Bathrooms aren’t just for bathing – they’re also for showering, hand-washing, toilet use, applying makeup, fixing your hair, brushing your teeth, and for storing all sorts of beauty care products and other sundries. Bathrooms are some of the most-used rooms in your home – every member of your family checks into a bathroom multiple times each day. The irony is that bathrooms also tend to be some of the smallest rooms in the house. Because of all this, it’s really easy for a bathroom to become cluttered in a hurry!
A Simple, Effective Approach for Decluttering Your Bathroom
Is your bathroom starting to feel a little messy or cramped? It happens to the best of us, and it can sometimes feel a little overwhelming. The good news is that there are simple things you can do to take back your bathroom space, organize it for better use, and make it easier to clean and maintain. It doesn’t take magic; it just requires a little intentionality and effort on your part. And it all starts with some proper decluttering! Read on for 10 handy tips:
1. Start By Taking Everything Out!
The first thing you should do is to take everything out of your bathroom that isn’t attached. This includes things on the counter, things underneath, things in the shower/tub, things in the cabinets, on shelves, in baskets or bags – EVERYTHING. Try to place like items together by category. Then it’s time to sort, prioritize, and purge!
2. Daily-Use Items
Since there’s only so much space available in your bathroom, start by setting apart the stuff you actually use every day (like shampoo, soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, etc.) from the stuff you don’t. The basic rule of thumb is to keep your daily-use items out and easily accessible while finding other places to store everything else you want to keep. Purge any duplicate items, and get rid of anything you haven’t used over the past six months. And here’s a tip for preventing clutter buildup in the future – don’t add any new items unless you’re using them to replace old items.
Since your counter should still be empty, go ahead and give it a good cleaning before you start putting anything back on it. Try to maximize available counter space by only placing items on the counter that you love and actually use daily. Resist the urge to use your counter as a catch-all storage dump.
4. Drawers & Cabinets
Just as you did with the counter, go ahead and give your cabinets and drawers a wipe-down inside and out first. Then you can start replacing items that didn’t make it onto your daily-use list. Pro tip: store items by category, or consider placing items by designated space zones. This will make it easier to find what you need when you need it, and it will also improve your chances of keeping everything organized.
5. Medicine Cabinet
Not all bathrooms have medicine cabinets anymore. But if yours does – and if you actually use it to store medicines – then this is an area you’ll definitely want to stay on top of. After you’ve given your medicine cabinet a cleaning, decide which medicines you still use and want to keep. Be sure to double-check all expiration dates before placing any items back in the cabinet.
6. Makeup & Toiletries
Only keep the items you absolutely love and use on a regular basis; get rid of everything else. Some types of makeup do have expiration dates, so be sure and check those as well. Things like mascara, lipsticks, and lip balm can harbor bacteria over time, so these are items you really should replace every year or so, if not sooner.
7. Bath Towels, Linens, and Bathrobes
How to decide when it’s time to replace a bath towel, hand towel, washcloth, or bathrobe? Here’s a good rule of thumb to follow: If it has holes or tears, has become discolored, carries an unfavorable odor, or is just looking pretty worn – get rid of it. And if you’re looking for some luxury bathrobes that are plush, soft, lightweight, quick-drying, and make you feel pampered like no other, check out the signature collection from Jennifer Adams!
8. Hair Dryers & Straighteners
We know these items are probably a necessity for you, but they can also be awkwardly-shaped and somewhat bulky. Where to store them in a small bathroom where available space is at a premium? Try mounting a file organizer or magazine rack inside a cabinet door, or to the side of a bathroom sink. Haircare appliances fit inside beautifully, and this also opens up more usable storage space under your sink (or wherever you tossed these items previously)!
9. Use a Tray Organizer in Bathroom Drawers
Because of all the small items that tend to collect inside, drawers are often some of the most cluttered spaces in any bathroom. Tired of having to fish around for five minutes every time you need to find that special item which you KNOW is in here somewhere? You could add some dividers to your drawer space, or for an even simpler solution just place a plastic utensil tray (like the ones you use for silverware in your kitchen) in each drawer. Just be sure to store everything with like items, and you’ll never have trouble finding anything again!
10. Add an Extra Shelf
Now that you’re nearly finished with the bathroom decluttering process, you may find that you still have a few items that didn’t make your daily use list, but which you still need to keep somewhere. But where? The counter, cabinets, and drawers are all accounted for! No worries. Even if you don’t seem to have any available wall space for adding an extra shelf, you can always mount one over the inside of the bathroom door and turn it into a mini storage unit. Granted, this shelf isn’t easily accessed without a footstool, but it’s a fantastic place for keeping certain items put up and out of the way.
Have Fun Taking Back Your Bathroom Space!
We hope you enjoy taking these Tips for Decluttering a Messy Bathroom and running with them in order to successfully reclaim your bathroom space! If you’re looking for some more ideas about how to transform a tired bathroom in a single day, check out our recent article on the topic here. In fact, our entire Home Journal blog section is a great resource for home decorating, maximizing the use of your space, and helping to turn your home into someplace you truly love.