Do you have a closet full of guilt? You’re not alone. Guilt is the big reason why women don’t clean out their closets — letting an average of 22 never-worn items languish on hangers.

That’s according to a study conducted by shopping channel QVC U.K. — but I’m guessing American women keep similar numbers of unworn clothes in their closets. Men are also guilty, keeping an average of 19 unworn items in their closets, according to the survey. 

Why so many clothes? Impulse shopping is the most common reason, according to the survey respondents. Why keep clothes that won’t be worn? Guilt over money wasted is the big reason for that one — though keeping unworn clothes in the closet isn’t going to put that money back into your wallet.

There are other reasons for clothes hoarding, too — reasons that you might find uncomfortably familiar. Daily Mail reports: “41 percent insist they are planning to lose weight before getting some use out of their unworn outfits. Some 17 percent are hoarding particular styles in the hope of a fashion revival.”

I honestly don’t have any unworn items in my closet, but I do have a number of rarely worn items that I occasionally take out, wonder if I should get rid of and then put back. Most of these are accessories — like scarves I rarely remember to wear — or very dressy clothes, like gowns only appropriate for black tie events. But I’m somewhat proud to say that I have fewer unworn items than the average woman. Partly because I rarely impulse buy clothes, partly because I have a tiny closet, and partly because I have a distaste for clutter, I rarely buy items that I don’t have a need for. I also often cull my closet — and donate or exchange the no-longer-loved fashions.

If the unproductive and space-stealing fashion hoarding described in the QVC U.K. survey seems to describe you, I have a quick and fun solution: Throw a fashion swap party! My friend Anastasia had one yesterday — and I got to purge my closet of fashions I'm tired of while having a fun afternoon of hanging out with the girls and trying on different outfits. Plus, I left the party with three new-to-me fashion pieces — free! One of those is a cute, red-and-white spring dress that had never been worn. It’ll finally get its debut when the weather gets warmer in L.A. 

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The 22 unworn items in your closet
The average woman owns 22 items of clothing she'll never wear. Men too are guilty of useless fashion hoarding, keeping 19 unworn items in their closets.