How to Organize Makeup in a Small Bathroom

Bathrooms will never be the most spacious room in your home, but some are definitely smaller than others. If you're a makeup aficionado, that can pose a pretty big problem. Where do you keep all that makeup, and how do you avoid feeling claustrophobic in your bathroom? As it turns out, there are several research-backed methods you can use:

If you want to organize your makeup in a small space, you will need to use tools that can make it easier for you. Some of the more important organization tools to consider buying include:

  • A Wheeled Cart
  • A Shoe Rack
  • Elegant Bins
  • Pencil Holders
  • Makeup Cases
  • Plastic Shelving
  • Spice Racks

Organizing your makeup doesn't have to be a nightmare. In fact, using the right supplies can even add a touch of elegance to your bathroom. To help you learn how each method can make the most of your makeup space, we're going to break down how to use each tool for artful compact storage. 

Two small white bucket containers with small makeup brushes and a round mirror, How to Organize Makeup in a Small Bathroom

Space-Saving Methods For Makeup Organization

Finding the right storage options is all about choosing the right tools. The right tools will have features that make storage a cinch. In that sense, it's a lot like finding the right shower for easy bathroom cleanliness or even getting the right equipment for a carpet cleaning session. We're going to make things easier by showing each option and why it'll work well for you.

A Wheeled Cart

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If you have a lot (and I mean a lot) of makeup, the easiest way to store, organize, and transport it is using a small, multi-tiered cart. This makes it easy to separate your makeup by section, use cups, baskets, and dividers to parse out your makeup storage, and also move your cart around from room to room. 

Don't have that much makeup, but still have more than the norm? Use one rack for towels, instead.

Click here to get a tiered wheeled cart from Amazon.

A Shoe Rack

A makeup kit filled with makeup materials, foundations, lipsticks and eyeliners

Shoe racks can be an excellent makeup storage tool, particularly if you choose over-the-door plastic models. Each pocket in your shoe rack can hold a different makeup category, brushes, and more. Some manufacturers are even catching onto this trend by creating hanging makeup kits with an add mirror in the middle. 

These are good options if you want to keep your makeup away from sources of water or if you want to keep makeup out of sight. We suggest getting a rack that's mildly transparent so you can see your makeup pieces easily. 

Click here to get a pair of shoe racks from Amazon.

Elegant Bins

A small basket with make up, lipstick, blush-on and a scented candle on the side

One of the easiest ways to lose the cluttered look that having tons of makeup tends to show is by storing your makeup in elegant bins. Wire bins, when used properly, can have a modern and sleek look. Of course, many other makeup aficionados prefer to stick to cloth bins to reduce clutter. 

Unlike other options, this can be combined with other storage tools like carts and cups. To make your bathroom look extra chic, choose a cloth bin pattern that matches your decor.

Click here to get a trio of cloth storage bins.

Pencil Holders

White small buckets filled with brushes for make up and a small round mirror on the background

If you've ever gotten a makeover at a mall, you may have noticed that the makeup technician stored his or her makeup brushes in a pencil holder cup. This is a great organizational move and can actually make it easier to access the right brush. Like with other storage options, you can use this alongside other options. Snazz it up by choosing a pattern that works with your bathroom theme.

Click here to get a makeup cup from Amazon.

Makeup Cases

A small purse with women's make up and lipsticks on a bag

Makeup cases are a classic go-to, and rightfully so. They are stylish, designed to hold makeup, often come with vanity mirrors, and best of all, they're portable. If you have a massive collection of makeup, you can stack them, and you can also get them color-coded. For tiny bathrooms that don't have much room, you really can't get a better solution.

Though there are tons of makeup cases that you can choose from, Caboodles tend to be the best brand. They literally come with niches for each major makeup type, are made of durable plastic, and also come with a stackable design.

Click here to get a Caboodles case from Amazon.

Plastic Shelving

A woman arranging her stuff in the bathroom cabinet

Have you ever gone to a nail salon, only to notice the plastic shelves that are nailed to the wall, keeping all the little polishes safely stored? There's nothing saying you can't add a little salon aesthetic to your bathroom. If you want to do this aesthetic type, you can usually get a nail polish shelf premade online.

Click here to get a nail polish shelf from Amazon.

Spice Rack

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If you need something more substantial in size that still has a similar structure to nail polish racks, then get a spice rack. Spice racks have a caddy-like appearance that offers more space for your bigger, bulkier items. This is a good way to store larger makeup items like setting spray, blush, BB cream compacts, and shimmer lotion. 

If you use this option, make sure that you store it away from your toilet, sink, and shower. Your goal is to minimize your makeup's exposure to moisture, after all. 

Click here to get a spice rack from Amazon.

Where Should Makeup Be Stored In A Bathroom?

One of the things many people forget about makeup is that it needs to be stored properly to remain safe for use throughout its lifespan. Excess humidity, high temperatures, and excessive temperature fluctuations are all bad news for your makeup. At times, even storing your makeup in light can be a bad decision. 

Many experts believe that makeup should not be stored in the bathroom because of the constant influx of moisture and rapid temperature changes. However, it is possible to store it inside your bathroom while minimizing damage. To make your makeup last as long as possible, we suggest storing it close to the floor, away from your sink and bathtub.

Keeping your makeup on the bathroom counter is not ideal, simply because it's so open to all the temperature fluctuations and moisture droplets from your bathroom's daily use. If you have a place where you store your cotton towels, such as a cabinet near the door, that's often the best place in the bathroom to store your goods. Even so, you might want to consider storing your cosmetics in a linen closet near (but not in) your bathroom.

Where Should You Store Your Makeup Brushes?

Makeup brushes are a little more lenient with their storage options than makeup itself. The big concern that you need to keep in mind is that you have to avoid moisture droplets from your toilet and shower. High moisture levels encourage faster bacterial growth and can also put your brushes at risk of fungal growth. 

If you want to ensure that you get the most from your makeup brushes, try to seal them in an airtight container away from the sink or toilet. So, if you use a brush cup, then place the cup inside a covered cloth bin. If you're not that big into cloth bins, it's better just to pack them in a plastic bag.


Owning makeup is a lot like eating potato chips: you never stop at just a single item. Knowing this, it's important to find cases that make it easy to store your makeup. To find the right storage option for yourself, you will have to take a look at your makeup collection's size, components, and requirements. From there, you'll be able to narrow down which technique will work best for your bathroom.

Though most people choose to store their makeup in the bathroom for convenience's sake, it's important to realize that this is not ideal. In fact, most makeup experts actively advise against it due to the potential for humidity exposure, fecal matter transmission, and temperature fluctuations that can occur. That's why the best place to store makeup in a petite bathroom is outside of it.

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