Break Up Your Beauty Storage


Let’s talk bathrooms. Many of us spend a substantial amount of time in there. It’s soothing and sacred, but also chaotic—hair products overflowing in their bucket, skincare essentials scattered across the countertop, and cosmetics packed to the brim in disorganized pouches. Or maybe that's just me? For the sake of my own sanity, I realized I desperately needed a new system. But when I plunged into the depths of Google looking for tips on how to organize my bathroom, I learned that many self-care products don’t actually belong in the bathroom in the first place. Its humid atmosphere is an unstable environment for products easily affected by moisture.

I might not be Marie Kondo, but I’m a girl on a mission. And it turns out, a fragmented approach to beauty product storage is actually the best move. Below, find a compartmentalized guide for all your self-care storage needs.

Dump & Give Away

Clear out your entire bathroom before you do anything else—cabinets, drawers, countertops, and every other nook and cranny. Any professional home organizer would force you to take stock of what you have so you can get rid of the dead weight, and spreading out all your items on a few towels is a great way to start. This process allows you to take inventory of what you have, and figure out what's no longer serving you. Long past expiration date? Toss it. Haven’t used it in six months? Dump it. Unused product that you just haven’t opened yet, and aren’t planning to open ever? Donate it. Plenty of charities, like Project Beauty Share and Beauty Bus, will accept unused or lightly used cosmetics.

The Easy-to-Reach Essentials

The most ideal home for your skincare products is a cool, dry spot. So if you have a medicine cabinet (one that’s sealed tightly to prevent shower steam from seeping in) store your products there. Medicine cabinets are easily accessible and convenient for the stuff you use on a daily basis, such as cleansers, moisturizers, and SPF. To make things even easier, you can group your products by function. For example, if you put cleansers, masks, and exfoliators on the bottom shelf, and serums, moisturizers, sunscreens and on the middle shelf, it helps remind you what order to use them in.

If you don’t have a medicine cabinet, you could store your skincare products in your bedroom to avoid the humidity, on a vanity tray or this two-tier free standing stackable organizer shelf. Another safe option? Inside the fridge.

Makeup, Brushes, And Tools

Makeup should also be stored in a dry, cool environment. Instead of keeping cosmetics on your bathroom sink countertop, opt for storing them on a dresser or vanity in your bedroom. Make sure to keep your makeup out of direct sunlight, as the warmth from the sun can cause some products to separate or even melt.

Concealers, spongy Beautyblenders, contour kits, and tools are different shapes and sizes, so look for a makeup organizer that can accommodate them all. It’s easy to lose track of what you own, but clear plastic containers keep everything visible. The stackable construction of this makeup storage kit allows for a range of items, from cumbersome eyeshadow palettes to narrow brow pencils, to find their perfect place. If you have drawers in your vanity or desk, you can use that space to organize your makeup products with expandable drawer organizers. Another practical option is just keeping everything in a makeup bag, which is easy to carry into the bathroom each morning or bring along with you if you’re on the go.

The Works: Bath, Body & Hair

Organize bath, body, and hair care products together, because you’ll use them all while you’re in the shower. Since these products exist comfortably in humidity, shampoos, conditioners, and body soaps can be stored inside your shower in a caddy, so they’re easily accessible. Post-shower items, like lotions, body oils, and leave-in hair products can be placed in the cabinet beneath your sink. This Bathroom Cabinet Starter Kit, made in collaboration with professional organizers Clea Shearer and Joanna Teplin, includes everything to make your bottom shelf storage dreams come true.

If you’re a DIY enthusiast who’s not afraid of handiwork, install open shelving above your toilet—a space that’s often underutilized. Unlike how you’d hide stuff under the sink, the trick here is crafting an aesthetically pleasing appearance. Try these rattan baskets, which provide ample room for large bottles and containers without looking messy.

Overflow Goes Here

Overflow items are the things that won’t fit into your more accessible spots, products you bought multiple of but don't need just yet, and travel-sized products you’ll use on your next vacation… whenever that is. We’ll need those little bottles one day! Overflow can be tucked away beneath your sink in concealed bins, alongside the bath, body, and haircare products mentioned above.

Got all that? Let’s get to organizing.

—Lauren Tappan

Photo via ITG