained CoffeemakerTry: A French Press
Now that you have those fancy new stacking mugs, you may want to reconsider that warm brown water you call coffee. If you've had the same coffee maker since your college days, try upgrading to a French press. You'll never look back.
Toss: Branded Beer MugsTry: Matching Glassware
You love your collection of bar-themed beer glasses—fine. But outside of football season, you may want to invest in actual glassware so you can serve a swanky old fashioned in something other than the beer mug you grabbed from your college town's local dive. A set of highball glasses is a good start.
Toss: Your College FutonTry: A Streamlined Sofa
Who even owns a futon, anymore? You? Time to kick your sad seating to the curb and invest in a sleek sofa. The same goes for hand-me-downs and bulky reclining leather sofas (you know the type). Think more Mad Men and less 1980s man cave.
Toss: Your Makeshift CurtainsTry: Custom Window Shades
Bedsheets are not curtains—and let's not even talk about flags. There are also a few general rules to know about curtains: They must reach the floor (but not puddle) and be hung high and wide. When in doubt, play it safe with sleek roller shades—they are insanely convenient and well worth the investment. Better yet, places like The Shade Store have in-store experts and installers to take all the guesswork out of your window-treatment planning.
Toss: Plastic Folding ChairsTry: Real Dining Chairs
You know the plastic foldable chairs that you drag from your kitchen table to your desk and even your balcony in the summer? While we appreciate the versatility, it's high time to invest in actual dining chairs. If you're old enough to hold a dinner conversation, you should have comfortable chairs to match.
What other items should men toss from their bachelor apartments? Share your worst offenders with us.