Bathroom closets can be wonderful storage places for all the things you need in your bedroom and bathroom, if the closet is large enough. Some of the closets have shelves that are long and narrow. Other closets have great shelves, but also have large caverns of empty space at the top or the bottom. It’s important to make the most of the space in your bathroom closet available so you can store the necessary items and find them quickly when you need them.
Here are my best tips to organize your bathroom closet
Gather your supplies
You will need a garbage bag to hold things you are removing to either toss or recycle.
Another bag or box to hold anything you are donating.
And a small box or bag to contain things that don’t belong in the bathroom closet.
You will also need a cloth to wipe off the shelves. The way I figure it is if you are going to all this trouble to organize your bathroom closet you may as well clean it.
Organize your bathroom closet one shelf at a time
It’s so much easier and less overwhelming when you tackle a project like this in small bites.
Remove everything from the top shelf.
Sort the contents into things to keep and things to recycle, toss, or donate.
Wipe off the shelf.
Think about the things you are keeping.
Do they all belong in the bathroom closet?
Put anything that belongs in another room aside. You will deliver those things to where they belong when you are finished organizing your bathroom closet.
Follow these steps for every shelf in the closet starting with the top of the closet and working your way down, one shelf at a time.
Things to keep in the bathroom closet
Keep the obvious bathroom essentials like toilet paper, feminine products, extra toothpaste, toothbrushes, dental floss, extra shampoo/conditioner, and any other extra products you use regularly.
Be mindful of how many extras you keep. Sometimes we like to try a new product and if you have a backlog of extras that can be problematic. As you are sorting through each shelf in the bathroom closet remember to ask yourself if you still use this product. If it’s something you no longer use, donate it.
How to organize these bathroom essentials
If space is at a premium, store an (as in only one) extra of the products you currently use in a holder on the inside of the bathroom closet door.
You can use a clear shoe holder that sits on the inside of the bathroom door or an Elfa Pantry door organizing unit. This storage unit works equally well on a bathroom closet door.
Use the cavern at the top of the bathroom closet to hold extra bed pillows or extra bedspreads/duvets. Contain these things in large Ziploc storage bags.
Stacking drawers are great to use in the extra space under the bottom shelf to organize bathroom closet. Be sure to label the contents of each drawer so you can easily find the product you are looking for. These drawers are great for things like bandages and hair accessories.
Sheets and towels
I store my sets of sheets stacked one on top of the other. The rule I follow is one set on my bed, one in the wash, and another in the closet. It’s always good to have a clean set available, just in case.
You can also store sets of sheets by folding them small enough to fit inside a pillowcase. That ensures the set is all together and easy to grab when you’re ready to change your sheets.
I stack towels together by type. All washcloths, hand towels, bath towels, and bathmats are stacked individually in my bathroom closet.
Another way to keep towels is to roll them. This method saves space if the shelves are not very deep.
As you sort through and reorganize your sheets and towels remove any that you no longer want or that are too worn. Schedule time to donate them to your local veterinarian or animal shelter.
What should not be in the bathroom closet
Medications should not be stored in the bathroom as the moisture in the air can damage the medication. Keep medication in a dry place. My recommendation is a shelf in a cupboard in the kitchen. If you have young children, be sure that the shelf is out of their reach.
Like every other area of your home the bathroom closet has the potential to become disorganized from time to time. When you notice that things are starting to look messy or be out of place take control and reorganize those spots. Use the Organize Your Home 10 Minutes at a Time deck of cards to easily regain order.
For more tips like these sign up to receive my monthly newsletter and/or follow me on Facebook and Instagram.
Diane N. Quintana is a Certified Professional Organizer® ,a Certified Professional Organizer in Chronic Disorganization®, Master Trainer and owner of DNQ Solutions, LLC and co-owner of Release●Repurpose●Reorganize, LLC based in Atlanta, Georgia.
Love the process you describe for organizing a bathroom closet! It’s one of the projects I enjoy helping clients to do because it’s so satisfying. Most often, a lot of items can go. They are either expired, not useful, damaged, or belong elsewhere. The process of organizing like with like is also valuable because you can see what you have and can stop overbuying. Labeling helps too, especially when the household has multiple people in it. Gets everyone on the same page for retrieving and returning items to their “homes.”
Thank you, Linda!
I am a big fan of over-the-door storage units, especially small bathrooms. This post is super timely for anyone with company during the holidays.
Thank you, Sabrina!
If you are lucky enough to have a bathroom closet, it is a gem! Sometimes this is in the hallway, which is nice, because then you don’t have the moisture issue that you mentioned.
We have some cabinets in our bathroom, but no closet. I think a lot of these tips are helpful even in a cabinet! Seems like there is never enough storage in this busy room. I am thinking about putting a lazy susan in one of the cabinets that sits on the counter because we have a lot of bottles in there.
Such a rewarding little project!!
Great idea, Seana!
I don’t often wish for a different layout in my home, but I am often dismayed at the lack of a bathroom closet. I have a three-shelf cabinet high on the wall for extra grooming and care items; and cabinetry under the sink for cleaning supplies, but with no bathroom or linen closet (the house in which I grew up had BOTH), bedding and extra towels have to be stored in the bedroom closet. There’s adequate shelving, but you have to remember to move towels into the bathroom so the the laundry-storage-prep cycle ensures everything wears evenly.
And yes, vertical storage is the best! Great tips.
Thank you, Julie
Great tips and product recommendations. Storing sheets in the pillow cases is a great way to prevent them from falling out when getting in and out of the linen closet.
Thank you, Janet!