Organize Your Bathroom {Day 13}


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This is the thirteenth day of my 31 Days of Living Well & Spending Zero challenge. To read all the posts in order, start with Day One or visit the Overview Page.

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Use these tips to organize your bathroom without spending money.

There is no room I dread cleaning more than the bathroom. Ugh! It’s not really the daily cleaning that I hate. Scrubbing the toilets and soap scum–although far from pleasant–are manageable, especially since I am a fan of daily speed cleaning to avoid any major bathroom nastiness build-up.

No, what I really take issue with is not the cleaning, it’s the keeping it organized. It is figuring out to do with all those “bottles of crap,” as Husband so lovingly refers to them, all the makeup and tubes of cream, all the hairspray and curling irons and flat irons (oh my!)  It’s the pile of towels and the extra toilet paper and the set of rollers that I’ve only used twice and the piles and piles and piles of ponytail holders and barrettes that seem to multiply while I sleep.

Organizing your daughter's hair ties and bows can be chaos.

So do you know what I do?

I completely ignore my bathroom.

The before picture of this bathroom drawer is messy and unorganized.

I clear the counters by throwing everything into a drawer or bin under the sink, then wipe it down and forget it. Until the next time I need a hair brush or tube of cream and have to face, once again, the disaster area that is my bathroom.

The before picture of these bathroom cabinets are disorganized.

Am I all alone in this?

But this month is all about being brave and tackling our vices and learning to love what we have, which means that taking control of this bathroom space is crucial. I tackled mine yesterday and today your assignment is to conquer yours. Today you are going to organize your bathroom!

I found that once I finally forced myself to get started, it really wasn’t that bad. I started by emptying all the drawers and cupboards in order to figure out exactly what I had. I made piles of like items and, as I went, threw away garbage, expired items, & stuff I knew I’d never use.

Once everything was empty, I wiped down all the drawers & cabinets, then cut some pretty scrapbook paper to line the inside of my drawers, which were all stained and water-damaged. I couldn’t believe what a difference such a small (and easy) change made! They’re so cute now! I used scrapbook paper because that was what I had, but you could just as easily use pretty wrapping paper instead.

I then set about finding storage solutions for all my stuff. Items that I need but don’t use that often–mani/pedi supplies, travel toiletries, sunscreen, etc.–went into gallon-size freezer bags, which I labeled clearly with a permanent marker then “filed” in a plastic storage bin I snagged from my pantry. You could just as easily use a box with the flaps cut off.

Using plastic bags and labeling items is a smart way to organize your bathroom.

I also needed to find a solution for all those hair accessories, which I loathe, but which we do use all the time. Inspired by my friend Jen’s 31 days of Good Enough Things series this month, where she is pointing out that not everything has to be “Pinterest Perfect,” I decided I could come up with something using stuff I had around the house. A large vase was turned upside down to hold headbands, a hurricane full of shells in my bedroom was emptied & filled with ribbons, & a few empty mason jars in assorted sizes worked perfectly to hold ponies and barrettes. I then converted an unused picture into a clip holder by wrapping the glass in a scrap of fabric and securing ribbons in place. Overall, the look is a little “busy” for my taste, but I don’t hate it and it gets the job done and it will work well for now until I can come up with a “cleaner” look that I truly love.

Use various mason jars to organize your daughter's hair accessories.

Once I had tackled all my “problem” areas, I easily found places for all the rest of the items in the newly cleared drawers and cabinets. I finished by re-wiping all the counters and sweeping the floor, and my bathroom honestly now feels like a brand new space!

The after photos of this bathroom show everything in its place and organized.

Now, after seeing my bathroom transformation, don’t you feel motivated to conquer your bathroom space? The biggest step is always just getting started, so to help make it less overwhelming I have another very detailed checklist for you to use today. Hopefully you’ve still got toner in your printer. 🙂

Use this printable checklist to get organized today.

{Get your Bathroom Organizing Checklist here}

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Do you keep your bathroom fairly organized, or are you a “stuff it in the drawer and forget it” kind-of person? Do you tend to accumulate a lot of products and hair accessories? What do you do with them all?

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{Go to Day 14}


  1. Anna
    October 13 at 10:31PM

    I love all your ideas! The paper is so pretty, it makes me want to do that to all my drawers right now. I love the upside-down vase for the headbands and the picture frame for the clips. The ziploc bags are a good idea too! I haven’t been able to do everything this week but this definitely makes me motivated to do my bathroom tomorrow!

    • Ruth
      October 15 at 11:21AM

      Thanks Anna. I really love the paper too & I couldn’t believe how simple it was.

  2. Bethany
    October 15 at 02:31PM

    Looks great! I agree the bathroom is the easiest room in the house to ignore but I LOVE when its nice and organized.

  3. April 24 at 12:07AM

    Hi, I know I’m commenting major late, but just found you and love everything on your site! I’m totally inspired to pare down, organize, and spend smarter/less. A tip that works for all my girls hair pretties as we call ’em. A fishing tackle box! All the compartments help you sort and organize barrettes, ponies, clips. Just bake sure the big part is wide enough for headbands. My first box wasn’t and I loved when I could toss them in their too. I also put a tin with my bobby pins in their with a couple of my boring plain black elastic ties so I don’t hunt for my stuff amid theirs. Then I hide the box under the sink, or on a shelf. If your box is big enough you can chuck in a hair brush and a bottle of detangler, and your have a kit all ready for the morning routines.

  4. meghan
    May 17 at 11:27PM

    I’m just like you. throw it all in the draw, wipe down counter and forget about it till I’m desperate for floss or a bobby pin. lol. I have those little baskets but getting everyone in the house to keep things where they belong is maddening. Even my linen closet is a wreck no matter the amount of baskets I use. I will try labels next to see if that helps everyone stay on board w/ the clutter. Love the paper. Such a pretty idea.

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