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Hanes opens the Nation's Drawers
Mar '11
What's hiding in the back of America's underwear drawer? Denial, anxiety and forgotten undergarments. So reveals Hanes research that sheds light into the usually dark spaces of our closets and drawers.

Virtually everyone hoards underwear and socks – despite the fact that most people wear only 70 percent of the items inside their drawers. According to a recent national survey commissioned by Hanes, 50 percent of Americans admit to stashing non-sock, non-underwear items into their clearly designated sock and underwear spaces.

To inspire the masses and help with a drawer organization overhaul, Hanes has enlisted star of Bravo's "Bethenny Ever After" Bethenny Frankel and Michael Moloney of "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition." Together, they'll make the case for why it's important to rid closets and drawers of the gently worn, the ridiculously uncomfortable and the out of style.

"Staying organized helps me save time and keeps me sane," said Frankel. "I need to be able to quickly get what I need from my drawers and know that, without a doubt, it's going to fit correctly and look good. While it's nice to keep old items for sentimental reasons, it's important to set aside time to purge, donate and replenish. You'll feel great afterward!"

Research shows there are significant emotional benefits to being organized and clutter-free. The task becomes less daunting when people realize that "drawer hoarding" is a universal behavior and they are not alone. But why do most people hoard? Research indicates that, for men, it's mostly about nostalgia (which may explain that stack of old concert tees or the pile of baseball socks that haven't been worn in 15 years) and inertia – it's a behavior that's become a habit. For women, it appears that hoarding stems from an innate fear they will be left in desperation on laundry day. There's also anxiety that, one day, a certain dress or top will require a specific bra they no longer have.

Highlights of the Hanes research include:

• Unused clothes are often pushed to the back or bottom of the drawer, where they remain forgotten for long periods of time
• More than one in five Americans keep a lone sock, hoping it's missing mate will eventually appear
• Drawer rotation is uncommon; people tend to put clean laundry on top and grab what's closest in the morning, which means they are actually only using a small percentage of what's taking up space in the drawer
• When people took the time to purge, donate and replenish, it ultimately saved them time, made them feel calmer and led to more productive shopping experiences because they had a better sense of what they liked and what they actually needed

Giving Unwanted and Forgotten Clothes a Second Life

Hanes has partnered with Goodwill Industries and its Donate Movement to educate drawer hoarders about the value of donating unwanted clothing.

"As an interior designer, I try to help people live in a clutter-free zone and show them that being organized does not need to be agonizing," said Moloney. "Many people tell me they avoid cleaning out their drawers because they don't know what to do with the items they don't need any more. Making a donation to an organization like Goodwill allows you to turn gently used items into opportunities for people in need of job training or support services."

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