With 2015 drawing to a close, it's time for people nationwide to dig out their household cleaning products, grab a pair of rubber gloves and don a face mask before dusting, sweeping and scrubbing their living spaces from top to bottom to ensure they are spotless come New Year's Day.

Called ōsōji (big cleanup), the ritual is traditionally performed at the end of the year, offering households an opportunity to reset and begin the new year afresh.

As almost everyone knows, however, this gargantuan task is far easier said than done. What items should people consider throwing away? Who's brave/stupid enough to volunteer to tackle the kitchen? Is it ever possible to get oil stains out of a treasured pair of gray pants?